Toyota Hilux VN Turbo

The Hilux is the choice of nany contractors and people who actually need pickup trucks for their utility and not as a lifestyle vehicles. Alot of people who just want to experience a 4WD truck for the occasional light offroad trek and the frugal diesel engine tend to dismiss the Hilux because of its weak engine – only 100 horsepower and 260Nm of torque. This is thanks to the mild tuning of the engine, so mild that it does not even require an intercooler.

This could change. A more powerful version of the Hilux has just been launched in Thailand and its called the Toyota Hilux Vigo VN Turbo. The biggest change is highlighted in the name – it has a Variable Nozzle Turbo, also known as a Variable Geometry Turbocharger, similiar to the unit you can find in the Ford Ranger TDCi.

Two engines are available – a larger 3.0 VN Turbo (1KD-FTV) putting out 163 horses and 343Nm of torque between 1,400 to 3,200rpm, and a smaller 2.5 litre unit (2KD-FTV) making 144 horses and the same 343Nm of torque, this time over a narrower peak torque band between 1,600 to 2,800rpm. All engines are intercooled. These engines are Euro III engines (okay, so they may not end up being available here) and are B5 diesel capable.