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LDV T60 2019 review: Trailrider

The LDV T60 Trailrider is a limited edition model, with just 650 examples available.
EXPERT RATING
7.4
If you haven't heard of the LDV T60, we'll forgive you. This relative newcomer to the dual cab ute segment is fighting for a spot among some big name rivals. This particular model - the Trailrider - has a distinctly Aussie flavour to it, having had its suspension retuned by local heroes Walkinshaw. Yep, the same people that've been tuning Commodores for years!

There are plenty of big name utes that dominate the Aussie sales charts. You know I’m talking about the HiLux, Ranger and Triton. And it’s fair to say ‘T60’ isn’t one of those household names. Not yet, anyway. 

The LDV T60 launched back in 2017, but now the Chinese-made ute comes with a dash of Aussie inspiration. A bit like the local Chinese take-away that has chicken chow mein and lamb chops on the menu, this version of the T60 has been tuned to Aussie tastes.

That’s because we’re testing the new Trailrider model, a limited edition ute with an Australia-specific ride and handling tune by Walkinshaw. Yes, the same mob that built HSVs and hot Commodores for decades.

There will only be 650 examples of the tricked up Trailrider sold - but the suspension and handling tune that has been perfected by Walkinshaw may be rolled out across the regular models.

So, what’s it like? Let’s find out.

LDV T60 2019: TRAILRIDER (4x4)
Safety rating
Engine Type2.8L turbo
Fuel TypeDiesel
Fuel Efficiency9.6L/100km
Seating5 seats
Price from$38,937

Is there anything interesting about its design?   8/10

No, it’s not a Holden Colorado, even though those special edition stickers on the bonnet, doors and tailgate are pretty similar to what we’ve seen on that other ute.

But there is more to it than just stickers: the Trailrider also gets 19-inch alloy wheels, a black grille, a black nudge bar, black side steps, a black sports bar for the tub, and a roll-top lockable tray cover.

  • No, it’s not a Holden Colorado, even though those special edition stickers are pretty similar to what we’ve seen on the Red Lion. No, it’s not a Holden Colorado, even though those special edition stickers are pretty similar to what we’ve seen on the Red Lion.
  • Up front is a black grille and nudge bar. Up front is a black grille and nudge bar.
  • The Trailrider gets black 19-inch alloy wheels. The Trailrider gets black 19-inch alloy wheels.
  • Trailrider decals line the doors on each side. Trailrider decals line the doors on each side.
  • Out the back is a black sports bar and a roll-top lockable tray cover. Out the back is a black sports bar and a roll-top lockable tray cover.

That’s in addition to the adaptive LED headlights with LED daytime running lights, the muscular body and bulky frame. It is a big beast, after all - measuring 5365mm long (with a 3155mm wheelbase), 1887mm tall and 1900mm wide, the LDV T60 is one of the larger dual-cab utes out there.

And those sizeable measurements translate to impressive interior dimensions: check out the interior images to see what I’m talking about.

The cabin is quite pleasant. The cabin is quite pleasant.

How practical is the space inside?   8/10

The cabin of the LDV T60 is certainly one of those moments where you think to yourself ‘wow, I wasn’t expecting that!’

That’s partly because the fit and finish is better than plenty of the other big-name brands out there, and also because all LDV dual cab models come with a benchmark media screen in the ute segment - a 10.0-inch unit, which is the biggest yet in a ute. 

It looks amazing - the size is good, the colours are bright, the display is crisp… But then you try and use it. And it all turns bad.

It has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but I spent more than two hours trying to figure out the ‘right way’ for the screen to play along with my phone. Once it was connected, it was great - until it wasn’t. It’s glitchy and frustrating. And the regular on-screen menus have some of the worst user experience (UX) design I’ve come across. I’d have a Lexus touchpad over it, and that’s saying something.

The 10.0-inch multimedia screen is the biggest in the ute segment. The 10.0-inch multimedia screen is the biggest in the ute segment.

There’s no sat nav, and no digital radio. But you do get Bluetooth phone and audio streaming (another one you might need to look at the owners manual to figure out) and two USB ports, one labelled for smartphone mirroring, the other just for charging. The screen is also prone to glare.

Screen aside, the cabin is really quite pleasant. The seats are firm but comfortable, and the material quality isn’t any worse than you’ll find in utes at this price point. 

It’s well thought out, too - there are cup holders down between the seats, another pair of pop-out cup holders at the upper edges of the dashboard, and big door pockets with bottle holders. The rear seat has big door pockets, a pair of map pockets, and a flip-down armrest with cup holders. And if you need more storage, you can fold the rear seat down for an additional 705 litres of cargo capacity.

If you need more storage, folding the rear seats down will result in an additional 705 litres of cargo capacity. If you need more storage, folding the rear seats down will result in an additional 705 litres of cargo capacity.

Back seat space is exceptional - I’m six-feet tall (182cm) and with the driver’s seat in my position, I had more leg room, head room and toe room than in a dual cab HiLux, Ranger and Triton - I jumped between these four utes, and the LDV is truly good, and it gets rear seat air-vents, too. But the seat is a bit flat, and the base a tad short, so if you’re tall, you’ll find you have to sit in a bit of a knees-up position. 

