These days the onset of autumn is defined as much by the start of another season of The X Factor on television as by the prevalence of any mists or feelings of mellow fruitfulness. This year Toyota is following the popular trend by presenting a new star model of its own for the nation to enjoy, but without the chore of having to phone in any votes.

The new arrival is the Extra Cab, which completes the line-up of Toyota’s new generation Hilux pick-up range alongside the Single and Double Cab models. Extra Cab, offered exclusively with four-wheel drive, becomes the first Hilux to adopt Toyota’s new 2.5-litre D-4D 120 engine. This unit gives more power and torque and is cleaner than the previous Hilux engine and will be available, together with a new, high-power 3.0-litre D-4D 170, in high grade Double Cab versions in the New Year.

The Extra Cab focuses firmly on practicality and is aimed principally at the business user who needs the flexibility of additional passenger space with maximum load area. It’s a two-door model, but features two occasional rear seats, equipped with three point seatbelts. These are incorporated into the design allowing a rear deck length of 1805mm compared to a Double Cab with 1520mm.

It benefits from the same bold and stylish design of its Single and Double Cab stablemates and adopts the new-look bonnet with intercooler bulge that forms part of the Hilux range enhancements for the 2007 model year.

A single version is offered, in HL2 specification with four-wheel drive. Standard features include air conditioning, electric windows, remote central locking ABS and driver and passenger front airbags, demonstrating Toyota’s commitment to offering both tough performance for work and high levels of comfort, convenience and safety.

The new generation Hilux achieves significant improvements in noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) performance and better handling thanks to its new double wishbone front suspension, improved aerodynamics and ladder frame construction that is 45 per cent stiffer.

On sale date for the new Extra Cab is 1 November, with a basic price of £14,195 (full range prices and Extra Cab technical specifications are given below).

The new 2.5-litre D-4D 120 engine which makes its debut in the new Hilux Extra Cab will also be available in Single and Double Cab models from 16 January next year. At the same time, a new 3.0-litre D-4D 170 engine will be available in the higher grade Double Cabs.

The D-4D 120 delivers all-round improvements, with eight per cent more power and 25 per cent more torque than the engine it replaces: maximum power is 118bhp (120 DIN hp) and maximum torque is 325Nm.

The D-4D 170 will increase Hilux’s appeal across both work and leisure markets, offering high power (169bhp/171 DIN hp) and high torque (between 1400-3400 rpm) ensuring responsive and refined acceleration in all gears whatever the cargo. There are two transmission options of five-speed manual or four-speed automatic, the auto versions coming with cruise control as standard. Emissions from both new engines comply with Euro IV standards.