At the end of last year, Toyota officially unveiled the first prototype of the Hilux Revo BEV, the first electric pickup in the Japanese brand’s history. Today, Toyota’s Australian subsidiary has released new images of the vehicle, which is entering a new phase of development.
The Toyota Hilux has earned a reputation that few other vehicles have: it’s not just reliable, it’s almost indestructible, and the proof is in the pudding. Over time, even such a simple, robust model is no stranger to total electrification.
The electric Toyota Hilux gets closer
Toyota’s engineering team, along with a group of potential private, fleet and industrial customers, tested the all-electric Hilux to demonstrate the performance and value of this battery-powered version. According to Toyota, the test “marks another step forward” towards zero emissions.
According to the brand, the electric Hilux Revo prototype is “far more advanced” than most people expected, and drives almost like a production vehicle. These are claims we can’t verify at first hand, of course.
There is, however, a fundamental difference from the concept of the work truck that we generally have on this side of the planet. The Toyota Hilux Revo BEV is designed for the city. The brand confirms this in its press release. In European cities and streets, a pickup is a huge vehicle for getting around in traffic and is relegated to strictly professional tasks.
Why was this vehicle tested in Australia? Australia is one of the world’s biggest pickup customers, along with Thailand, a country that is the pickup “capital of the world” and where Hilux vehicles are produced for markets all over the world. In fact, the electric Hilux has been developed primarily in Thailand, and the country’s brand subsidiary will be building a demonstration fleet of Hilux-based electric shared cabs for its domestic market.
The Toyota Hilux has been Australia’s best-selling vehicle for seven years, with over 64,000 sales last year. It is even more popular in Thailand, where over 145,000 units were sold in 2022 alone.
Toyota has not announced any further clues as to the market launch date or whether it will be launched in Europe, which would be logical if the vehicle were to go into production. Nor has Toyota given any details of the powertrain, except to say that the batteries, motors, inverters and control units are being developed in-house on the basis of experience gained with its hybrid vehicles.