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Hilux towing capacity

  • By Graham Smith
  • Herald Sun

Sunbury, Vic


Until recently I was very happy with my 2009 Toyota HiLux SR-5, it looked good and was great to drive, but then a mate told me that the transmission temperature light in his similar vehicle came on when towing his caravan. Three weeks ago I went on holidays with my caravan and, sure enough, my transmission light came on as well. These vehicles are quoted as having a towing capacity of 2200 to 2500kg, which makes me ask why they have an issue when my van weighs approximately 1700 kg. Adding to my concern two other owners have told me that this is a common problem with the HiLux. I have contacted Toyota and the dealer, but Toyota has chosen to disregard the issue saying they haven't had any problems. The dealer, however, admitted that there had been "some complaints" and said Toyota won't fix the problem until they have a certain number of complaints. Has anybody else had this problem?

Graham Smith
Ask Smithy


We asked Toyota to look into your case and, while they haven't yet reported back to us, they told us they would investigate it. In the meantime to solve your problem it would be best to fit a transmission oil cooler.

Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 5 comments

  • Have 2010 hilux auto tow 1900 kg van never use high gear tow in 3rd , 90kph 2500revs around 6ks per ltr no light has ever come on even traveling in the Kimberly region and NT. Spoken to many mechanics say even manuals should never use overdrive gear hilux or cruiser man or auto

    Jim henderson of West Aus Posted on 02 September 2012 10:21pm
  • I have had the same issue in a hilux and was told the same thing by pennant hill Toyota how interesting

    I was on a trip last week towing 1.1t camper and it came on a couple of times were I had to stop and wait

    Think I’ll make another phone call

    Anthony Pepin Posted on 20 March 2011 5:57pm
  • If Toyota Hilux is advertised as having towing capacity of 2250kg in Australia (that mean towing from Hobart to Darwin 24/7 365 days) without any modification or expenses to the car owner. Anything less is false advertising. I expect more support from all motor writers too.

    Janusz Godyn of Ringwood Posted on 12 February 2011 11:55pm
  • I have a new Prado automatic, transmission overheats with a 2200kg boat on every hill, same engine? same transmission, apparently a common problem though initially denied, Toyota recommend using manual going up hills keeping revs up (in the manual!), they offer an adjustment to the computer to fix this in auto, and/ or to fit a transmission cooler. Mine is OK with cooler fitted now.

    Grant Coulter of Christchurch, NZ Posted on 21 July 2010 10:02pm
  • toyota are a bit pigheaded when you enquire about a problem I have 2007 Aurion with a considerable amount of piston slap & they say thats the motor and it will not effect longevity or performance. cold it is very noisy.

    john hall of south west rocks Posted on 06 July 2010 3:50pm
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