This article first appeared on MotoringNZ.com.
Wondering what a Hilux modified by Gazoo Racing could look like?
Toyota has released a Hilux GR Sport for the 2022 model year, but only for availability in the Japanese market. The GR Sport label is different from the full GR – this truck has a more rugged appearance, but the mechanical attitude is unchanged.
Even so, the mostly visual upgrade is certainly eye-catching, with a body kit including revised wheel arches, grille and bumpers and new black 18-inch alloy wheels.
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A center section of the front bumper provides a smoother, color-matched look, paired with a ‘TOYOTA’ grille to align it with the new GR Sport edition of the Land Cruiser 300 wagon which was due out here now but has been suspended until ‘see you next year.
While the powertrain remains unchanged, foreign media claim that engineers at Gazoo Racing have made an effort with the chassis to provide a “dedicated suspension (tuning) that improves steering response and enables a flat, comfortable ride.”
As with a Hilux Revo GR Sport unveiled for the Thai market in recent months, the Japanese market Hilux GR Sport gets a new interior look with synthetic leather and suede upholstery, sport front seats, dark silver highlights, badges and GR Sport instruments, sport pedals, and paddle shifters.
Toyota New Zealand has not commented on the model, although of course it already offers a seriously bulky Hilux specifically for this market – the new Mako, which is based on the SR5 Cruiser and costs $ 79,990.
Unique fender flares, side steps with ‘Mako’ logos, T Custom Sports Guard non-slip deck covering, shock-absorbing soft-close tailgate and sturdy rear bumper were developed especially for this model.
Inside, the front seats are replaced with higher-back, reinforced motorsport-style items (similar to Gladiator’s gravestone seats), trimmed in fully customized leather by a local supplier. It also gains a bespoke steering wheel and leather center console cover.
The things that make the Mako noticeably different from the donor are the suspension – a full set of Old Man Emu BP-51 shocks – 18-inch Black Rhino rims sourced from the US and Maxxis Razr 265/60 off-road tires. .
Mako’s brake set is also reinforced; Larger 15mm rotors and four-piston calipers taken from the Fortuner SUV.