Toyota has just wrapped up another impressive Antarctic expedition, this time traversing over 43,500 miles in the span of four months. In the process, the company says it snagged a new world record with three specially-prepared Hilux pickup trucks with each covering 5,903 miles of the frozen continent. Iceland-based Arctic Trucks handled converting the pickups for their stint in the cold, and while the alterations included creating at least two 6x6 versions, the 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engines had to be reworked to consume Jet A-1 fuel. In the low temperatures of the Antarctic, standard diesel would simply turn to jelly.

The trucks were also outfitted with large tires running just 2-3 psi of air pressure, resulting in a contact patch around 17 times larger than a standard tire. Toyota reports the trucks ran incredibly well throughout the expedition and required no major repairs.

Starting last November, Toyota sent a team of 10 Hilux trucks to the far south to establish fuel depots, a weather station and to support scientific expeditions along the way. Hit the jump for the full press release.
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Jet-Fuelled Toyota Hilux Conquers The Antarctic - News

28/03/2012

• Longest expedition in polar exploration history, covering over 70,000 km in four months
• Three Hilux set new world record, each covering 9,500 km
• Prepared by Icelandic 4x4 conversion specialists Arctic Trucks to tackle the extreme terrain and weather conditions
• 3.0-litre D-4D diesel engine and gearbox remain unchanged, demonstrating the Hilux's legendary Quality, Durability and Reliability
• Land Cruiser celebrates 60th anniversary with first trek to the South Pole The legendary Toyota Hilux, already renowned for its ability to overcome extreme challenges, started a new chapter in the history of polar exploration, covering over 70,000 km across one of the coldest and most hostile environments in the world.

The highlight of the Antarctic programme was a double trans-continental crossing, organised by Extreme World Races. A new world record was set by three Hilux vehicles, including two 6x6 versions, each covering 9,500 km. Totalling nearly 30,000 km this makes it the longest Antarctic journey ever.

From November 2011 to February 2012, a team using ten Toyota Hilux vehicles was charged with setting up a fuel depot, installing a weather station, and providing support to scientific expeditions and a ski race.

To face Antarctica's uniquely extreme driving conditions, with temperatures as low as -50°C, terrain altitudes of over 3,400 m and the most brutal driving environment imaginable, all vehicles were prepared by Icelandic 4x4 conversion specialists Arctic Trucks. Necessary modifications included the integration of a crane to lift heavy equipment, the use of Jet A-1 fuel to cope with the extreme cold, a 280-litre fuel tank (800-litres for 6x6 vehicles), revised suspension and drivetrain, crawler gears and extra large tyres with pressures as low as 2-3 psi (regular Hilux tyres have a pressure of 29 psi) giving a tyre surface area about 17 times larger than those found on standard tyres.

It is a testament to the Hilux's legendary Quality Durability and Reliability (QDR) that its 3.0-litre D-4D diesel engine and the transmission remain entirely unchanged for the expeditions.

The Hilux performed outstandingly well throughout its 70,000 km challenge without technical failures.

Sold in over 135 countries and a global leader in the pick-up segment, the Hilux once again pushes the boundaries of extreme endurance driving.

A video of the Hilux's most recent polar exploration will soon be available on Toyota Europe's YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/ToyotaEurope


