Toyota has launched an all-new HIACE range of vans that delivers vast improvements in driver comfort, performance, safety and functionality with the same expansive carrying capacity as its predecessor.
As the first new HiAce in 15 years, it has been completely redesigned with a new semi-bonneted configuration to more than meet the needs of commercial, private, corporate and fleet buyers.
Sitting on a substantially longer and wider all-new platform, the new HiAce combines efficient new turbodiesel and V6 petrol engines that deliver more power, refinement and driveability. The latest suite of Toyota Safety Sense features a redesigned cabin with improved ergonomics for greater driver comfort and convenience.
Toyota Vice President Sales and Marketing Sean Hanley said every aspect of the all-new HiAce has been designed to appeal to owners who often spend long days behind the wheel.
“We focused on making the new-generation vehicle an even better tool of trade through an all-new semi-bonneted design, increased performance, a quiet cabin, smooth ride and improved handling and agility,” Mr Hanley said.
“Its impressive carrying capacity is even more flexible and user-friendly with increased internal width, and increased height on LWB versions, and dual sliding side doors on van models which, for the SLWB variants, can take a standard Australian pallet.
“We are also providing HiAce customers with the same high level of safety as found in our passenger cars and SUVs with a full suite of advanced Toyota Safety Sense technologies.”
The new HiAce is offered in a choice of nine variants to cater to a diverse variety of users.
Van versions are available in long wheelbase (LWB) and super long wheelbase (SLWB) variants with a choice of new turbodiesel and petrol engines, manual (LWB-only) or automatic transmissions and two-seat or five-seat capacity.
Priced from $38,640, the HiAce range kicks off with the LWB van with the option of a 207kW 3.5-litre V6 petrol or 130kW 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel engine and six-speed manual or automatic transmission.
The new V6 petrol engine provides a huge increase in power and torque compared to the previous model’s four-cylinder unit with peak power boosted by 89kW while peak torque is increased by 108Nm to 351Nm.
Although total capacity for the new turbodiesel engine has been slightly reduced, it too offers more peak power and torque with an increase of up to 30kW and up to 150Nm compared with its 3.0-litre predecessor.
At the same time, official combined cycle fuel consumption for turbodiesel variants has been cut by up to 8.7 per cent – thanks in part to a new stop/ start system – with the manual LWB turbodiesel van variant returning a figure of just 7.5l/100km2.
Both new engines are also far more refined than their predecessors and are offered in the SLWB van variants as well, mated to the automatic transmission.
Toyota is also offering a LWB crew van that adds a second row of seats enabling it to carry up to four passengers and driver and is available exclusively with the turbodiesel engine driving the rear wheels through the six-speed automatic transmission.
For carrying passengers rather than cargo, the new HiAce lineup also includes the 12-seat Commuter model that is available in two grades with both powered by the turbodiesel/automatic transmission powertrain.
The range-topping Commuter GL is a stylish small bus that offers prestige features including power sliding side door, front and rear air conditioning, six rear USB charge outlets, eight reading lights, premium upholstery and 16-inch alloy wheels.
With the new semi-bonneted design, Toyota has been able to move the engine forward ahead of the front axle and seats providing easier access to the engine bay, improved safety and greater stability and ride comfort.
The LWB variants are 570mm longer and SLWB versions 535mm longer than the previous generation models, which together with clever packaging and a substantially wider (up to 215mm) interior space, ensures they maintain large cargo capacities of 6.2 cubic metres and 9.3 cubic metres respectively.
The new design has also delivered substantial improvements in driver comfort with easier access to the cabin, a lower seating position and completely redesigned dash that provides significant ergonomic advantages.
All models feature height-adjustable driver’s seat, tilt and telescopic adjustable steering wheel with controls for the audio, infotainment and cruise control systems, manual air conditioning and extensive storage areas with big front door bins and 1.5-litre bottle holders.
To ensure drivers are fully connected at all times while out on the road, the HiAce features the latest generation multimedia system with a large 7-inch touchscreen display. It offers AM/FM/DAB+ radio, CD player, full Bluetooth® connectivity for audio and phone, USB and AUX inputs, satellite navigation with SUNA™ live traffic alerts, and voice recognition, Siri® eyes-free for compatible iPhones® and Toyota Link apps.
Available from the fourth quarter this year, the new HiAce multimedia system will also be compatible with Apple CarPlay® and Android® Auto that will also be offered to retro-fit on new generation HiAce at no additional charge.
In addition to designing the cabin around the driver, Toyota has also focused heavily on improving safety in the new HiAce, which features a broad range of Toyota Safety Sense driver assistance features.
These include a pre-collision safety system with pedestrian and daytime cyclist detection, lane departure alert with steering assist, road sign assist (certain speed signs only) and auto high beam.
Further standard safety features include cruise control, anti-lock brakes, vehicle stability control, blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert, reversing camera, front and rear parking sensors and up to nine airbags depending on the model.
To help deliver low whole-of-life costs, the new HiAce is covered by the Toyota Service Advantage that offers capped price servicing for three years or 60,000km, whichever comes first, up to a maximum of six services.
Service intervals for all HiAce and Commuter models are six months/10,000km and for turbodiesel versions, the cost is capped at $240 per service or just $180 for petrol variants.
Like all new Toyota vehicles, the new HiAce will also be covered by the five-year Toyota Warranty Advantage.