Plus there are dual ISOFIX child seat anchor points and three top-tether points - but like many utes, getting a baby set fitted might take some effort. 

If you need more storage, folding the rear seats down will result in an additional 705 litres of cargo capacity. If you need more storage, folding the rear seats down will result in an additional 705 litres of cargo capacity.

Now, tub dimensions: the standard-fit tray with tub liner measures 1525mm long at the base, 1510mm wide (and 1131mm between the arches - sadly 34mm too narrow for an Aussie-standard pallet - but wider than many rivals) and the depth of the tub is 530mm. There is a rear step bumper, and the tub floor is 819mm from the ground with the tailgate open.

Does it represent good value for the price? What features does it come with?   8/10

As mentioned in the design section above, the price and specs of the LDV T60 Trailrider build upon the Luxe model, with additional equipment to differentiate it from the more affordable models in the range. You could consider it a black pack, in fact. And those big wheels are clad in Continental ContiSportContact 5 SUV tyres. Impressive!

The manual T60 Trailrider has a list price of $36,990 plus on-road costs, but ABN holders can get it for $36,990 drive-away. Non ABN holders will have to pay $38,937 drive-away.

The six-speed automatic version we tested is priced at $38,990 (again, that’s the drive-away price for ABN holders, while non ABN customers pay $41,042 drive-away). 

Because this model is based on the high-grade T60 Luxe, you get leather-ish seat trim with front seat electric adjustment, plus a leather steering wheel, single-zone climate control air con, and keyless entry with push button start.

Inside are leather-ish seats with front seat electric adjustment. Inside are leather-ish seats with front seat electric adjustment.

The Trailrider variant is limited to just 650 units.

LDV Automotive offers a range of accessories such as rubber floor mats, a polished alloy nudge bar, a tow bar, ladder rack setup, colour-coded canopy, and soft top tonneau cover. A bull bar is in the works, too.

What are the key stats for the engine and transmission?   6/10

The LDV T60 runs a 2.8-litre turbo-diesel engine, but it’s no horsepower hero when it comes to engine specs.

The four-cylinder powerplant is good for 110kW of power (at 3400rpm) and 360Nm of torque (from 1600-2800rpm), which makes it about 40 per cent less grunty than the Holden Colorado - which is the benchmark for four-cylinder torque, with an identical displacement engine producing 500Nm in auto guise.

The LDV T60 dual cab range is available with the choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions, and both have selectable four-wheel drive

Under the bonnet is a 2.8-litre turbo-diesel engine, which makes 110kW/360Nm. Under the bonnet is a 2.8-litre turbo-diesel engine, which makes 110kW/360Nm.

The payload of is rated at 815kg, while lower grade models can offer up to 1025kg of load capacity. Some other high-spec dual cabs offer payload levels in the high seven-hundred-kilo range, so it’s not the worst out there, but it is a tad below average.

The LDV5 T60 dual cab has a towing capacity of 750kg for an un-braked trailer, and 3000kg for a braked trailer - so it’s a little behind the pack on that front. 

The gross vehicle mass for the T60 is between 3050kg and 2950kg, depending on the model, with a kerb weight that varies from 1950kg at its lightest to 2060kg at its heaviest (before accessories).

How much fuel does it consume?   7/10

Claimed fuel consumption for the T60 auto is 9.6 litres per 100 kilometres, which is a little higher than some of its chief rivals. 

But, surprisingly, we saw a little better than the claim across our (admittedly highway-heavy) test loop, which included a run down the south coast for some distance driving and a load test thanks to our mates at Agriwest Rural CRT Bomaderry. More on that soon.

We saw an on-test average fuel economy of 9.1L/100km, which I reckon is decent, if not exceptional.

What's it like to drive?   7/10

This isn’t a comparison test, but I had the chance to drive the T60 Trailrider over the same loop as a Ford Ranger XLT and a Toyota HiLux SR5 Rogue, and it wasn’t left it the wake of those utes, but couldn’t quite match them across the board when it came to suspension and steering.

With the Walkinshaw-tuned suspension designed to offer better control and comfort, I would have loved to have had the chance to drive the ‘regular’ T60 to compare it to. The standard T60 range runs two different suspension tunes - a harder setup for heavy duty work in the Pro model; and a softer suspension designed more for comfort in the Luxe. All T60 models have a double wishbone front end and leaf spring rear suspension

Without the benchmark of either those models, though, I can say that generally the compliance of the T60 is good - even better than a few big name players. It doesn’t crash over bumps, but you can feel a lot of the smaller niggles in the road surface. It deals with larger lumps - speed humps and the like - very well. 

The diesel engine doesn’t set any new benchmarks, but the locally tuned suspension is pretty good. The diesel engine doesn’t set any new benchmarks, but the locally tuned suspension is pretty good.

