Simple, rugged and dependable, there’s nothing fancy about the big box on wheels. The dependable four-cylinder petrol engine is mounted underneath the passenger compartment to maximize available load space, and it can take a pallet of freight with ease.
Slip behind the wheel of this Hiace and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how car-like its driving is, compared to most rivals thanks to a rather un-van-like vertically-mounted steering wheel. Once you’ve tilt-adjusted it and ratcheted the height-adjustable seat up or down, it’s easy to find a comfortable driving position, aided by thoughtful touches like a driver’s armrest and window glass chosen to reduce UV glare. Neither of the engines are especially silent, so it’s just as well that in other areas, Toyota’s designers have worked hard to prioritise refinement, fitting a full-height glazed bulkhead as standard and using sound-absorbent material liberally around the cabin to significantly reduce noise, vibration and harshness.