Thailand and Japan have now received GR Sport-branded Toyota HiLux models, though Australia misses out for now.
“Toyota Australia is continually looking at opportunities to expand the Toyota GR range with more exciting models however at this stage, we have no announcements to make,” said a spokesperson for Toyota Australia.
The Japanese-market HiLux GR Sport receives some suspension and aesthetic tweaks, though as is common for GR Sport vehicles there’s no extra power on tap.
It bears a close resemblance to the Australian-market HiLux Rogue, albeit with body-colour wheel arches and a largely body-colour nose.
The Toyota badge on the grille is also swapped for a Toyota wordmark, à la the LandCruiser 300 Series GR Sport, while it rides on dark-finish 18-inch alloy wheels with red brake callipers behind the front wheels.
Under the skin, there’s a revised suspension tune which, according to a translation of Toyota’s press release, “improves steering response and realises flat and comfortable driving”.
Inside, there’s a unique red-accented, leather-wrapped steering wheel with GR badging and paddle shifters, as well as metal pedals and front sports seats.
The seats are upholstered in a combination of leatherette and suede and feature red contrast stitching, while additional GR logos can be found in the interior.
In Japan, it commands a premium of 430,000 yen ($5223) over the Z grade, which is similar to our SR5.
The launch of the Japanese HiLux GR Sport follows that of the HiLux Revo GR Sport in Thailand.
Available in either a dual-cab 4×4 body style or, as is quite popular in Thailand, a lower-riding 4×2, the Revo GR Sport features a raft of aesthetic enhancements.
There are black exterior accents, a metallic black sports bar, red front brake callipers, and a unique grille and 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels, as well as sticker decals on the rear and sides.
The 4×2 model has also been lowered by 23mm, while Toyota Thailand says the 4×4 has a new monotube shock absorber.
Inside there are Smoke Silver accents, metal pedals, suede upholstery with red contrast stitching and GR logos.
Toyota offers a wide range of GR Sport vehicles in the Japanese market, including the Voxy and Noah people movers and the Prius hybrid, but the sub-brand is also expanding beyond its homeland.
Earlier in 2021, Toyota Indonesia released a GR Sport version of the Fortuner SUV with unique wheels and restyled front and rear bumpers.
It also features similar cosmetic tweaks inside to the HiLux GR Sport.
In Australia, only the C-HR and all-new LandCruiser 300 Series have received the GR Sport treatment.
The C-HR gets racier styling and a firmer suspension tune, while the off-road-focused LandCruiser GR Sport takes an entirely different tack.
Developed as a base vehicle for the Dakar Rally, it has unique exterior trim including a gloss-black mesh grille and black accents, while inside there’s an available red-and-black colourway.
Underneath, there are front and rear differential locks and Toyota’s electronic Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System, which can independently lock and unlock the front and rear stabiliser bars.
Like the flagship Sahara ZX, it also includes adaptive suspension and adaptive high-beam. However, it shares the same 3.3-litre turbo-diesel V6 with the rest of the line.
MORE: Everything Toyota HiLux