By 5 July 2012 | Categories: feature articles



South Africans love to braai, watch rugby on a Saturday, eat biltong and drive double cab bakkies. Here are our top 5 choices.

Isuzu KB 300D-Teq double cab 4x4 LX

Isuzu KB 300D-Teq double cab 4x4 LX

Isuzu's tough as nails single and double cab bakkies have always remained a popular choice for local buyers. The KB 300D-Teq double cab 4x4 LX's three litre four cylinder turbocharged diesel engine pumps out 120 kW at a low 3600 RPM and 360 Nm of torque between 1800 and 2800 RPM.

This 4x4 may allow competent offroaders to traverse nearly any terrain, but this doesn't mean that you won't get there in a spartan cabin derived of any creature comforts. You get a sound system capable of playing music CDs, MP3s and WMA files, and air-conditioner with cabin air filter (pollen filter) that hay fever sufferers will appreciate.

Safety wise, your R407 400 nets you features such as rear park assist (four parking sensors), airbags for the driver and front passenger, ABS that sports EBD (electronic brakeforce distribution) and an automatic door lock function that locks the doors when you drive over 30 km/h.

Mitsubishi Triton 3.2 Di-DC double cab 4x4

Mitsubishi Triton 3.2 Di-DC double cab 4x4

Besides the Ford Ranger Wildtrak, the Triton might be the most distinctive looking vehicle in this comparison. Its rounded, sculpted appearance adds some extra flair to the stylish design of this rugged vehicle.

The Triton is propelled forward by its turbocharged in-line four cylinder DOHC common rail engine, which pushes out 118 kW at 3800 RPM and 343 Nm hill-conquering torque at a low 2000 RPM. You are able to easily switch between the various driving modes, whether it's 2H, a rear wheel drive high range mode for everyday driving and optimum fuel efficiency, or 4L, which is a four wheel drive low range mode for extreme off-road challenges such as deep mud or steep inclines.

This one-tonner (1020 kg load capacity) bakkie's price starts from R395 900 (including emissions tax and VAT). For that price, two airbags (driver and front passenger), electric windows, electronic brake force distribution (EBD) and single-zone climate control as standard are included.

VW Amarok 2.0BiTDI double cab Highline 4Motion

VW Amarok 2.0BiTDI double cab Highline 4Motion

Unlike the rest of the bakkie blue bloods listed in our Top 5 double-cab list, the Amarok is relatively new to the scene. VW has done a remarkable job designing this bakkie, as it manages to look great whilst also conveying a sense of off-roading ability (tough enough for the rough). Its two litre four cylinder turbocharged powerplant pushes out 132 kW at 4000 RPM and 400 Nm between 1500 and 2250 RPM.

Unfortunately the Highline 4Motion double cab sports an equally potent price tag of R425 300. You do get a radio/CD sound system that features Bluetooth and six speakers for a more immersive surround sound experience, but not much else is thrown in for free. The more additional features you tick, the bigger the smile on the salesman's face, with functionality the likes of rear park distance control (standard on the more affordable Isuzu and Ranger) costing an extra R2650 and leather seat covering going for an additional R6530.

Ford Ranger 3.2 double cab Hi-Rider Wildtrak

Ford Ranger 3.2 double cab Hi-Rider Wildtrak

We already love the normal Ranger double cab, but the Wildtrak manages to build upon this with some unique design characteristics including the Wildtrak grille, titanium front bumper and sun-kissed orange body colour. This exclusive theme is continued in the interior via the orange stitching on the Wildtrak leather trim.

A bakkie that looks this good deserves equally powerful muscle, with the Wildtrak equipped with one of Ford's phenomenal 3.2 TDCi engine that delivers 147 kW and a massive 470 Nm of caravan towing torque.

All of this kit does come at a price though, with the Wildtrak model starting at R413 650 (incl VAT). A lot of spec bang for your bucks is on the cards though, with features such as dual zone auto aircon, auto on/off headlights, rain sensing wipers, rear park assist with rear view camera and an eight way power driver's seat that is also heated (as is the front passenger's seat).

Toyota Hilux 3.0D-4D double cab Raider

Toyota Hilux 3.0D-4D double cab Raider

The local benchmark when it comes to double cab bakkies (well any bakkie for that matter) is Toyota's evergreen Hilux. At the heart of this South African legend beats a 2982cc four in-line DOHC engine, which delivers 120 kW at 3400 RPM and 343 Nm of torque between 1400 and 3200.

This model retails for R424 900, which nets buyers an integrated USB and iPod connectivity feature that enables the driver to connect their iPhone, iPod or MP3 player to the audio system for an on-the-go music experience.

You also get an automatic air-conditioner, an anti-lock Braking System (ABS) that features load sensing technology as well as emergency brake assist system (BAS), head curtain shield side airbags and vehicle stability control functionality as standard.

The latter enables even casual bundu-bashers to keep a firm grasp on the “reigns” of this beast whilst navigating slippery dirt roads. It is however the Hulux's remarkable reliability, engine, suspension and chassis that allows the Hilux to ascend to the top of any prospective 4x4 buyer's list.


Get it from Barloworld Toyota Menlyn on 012-995-1700.


This article first appeared in TechSmart 106, July 2012. To check our latest (July 2013) Double Cab bakkie comparison click here



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