Automotive

Published on May 6th, 2016 | by Subhash Nair

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All-New Toyota Fortuner Arrives for RM186,900-RM199,900

Meet the all-new Toyota Fortuner, now in showrooms with the diesel going for RM186,900 and the petrol having an RM199,900 sticker price. UMW Toyota Motor, the sole authorised imported and distributor of Toyota vehicles in Malaysia announced the introduction of the new Fortuner alongside the new Hilux yesterday. Both vehicles were a part of the Innovative International Multi-purpose Vehicles project (referred to as the ‘IMV Project’) and shares many parts and systems.

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Having said that, the Fortuner and Hilux couldn’t be worlds apart. The Toyota Fortuner is a relatively ‘young’ model in Toyota’s line-up, having been introduced about 12 years ago. Other than some engineering R&D done in Japan, all product development and manufacturing activities would be done at specific locations around the world. On a historical and geographical scale, it was unprecedented vehicle project for Toyota.

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This 2nd generation Fortuner has all-new styling and a tougher body structure. With the design concept of ‘Luxury & Prestigious’, its image is elevated to a more premium one in response to feedback from customers and market trends.

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To suit different customer requirements, there are two grades available – the Fortuner 2.7 SRZ and Fortuner 2.4 VRZ. The Fortuner 2.4 VRZ has a newly developed 2.4-litre turbodiesel engine while the 2.7-litre petrol engine is the same unit as before. However it has received updates and improvements which improves its efficiency and responsiveness considerably.

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Both engines are equipped with a 6-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission (ECT), providing more flexibility during the drive. With the extra ratio for a wider spread, better acceleration is available at the lower end while at higher cruising speeds, there is reduced noise as well as fuel-saving. Manual gear selection is available, if desired, via the sequential function. The Fortuner 2.7 SRZ has paddle shifters allowing the driver to select gears from the steering wheel.

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A Drive Mode Switch gives the option of maximising fuel efficiency (ECO) or getting a stronger drive response (POWER). If neither mode is selected, the default mode provides a balance of fuel economy and performance.

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Both variants are fitted with Auto Disconnecting Differential (ADD) which allows engagement of the front differential from 2WD to 4X4 while the vehicle is moving. This, together with automatic locking hubs, will be a convenience greatly appreciated when driving off road (especially in muddy conditions) as the vehicle does not need to be stopped to go from 2WD to 4WD.

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The new Fortuner comes with an Electronic Transfer Dial, so it is no longer necessary to use a second lever to operate the transfer case to switch between high and low ranges. With a turn of a rotary dial, 4X4 in 4H or 2H can be selected. The 2.7 SRZ also has a Rear Differential Lock, activated at the push of a button. This feature is for use only in very difficult conditions and locks the rear differential so that equal amounts of torque are transferred to each wheel.

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A new feature found in the new Fortuner 2.7 SRZ is Active Traction Control (A-TRC) which mimics the function of the limited-slip differential (LSD) for maximising traction on challenging terrain or surfaces. A-TRC, similar to electronically-managed system in more expensive premium SUVs, employs sensors on each wheel that detect whether traction is lost. If it is, the system will brake specific wheels individually and transfer power to the opposite wheel. In this way, forward motion can be maintained. A-TRC automatically activates when in 4X4 mode and Low range when wheel slippage is detected.

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In terms of kit and looks, new Bi-LED projector headlamps with integrated LED Daytime Running Lights are fitted to Fortuner 2.7 SRZ while the 2.4 VRZ has halogen projector headlamps with Daytime Running Lights. Front Foglamps are installed at the lower corners of the bumper to provide additional illumination.

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Customers have a choice of 6 colours – Silver Metallic, Medium Silver Metallic, Gray Metallic, Attitude Black, Avant-Garde Bronze Metallic and Super White II. The last two exterior colours are new to the Fortuner range.

The refined 7-passenger interior features many car-derived style cues. The Multi Information Display (MID) panel keeps the driver informed of fuel consumption, trip data, range, vehicle status and settings that can be customised by the drive using 4-way MID switch on the steering wheel.

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The front seats of the new Fortuner offer greater comfort and support, with those in the 2.7 SRZ having plush dark brown combination leather upholstery. The driver’s seat has 8-way power adjustment for easy acquisition of the most comfortable seating position for a fatigue-free drive.

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There is significantly more legroom and knee clearance for the occupants who sit in the second row. This not only enhances comfort during the drive but also makes getting in and out easier. The second row backrests can be reclined and also moved forward or back. Assist grips are mounted on the centre pillars to help children or old people get in and out.

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Access to the third row is easily achieved by using the one-touch lever to tumble the second row forward. Side steps on the left and right side of the vehicle make it easier to get in and out as well. The two occupants in the third row are seated slightly higher than those in the second row in a theatre-style layout. For extra comfort, there is a reclining function for the backrest and when the seats are not needed, they can be folded to the sides to provide extra cargo space.

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As in many premium SUVs nowadays, the new Fortuner has a Smart Entry and Push Start System which makes it unnecessary to use a key. The doors can be unlocked or locked with a touch of a button on the chrome front door handles and the engine started by pressing a button.

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