Jet-Fuelled Toyota Hilux Conquers The Antarctic

  • 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 4×4 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
  • Brussels, Belgium – 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 6×6 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 4×4 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 6×6 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.

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