Toyota March 29, 2017

The Toyota HiLux Tonka concept has been revealed this week, paying tribute to the popular ute’s top sales ranking in Australia last year, along with the 70th and 80th birthdays of the Tonka and Toyota brands respectively.

Based on the flagship SR5 double cab variant, the HiLux Tonka concept features a number of off-road upgrades along with an eye-catching black-and-yellow livery.

2017 Toyota HiLux Tonka Concept Exterior and Interior

The design team have not only made it look like a Tonka toy with its yellow paint scheme and chunky tyres but have also improved its off-road capabilities with some serious special additions and accessories.

Starting with a standard HiLux SR5 the team added modified bodywork including a new front bumper, grille and carbon-wrapped bonnet with “power bulge” to give it a Tonka look. The ride height was raised by 150mm for better ground clearance and a high-riding axle, heavy duty suspension and 35-inch tyres were also added to help make it a serious rock crawler.

Underneath the front end is a 6mm thick alloy bash plate designed to protect the 2.8-litre turbo diesel engine, especially its oil sump. There are also side rails to protect the body. Completing the front end changes is a roof-mounted LED light bar housed with a roof pod along with a snorkel for water crossings.

At the back Toyota has added a new carbon-wrapped tailgate that incorporates a spoiler and a pair of vents for improved airflow. The tray features a removable framework that can store the spare wheel, fuel cans, a fire extinguisher, jack, axe and shovel as well as additional storage boxes.

Inside the tub, the HiLux Tonka concept features a removable tubular frame which helps secure diesel fuel cans, storage boxes, fire extinguisher, axe, shovel, high-lift jack and a spare wheel.

2017 Toyota HiLux Tonka Under the Hood

Powering it is a 2.8-liter engine, the output of which remains unkown. However, that unit is good for 174 horses and 420 Nm (310 lb-ft) of torque in the production version of the Hilux, and can work in conjunction with either a manual or an automatic gearbox.

Unfortunately for fans of the HiLux Tonka concept, it’s not destined for showrooms anytime soon. It will be touring 4WD shows, field days and expos around the country, giving young fans and the young-at-heart a chance to get up close and personal with the rugged ute.

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