The incoming Toyota GR HiLux could out-punch arch rivals like the Ford Ranger Raptor and Isuzu D-Max, with fresh reports out of Japan suggesting the brand is working on a new 3.3-litre diesel V6 that will power the LandCruiser 300 Series.
We know from Toyota that the brand was looking for a "big diesel" to power its performance-flavoured HiLux, with its executives confirming as much to media way back in 2018, with the only lingering problem being that it didn't have one at its disposal.
But according to fresh reports out of Japan, the brand will launch the LandCruiser 300 Series with a new 3.3-litre V6 diesel, with promises it will outperform the current diesel V8 used in the LandCruiser 200 Series, which should mean outputs in excess of 200kW and 650Nm.
The reports, though unconfirmed, marry with news first reported in CarsGuide that the locally-delivered Toyota LandCruiser 300 would swap the 2.8-litre diesel offered in international markets for a punchier V6 diesel to satisfy our towing and off-road requirements.
Toyota has previously promised that any car given the GR badge would benefit from "noticeable" performance upgrades from its regular counterparts. And that means a GR HiLux would have to up the performance factor, no matter whether the focus is then on the road or off it.
While Toyota is yet to officially confirm the model, the brand has trademarked the name "GR HiLux" in Australia, with the go-fast ute expected to launch with the next new HiLux, possibly in 2023.
Whatever is powering it, Toyota has promised it will carry "significant" performance upgrades compared to the regular version.
“The plan for us is that any product that comes into Australia with Gazoo-racing branding will primarily be focused on performance. It needs to be the full package. It needs to show a noticeable performance increase on our standard line-up,” a spokesperson told CarsGuide in the past.
"We’re always taking a keen interest in the high-performance ute market, but at this stage we have nothing announce. But like we’ve said in the past, we are not ruling truly out any model from GR modification."