Toyota Fortuner Hatchback First Drive & Gearbox

Toyota Fortuner Overview

The Toyota Fortuner is a mid-size SUV sold by Toyota in mainly the Asian countries. The SUV was launched in India and was assembled from CKD kits at the company’s plant located at Bidadi in Bangalore, Karnataka. The Fortuner is the best selling SUV in this segment and it out sells its competitors by a huge margin. Indian customers love its rugged look that gives it a commanding road presence.

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The car is based on the Toyota Hilux which is regarded as one of the best built pick-up trucks of all time. Top Gear UK tested the truck and termed it as an ‘indestructible truck’ after it survived all their attempts to kill, which incuded setting the car on fire. Later, Top Gear UK took the car to the North Pole and also to the edge of an active volcano in Iceland and the car did the trips without any hiccups. Check for Car Loan Interest calculator.

Toyota Fortuner Look

Before this review, I had never driven or travelled inside a Toyota Fortuner. I had an image of this SUV as a bulky, scary and a huge vehicle. It used to be scary in traffic signals when this monstrous thing stood beside my humble tiny Tata Nano with the scare of being run over by it.The 2012 Toyota Fortuner now incorporates the all new Toyota front face which is seen on the latest generation Camry and Innova too. The new face has made the Fortuner a smarter looking SUV unlike the earlier version.

On the front profile, the intake scoop has got a tag bigger. The new clear finished headlights are in line with the chunky chrome radiator grille. They wrap around from the grille to the side panel. Even the lower jaw has been redesigned with smart fog lamp design. The hidden and subtle profile on the front face now makes the Fortuner a well proportioned design.Even though only the face has got majority of changes, it has left an impact throughout the design which looks good sans the bulky character. The new Fortuner also gets the 17inch 12 spoke alloy wheels which blend in neatly.

Like the face, the rear profile has been reworked too. The rear tail door now features the name etched on a chrome line between the tail lamps which is similar to the other SUVs of Toyota. The tail lamps design has been changed too from the simple horizontal lines to twin circles. Even the bumper has been reworked to match with the new design.Overall, the Fortuner has lost its bulky character and looks like a new age refined SUV. It also boasts of some lines and curves inspired from the Land Cruiser but in a subtle way.

Toyota Fortuner Comfort

Get inside the cabin and the design flow of the new Fortuner’s dashboard will remind you of the Innova Crysta to some extent. The cabin feels rich and premium than before in terms of quality and finish and also the attention to detail. The new steering wheel feels good to hold having a matte silver lower half. The instrument cluster is big and easy to read which also has a sizeable MID display that shows all the necessary info about the car and also information from the media system. The top half of the dashboard gets AC vents and the centre console is uniquely highlighted with silver accents along with a dash of leatherette upholstery with double stitching that gives you a premium car feel.

The infotainment system consists of a big 7.0-inch touch-screen display with USB, AUX, DVD, MP3 and Bluetooth connectivity for music streaming and telephony. It comes with a 6-speaker audio system that offers decent aural experience. Sadly there is no Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, which is the trending car tech on offer these days. The new Fortuner comes with Navigation, which is user friendly and the screen also doubles up as a display for the reverse camera with parking guidelines (not dynamics). Unlike the new Ford Endeavour, the Toyota Fortuner doesn’t come with the fancy auto park assist.

The 2017 Toyota Fortuner is offered with an 8-way electrically adjustable driver’s seat that offers good visibility and is suitable for both tall and short passengers. It also comes with power foldable and adjustable ORVMs, keyless entry (the smart key looks very fancy) and go with push button start/stop, cruise control, auto headlamps, powered tail gate and a ton of new features which you haven’t seen on the previous generation model. However, it misses out on dual-zone climate control system, sunroof and electrically folding third row seats, all of these are available in the American SUV.

The new gen Toyota Fortuner gets a dark brown upholstery, which looks almost black in dark conditions. It makes the cabin feel rich and the seats offer tremendous support for the back and under-thighs. The second row has ample space with good legroom, kneeroom and shoulder room but under-thigh support is lacking and seating three people abreast isn’t a good idea. The third row is a tight fit for adult passengers specially compared to the more spacious Innova Crysta’s third row seating, as one sits low down with the knees close to the chest and poor under-thigh support.

