Jaco Van Der Merwe

By Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring

WATCH: Is this South Africa’s long-awaited ‘junior’ Toyota Hilux?

Carmaker plans to introduce a bakkie underneath the Hilux to Mzansi in the coming years.

It’s still anyone’s guess what the so-called “junior” Toyota Hilux bakkie the carmaker has up its sleeve for South Africa in the next few years will look like and what it will be called.

But for the moment, leads provided by overseas media outlets might be telling in the long run. The evolution of the IMV 0 Concept bakkie that debuted in Bangkok last year seems to fit the bill quite well.

Watch “sub” Toyota Hilux from up close

In line with the IMV 0, the Rangga Concept was then shown in Indonesia in August. Both the Rangga Concept and IMV 0 was on display at the recent Japan Mobility Show in Tokyo. Here The Citizen Motoring had a chance to see them from up close.

A recent report from Thailand claims that the production version of the IMV 0/Rangga Concept will be revealed by 27 November. In so-called leaked images, a bakkie similar to the concept version displays the name Hilux Champ on its number plates.

ALSO READ: The real ‘small’ Hilux? Toyota reveals ‘concept’ Rangga workhorse

The leaked images show the so-called Toyota Hilux Champ as a dropside single cab. It is one of various body styles that has featured on the concept versions. The others being a fire truck, ice-cream van and a mobile coffee shop as shown in out video.

The IMV 0/Rangga Concept is believed to be one of two new bakkies under consideration for South Africa. The other being a unibody based on the Corolla Cross’s TNGA-C platform.

ALSO READ: Toyota Hilux Champ is the name as new small bakkie leaks

‘Bakkie for Africa’

Leon Theron, Toyota South Africa Motor’s (TSAM) Senior Vice-President for Sales and Marketing, confirmed plans for a new bakkie in May. He ruled out the possibility of it being a half-tonner and said it would be “the perfect bakkie for Africa”.

Junior Toyota Hilux interior
The interior of the IMV 0 on display in Tokyo. Picture: Jaco van der Merwe

Judging by the finishings of the IMV 0/Rangga Concept, it will be offered as a stripped-down version of a standard Toyota Hilux. The cabin is very basic as can be seen by our photo taken of the IMV 0’s interior in Tokyo. Incidentally, the IMV 0 had the word “Toyota Hilux” displayed inside its instrument cluster.

Until TSAM confirm any details regarding the new bakkie it plans to introduce to the local market, we can only guess if the so-called Toyota Hilux Champ is the one destined for Mzansi.

ALSO READ: ‘Junior’ Toyota Hilux bakkie edges closer to reality

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