10 Upgrades the Toyota Super Grandia gets vs. standard Hiace vans

Are these upgrades worth the price bump?
by Drei Laurel | Aug 19, 2019
PHOTO: Drei Laurel
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Say hello to the all-new Toyota Hiace Super Grandia, the Japanese car manufacturer’s new corporate-level hauler. Locally, it’s the nameplate’s new top-of-the-line offering—a title held by the Hiace GL Grandia Tourer prior to today’s launch.

Naturally, this being the highest-spec unit, the Super Grandia carries the most expensive price tag. The most affordable unit, the Hiace Super Grandia Fabric, costs P2,420,000, while the most expensive Hiace Super Grancia Elite goes for P2,875,000 (add P15,000 for a two-tone exterior). That’s quite the jump from the GL Grandia Tourer’s P2,220,000 initial cost whichever way you look at it.

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So, what do you get for that price bump? Nothing new in terms of performance, as the van still runs on a 2.8-liter turbodiesel engine capable of 176hp at 3,400rpm and 450Nm of torque at 1,600-2,400rpm. What it does get is tons of extra style and convenience—everything from a nicer exterior to high-tech safety features.

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Below are 10 of the most notable advantages the 2020 Toyota Hiace Super Grandia has over the ‘standard’ van:

1) The lighting units

One of the first things you’ll notice with the Hiace Super Grandia are the lights—specifically, how much fancier they are compared with the units found on regular variants. Sure, the GL Grandia Grand Tourer already comes with daytime running lights, but the ones on the Super Grandia simply pop out more, and boast automatic high beams and automatic leveling. The overall look is more pronounced, too, thanks to the new shape on account of the grille’s added chrome trim.

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2) The face

The Super Grandia’s grille makes excellent use of both plastic and chrome, providing the van with a much bolder and more premium look over the standard version’s mostly plastic setup. The mix of materials pairs very well with the vehicle’s new hood. Even the lower part of the face gets an upgrade, courtesy of much subtler foglight housings and additional chrome.

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3) Much easier ingress and egress

This is the only variant in the entire Hiace lineup that comes equipped with sliding doors on both sides. If ease of entry is a big deal to you, this might make the Super Grandia’s higher price tag a no-brainer.  The dual sliding doors also come with ‘Auto Easy Closers’ that assist during opening or closing, and all units still come with conveniently placed grab handles.

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4) The seats

This is what really sets the 2020 Toyota Hiace Super Grandia from regular units. The vehicle gets two pairs of captain’s chairs in the rear. Depending on what trim you get, these can come as ottomans with power adjustment, too. Second-row captain’s chairs found in the Elite Super Grandia feature a snazzy quilted pattern, some faux wood trim on the armrests, and more comfortable headrests.

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5) Storage options

The top-spec Super Grandia Elite comes with a whopping 21 cupholders throughout the cabin, while non-Elite units come with 19 (same as the GL Grandia Tourer). The second row gets a convenient aisle tray that features a flat surface and four cupholders—perfect for having meals while on the go. If you splurge for the Elite trim, these get some nice faux-wood accents as well.

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6) The van is simply much safer

The 2020 Toyota Hiace Super Grandia Elite is the first vehicle from the Japanese car manufacturer to come equipped with Toyota Safety Sense locally. This means it gets features like a pre-collision system, lane-departure alert, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams. All this is on top of the nine airbags all Super Grandias come with (regular Hiace vans only get driver and passenger airbags).

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7) The suspension

Instead of a MacPherson-strut/leaf-spring suspension setup, the Super Grandia comes with four-link coil springs in the rear. This, Toyota says, provides the van with better handling and stability, as well as reduced cabin noise and vibration. We’ll have to get our hands on a test unit to put this claim to the test, though.

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8) Interior lighting

If you put a premium on interior ambience, the Super Grandia Elite is the only Hiace van that allows passengers to adjust both brightness and color of the cabin lighting (non-Elite units only get adjustable brightness).

9) A better A/C system

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All Hiace Super Grandia units come with an automatic climate-control system and nicer-looking, more intuitive A/C controls in the second row featuring a display that shows both current temperature settings and fan speed. Regular Hiace units only get manual A/C controls and a simpler traditional second-row display.

10) The wheels

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Not satisfied with the wheels on the regular Hiace? Well, the Super Grandia runs on larger 17-inch alloys versus the 16-inch ones on the GL Grandia, the GL Grandia Tourer, and the Commuter Deluxe. It also features a more premium-looking multi-spoke design—not that the ones on standard Hiace units are shabby to look at.

Do you think these changes make the Super Grandia worth its higher asking price? Let us know in the comments. You can also see the full price list here, and more photos of this van below:

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PHOTO: Drei Laurel
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