The HiLux Rugged X might be dripping with factory upgrades, but we made it way better with one simple mod
Words and Images by Rob Rien
Call it a disease, an affliction, a condition or whatever you want, but the truth is that we as 4X4 drivers are after one thing – the best 4X4 we can get our hands on, AKA ‘The Quest For Perfection’. Toyota’s HiLux Rugged X is their answer to our prayers, coming loaded with factory upgrades such as bar work, proper recovery points and more, but as sufferers of ‘The Quest For Perfection’, we had to find a way to make it better, and it was ridiculously simple: proper off-road tyres.
1. Bumpers and bash plates may look cool, but they won’t get you further up the track. Proper off-road tyres will though
2. Try this on your standard road tyres and be prepared to live in Punctureville, an expensive town to call home (ask us how we know). Airing down for grip and comfort is an off-road non-negotiable, and it is where most standard tyres will let you down, literally
3. One of the biggest improvements to the Rugged X was at speed on dirt roads. Better grip equals a safer, more predictable 4X4
4. Quality off-road tyres are built with this sort of traction and strength in mind. A standard factory tyre would either slip off the obstacle, or the sidewall would not stand up to the loads being imparted in such a scenario
5. By choosing a tyre that was just a touch oversize from the factory hoops, the Rugged X has also picked up a handy boost in ground clearance, going from 22cm of pumpkin clearance to 23.5cm
6. Bigger rubber also means better approach and departure angles. Win/win!