Toyota has unveiled the international 2016 Fortuner in Thailand. The SUV is scheduled to launch in India later this year or by early next year.
Looks wise, the 4X4 does not in any way resemble its predecessor. It is based on the same platform as the Hilux pickup truck. The fascia looks the most radical with its sleek LED headlights and LED DRLs and also with the Lexus-like three-slat chrome grille nestled between two thick chrome bars. The front bumper has a wide air dam in the middle and is flanked by the chrome-lined fog lamp assembly with the lamps positioned deep within the assembly. Moving to the sides, the circular wheel arches have now been replaced by U-shaped ones. The most striking features however are the floating roof and the sharp elevation of the chrome-wrapped beltline at the rear which then descends, attaining a linear path as it moves along the tail gate. The rear is equally sleek as the front, and slender LED tail lamps are joined by a chrome strip just above the license plate holder.
Interiors look more modern, thanks to the use of premium materials and chrome inserts. At the center of the dashboard is a 7-inch touchscreen with navigation and DVD, MP3, USB, AUX, Bluetooth compatibility. Higher variants are expected to get leather seats and four-spoke multi-function steering wheel as well as automatic climate control, rear AC vents, cruise control, 8-way electrically adjustable driver seat and electrically operable door mirrors. Safety features abound in the 2016 Fortuner with dual front airbags, side and curtain airbags, ABS with EBD, ESC, Hill Start Assist, DAC (Downhill Assist Control) and reverse parking camera with sensors. These are a lot of features and it is yet unclear which of these will make their way in to the Indian version.
Changes are vast under the hood too. The new Fortuner will be getting the new GD range of engines which will replace the 2.5-liter and 3.0-liter diesel units found in the current model. A 2.4-liter turbocharged engine will replace the 2.5-liter unit, it is expected to produce figures of 148 bhp/ 400 Nm. The 3.0-liter will be replaced by a more powerful 2.8-liter mill churning out 175 bhp of max output and a mammoth peak torque of 450 Nm. These engines will be mated to either a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission depending on the variant.
The new engines will be assembled in India and hence the pricing is expected to be competitive. Once launched, it will take on the likes of the Ford Endeavour and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.