Full-sized trucks are indispensable in the American automotive landscape. In 2020, the top three best-selling vehicles were all full-sized pick-up trucks from Ford, Chevrolet and Dodge, contributing to almost 2 million units, or close to 14% of the entire automotive segment!
As such, Toyota has completely revamped their Tundra full-sized pick-up truck to better compete with the native brands. Targeted just for use in North America, the all-new Toyota Tundra has been styled in the US. Key themes for the design include rugged, most powerful as well as sophisticated looking.
The Toyota Tundra gets a front end that is dominated by a massive grille, bordered by a thick inverted ’U’ surround. It does have some similarities to the much smaller Toyota RAV4 and Toyota Corolla Cross models. The LED headlamps look tiny in comparison and are accented by thick T-shaped DRLs.
The taillamps meanwhile are exclusively for use in North America, with a full-height glow in three red vertical stripes, similar to the items found in a Ford Mustang.
An off-road-focused Toyota Tundra TRD Pro variant meanwhile adds more auxiliary lights, badging, unique pattern on the bumpers and wheel arches as well as exclusive rim design.
In the all-new Toyota Tundra, a new ladder frame was developed with higher rigidity as well as lighter in weight, with the use of aluminium in some sections. Coil springs now replace leaf springs on the new multi-link rear suspension, offering better handling dynamics, comfort levels and even payload and towing capacities.
Toyota USA is offering two off-road packages for the new Tundra- the TRD Off-Road add-on package with monotube Bilstein shocks as well as the full-vehicle TRD Pro variant. The Toyota Tundra TRD Pro grades are fitted with 2.5-inch diameter Fox internal bypass shock absorbers with piggyback reservoirs for the most demanding terrain.
Other off-road specific upgrades include a red-painted front stabilizer bar, aluminium front skid plate, underbody protection and Falken all-terrain tyres.
The all-new Toyota Tundra will also offer an air-suspended rear axle as well as adaptive variable suspension that continuously adjusts the damping force for better comfort as well as stability with loads in the cargo bed.
The all-new Toyota Tundra also sees the lightweight cargo bed manufactured with new Sheet-Molded Compound (SMC) and aluminium. This allows the cargo bed to offer better protection against light dents, impact dings and rust. Opening the massive tailgate will also be as simple as a touch of a button, as it now has an electronic switch as well as a remote switch on the keyfob.
Highlighting the all-new Toyota Tundra is the powertrain where the company is not only heading towards downsizing but also electrification. A new 3.5-litre twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine is on offer, with the standard output of 394 hp and 649 Nm of torque that also serves the all-new Toyota Land Cruiser 300 series.
Next up is the hybrid version of this engine, which is currently not in use in other Toyota models. Adding an electric motor between the V6 engine and the 10-speed automatic transmission brings the output of this “i-Force Max” powertrain to 443 hp and 790 Nm of torque.
The hybrid system does all the familiar Toyota-type assistance and propulsion with the motor providing assist during acceleration as well as towing. There is however no dedicated EV mode like the regular Toyota Hybrid System (THS) but the Tundra can still move around on just electric-only when conditions allow.
Inside the new Toyota Tundra, an equally large central infotainment screen measuring 14 inches provides the driver and occupants with better connectivity. The locally developed system has processing power that is five times greater than the old unit to offer better usability, crisp graphics and higher levels of voice commands.