Off the beaten track lies adventure. The off-roading enthusiast, for that reason, is looking only for the best off-road cars in India. Today, we look at Toyota Hilux and Fortuner, and find out what draws off-roaders to them.
In this article, we will share
- What an off-roading enthusiast looks for in a car
- Toyota Hilux vs Toyota Fortuner – an in-depth look at their top variants, features, and off-roading capabilities
- How to pick the right car for you
Both Toyotas are based on the same mechanicals and thus, highly reliable. However, the Hilux is a pick-up truck while the Fortuner is an SUV. Therefore, the latter offers greater comfort, particularly if you are carrying more than 2 adults.
But for those off-roading enthusiasts who have a young family, or are single, Hilux offers the same qualities at lower price.
What an Off-roading Enthusiast Looks for in a Car
Here’s what to look for in a car as an off-roading enthusiast:
- Drive system – What drive system does the vehicle have (FWD, AWD, or 4X4)
- Ground clearance – the car should have high ground clearance to tackle uneven terrains
- Low range gearing – the car should have low range gearing to allow the vehicle to drive at lower speeds while still operating the usable power band/RPM of the entire engine
- Locking differential – the vehicle should have differential locking for better traction when driving on soft, muddy or uneven surfaces
- Engine power and torque – the engine should have adequate power and generate enough torque
- Safety – safety features are important, especially when traveling through challenging terrains
- Comfort and convenience – the vehicle should offer good comfort, as well as convenience features
An offroading enthusiast prioritizes rugged durability, power, and specialized features for tackling rough or diverse terrains like mud or sand, or even water-wading.
Essential attributes include a powerful engine with responsive torque, 4WD capability, a high ground clearance, and significant approach and departure angles. Differential locking and low-range gearing are additional advantages for challenging terrains.
Lastly, safety features such as ABS, ESC, and traction control ensure confidence on unpredictable paths.
Why Toyota Hilux and Fortuner are Popular
Both Toyota Hilux and Toyota Fortuner have made a mark in the off-roading community. Their robust build quality combined with Toyota’s reliability makes them preferable choices for both mild and serious off-roading.
The Toyota Fortuner, known for its formidable road presence, comes with an impressive ground clearance and a powerful engine. Its 4WD variant, especially, is praised for traversing challenging terrains with ease, and is among the top SUVs for off-roading in India.
On the other hand, the Toyota Hilux, popularly dubbed the “indestructible truck,” has globally showcased its mettle in harsh environments. Its engine performance, combined with impressive off-roading angles and 4WD, makes it a genuine contender for offroading adventures.
Toyota Hilux and Toyota Fortuner Variants Shortlist in Rs 37-40 Lakh Range
For Toyota Fortuner, we have:
|Variant||Price (INR) as on 21 August 2023|
|4X2 Diesel AT||₹37,37,000|
For Toyota Hilux, we have:
|Variant||Price (INR) as on 21 August 2023|
Toyota Fortuner 4X2 Diesel AT
Though equipped with a robust engine and safety features, its FWD configuration limits its offroading capabilities. We have also compared the Fortuner with Skoda Kodiaq for off-roading enthusiasts.
Toyota Fortuner 4X4 Diesel
A strong contender, this variant boasts a 4WD system, enabling it to handle rugged terrains more proficiently. Its impressive torque and power are assets for challenging paths.
Toyota Hilux High
As far as off-roading vehicles in India go, this variant stands out with a capacious boot and comprehensive off-roading attributes like good approach and departure angles. Its 4WD drive type ensures it remains a top pick for offroad enthusiasts. You can read our comparison of the Hilux with Isuzu V-Cross for off-roading enthusiasts.
Toyota Hilux High AT
Combining the strengths of the ‘High’ variant with the convenience of an automatic transmission, this option provides an excellent blend of power, functionality, and ease of driving.
Our Pick for the Best Variant Among Toyota Hilux and Toyota Fortuner for Off-roading Enthusiasts
The Toyota Hilux High AT stands out as the best choice. Not only does it have the vital 4WD system, but it also combines the offroading strengths of the ‘High’ variant with an automatic transmission.
Its torque and power are akin to the Fortuner, yet its specific offroading angles and features edge out its sibling. The automatic transmission is a boon for those who frequently switch between city driving and rugged terrains, ensuring comfort without compromising on the adventure.
The Top 3 Choices
- Toyota Hilux High AT
- Toyota Hilux High
- Toyota Fortuner 4X4 Diesel
|Attribute||Toyota Hilux High AT||Toyota Hilux High||Toyota Fortuner 4X4 Diesel|
|Boot capacity (liters)||435||435||296|
|Engine – power (BHP)||201.15||201.15||201.15|
|Engine – Torque (Nm)||420||420||500|
|Low range gearing||Yes||Yes||Yes|
How to Pick the Right Car for You
- Both Hilux variants provide comprehensive offroading features, with the AT variant adding ease of driving.
- The Fortuner 4X4, while powerful, is a tad behind the Hilux models in some offroading metrics.
For the offroading enthusiast, these three choices ensure thrilling adventures backed by Toyota’s reliability.
If you’re interested in reading more such face-to-face comparisons of popular car variants, head over to our Buying Advice section.