Toyota has launched a budget-positioned compact SUV – but clad in an eye-catching SUV package – in South Africa this week.
Few local motorists will know that the Daihatsu Terios, a small SUV that was discontinued from the local market in 2015, was the sister product of a model named the Toyota Rush (even though Daihatsu is no longer represented in South Africa, the brand belongs in the Toyota stable). Following the sighting of the consignment of Rushes by Cars.co.za journalist and photographer Gero Lilleike, the Terios has, in fact, made a “comeback” in the form of the 5-seater Toyota Rush which is now available in South Africa.
Sporty black cladding, distinctive tail lamp clusters and a raised ride height give the Rush a rugged look.
The Rush is 4.435 metres long, 1.695 metres wide and 1.705 metres high with a ride height of 220 mm and surprisingly, a maximum wading depth of 600 mm.
Apart from the fact that the Rush offers family car buyers the practicality of a large 609-litre load bay and seating for 5, many will be attracted to its “Baby Fortuner” appearance. Shown here in TRD Sportivo spec, the Rush’s front view is dominated by a large grille flanked by LED daytime running lamps and a high-set bonnet. The profile view admittedly looks a bit more generic, but flared wheel arches and black cladding make the newcomer appear purposeful. The Rush features 17-inch alloy wheels, electric mirrors with integrated indicators and LED tail lamps.
The top-of-the-range automatic version of the Rush features automatic climate control.
Inside, the cabin features a black-and-beige trim combination and familiar Toyota fascia architecture, replete with a 7-inch touchscreen-operated audio system, automatic climate control, keyless entry, start-stop button and two 12V outlets. Bear in mind that the South African-spec Rush will probably have a different trim specification but we will get definitive details from the launch.
The Rush is powered by a 77 kW/136 Nm 1.5-litre petrol motor paired with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission that drives the rear wheels, as is the case with the Avanza. Safety features include ABS with EBD, 6 airbags, vehicle stability control and hill start assist.
The Rush certainly makes a case for itself as a compact family car/small crossover that offers more practicality at a lower price point than the C-HR.
Toyota Rush Price in South Africa
Toyota Rush High MT - R299 900
Toyota Rush High AT - R313 500
The Rush is sold with a 3-year/100 000 km warranty and a 6-service/90 000 km service plan.