GR forms part of Toyota’s global motorsport division. The first chapter in its GR product story of limited-edition models featured the Yaris GRMN, which was launched outside of Japan in 2018.

"The Hilux GR-Sport is designed to appeal to the dashing expressive people who want a vehicle that delivers performance and off-road capability, as well as styling. They believe their Hilux is an extension of their lifestyle and enjoy motorsports, outdoor activities and off-roading," says Toyota marketing manager Lensha Dlamini.

"Our brief to FCB Joburg was to — quite simply — put the Hilux GR-Sport well and truly out there," she adds.

According to Toyota, FCB’s response was to leverage Toyota’s Dakar equity across TV and cinema, radio, out of home, brochures, print, point-of-sale and digital (including a website).

Creative director, Tian van den Heever, says, "Every time a rally driver and his navigator traverse an obstacle — a dune, an anthill, a ‘donga’ — they respond physically."

"First, there’s the widening of the eyes. Then, their heads tilt back, before they wobble around uncontrollably as they land. We claimed this as the '#TEAMHILUX' nod in our 2018 ad as a mechanism to include all Toyota Hilux drivers in '#TEAMHILUX' as part of the family, so to speak," he adds. 

He concludes, "The '#TEAMHILUX' nod was quickly adopted by many South Africans and used as a mark of acknowledgment from one to the other. For Dakar 2019, we brought in a family to help us 'up' the appeal. Today, they’re no strangers to South Africa’s and the world’s screens and, as desert icons themselves, were ideal to give the new Hilux GR-Sport the 'nod'."

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