Toyota Hilux 1998 2.4 petrol 4×4 | High-Mileage Club
Speed is definitely not everything. This stalwart that have done more than 250 000km might not get there first, but boy, do they keep going.
Harold Churchill’s 1998 2.4 petrol 4×4 Toyota Hilux
On the odometer?
300 500 km
How many owners?
I bought this Hilux new. It was my company vehicle, which I bought when it had done 150 000 km.
How much did it cost?
I can’t remember, but I think it was about R40 000.
Why a Toyota?
I’ve had six since 1979 and they have proved to be exceptionally reliable and cheap to run.
Does it have a nickname?
A friend once called it the Beast when I towed him many kilometres through Mozambique. I just call it my Truck.
Where have you been in it?
We have done a number of trips into the hinterland of Southern Africa – Lesotho, Namibia, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe – and most of South Africa. We always take the byways.
Your dream destination?
A four month trip through Africa: through Mozambique to Dar es Salaam, then west across Tanzania to Malawi and then home – maybe through Zambia, Zimbabwe or across the Caprivi and the rest of Namibia. If I won the Lotto, I would tackle a round-the-world overland trip with my Hilux, a Long, Long-Way-Round.
Repairs so far?
Only once, when it was still under guarantee, when the voltage regulator was repaired. In recent years I have embarked on a preventative maintenance program doing parts such as wheel bearings, the clutch, universal joints, starter motor and alternator.
None. It is standard with 215×15 tyres. It has a steel canopy and a roof-top tent – which we designed and my wife made on her sewing machine. We also designed the roof rack and made all the internal fittings. It certainly isn’t designer gear, but it’s functional to the nth degree. We have been through the most severe weather, everything except hail.
What do I like about it?
It has enabled us to travel to some of the most remote and exciting places, usually on our own, with absolute confidence in the ability of our Hilux to get us through. The fixed front axle Hilux is the best Toyota ever made.
Would you change anything?
I would like a rear-mounted spare-wheel carrier. Would I change to another vehicle? Definitely not – I love my Hilux.
Which famous person would it be?
David Livingstone, one of Africa’s foremost explorers.
With R10 000 …
I would have that rear-mounted spare-wheel carrier fitted, and invest in a satellite phone.