Quantum leap for new Toyota minibus
SA’s perennial people mover promises advanced safety systems, a new diesel engine and improved ride comfort
Toyota globally revealed a new generation of one of the most important vehicles to the company and the local transport system, the all-new Toyota Quantum, this week.
Available in a van and minibus shape, the new passenger and cargo carrier is said to feature advanced safety systems, a new engine and improved ride comfort.
Scheduled to arrive in SA in the second quarter of 2019, the new Quantum will be available with three-seat vans in long (LWB) and super-long wheelbase (SLWB) configurations and six-seat LWB crew cabs. The bus range will comprise 11-seater (LWB) and 14-seater (SLWB) versions.
There will be a luxury VX version too, which will compete against vehicles like the Hyundai H1 and VW Kombi.
The imported new-generation Quantum won’t replace the current locally produced Toyota Ses’fikile minibus taxi, which will continue in its current form, says Toyota SA.
The new, imported Quantum has shifted to a semi-bonneted design that reportedly has enabled the development of a stiffer frame that creates stronger straight-line performance, greater stability and manoeuvrability, and more supple suspensions.
Unlike the outgoing generation, which offered 2.7l petrol and 2.5l diesel engines, a solitary 2.8l four-cylinder turbocharged diesel with a six-speed manual transmission now does duty for the entire range.
Towing capacity is now rated at 2,000kg on certain variants, a claimed improvement of up to 600kg. There are newly developed MacPherson struts in front and a new leaf spring suspension span increased by 200mm. Toyota claims all of these technical changes enhance handling and stability.
The new Quantum has reworked interior packaging to maximise ease of use and versatility. LED lighting, console boxes, flip-up seats and netted seat-back pockets are introduced while up to 16 cup or bottle holders are provided. A larger front-door glass and a lower beltline improve visibility.
Toyota Genuine accessories will also be available when the bus is launched and bespoke body building services will be offered.
The full model line-up, specification and pricing will be released closer to the launch.
The Quantum sold 16,584 units in SA in 2018, making it the country’s seventh-best-selling vehicle.