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Global Compact Truck Comparison – Time to Update Toyota Compact Pickups?

Pickuptrucks.com had another mid-size truck shootout and this time the competition was between trucks not available in the U.S. Many Toyota fans might expect the Hilux to mop the floor with the other competitors, but this was not the case at all. Is this a trend for all compact Toyota pickups? Is it time for the alarm bells to sound at Toyota?

Global Compact Truck Comparison

Is it about time or past time to for Toyota to update their compact pickups?

The competition took place in Australia and pitted the Hilux SR5 against some of its primary competition—the Volkswagen Amarok Highline, Ford Global Ranger XLT and Holden Colorado LTZ. Given the opportunity to put a handful of trucks through their paces, they jumped at the chance.

The trucks were judged in four areas—on-road, off-road, design and total value. As far as scoring, top performers in each category were awarded 10 points, runner-up got 9, while third and fourth received 8 and 7, respectively. Clearly, this method makes it difficult to account for close calls. Also, PUTC was open that the testing was not as comprehensive as they would have liked.

Still, they hit mud pits, water crossings, steep gravel and rock courses. They pushed the engines over asphalt and gauged tight handling situations.

What did they find? Well, most notable was Toyota finishing dead last. It only managed a third place off-road score, hitting rock bottom in everything else. The Ranger took top billing, falling to third in the value category primarily because it’s the most expensive. Other than that, the Colorado, Amarok and Ranger juggled the high scores, and left the Hilux in the dust.

The Ranger was noted for it’s response, handling and well-isolated cabin. It demonstrated no shortage or torque and the engine never sounded to be working hard. The biggest knock on the Colorado was its on-road body roll, but it’s hard to fault a pickup for handling like a pickup. The Amarok was the worst off-road performer, straining on inclines, but posted 9’s in every other category. Of the four, the Holden Colorado is the only one scheduled to be introduced to the US-sometime in 2013.

What can Toyota take away from this? Well, the Hilux hasn’t seen much alteration since 2005 when the current generation was introduced, while the other’s have. It remains the most popular pickup of its class in Australia, with a devoted fan base and the highest resale value. In all fairness, the Hilux was the only competitor with a gasoline engine, while diesel is the fuel of choice in Australia. This fact has some Aussies clamoring that their champion was setup to fail.

In any event, Toyota still rules down under, but it could be a good time to upgrade before the Hilux’s status starts to wane. It’s anticipated that the Holden’s arrival will challenge the Tacoma’s place atop US sales. We’ll see. Whatever the circumstances of the test, though, if public perception changes so might Toyota’s hold on an increasingly competitive market.

Here’s how the trucks placed, first to last:

  • On-road: Ranger, Amarok, Colorado, Hilux
  • Off-road: Colorado, Ranger, Hilux, Amarok
  • Design: Ranger, Amarok, Colorado, Hilux
  • Value: Colorado, Amarok, Ranger, Hilux

Final scores: Ranger (37), Colorado (36), Amarok (34), Hilux (29)

Related Posts:

  • Chevy’s New 2013 Colorado – What To Expect
  • Toyota Tacoma Wins Pickuptrucks.com Midsize Shootout
  • Toyota Tacoma Still the Most Popular Compact Pickup in U.S.