Now in its second generation, a refreshed TOYOTA FORTUNER boasts sharpened styling, enhanced spec levels and improved performance.

When executed well, a facelifted model has improved visual appeal – but it’s seldom that you can genuinely feel the difference. Visually, South Africa’s favourite seven-seater SUV is instantly recognisable thanks to sharp styling upgrades; but it’s only once you get inside – and especially after you press the starter button – that you can feel the enhancements that have been made to the new Fortuner range.

Exterior

Let’s start with the aesthetic improvements. You’ll notice that the new Fortuner retains its characteristic profile with a new façade – a larger, blacked-out grille with a wave-like mesh pattern. The latest model has a silver-accented “skid plate” for a tougher look, while sleeker bi-LED headlamps boast prominent chrome strips between the grille and headlamp assemblies, and are joined by LED fog lamps and strip-like LED turn signals.

Interior

It’s inside that you really start to feel those changes mentioned upfront. The new Fortuner has an all-black interior, boasting sophisticated black “hide” with silver contrast stitching. High-brightness treatment has been applied to accent areas, resulting in an interior that’s palpably more premium. The new instrument cluster features metallic-blue dials, white needle pointers and a simple, elegant font, as well as an expanded, centrally mounted Multi-Information Display.

There’s also a new 8-inch system that includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, allowing users to mirror their mobile phone for seamless connectivity. Google Maps and Waze are included, and occupants can access their own music and streaming accounts via apps such as Apple Music, JOOX, Spotify and SoundCloud. Wireless telephony is supported via Bluetooth, and an additional USB input allows for other media options.

Power and Performance

Turn the key and put your foot down, and the updates really become tangible. The bulletproof 2.8 GD-6 engine has been boosted to 150kW and 500Nm; Toyota engineers have also improved performance and fuel economy thanks to a larger, heavy-duty turbocharger and a new common-rail injection system.

Fuel economy benefits from a new combustion chamber and more efficient exhaust gas recirculation in the intake manifold. The fuel index ranges from 6.8 to 7.9ℓ/100km, depending on the engine and drivetrain configuration.

The six-speed automatic transmission has been recalibrated for improved acceleration and cooling performance, especially while towing.

Choose your colour

There are seven exterior colours available, with Oxide Bronze joining Glacier White, Chromium Silver, Graphite Grey Metallic, Attitude Black, Cosmic Blue and Chestnut Brown.

Ride and Handling

The new model retains its double-wishbone suspension at the front with a four-link arrangement in the rear – all using coil springs – while a new variable-flow control power-steering pump delivers a more natural driving feel. The system offers a high level of assistance at low speeds (including during parking manoeuvres), with less assistance at cruising speeds. There’s also a specific mode for low-range, off road driving.

Specification Enhancements

New Fortuner models are comprehensively equipped. The 2.4 GD-6 has Park Distance Control and full LED lighting, as well as cruise control and touchscreen infotainment, and a new Multi-Information Display screen with steering wheel angle indicator for enhanced offroad usability. Base spec includes one-touch power windows, reverse camera, steering switches, air-conditioned upper glove compartment, multiple 12-volt power outlets, cup-holders and a tilt/telescopic adjustable steering column.

The 2.8 GD-6 gets an electro-chromatic rear-view mirror, power front seat adjustment, climate control and rear fog lamps. A leather steering wheel, leather dashboard accents and matte wood trim complete
the package.

New Flagship Grade

The new 2.8 GD-6 VX joins the lineup as a new derivative. The VX suffix, also found in Toyota’s other SUV ranges (RAV4, Prado, Land Cruiser 200), denotes the highest available specification level.

On the VX grade, the grille gets a gloss finish, and the SUV’s side profile features a thin, chrome belt-line towards the rear, complementing the other chrome detailing. New tail-lamp units help to deliver a more striking night-time signature. A roof spoiler and Fortuner-emblazoned centre garnish complete the rear view.

The overall result is a sleeker, more premium presentation that still retains the rugged appeal the Fortuner is renowned for. Inside, the new VX also boasts front-seat heating and welcome lighting.

Safety & Security

The Toyota Safety Sense system makes its debut in the Fortuner, integrating a pre-collision system, Lane Departure Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control and road-sign recognition, and joining the existing array of airbags, Isofix, seatbelt pre-tensioners and a full suite of active safety aids. As before, 4×4 models also include Downhill Assist Control.

Model lineup

Fortuner 2.4 GD-6 RB 6MT

Fortuner 2.4 GD-6 RB 6AT

Fortuner 2.4 GD-6 4×4 6AT

Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 RB 6AT

Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4×4 6AT

Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 RB VX 6AT

Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4×4 VX 6AT

Warranty and maintenance

There is a three-year/100  000km warranty and
a nine-services/90  000km service plan on all models (with service intervals of 10  000km/12 months). Extended service plans and warranty packages can be purchased.