• We list the five most fuel-efficient bakkies in SA.
• Ford and Toyota both made the list.
• The Nissan Navara's fuel economy is 6.3-litres/100km.
• For more motoring stories, go to www.Wheels24.co.za
A question we're often asked is 'how fuel-efficient are bakkies?'
It's a valid question, mainly because we're a bakkie-mad country and almost everyone aspires to own one. Whether from Japanese or American descend, bakkies have become the go-to vehicle in South Africa, and there is little anyone can do or say to convince us otherwise.
While some bakkies have achingly horrendous fuel returns, others, according to the automakers, can be stingy at the pumps. And this is a good thing because with fuel price increasing from lockdown level 5 levels, you want a bakkie that will take care of the wallet, too!
Here are the five most fuel-efficient double cab bakkies in South Africa.
2020 Toyota Hilux (MotorPress)
What is the best fuel return you have achieved with your bakkie? Please Email us here.
1 Nissan Navara
The second-generation Navara has been around since beginning-2017. Ten variants make up the local range, all double cabs, and each one is powered by the same 2.3-litre turbo diesel engine. Mated to either a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic gearbox, the engine produces a healthy 140kW and 450Nm (from 1500 - 2500rpm).
The manual Navara is the most fuel-efficient between the two transmission options, boasting with a return of 6.3-litres/100km. The automatic, says Nissan, comes in at 6.8-litres/100km. Do keep in mind that these figures, and of the ones to follow, are manufacturers' claims and may, or may not, be representative of real-world conditions.
The Navara range is priced from R527 300.
2020 Nissan Navara (MotorPress)
2 Ford Ranger 2.2 TDCi Hi-Rider
Nope, Ford's new 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine is not the most fuel-efficient of the lot. This older generation 2.2-litre turbo diesel unit powers the entry-level Ranger double cab Hi-Rider and delivers a rather underwhelming 88kW/285Nm. Thanks to the five-speed manual gearbox, this rear-wheel-drive bakkie has an economy of 6.5-litres/100km.
This is not too bad, considering that of the bakkies in this list it is the most affordable. Granted, it's the entry-level model to the Ranger line-up, but no harm in spicing things up with Ford Approved accessories.
The Ranger 2.2 D/C Hi-Rider retails for R381 200.
2020 Ford Ranger (Whichcar)
3 Toyota Hilux 2.4 GD-6 SR
Though the 2.8-litre Toyota Hilux is very popular, the 2.4-litre turbo diesel models are not too shabby. Beginning the double cab life at R450 900, the Hilux 2.4 GD-6 SR produces a healthy 110kW and 400Nm. Power is sent to the rear wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox, and Toyota claims a fuel return of 7.1-litres/100km.
This engine may be slightly down on power compared to the 2.8 (130kW/450Nm), but owners are quick to praise it for the effortlessness that accompanies the drive.
Toyota also offers two petrol engines but expect fuel consumption to be considerably higher.
2020 Toyota Hilux (Toyota Media)
4 Mitsubishi Triton
Despite being very impressive, the Triton is not a very popular bakkie in South Africa. Even so, it is one heck of a looker and carries one of the best designs of any bakkie on sale in SA today. One engine is used to power the five-model range, that being a turbocharged 2.4-litre diesel engine. Engine outputs come in at 133kW and 430Nm, but the full gallop of torque is only available at a rather heady 2500rpm.
Still, the Triton manages to return 7.5-litres/100km for the six-speed manual model, while the six-speed automatic comes in at 7.6-litres/100km.
Mitsubishi recently added a Triton Xtreme model, which is based on the 4x4 automatic model. This engine and drivetrain combination will return 8.3-litres/100km, according to Mitsubishi. The Triton range is priced between R534 995 and R654 995.
2020 Mitsubishi Triton Xtreme (QuickPic)
5 Mazda BT-50 2.2
Before the all-new Mazda arrives in 2021 or 2022, the current generation must continue its work in sunny SA. Kicking off the range is the 2.2 double cab SLX model. The engine in this model produces 110kW and 375Nm, and will return 7.6-litres/100km.
Five models make up the range and comprise manual and automatic transmissions - all six-speed.
A 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbo diesel engine powers the two top models, but an economy of 9.3-litres/100km is not good enough to be considered fuel-efficient.
The BT-50 2.2 SLX is priced at R484 500.
2020 Mazda BT-50 (QuickPic)