Toyota builds fisherman’s dream ute

Toyota builds fisherman’s dream ute


Toyota NZ has teamed up with extreme fisherman Matt Watson in creating a uniquely fishing friendly Hilux ute that will make its public debut at Fieldays this week.

Designed by Watson himself, the Hilux 4WD double cab SR5 has been kitted out with an array of Toyota accessories and modifications that he reckons would hook the most die-hard fisherman.

Watson says the Hilux SR5 has everything you’d expect to be able to land the big one – plus a few things you might not.

“There were a bunch of Toyota accessories I wanted plus a few custom mods we thought would be cool on the back of the ute. I thought the build team was joking with a few of their more ‘out there’ ideas, so I was pretty surprised to see the Hilux roll in with a pneumatic bait caster in the tray!

The customised SR5 stands out with a matte Lagoon Blue wrap, and carbon fibre wrap black accents on the bonnet, roof, side, door handles and tailgate for a distinctive street appeal.

It sits on 20” black Fuel Trophy alloy wheels with Nitto Terra Grappler all-terrain tyres.

Stainless steel side pipes, front and back forge alloy bullbars and Hella front spot lights are fitted to show that this Hilux is tough enough to traverse the most challenging tracks says Toyota.

But it says it is a full range of fishing modifications, installed with the help of Toyota’s customisation team, that sets Watson’s ute apart.

The SR5 includes a Seahorse Kontiki with torpedo, winch and trace-board. Railblaza rod holders and fittings frame the tray, while Hella rear mounted spot lights mean the fish will have to be on their guard day and night.

A Hi-Tech Plastics bait board and Icey-Tek chilli bin make it easy to bait both the kontiki and rods right out of the back of the ute, while the custom-made hydraulic bait caster launches baited lines direct from the ute up to 280 metres into the surf.

Jared Burns was part of the team fitting out the Hilux at Toyota’s Thames plant, and says creating Watson’s ute has been a truly unique project.

“There are not too many Hilux utes on the road with that many accessories fitted and such a broad range at that. It was a good test of our ability to pull together a pretty complex concept and turn it into reality.

“It looks cool, has the off-road ability, and all the gadgets for a great day’s fishing. It’s just the perfect all-round truck and a great way to show what’s possible with a Hilux.”

Toyota sponsors the ITM Fishing Show of which Toyota ambassador Matt Watson has the starring role.

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