The upgraded 2014 Toyota Hilux diesel manual is no better off-road than its predecessor, but the $62,790 SR5 that's been in 4wdNewz's hands is a nicer vehicle to be in and around. For example, satellite navigation and a reversing camera, its lens mounted in the tailgate, are now standard. The navigation unit includes SUNA real-time traffic updates. These items are useful, but both can be all but unusable when bright sunlight filters into the cabin, obscuring their screens. That's a widespread problem, not just Toyota's.
A 6.1-inch touchscreen display audio shown in the photo (right) is standard on all models, but not all have the satnav. Also standard is Bluetooth hands free capability and voice control for the audio and phone. An integrated USB AUX jack is standard; two USB devices can be plugged in at any time. All Hiluxes now come with cruise control, and steering-wheel controls for Multi-Information Display (MID) trip data, the audio and phone.
4WD Hiluxes now have standard Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and Active Traction Control (A-TRC). The traction control, coupled with skilled driving – or perhaps blind good luck – got the 4wdNewz SR5 out of a potentially nasty situation in a spot of unexpected soft ground.
Here's the thing about the 2014 Hilux: despite its age, compared to newer rivals, it continues to be a comfortable, competent vehicle that gets the job done. An old adage in the business community is that nobody ever got sacked for buying an IBM. We feel the same way about the Hilux, despite the 340Nm of torque from its diesel being well below most rivals. In practice, it hardly feels disadvantaged.
The V6 petrol is next up on the 4wdNewz drive schedule.