Toyota HiAce goes upmarket

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One of South Africa’s most important people movers lives on, in 14-seater configuration.

The introduction of Toyota’s 6th-generation Quantum earlier this year has made it inarguably more comfortable for many South Africans to get to work and visit family whilst on vacation. However, an unexpected consequence of the new Quantum’s success has been the revival of the previous one! It might sound a touch confusing, but you can now buy both Quantums in South Africa, with the revived version being marketed under the HiAce nameplate.

Those loyal taxi industry followers will know that HiAce was the name which established Toyota’s dominance of the South Africa mass transit transport market in the 1990s.

In terms of specification, the rebranded MPV (to reiterate, essentially an old Quantum), is configured with 14-seats and positioned aside Toyota’s Ses’fikile 16-seater in the HiAce range, albeit with more convenience kit such as air-conditioning, an audio system and USB ports.

Technical details are very much as they were. Power comes from the proven 2.5-litre turbodiesel with 75 kW and 260 Nm. Drive is to the rear wheels via a 5-speed manual transmission and its mechanically durability is unquestionable.

Colour options are limited to, predictably, simple white and silver.

An interesting ownership aspect of the 14-seater HiAce is that it is classified as a light commercial vehicle and does not require a code 10 licence to operate. Priced at R571 000, this latest HiAce is cheaper than a new-generation Quantum 14-seater, which retails for R635 000. The HiAce Ses’fikile 2.5 16-seater remains your value choice at R453 900.

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