Already basking on the success of the Innova Crysta, Toyota is now planning to launch the new generation Fortuner in India. Launched in Thailand last year, these are the first spy shots of the new-generation Toyota Fortuner being tested in India. Based on the Toyota New Global Architecture or TNGA platform which also underpins the Hilux pickup, the new generation Fortuner is expected to provide better ride and handling than the existing offering. The 2016 Toyota Fortuner is scheduled to reach Indian showrooms later this year.
The camouflaged test mule that was recently spotted in Bangalore reveals the updated styling. The front profile has got more aggressive with the new sleek headlights. Similar to the international version, the India-bound Fortuner should retain the dual-beam LED projectors. The compact radiator grille gets loads of chrome and so does the new fog lamp housing. The bumper too has been redesigned with new contours. The overall silhouette does look similar to the existing version but gets a new window line with a stretched section between the C- and the D-pillar. The rear too gets sleek lights and a new tail gate.
Inside the new Toyota Fortuner, the cabin is expected to be more modern and plush compared to the existing version. It gets an updated instrument cluster, push button for ignition, more comfortable seats with premium leather on the higher trims and a 7-inch infotainment touchscreen system, also seen in the Innova Crysta.
The most important bit about the new Toyota Fortuner are its engine options. Expect the base variants to be powered by the 2.4-litre diesel unit that churns 150PS/343Nm in the Innova Crysta. The more premium variants can make use of the 2.8-litre diesel that comes mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. The new-Fortuner that is sold in Thailand comes with the same engine options. We expect to see a slight bump in the power and torque figures when Toyota offers these engines in the new Fortuner. Also, the company might look at locally assembly of both the engines, in order to price them more competitively. A first for the Toyota Fortuner in India will be an option of a 2.7-litre petrol with a choice of a 5-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic transmission. This engine will make its debut in the Innova Crysta this month.
Going by the popular belief that Toyota will launch the new Fortuner with the 2.7-litre petrol engine to tackle the diesel ban imposed by NGT on vehicles above 2,000cc in Delhi-NCR, there is another reason for the company to do so. Till mid-2015, there was a stronger demand for diesel vehicles not just for their torquey nature and efficiency but also the wide gap between the petrol and diesel fuel prices, which was close to Rs 16. Presently, the difference in petrol and diesel prices is in the range of Rs 6-7. This has also led to a shift in the buying trend for more are choosing petrol alternates. This year, Maruti Suzuki reported an increase of sales of 56 per cent from 54 per cent in their petrol vehicles while that for diesel dropped from 46 per cent to 44 per cent. Toyota too has witnessed this trend with five to seven per cent rise in sales of the petrol powered Etios range in the last three months.
The new Fortuner will lock horns with the new Ford Endeavour, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport and the Chevrolet Trailblazer. Presently, the Fortuner is priced between Rs 25.09 lakh and Rs 27.94 lakh (ex-Mumbai)
Spy pics source: TeamBHP