Toyota GR Hilux's possible rival for the Ford Ranger Raptor!

Article & Images soucred from Car's Guide, written by: Andrew Chesterton

Toyota's still officially unconfirmed - but most definitely coming - GR HiLux is set for a big month in April, with the Ranger Raptor Rival's big six-cylinder diesel engine set to be outed in Japan.

Well, not directly. But the long-awaited reveal of the LandCruiser 300 Series will, in effect, also finally detail the engine of choice for Toyota's incoming hardcore dual-cab.

As previously reported on CarsGuide, reports in Japanese media are now quoting local Toyota dealers who are preparing to go public with the LC300's specification - including detail about the 3.3-litre diesel that will replace current V8 in the LC200 - in April.

And given it's that same diesel engine that's expected to be fitted in the Toyota GR HiLux, the reveal - now just weeks away - will also shine a light on what Toyota has planned for its first properly hardcore ute.

Talk of the GR HiLux dates back to at least 2018, when the company's heavy hitters started flagging their interest in a hardcore HiLux to rattle the dominant Ranger Raptor.

Toyota went on the record, in 2018, as saying it would be looking for a "big diesel" to power a go-fast HiLux, suggesting a petrol engine wouldn't work.

Toyota then applied to trademark the "GR HiLux" nameplate in Australia and around the world, lodging the application in July 2019, with approval granted on February 18, 2020.

The "big diesel" Toyota's executives mention? It's coming in the LC300, and details of it will be revealed in mere weeks. It's expected to be a thumping 3.3-litre six-cylinder diesel that should produce in excess of 200kW and 650Nm.

CarsGuide understands the engine is all new for Toyota, and will find its way into other products in the brand's stable. One of those products will surely be the GR HiLux, and when it does, the whopping 650Nm should see it out-box just about anything else on the market.

And if the trademark in Australia isn't enough, remember that Toyota here has also put its hand up for any go-fast products.

“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 will definitely put our hands up for anything that becomes available. And we will fight very hard for it."

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