Toyota released the Fortuner for the very first time back in late 2004. It didn’t take it long for the Fortuner to become one of Toyota’s fastest-selling SUVs in the mid-size segment. The Fortuner’s chassis rides on the same platform as that found underpinning the popular Hilux pickup truck. As the years ticked by, the Japanese auto giant kept up with minor styling updates and feature additions in order to keep their star performer relevant with newer, entrants in the market. While the first-generation model was still doing quite well, Toyota knew that it was time to move to the next chapter. So, in 2015, Toyota launched the all-new second-generation Fortuner. It was based on the Hilux’s platform, but the Fortuner was now thoroughly modernized, both inside and out.
In the United Arab Emirates, the 2019 Toyota Fortuner range is priced between AED 114,900 for the entry-level variant and AED 149,900 for the range-topping VXR variant. The basic EXR trim of the Fortuner sources its power from a 2.7-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder. This unit kicks out 160hp and 245Nm of maximum torque, and runs it through a 6-speed automatic transmission, before being split between all four wheels. In terms of performance, this four-pot motor isn’t the right fit for a heavy, seven-seat SUV, and it shows. With this motor under the hood, it takes the Fortuner an agonizing 12.0 seconds to hit 100 km/h. Meanwhile, the maximum velocity is 180 km/h, and fuel economy stands at 12.4 L/100 km.
While the entry-level model can only be had with the lower output engine, the AED 134,900 GXR variant is smack in the middle of the pack. This one gets the appreciably more powerful and smoother V6 engine. The 4.0-liter unit is good for 235hp and 376Nm of torque, though the 6-speed slushbox and permanent four-wheel drive (4WD) system remain unchanged. In spite of the added horsepower, the V6-powered Fortuner maxes out at 187 km/h. However, the increase in torque shows itself well and early, as the sprint from 0 to 100 km/h now takes just 9.0 seconds. Yes, it’s still not blazingly fast, but in real-world driving conditions, it’s noticeable. As for fuel economy, the Fortuner V6 should average a fairly decent 12.6 L/100 km - putting it just a short throw away from the inline-four variant.
On the features and equipment front, all 2019 variants of the Fortuner come with alloy wheels, power-operated door mirrors, roof rails, rear spoiler, LED taillights, front & rear fog lamps, cruise control, rear parking sensors, air conditioning, power windows, 6-speaker audio system with Bluetooth, CD, AUX and USB connectivity, and a multi-function steering wheel. Meanwhile, standard safety tech all across the range includes three airbags, ABS with EBD and brake assist, and Auto Disconnect Differential.
At the top of the pack is the AED 149,900 Fortuner VXR. It has the same six-cylinder mill as the GXR, but gets more in the way of features. It sports larger 18-inch alloy wheels, slightly reworked front & rear bumpers, auto-leveling full-LED headlights with LED DRLs, chrome exhaust tips, rear locking differential, rear-view camera, power tailgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather seating surfaces, smart keyless-entry with push-button start, paddle shifters, powered and ventilated front seats, cooled glove box, color multi-information driver’s display, and an 8-inch touch-infotainment head unit with built-in navigation.
In the UAE, the 2019 Toyota Fortuner goes up against the likes of the Kia Mohave, Mitsubishi’s Montero Sport, and Chevrolet’s Trailblazer. The 2019 Fortuner can tip the scales at 2.6 tons, and it measures 4.795 meters in length, 1.855 meters in width, 1.835 meters in height, and has a wheelbase that spans 2.750 meters.
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