Toyota Hilux 6×6 to tackle Antarctica

Antarctic Hilux 05

When the world’s harshest environments need traversing, one vehicle has proved itself to be reliable and durable enough to tackle the job – the Toyota Hilux.

The legendary pick-up has famously conquered both the Arctic and Antarctic in support of numerous expeditions and world record attempts. But now its breadth of ability has been significantly increased with a new custom-built six-wheel drive version.

Designed and built in Iceland by Arctic Trucks, the company behind our own Polar Hilux, the Hilux 6×6 was created to accommodate the logistical and communications requirements of the ground-breaking Willis Resilience Expedition.

Parker 01

Led by 19-year-old polar explorer and environmental campaigner Parker Liautaud, the aim of the expedition is to collect scientific data about climate change and pilot a new model of weather station. In addition, Parker is hoping to document his setting of a new world record for skiing across Antarctica from coast to pole, a distance just short of 400 miles, without any support from the following Hilux.

Parker 02

The multi-purpose nature of the trip required the Hilux to carry a huge 2.6-tonne payload, which necessitated the pick-up’s modification to six-wheel drive. Distributing the weight across six 44″ wheels would provide superb traction on ice and snow despite the load, while the 400-litre fuel tanks give the 170bhp Toyota incredible range.

Final preparations for the 40-day expedition are now being made, prior to the team’s departure from the Ross Ice Shelf on 3 December. As part of these arrangements, the Hilux 6×6 is now in the UK on a media campaign.

Over the next few days we will be catching up with this incredible vehicle, no doubt surprising a few people on some easy drives around London’s South Bank. Afterwards we will be taking it for a private photocall to meet its relatives – a standard Hilux Double Cab and the famous BBC Top Gear Polar Hilux.

Make sure to check back on the Toyota Blog for reports on these events.

Antarctic Hilux 01

Antarctic Hilux 02

Antarctic Hilux 03

Antarctic Hilux 04

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