In case you forgot, Mercedes-Benz once made a pick-up truck called the X-Class. It’s based on the Nissan Navara, and most reviewers gave it a solid “meh” – mostly due to its outdated interior and high price. The reception to the X-Class was so underwhelming that Mercedes-Benz actually cancelled the model after just two years in the market.
But that’s not what Quentin Boylan, a South African pick-up truck enthusiast thought when he saw the X-Class. He couldn’t care less about the subpar luxuries, but when Mercedes-Benz didn’t care to fit an AMG engine into the X-Class (despite cars such as the G-Wagen having one) he couldn’t help but feel disappointed.
Thus, armed with pick-up truck modification knowledge, he decided to take matters into his own hands, and spawned this – the AMG Hilux.
The AMG Hilux started life off as a standard (accident-damaged) Toyota Hilux single-cab, equipped with a facelift kit that was actually imported from Malaysia, way before the facelift model was sold in South Africa!
The stock 2.4-litre turbodiesel was replaced by a 6.3-litre V8 that’s sourced from an old Mercedes-AMG C63, and to make it easier for day-to-day driving (that’s right, the AMG Hilux is Boylan’s daily-driver!), he also opted to use the stock automatic transmission that came with the truck, which in itself was a huge challenge to make it fit the AMG engine, according to Boylan.
To make the franken-car work properly, Boylan also installed a MoTeC M150 engine management system with a custom-made wiring harness, allowing him to fine tune the engine’s parameters in order to gel all the mechanical bits together.
As for looks, Boylan pretty much kept the stock Hilux look, but injected some “AMG love” into it. There’s a set of AMG brakes on the front axle, a set of AMG look-alike wheels, and a lowered-suspension, but that’s pretty much it for the exterior to set it apart from the other Hiluxes on the road – well, aside from some additional AMG 63 badging, plus the “AMG HLUX” number plate.
Moving inside, Boylan and his team reupholstered the entire interior with leather and alcantara, alongside some red cross stitching and accent trims to give it the classic “AMG look”. The seats have also been custom-made with diamond quilting to make it look as close as possible to the AMGs.
And with all that hard work put into it, the AMG Hilux is frankly one of the cleanest conversion builds we’ve ever seen – and the V8s just sound so good, even when it’s stuffed into a pick-up truck. Check it out for yourself in the video above!