The humble Toyota Hilux has always laid claim to being ?unbreakable?. Judging by their widespread presence on building sites, farms and mining operations, a lot of people would seem to agree. To cement its legendary reputation, the Hilux can now boast that it has traveled across Antarctica, to the South Pole.
The accomplishment comes on top of the 2007 Top Gear Polar Challenge, when the Hilux became the first car to be driven to the Magnetic North Pole.
The Hilux even showed up traditional snow vehicles by being faster, more fuel-efficient, carrying more passengers in greater comfort and producing less CO2 emissions, all while maintaining a high level of reliability.
Hilux was chosen as the support vehicle for the 777 kilometre Amundsen Omega3 South Pole Race, which re-creates the historic expeditions of rival explorers Roald Amundsen and Robert Scott. The dual-cab Hiluxes were specially prepared by Artic Trucks in Reykjavik, Iceland - the same team responsible for building the Top Gear vehicles.
Set up with custom trailers, the Hiluxes were required to haul loads up to 2.5 tonnes (1.5 tonnes above their normal towing capacity) in frozen terrain as cold as -30C.
Specially fitted with a system which uses engine heat to melt snow on the move, the utes were charged with the duties of ferrying supplies and carrying scientists and support teams. So far the South Pole vehicles have clocked over 3200 kilometres in the freezing conditions.
Hilux is already the vehicle of choice at other Antarctic research stations and is being considered as a future transport option to serve the needs of the region. If anything can add to the legendary reliability of the Hilux, it?s the amazing ability to survive in these kinds of extremes.