The steering is decent - nothing has changed to the way it is set up, but the front suspension has been tweaked, which has a geometrical impact on the front end and how it handles corners. It steers fine for the most part: it is a touch too slow at lower speeds, meaning a bit more arm-twirling than you might want if you do a lot of parking space manoeuvring, but at higher speed it is accurate and predictable. And the Continental rubber, which were unexpected on this affordable ute, offered good cornering grip, too. 

The diesel engine doesn’t set any new benchmarks, and in fact is a bit behind the times in terms of outputs and refinement - but it gets the job done, whether you’re running around town without anything in the tray, or loaded up with a few hundred kilos in the tub. 

We did exactly that, loading in 550 kilograms of lime from our farm supplies pals at Agriwest Rural CRT in Bomaderry, and the T60 dealt with the mass well.

  • With 550kg in the rear, the T60 dealt with the mass well. With 550kg in the rear, the T60 dealt with the mass well.
  • Agriwest Rural CRT in Bomaderry loaded 550kg of lime into the back of the T60. Agriwest Rural CRT in Bomaderry loaded 550kg of lime into the back of the T60.
  • The Trailerider's payload is rated at 815kg. The Trailerider's payload is rated at 815kg.

And during our loaded up road loop we found the T60 Trailrider to be adept at handling what we consider to be about an average load for a dual cab ute. The ride settled down a bit, but it still picked up little jittery bits of road.

The engine was up to the task, despite its modest power outputs, but it was noisy no matter how much weight there was on board.

Unlike plenty of utes out there, the T60 has four-wheel disc brakes (most still have rear drums), and it did a good job unladen, but with a load over the rear axle the brake pedal became a bit soft, and a bit long. 

All in all, I liked driving the T60 a lot more than I thought I would. So much so that I ended up doing a further 1000km in it, and I only really came away griping over the media screen, which mucked up three or four times on my test. 

If you're hoping for an off-road review, sadly that wasn't on the cards this time around. Our main purpose of this test was to see what it was like as a day-to-day driver and, of course, how it handled a load.

Warranty & Safety Rating

Basic Warranty

5 years / 130,000 km warranty

ANCAP Safety Rating

ANCAP logo

What safety equipment is fitted? What safety rating?   8/10

The LDV T60 is well equipped when it comes to safety equipment in for the price. In fact, it hits harder than some of the big name models out there, like the Toyota HiLux and Isuzu D-Max.

It has a five-star ANCAP rating per its 2017 test, and is fitted with six airbags (driver and front passenger, front side, full-length curtain) and includes a raft of safety tech across the range including ABS, EBA, ESC, a reversing camera and rear parking sensors, 'Hill Descent Control', 'Hill Start Assist', and a tyre-pressure-monitoring system. 

Plus there’s blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, and new to the T60 as part of 2019 model changes are lane departure warning and the surround view camera system - both of which, we understand, will be rolled out on T60 Luxe models, too. There is no auto emergency braking (AEB), though, so it falls behind the likes of the Ford Ranger, Mercedes-Benz X-Class and Mitsubishi Triton in that regard.

It has two ISOFIX points and two top-tether points in the back.

What does it cost to own? What warranty is offered?   7/10

The LDV T60 range is covered by a has a five-year/130,000km warranty, and you get the same duration of cover for roadside assistance. Further to that, LDV has a 10-year body anti-perforation rust warranty. 

The brand has an initial service requirement at 5000km (oil change), and the intervals every 15,000km thereafter. 

Unfortunately there is no capped-price servicing plan, and the dealer network is currently pretty thin. 

Concerned about problems, issues, complaints? Check out our LDV T60 problems page.

Verdict

If you want a budget ute that has plenty of gear, the LDV T60 Trailrider might be a good option for you. Sure, the reliability and resale factor is a bit of an unknown. And the easier - and, in this writer’s opinion, better - option would be the Mitsubishi Triton GLX+, which is very, very similarly priced to this model.

But for a first effort, LDV should be happy with this ute. With a few more tweaks, additions and adjustments, it could be a true contender among not only the budget bodies, but also the mainstream models. 

Thanks again to the team at Agriwest Rural CRT Bomaderry for helping out with the load test.

Would you buy a T60 over its competitors? Let us know in the comments.

Pricing Guides

$33,168
Based on Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP)
Lowest Price
$25,253
Highest Price
$41,082

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
2WD CAB CHASSIS 2.8L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $25,253 2019 LDV T60 2019 2WD CAB CHASSIS Pricing and Specs
4WD CAB CHASSIS 2.8L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $28,411 2019 LDV T60 2019 4WD CAB CHASSIS Pricing and Specs
LUXE (4x4) 2.8L, Diesel, 6 SP AUTO $36,831 2019 LDV T60 2019 LUXE (4x4) Pricing and Specs
PRO (4x4) 2.8L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $30,516 2019 LDV T60 2019 PRO (4x4) Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
7.4
Design8
Practicality8
Price and features8
Engine & trans6
Fuel consumption7
Driving7
Safety8
Ownership7
Matt Campbell
Senior Editor

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Pricing Guide

$38,937

Lowest price, based on new car retail price

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