Drivers from North America and Europe may not be too familiar with this nameplate but the Fortuner is a pretty popular SUV in parts of the world like Australia or Southeast Asia. The reason lays in the fact that drivers from these parts of the world prefer traditional body-on-frame SUVs over modern crossovers, because of superior off-road performance and utility. Considering that the Fortuner shares most of its parts with the legendary Hilux pickup, it’s easy to conclude why this SUV is so popular. We expect nothing less from the 2023 Toyota Fortuner, which will probably continue without more important changes.
The current generation has been around since 2015 and we presume it will follow the path of the current-generation Hilux, which arrived the same year. As the popular pickup won’t receive a full redesign in the next year or two, we expect the same from this SUV as well. This leads to the conclusion that the 2023 Toyota Fortuner could come with minor updates only, such as new color options and a few additions to the list of standard equipment.
2023 Toyota Fortuner Design
As we’ve just mentioned, the Fortuner is a genuine body-on-frame SUV. It shares most of its parts with Hilux and 4Runner and, therefore, it’s no wonder that off-road performances are great, especially if we consider high ground clearance, relatively short wheelbase, rear locking differential, hill descent control etc. Still, the Fortuner is also pretty smooth on the road. Unlike the pickup sibling, which comes with traditional leaf springs, this SUV comes with an independent rear suspension, which significantly improves the ride quality.
In terms of the styling, the SUV was updated a few years ago. The 2020 update brought the new styling, with the new front face and few modifications in other areas. Also, a version called Legender came to certain markets, with exclusive styling details, such as unique bumpers, unique grille design, new wheels and more.
On the inside, the Fortuner is rather functional than attractive, though it’s far from looking unattractive. Basically, most of the cabin is the same as in Hilux, including the dashboard. As a result, you get solid build quality in a combination with durable but also hard-touch materials, predominately plastics. Still, the dash doesn’t look too truckish and can be even compared with modern crossovers in terms of aesthetics.
Due to the relatively short wheelbase, the third row of seats is very tight. On the other hand, the first two rows are very generous with space and accommodate adults with ease. The front seats are comfortable and offer decent support, while the driving position is high and ensures good visibility in all directions.
We expect that the trim level organization will remain the same, at least in Australia. Down under, the 2023 Toyota Fortuner should come in three grades – GX, GXL and Crusade.
The base GX model should come standard with tech goodies like an 8-inch infotainment screen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a six-speaker audio system, a 4.2-inch driver information display, and air conditioning. The list of standard equipment should also include hardware like a rear locking differential and side steps.
The GXL model will bring a couple of upgrades, starting from chrome exterior details. On the inside, you may count on a leather-wrapped steering wheel, paddle shifters, keyless entry, navigation, dual-zone automatic climate control, LED foglights etc. This grade also comes standard with hill descent control.
Finally, there is the Crusade grade, with standard features like a power tailgate, LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, leather upholstery, 8-way adjustable driver seat, and a household-style 220V outlet. Also, there are a few upgrades in terms of driver-assistance features, such as surround-view camera, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert etc.
2023 Toyota Fortuner Engines
This aspect of the SUV definitely won’t bring any surprises. Therefore, the recently updated 2.8-liter turbodiesel should remain the core of the offer. This engine puts out 150kW (204 horsepower) and 500 Nm (369 lb-ft) of torque and comes with a 6-speed automatic gearbox. In some markets, you can also get a smaller and more efficient 2.4-liter turbodiesel, which is good for 110kW (148hp) and 400Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque.
In some pretty specific parts of the world, the Fortuner can also be configured with gasoline engines. Two units are available, starting from a 2.7-liter inline-four, which is good for about 165 horsepower. The good-old 4.0-liter V6 is also available, with a max output of 235 horsepower.
2023 Toyota Fortuner Release Date and Price
We expect that the 2023 Toyota Fortuner will hit the market sometime in the last quarter of the year. The current model starts at around AU$50.000 and we don’t expect to see a significant increase in the near future. Key competitors are models like Ford Everest, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport etc.