The rampantly popular Toyota HiLux is getting a more affordable little brother.
Speaking with South African website IOL, a Toyota South Africa executive said the new ute would sit in a similar space to the HiLux, but would undercut it on price.
The upcoming ute will launch in 2025 or 2026, and will be aimed at developing markets around Africa, among other places – small, affordable utes are popular in Latin America, where Toyota doesn’t currently offer anything smaller or cheaper than the HiLux.
Toyota won’t follow the same path as the likes of Fiat, Volkswagen, Chevrolet, and Renault by rolling out a smaller car-based pickup with a payload around 500kg in those markets, though.
“It won’t be a half-ton [ute],” Toyota South Africa vice president for sales and marketing Leon Theron recently told South African media, as reported by IOL.
“We believe it will take the market by storm and are still doing a lot of development around it.”
What the new ute will look like isn’t clear, although Toyota may have provided a hint with the IMV 0 concept shown alongside an electric HiLux in Thailand.
That car was a modular vehicle, thought to be built on a version of the ladder frame underpinning the HiLux.
At the time, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda (who’s since been replaced at the top) said: “I truly believe this is a product that can enhance the quality of life for many people and provide new economic opportunities”.
On the outside, the IMV 0 bears a close relation to the Compact Cruiser concept. Down back it wears a long tray to go with its single-cab, although the modular nature of its design means a range of body styles could be offered.
It’s not electric-only, based on comments made by Mr Toyoda at the car’s reveal.