The Hino Dutro (also known as the 300) is basically Toyota Dyna’s twin and both models share the same platforms. The standard cab Dutro is built on the U300 Platform, while the wide cab uses the U400 platform.
The vehicle is pretty flexible and it can be configured in a wide range of body configurations.
Unlike the Dyna, the Dutro is sold in Australia, Canada Chile, Colombia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and some countries in Latin America.
The previous generation was sold between 2005 and 2010 and came with a sharper style, a series of modern features and a stronger engine. Equipped with a 3.0 liter engine, the old Dutro had a maximum payload capacity of up to 1.5 tonnes.
The Dutro features a classical cab over engine configuration which is better suited for driving around town as it offers a better maneuverability than a conventional cab design.
There aren’t significant exterior differences between the old and the new Dutro generations as the old cab had the same overall appearance as the new one. The 2005 model came with a pretty curvy design and a set of horizontal headlights which enhance the cab’s width. Though, the old radiator grille looked pretty fade, while the simple spoiler wasn’t something to rave about either.
Luckily, the body panels seemed pretty solid and the exterior fittings were well made, as well. The Hino Dutro was also built using a strong U-shaped frame chassis that is ready to endure the abuse of heavy loads without whining and also comes with a superior anti rust treatment.
The cabin was fitted with a wide, panoramic windscreen and a set of generous lateral windows which offer an excellent outward visibility.
You can climb inside Dutro’s cab pretty easy, thanks to the convenient steps and the smartly placed grab handles. Though, interior looks pretty dull and the dashboard comes with a pretty robust design.
The center stack however, is laid out in an intuitive way and every control is placed within easy reach. We also like the numerous storage places than can be found around and the reasonable overall ergonomy.
As it was expected, the Hino Dutro makes use of low-rent plastic all over the cabin, while the rest of the materials are also part of the third class. On the other hand, the fittings seem pretty well done and the cabin inspires an air of solidity.
Theoretically, the Dutro’s cab can accommodate up to three adults on the first row of seats, but in practice, the third middle passenger will feel cramped, due to the limited shoulder and knee room.
The driver’s seat is pretty rudimentary as well, and offers only basic support. It’s also a bit too flat and hard for our tastes, but at least it won’t heart our back after long journeys.
Fortunately, the all around visibility is nothing short of excellent, as you seat pretty high from the road and you are surrounded by a generous glass area.
The chunky steering wheel looks dated and it’s too thin to offer a proper grab. Though, it’s not all bad news, as it comes with reach and rake adjustments.
The 2005 Hino Dutro cabin was fitted with electric front windows, remote control door locking, driver air bag, radio CD and engine imobiliser.
Engines and performance
Power comes from a 3.0 liter Euro IV diesel engine. The engine’s 136 hp are pretty capable of dealing with heavy loads, while its 300 Nm of torque offers great towing abilities, as its available from as low as 1200 rpm and maintained up to 2400 rpm. Though, the engine is pretty unrefined and noisy, showing its raspy nature every time it’s pushed harder.
To be better suited for heavy loads carrying, the medium wheelbase and long wheelbase models have double rear wheels.
The engine is mated on a five speed manual gearbox which sends power to the rear wheels. Unfortunately, the transmission is pretty jerky and feels like needed an extra gear for better performances. There was no automatic transmission available, which is a shame as most of the rivals offer this option which has started to be pretty popular among truckers.
2005 Hino Dutro engines specifications
| Engine || Hp @ rpm || Nm @ rpm |
| 3.0 liter ||135 @ 3600 || 300 @ 1200 – 2400 |
Ride and handling
The Hino Dutro comes with front double wishbones with torsion bar and rear leaf springs. The ride is pretty bumpy when the truck is unladen, but if you’ll put some load at the back, things will drastically improve.
Thanks to its cab over engine configuration and the sharp steering, the Dutro is pretty easy to drive around town. The overall handling abilities however, aren’t the best you’ll find in the segment and body roll is pretty big.
Luckily, the stopping power is decent, as the truck comes with standard anti lock brakes.
The 2005 Hino Dutro was a pretty basic work truck which comes with a reasonable level of interior features. It’s true that the cabin wasn’t the best you’ll find around, but we liked the overall ergonomy and the solid build quality.
The 3.0 liter engine was perfectly suited for the utilitarian nature of the truck, but the 5 speed manual gearbox needed some serious improvements. The ride and handling aren’t stellar either, but the Dutro is offered at a pretty competitive price and the famous Japanese reliability also works in its favor.