Brian Joss – The Toyota Quantam which defined passenger and cargo transportation in South Africa and is a staple of the minibus taxi industry and a popular cargo carrier has been given a new look with several changes under the skin.
The biggest departure is the change from a ‘cab-over’ to ‘semi-bonnet’ design. The new design provides for a more spacious interior and modernised look with enhanced aerodynamics. The revision to Quantum has increased the overall length and passenger space, with improved leg room and seating comfort.
The front design includes a united radiator grille and headlamps. GL Bus models receive chrome treatment to the grille as well as vertical LED Daytime Running Lights, fog lamps and colour-coded bumpers and door handles.
Other exterior features for the Quantum include newly- designed 16-inch steel wheels, as well as newly-designed large multi-functional side mirrors (power-retractable on GL models) to enhance visibility.
The GL bus can be specified in one of three exterior colours (Ivory White, Quicksilver Metallic or Light Blue Metallic) while the utility-focused panel van and crew cab variants are offered in Ivory White and Quicksilver Metallic.
The Quantum range comprises new panel van and bus derivatives, with the option of 3-seater panel vans in long wheelbase (LWB) and heightened-roof super-long wheelbase (SLWB) configurations, as well as a six-seater long wheelbase (LWB) crew cab. The ‘GL’ Bus range offers 11-seater long wheel base (LWB) and 14-seater super long wheelbase (SLWB) versions.
All models have evolved from the cab-over configuration and now feature the all-new semi-bonnet body type with excellent safety features, dynamic new engines and a more comfortable and quieter ride for a relaxed traveling experience.
The range includes the Quantum Bus, a three=seater panel van, and an 11-seater and 14-seater bus.
The Quantum’s new 2.8-litre engine adopts a turbocharger with intercooler, which helps produce powerful dynamic performance while enhancing fuel economy and quietness.
The four-cylinder, 2.8-litre turbodiesel engine delivers maximum power of 130 kW @ 3400 r/min and peak torque of 420 Nm @ 1400 – 2600 r/min, on all panel vans and the 11-seater bus model. The 14-seater bus delivers power of 115 kW @ 3600 r/min and peak torque of 420 Nm @ 1600-2200 r/min.
The business end of the Quantum’s design shows in its transmission and suspension. Its 6-speed manual transmission is tuned to simultaneously achieve top-class fuel economy and excellent dynamic performance, while gear shifting is smooth and has a high quality feel, said Toyota Built with passengers in mind, the all-new Quantum is cut and clothed with comfort and convenience as its hallmark.
Spacious seating measurements have been attained by increasing the cabin length and width for better legroom and headroom. The colours, patterns, and shapes are coordinated throughout the interior to create a traveling space with an open feel. The seat material on the GL Bus models is presented in natural beige with a combination of synthetic leather and fabric. The Panel Van range seats are fashioned in grey fabric.
The new Quantum is equipped with various active and passive safety technologies. The Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) ensure that the maximum braking power is produced without locking the tyres and distributes optimal braking force to the left and right wheels.
The 16-seater Ses’fikile Commuter will be renamed Hiace and continue to be built on the current platform (previous Quantum) at Toyota South Africa’s Prospecton production facility. The Hiace name is well known and trusted in South Africa, and pays homage to the iconic ‘Siyaya’ commuter busses of the 90’s. The Hiace Ses’fikile will retain the 2.7 litre petrol and 2.5 diesel engine and drivetrain.
CAPTION: Moving on: the Toyota Quantum. Picture: Motorpress