There are low storage spaces in the cabin (considering how many more bottle holders are there in the Innova Crysta) in spite of it having dual glove box including one cooled compartment, two bottle holders on the dashboard for the front passengers near the AC vents (can be converted into a cubby hole), cupholders near the centre console, all four door pockets (the last row also gets them) with bottle holders (the rear ones can’t be easily accessed due to the position of the bottle holders being too far back, one really has to open the door to easily get to the bottle), front arm rest storage, hooks for hanging bags and power sockets for all three rows. Boot space is pretty decent, the third row has 50:50 split that fold up and the second row have 60:40 split so you can easily fit luggage and accommodate four passengers (the last row doesn’t have much space and a third passenger in the second row is a tight squeeze, the seat too is hard and putting the roof mounted seatbelt on takes quite a lot of time) comfortably in the new Fortuner. For Toyota Fortuner check iiit-bh

Toyota Fortuner Gearbox

The next generation Toyota Fortuner gets new engines. The SUV will be powered by a 2.8 litre, four-cylinder, turbocharged diesel engine which will replace the existing 3.0 liter unit. This small is more capble and also fuel efficient at the same time producing aqbout 174 HP of peak power. A new 6-speed manual and a new 6-speed automatic transmission are available as gearbox options. The 2.8 litre engine makes 420 Nm of torque with manual transmission and 450 Nm of torque in an automatic transmission equipped vehicle. The manual transmission ensures smoother shifts by matching the engine and transmission speeds. A smaller 2.4 litre diesel engine producing around 148 HP and 400 Nm of torque is also expected to replace the 2.5 Liter diesel unit which powers the current Fortuner. These new engines belong to GD family and will replace the existing KD series of engines.

The Fortuner gets an all-wheel drive gearbox with high and low range to enhance its off-roading ability. It also gets rear differential locks that give the SUV a go anywhere capability. The vehicle also gets new suspension. It uses double wishbones at the front and five-link coil springs at the rear. Front and rear stabilizers have been used to reduce body roll.The car rides on 17 inch or 18 inch wheels and is based on a body on frame chassis.

Toyota Fortuner Riding

Ride quality is the one area where the new Fortuner both surprises and disappoints. The surprise is in the fact that this vehicle is not as soft and squishy as you would expect. Body roll in corners isn’t excessive, and there isn’t much nosedive under braking as well. In that sense, this is a big improvement over the old Fortuner, and while it is far from a sharp handler, it is definitely a step ahead. The disappointment comes in the subtle but constant jiggle that creeps through the suspension at all speeds. The Fortuner never settles into a smooth cruise and constantly produces a slight judder. At first I thought it was due to our rough concrete roads, but even on the Bandra-Worli Sea Link, Mumbai’s smoothest tarmac road, the Fortuner still displayed the same behaviour, albeit more subdued. You soon get used to it, but it never truly feels comfortable.

No Fortuner test would be complete without taking the vehicle off-road, and this is where it really shines. It may look all up-market and fancy on the outside but make no mistake, this is still a hard-core SUV! I’m no off-road expert but I was really impressed with the Fortuner’s ability to find traction and climb almost any obstacle I pointed it at. When the wheels eventually started to spin, the selectable low-ratio mode helped it put the power down and extract itself out of some serious terrain. The 225mm ground clearance is plentiful, approach and departure angles are generous and there is impressive wheel articulation. Best of all, the Fortuner has a rugged, impervious feel off-road, and there’s no fear that you might break something. I really hope owners get to experience this side of their machines; it’s the Fortuner’s biggest virtue.

Toyota Fortuner Safety

This time around the new Toyota Fortuner offers an array of safety features making it a much safer SUV to be in. Toyota is offering 7 airbags, ABS, EBD, Brake Assist, Traction Control System, Vehicle Stability Control, Trailer Sway Control, Hill Hold Assist, Hill Descent Control and a few more tech. As far as after sales is concerned, the Toyota badge has always been known for its reliability and durability. The Japanese automaker has good reach in India but the cost of ownership of the new Fortuner might be a bit higher compared to its smaller siblings.

Toyota Fortuner Price in Mumbai

Toyota Fortuner On-Road Price in Mumbai ranges from 32,98,902 to 40,36,289 for variants Fortuner 2.7 4X2 MT and Fortuner 2.8 4X4 AT respectively. Toyota Fortuner is available in 6 variants and 7 colours. Below are details of Toyota Fortuner variants price in Mumbai. Check for Fortuner price in Mumbai at Tryaldrive.

Toyota Fortuner Bottomline

The word “new” has lost its meaning with sales and marketing influences clouding its true significance. In this case, Toyota stands apart. Not only is the 2017 Fortuner new in every sense, it is leaps and bounds ahead of the previous-gen SUV. Everything from the design to the new engines on offer will not only attract buyers but will also see them appreciate the value that they’re getting in return. The diesel engine will be the obvious choice of many and it performs just as you’d expect a Toyota to – smooth, effortless and bulletproof as far as they’ve established their reliability. It’s pricing put it bang in the middle of the competition and surely, there’s road test coming up in the near future to now establish the best from the rest.

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