American full-size trucks are constantly evolving and Toyota did not seem to take offense, if we are to believe the stagnation of the Toyota Tundra between 2007 and 2021. The manufacturer is however arriving with a whole new generation of truck in 2022, a much more modern vehicle, in an attempt to gain market share in this lucrative segment. On the menu, a Toyota Tundra 2022 with greater capacities, more performance and more comfort.
The first aspect that strikes with the Toyota Tundra 2022 The style is decidedly much more assertive thanks to this huge radiator grille, these deconstructed LED headlamps with daytime running light strip and these sculpted wheel arches.
The approach is imposing, muscular and above all customizable with the radiator grille that changes from one version to another, the chrome which is eliminated from certain versions and the different cabin and body configurations offered. Buyers will have two cabin choices, the Extended Double Cab and the larger cabin named CrewMax, and three body choices, 5.5, 6.5 and 8.1 feet.
First of all, let’s settle the technical aspect. The new generation benefits from a more rigid closed box chassis, wider at the rear and fitted with reinforced cross members. According to Toyota, the rigidity of the body is improved as well as the comfort of the passenger compartment and the ease of towing.
These improvements also take advantage of the presence of an all-new multi-link rear suspension with coil springs, similar to that found in the Ram 1500. According to Mike Sweers, chief engineer for the 2022 Toyota Tundra, the goal behind this suspension is to avoid that drivers feel like they are driving a truck. However, since this type of suspension does not offer the same resistance to weight in the body and towing, the Tundra can also be equipped with a rear air suspension which allows the body to be leveled despite the load. The adjustment can be done automatically or manually.
The front suspension also changes to a double wishbone configuration to improve handling and stability. Finally, the steering is electrically assisted, a novelty that allows the Tundra to integrate various driving assistance systems, such as lane keeping, integrated into the system. Toyota Safety Sense 2.5, standard on all pickup trucks.
Where the Toyota Tundra evolves the most is in terms of mechanics. Goodbye V8s, all room is now left for the 3.5-liter i-Force V6, a new kind of engine equipped with the D4S injection system and two turbochargers (one per cylinder row). It produces 389 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque, slightly lower than the Ford F-150, also equipped with a turbocharged 3.5-liter V6. The machine is coupled to a 10-speed automatic transmission.
The most interesting novelty, however, is the i-Force MAX engine, which features an electric motor sandwiched between the turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine and the 10-speed transmission. This parallel hybrid system, paired with a 1.8 kilowatt-hour Ni-MH battery placed under the rear seat, boosts power to 437 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and especially torque to 583 lb-ft at 2,400 rpm. min, numbers that surpass those of the Ford F-150 PowerBoost Hybrid.
The goal of this hybrid mechanism? First, to increase the performance and capacity of the truck, while giving it improved fuel economy. The electric motor makes it possible to drive in electric mode or to supplement the heat engine, while recovering energy when braking in deceleration.
All of these technical improvements boost towing capacity to 5,540 kilograms (12,000 pounds) and load capacity to 880 kilograms (1,940 pounds). Two towing modes are implemented in the truck; one for light towing and one for more serious towing.
Trucks have become almost limousines and Toyota has understood this well. The 2022 Tundra’s dashboard takes a luxurious tangent like American trucks. First, all versions come with a center console with gearshift, leaving only the possibility of seating five people on board. Higher is a more horizontal and more ergonomic dashboard, embellished with multiple screens.
In the less equipped versions, the instrumentation includes a 4.1-inch screen and analog dials, accompanied by a multimedia system consisting of an 8-inch screen. As you move up the lineup, the technological breakthrough will come complete with 12.3-inch fully digital instrumentation – fully customizable – and a 14-inch landscape-oriented multimedia system.
It incorporates, for the first time, a brand new more user-friendly interface, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, remote updates and a wifi terminal. Other equipment such as air-conditioned seats, panoramic roof, heated steering wheel, 360 vision and heated and electrically extendable exterior mirrors are also available.
This equipment will be in one of the six variations available, which range as follows: SR, SR5, Limited, TRD Pro, Platinum and 1794. Option packages, such as the TRD Sport and the TRD Off-Road, will be offered depending on the version.
For amateurs, the TRD Pro version complements the 4Runner and Tacoma of the same ilk. It features a 1.1-inch raised front suspension, 18-inch BBS forged rims, complete chrome abolition, larger skid plates, a unique radiator grille and an embossed body panel. Only the hybrid engine is offered with this version.
Late arrival of the hybrid version
The 2022 Toyota Tundra will arrive in dealerships by the end of the year for versions equipped with the base engine. Buyers who would like to have the hybrid version will have no choice but to wait until spring since that is when they will arrive. More details on pricing will be announced closer to arrival.