Top 5 Reasons We Look Forward to this Truck


America’s love affair with the pickup truck is long from being over, and for good reason. 

Modern full-size pickup trucks are more capable, efficient, comfortable, and technologically advanced than ever before. They really have become the jack-of-all-trades choice amongst the automotive world. So when an all-new pick-up debuts, it’s a big deal.

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Built in San Antonio, the new Tundra was styled by Calty, Toyota’s North American Design Studio. A true homegrown American truck, the Tundra’s exterior is sculpted to exude power and capability. It features angular lines, accented flared fenders, and an imposing front grille, to emphasize the notion of toughness.

The “Technical muscle” design theme of the Tundra continues throughout the interior, highlighted by a massive 14-inch touchscreen that’s integrated into the dash. There is also an available 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, that features a National Parks display during startup.

If the standard Tundra looks aren’t enough, of course there is a more extreme TRD Pro version with a 1.1-inch front suspension lift that complements the FOX internal bypass shocks. Also included on the TRD Pro are an aluminum front skid plate, red suspension components, and unique Falken all-terrain tires.

2. It’s Fully Capable

Underneath the bodywork is a solid foundation thanks to a new fully-boxed, high-strength steel ladder frame. The new Tundra also takes a modernized approach to its rear suspension, ditching leaf springs for coils on an all-new multi-link setup. Not only does this provide better handling, but also contributes to improved capabilities for the Tundra, which can now tow up to 12,000 pounds and carry a payload of up to 1,940 pounds.

While on the topic of payload, Toyota engineers developed a Sheet-Molding Compound truck bed. SMC beds are just as durable as a traditional bed, but Toyota argues even more so since it avoids rust like steel beds and doesn’t dent as easily as steel or aluminum.

3. Powerful New Engines

Perhaps the most interesting feature of the truck is the new powertrains. Gone are the V8s, replaced by more modern options. Standard is an i-FORCE 3.5L twin-turbo V6 that produces 389 hp, and 479 lb-ft of torque mated to a new 10-speed automatic transmission. But for those looking for more power and better efficiency, there is the available i-FORCE MAX twin-turbo hybrid V6, that produces 437 hp, and 583 lb-ft. of torque. The extra hybrid power comes from a motor-generator wedged between the engine and the transmission.

Since heat is one of the biggest stresses on an engine, especially a twin-turbocharged one like this, Toyota engineers have designed advanced cooling features to the combustion chamber, exhaust system, and cylinder heads to ensure performance and reliability.

4. Technologically Packed

The new 14-inch touchscreen controls an all-new multimedia system that delivers improved interaction through sight, touch, and voice activation. This screen also takes advantage of several new cameras to assist with everything from seeing the trail to navigating a tight parking spot. In addition, there are camera angles for the truck bed, a rear-split view to see what’s on the side of a towed trailer, and a hitch-view.

There’s also a slew of new technology features built into the suspension system, thanks in part to the new multi-link rear. A new automatic air suspension system is available with High, Low, and Normal height settings. Low and High modes can be used at speeds up to 18 mph, and also adjust to match the height of a towed trailer. The new Adaptive Variable Suspension constantly monitors the road and adjusts the shock settings for improved ride quality.

Finally, the new tailgate can be opened with a push of a button on the key fob.

5. It’s Got Advanced Safety

Toyota has improved the safety system for the new Tundra, which offers the brand’s active Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 standard on all trim levels. It includes a Pre-collision System with Pedestrian Detection which can automatically apply the brakes to help avoid a collision. There is Lane Tracing Assist which adjusts the steering wheel automatically to keep the truck between the lines, as well as a plethora of other features, including Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Road Sign Assist, and Blind Spot Monitoring. The latter even works when towing a trailer.

[Images: Toyota]

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