The refreshed 2021 Toyota Fortuner was officially launched in the Philippines bringing with it two new distinct facelifts. One harks back to its predecessor with only minor updates to the lights and bumpers, while the other comes with a completely new and sportier look.
The question now remains what exactly has changed for the refreshed model in the Philippines and how does it stack up to the pre-facelifted model?
With that said let's take a closer look at what Toyota exactly did to its popular SUV to refresh it for the 2021 model year. In this face-off segment, we will take a look at the older and new versions of the Toyota Fortuner. There are quite a few updates, so let's get started.
First on the list for the 2021 Toyota Fortuner Is its new face. Toyota has decided to split the new SUV into two variations. The first carries the same shapes and curves as the current model, however, it has tweaked its design slightly. The second and more noticeably different is the new LTD variant. For this version of the vehicle, Toyota has given it an entirely new face by making it look sleeker and sharpening up its lines a bit.
The current generation of the Toyota Fortuner on sale in the Philippines comes with a large four-level grille flanked on either side by chrome accents. On the lower bumper, it comes with a much smaller grille acting as a second intake for the engine. It also features triangle-shaped fog light covers facing at a downward angle.
The G through Q variants of the refreshed Fortuner carries the design of the previous iteration, however, the grille has been redesigned along with the lower bumper. It also comes with a new set of wheels 18-inch wheels that add to the overall look of the refreshed design. The previous generation had its grille stop just before the top of the bumper, now, however, it extends towards the middle. Through this redesign, Toyota has managed to eliminate the lower grille found on the bumper. This means that the G through Q variants of Fortuner now only take in air through its larger upper grille.
Aside from the grille change, the headlights have also been updated to now fit LED projectors, however, the light housing shape remains the same. The fog light housings have also been adjusted to give them a larger look. The rear of the vehicle remains the same except for the redesigned LED taillights that give it a more modern look.
Moving on to the new LTD variant of the vehicle is where we see more changes. For the new version of the Fortuner, Toyota has brought back its two-grille design. The range-topping variant now comes with a larger lower grille and a smaller top grille both carrying a honeycomb pattern. Chrome accents are also absent on the vehicle and it now comes with black accents instead. The fog light housings have been shrunken down slightly, however, it still retains its angular design. Unlike the refreshed standard version of the Fortuner, the LTD now comes with its own unique set of headlights. The 2.8-liter LTD variants also come with a newer set of wheels, however, these are of a different design compared to the ones found on the G through Q variants of the refreshed Fortuner.
Not much has been changed for the rear of the new Fortuner LTD. It carries over the same new taillight design from the standard version, however, Toyota has given the top-spec variant a different rear bumper and updated LED tail lamps. It now comes with creases on the side for the rear reflectors and the Japanese brand has done away with the chrome accents. The refreshed SUV also comes with a blacked-out roof unique to its trim-level in the Philippines. Overall the new updates give the vehicle a more sporty and sleeker look from the pre-facelifted model.
Interior and technology
Not much has changed for the interior layout of the SUV. Toyota did, however, update the infotainment system to a 7 or 8-inch head unit depending on the variant. The Japanese brand has also added a few more interior touches such as new cabin accents as well as interior mood lighting for the higher variants of the vehicle. A power tailgate as well as a 360-degree camera is also present in the vehicle for its higher trim levels. The entry-level Fortuner G also now comes standard with a reverse camera, a feature that was lacking in its predecessor even in the top of the line trims.
Where the new and old models differ slightly is in the infotainment system and in the gauges. For starters, the current Fortuner comes with black and white gauges and a smaller infotainment system. In 2019 Toyota upgraded the infotainment system to now have Apple CarPlay and Android capabilities.
Toyota Philippines has even given the refreshed 2021 Fortuner the brand’s own suite of safety systems making the SUV even safer than before. It now comes with Toyota Safety Sense which gives the vehicle adaptive cruise control, a pre-collision warning system, auto high beam, and lane departure alert just to name a few.
Engine and Chassis
It's still the same familiar motors powering the old and new Fortuner. It still can be had with the trusty 2.4-liter engine that pushes out 147hp and 400 Nm of torque. Where things differ, however, is in the bigger 2.8-liter turbo diesel motor. Toyota has tweaked it a bit for the 2021 model year and has given it a boost in power. It now makes 201hp and 500 nm of torque. Transmission options have also been unchanged, as the local models still come with a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic transmission. In terms of fuel efficiency, Toyota has stated that the newer Fortuner models in both engine options come with increased figures. While the Japanese brand did not mention exact numbers, it did state that a 4 to 5% increase is to be expected for the updated engines.
For safety, the current generation of the Toyota Fortuner is well equipped. It comes with a suite of 4 to 7 airbags depending on the variant that is able to enshroud the vehicle's occupants in a cocoon of airbags and it also features ABS, EBD, and a vehicle stability system along with traction control. The facelifted version of the vehicle takes this a step further by adding the Japanese brand's Toyota Safety Sense suite of safety features. This now gives the higher variants access to features such as a pre-collision system, adaptive cruise control, lane departure alert, and automatic high beams just to name a few.
Now that the new model is now on sale and with official pricing now available, the Toyota Fortuner has come a long way and is now on par with the rest of its competitors. With new vehicles entering the market and subsequently raising the bar even higher the popular SUV is now ready to rise to the challenge with the power to lead the segment once again.