Pickup trucks are popular in South Africa, otherwise known as bakkies in the African country. In fact, South Africa's best-selling vehicle in 2021 is a pickup truck and it's the Toyota Hilux. However, this Hilux is unlike any other Toyota pickup truck in South Africa – or anywhere else in the world, for that matter.
Converted by FatBoy Fab Works, this Hilux conversion was originally made to conquer the Simola Hillclimb last year. The truck has gone various upgrades since when we first saw the bonkers build. Of note, Francois Fritz, the owner of the tuning shop, went through various engines before deciding on what it has today – a 5.0-liter V12 engine from a Toyota Century.
The V12 mill from the stately Japanese sedan isn't powerful in stock form, only making 276 horsepower (206 kilowatts) and 355 pound-feet (481 Newton-meters). However, after two engine rebuilds and a pair of Garrett GT35 turbochargers in place, the whole setup under the hood of this Toyota Hilux can now put out 563 hp (420 kW) and 715 lb-ft (970 Nm) of pull.
According to Fritz, the engine now comes with fully-forged parts after the second rebuild. It can produce up to 1,000 hp in its current form, with 0.5 psi boost and running on 50 percent ethanol and 50 percent gasoline.
Sending power to the wheels is a 4-speed automatic gearbox from a Toyota Supra but with swapped mechanicals. However, that is just a stand-in as they are now planning to have it converted into a manual gearbox, which would be pretty sweet.
Safe to say, this isn't this truck's final form, and we're interested to the extent that Fritz is going for with this crazy, one-off bakkie build.