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  • 55 Comments
      STEVE BARBER
      • 2 Years Ago
      COOL
      tyvek0099
      • 2 Years Ago
      i guess they used toyota instead of bmw or mercedes because there is no service stations every 100miles ;x
      sfblog
      • 2 Years Ago
      I would only trust a Toyota in these conditions. Acomplishments like this and my ownership experience prove how awesome their products are. Yes they have "basic transportation" type cars that do the basics, but the specialty toyotas have always been one of the best. Land Cruiser, Supra, MR2, Tacoma, Tundra, 4runner, IS, GS, LS, LFA..etc...
        • 2 Years Ago
        @sfblog
        [blocked]
          WillieD
          • 2 Years Ago
          And my family has had Fords that have been more reliable than friends' Toyotas...who cares?
      buckfeverjohnson
      • 2 Years Ago
      Then the frames rusted through.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @buckfeverjohnson
        [blocked]
          WillieD
          • 2 Years Ago
          You're really going to bring up this misconstrued information again?
          Jimmy
          • 2 Years Ago
          actually the rust problems cams from an American supplyer Dana Corp that toyota ended up winning 25 million dollars from in a lawsuit http://www.torquenews.com/106/dana-corp-ordered-pay-toyota-25m-frame-rust-issues the same supplier sold to ford, now search for all the ford pickup frame rust problems, more than toyota, at least toyota fixed theres
        Jimmy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @buckfeverjohnson
        actually the rust problems cams from an American supplyer Dana Corp that toyota ended up winning 25 million dollars from in a lawsuit http://www.torquenews.com/106/dana-corp-ordered-pay-toyota-25m-frame-rust-issues
        jtav2002
        • 2 Years Ago
        @buckfeverjohnson
        Yeaaaa way to bring up old problems that were the suppliers fault. Problems that Toyota either fixed or bought the trucks back for.
        Jimmy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @buckfeverjohnson
        actually the rust problems cams from an American supplyer Dana Corp that toyota ended up winning 25 million dollars from in a lawsuit http://www.torquenews.com/106/dana-corp-ordered-pay-toyota-25m-frame-rust-issues
      Termin8
      • 2 Years Ago
      Big deal. Top Gear already did it.
      sfblog
      • 2 Years Ago
      In condition like the Antartica, Safari, or any trail that requires capability and relaiablity..im going ONLY with Toyota with blinders on. Not Land/Range Rover Hummer Any Sedan Utility Vehicle
        • 2 Years Ago
        @sfblog
        [blocked]
          Bruce Lee
          • 2 Years Ago
          The G-Wagen is mostly known for breaking down on the Canning Stock that stock Land Cruisers run all the time and none of the vehicles you mention have ever made it to Antarctica so what's your point? And it's not that nobody's tried-Land Rover tried and failed miserably: http://forum.landrovernet.com/showthread.php/21995-LR-South-Pole-Team-Thwarted?s=ade1e49f41c3c6220111a05cd566aa22 Down at the south pole you'd see either Hiluxes or heavy duty Ford trucks (F-250/F-350), not the froofy luxo garbage you mentioned. If you want to die in the frozen tundra you can go ahead and try and drive a Land Rover down there, everyone else will take a Toyota or Ford.
          David J. Bernstein
          • 2 Years Ago
          @ sfblog and Bruce Lee You people have clearly no clue. You think a STOCK Toyota SUV could handle the Australian Outback or the Antarctic? HELL NO. The vehicles have to be MODIFIED to tackle their target environments accordingly. That means beefed-up suspensions etc. And if you had read the report on the G classes in the Australian Outback, you'd realize that the standard models, which are biased towards on-road performance, had issues simply because the suspension they were equipped with couldn't handle the stress of the Outback. The military spec G classes that were also along had ZERO ISSUES. Why? Because they come equipped with a sturdier suspension. Let's get real. In the US nobody who buys a G class or a Land Cruiser will ever get it dirty.
          clquake
          • 2 Years Ago
          David, sfblog is referring to the reliability of the Toyota. Obviously any stock vehicle needs to be modified for serious offroading, but in the extreme conditions of the Artic & Antartic, you also need an engine that is rock solid. If the engine dies, you die. The fact the Toyota used bone stock engines & gearboxes, that anyone can get in the showroom, shows how tough they are. I have never heard of legendary Mercedes (non military), Hummer (non military), Land Rover reliability. Yes, their vehicles can be extremely capable, but reliability can be suspect.
        Ian
        • 2 Years Ago
        @sfblog
        Comparing these specials to a HiLux is like comparing a Kia to and F1 car. What was done here by people was an awesome achievement. However you could do this in any Diesel 4WD that is prepared in the same way.
          Ian
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ian
          clquake You are living in a delusional past on Land Rover reliability. You get caught out on your total lack of knowledge. So you then try to live in the past.. Honestly mate wake up
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Basil Exposition
        • 2 Years Ago
        Yea, these would make ideal suburban runabouts.
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
          WillieD
          • 2 Years Ago
          It certainly wouldn't. But maybe it would at least bring more competition to the unloved mid-size segment.
      Commentotron
      • 2 Years Ago
      I guess Jet A-1 sounds cooler than kerosene. :-)
      evannever
      • 2 Years Ago
      Not to diminish the accomplishment, but the amount of customization to these trucks' chassis is far more significant than what it takes to make a diesel engine run on JET A-1 -- Opening the filler cap and pouring it in.
        AP1_S2K
        • 2 Years Ago
        @evannever
        huh, "the 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engines had to be reworked to consume Jet A-1 fuel. In the low temperatures of the Antarctic, standard diesel would simply turn to jelly."
      JonnyO
      • 2 Years Ago
      Were any of the drivers named Jeremy, James, or Richard?
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      k4jlp
      • 2 Years Ago
      98 Tacoma 4X4 TRD king cab in the yard with 319,000 miles on it and my kid still drives the crap out of it, what can I say?
        Curtis
        • 2 Years Ago
        @k4jlp
        Similar story here. 99 4Runner Trail 5spd w/ locking diff. 242,000 miles. Still drives like new every day for my wife. We just can't justify replacing it yet because it's that good.
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