The arrival of the Toyota tundra In 1999 it represented the first effort by the Japanese automotive colossus to conquer a significant portion of the lucrative US market for pickup trucks. The idea of a foreign manufacturer taking over that market was not far-fetched. Toyota and Honda had conquered the compact market in the 1980s and the midsize family market in the 1990s. There was no reason to believe that the same could not be done with large pickups.
Pickup buyers in the United States turned out to be the reason. Fiercely faithful to the products of local manufacturers, the domestic market has greeted two generations of the Toyota Tundra and Nissan Titan, the two Japanese endeavors in the segment, with cruel indifference. At the end of 2020, the market share of the Tundra was 4.7% while that of the Titan was only 1.1%, while domestic manufacturers have a 90% share with the Ford F-Series leading the segment with more than a third of the market.
The arrival of the all-new third-generation Toyota Tundra for 2022 represents a new opportunity to reverse the trend and finally give Toyota a significant share in the coveted segment. Will you have what it takes to achieve such a goal? Let’s get to know it.
The Toyota Tundra will be sold exclusively in North American markets, so it shouldn’t be surprising that it shares the visual attributes typical of the most popular pickups sold in the United States. Starting with a visibly longer horn that visually justifies the size of its huge new grill. Its design is the result of the joint work of the design studios of Toyota Motor Corporation, Calty Design Research, in Newport Beach, California, and Ann Arbor, Michigan.
The design language inspired by Marvel’s superhero Ironman, which Toyota calls “technical muscle,” seeks to communicate strength and cohesiveness through the illusion of interlocking elements. Something that we’ve also seen in recent Ford and Chevy installments in the segment, and that is particularly well accomplished in the new Tundra. At the rear, Toyota played with volumes, succeeding in innovating, and improving, the ultra-generic appearance of the rear of the pickups, even managing to integrate a functional spoiler on the upper edge of the electronically actuated tailgate with remote control in all versions. This gate can be released with a touch of the elbow with a button integrated in the rear light when hands are full.
Unlike the generous and sometimes complicated engine offerings from US brand manufacturers, the new Toyota Tundra’s engine offer menu is very simple. The standard engine in the new Toyota Tundra is a new 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6, which Toyota dubbed the i-FORCE, which is capable of producing up to 389 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. The second option basically consists of the same engine combined with an electric motor-generator that creates additional energy that is transferred through the transmission. Toyota calls this second option i-FORCE MAX, and it is capable of creating 437 horsepower and a staggering 583 lb.-ft. of torque. A new 10-speed automatic truckbox will be the only transmission available for the entire 2022 Tundra line, both in rear-wheel drive and 4X4 versions.
i-FORCE MAX will be the only engine option available in the Mexican market.
Members of the engineering team led by Tundra project engineering chief Mike Sweers spent two years developing the new platform, which will be shared by the legendary Land Cruiser, whose next generation will not be available in the United States, and which features a chassis. High-strength steel, closed-beam ladder style for increased structural rigidity. Maximum payload is 1,940 pounds (880 kg), and towing capacity is 12,000 pounds (5,440 kg).
One of the great novelties of the 2022 Tundra is a new multi-link rear suspension with coil springs instead of the leaf springs of the previous model, allowing the addition of an air suspension system on high-end models with manual leveling capability. while forward it uses a newly designed double wishbone suspension that benefits from a reduced kingpin offset angle to improve straight-line stability as well as high-speed handling.
The TRD Pro off-road version features a front stabilizer bar, red painted suspension parts, aluminum front skid plate along with additional underbody protection and model-exclusive Falken off-road rims.
The aluminum composite cargo bed is offered in lengths of 5.5 feet, 6.5 feet, first offered in the CrewMax full crew cab version, and 8.1 feet.
Toyota chose a horizontal design theme as a departure from the vertical design in most of the competition in order to integrate the instrument panel and center console to flow with the interior design. The new Tundra uses high-quality materials in high-contact areas such as individual center armrests for front seat occupants, dash pads, doors and other areas in most trim.
The new interior will offer a panoramic roof, heated and ventilated front seats, rear sun visor, and heated steering wheel, while in the technology section you will find a number of new features throughout the line, such as towing aids and off-road upgrades. Tundra 2022 debuts an all-new multimedia system with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless updates including a virtual assistant that responds to voice commands with in-cab microphones, and a cloud-based navigation system for constant updating. of maps, and data such as points of interest and alerts on the road provided by Google.
The new 2022 Tundra line will offer SR, SR5, Limited, Platinum, 1794 and TRD Pro trims. The i-FORCE MAX hybrid powertrain will be the only one available for the Tundra TRD Pro and will be an option for Limited, Platinum and 1794 trims.
The TRD Off-Road Package is available on SR5, Limited, and 1794 models, and includes 18-inch TRD wheels (20-inch exclusive wheels on Limited and 1794), TRD grille, TRD off-road suspension, skid plates, fenders, and TRD leather covered gear lever. All 4X4 models will also get electronic rear differential lock, Multi-Terrain Select, and the off-road cruise control system Toyota calls drag control.
There will also be a TRD Sport package available on SR5 rear-wheel drive and 4X4 models in CrewMax (Crew Cab) and Double Cab (Cab & Half) configurations that includes the addition of 20-inch TRD wheels, TRD grille, TRD lowered sport suspension, and TRD leather covered gear lever.
All versions of the 2022 Tundra come standard with the Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 safety systems package that includes Pre-Collision System, Pedestrian Detection, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Loss Alert, Lane Keeping Assist lines, automatic high beams, road sign assistant. In addition there are other active safety systems such as blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert, and automatic emergency braking.
Like the current generation, the new Tundra will be assembled exclusively at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas plant in San Antonio, and although there is still a long way to go to see if the third generation Toyota Tundra will become a major contender in the segment. of America’s large pickup trucks, we will soon learn about its handling characteristics when we visit the city of San Antonio in the coming weeks to drive and see it in action.
Prices for the new Toyota Tundra will be announced later, near the date of the start of sales later this year.