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If you happened to see my viral Instagram Reel, you already know what’s to come from this article. OK, so the Instagram Reel didn’t exactly go viral, but it showcases a few of the newly designed 2022 Toyota Tundra features that we couldn’t wait to see. This is only Toyota’s third generation of the Tundra since the truck’s introduction in 1999. Did the new truck meet expectations of its anxious fans?
The Tundra isn’t available with a V8 engine this time around, but Toyota’s new iFORCE MAX hybrid engine could make up for it. The iFORCE MAX is Toyota’s hybrid-electric pickup engine. It boasts 437 hp and 583 lb-ft of torque with a payload capacity of 1,665 lbs and a towing capacity of 11,450 lbs. Unfortunately I couldn’t get my hands on an iFORCE MAX Tundra, but I did get the chance behind the wheel of a Tundra with an iFORCE Twin-Turbo, and I wasn’t disappointed.
3RD GEN POWER
As mentioned, this generation of Tundra comes with new power features. The exact 2022 Toyota Tundra model in review is the Limited Crewmax with a 5.5-ft bed, painted in a head-turning Supersonic Red with black interior. This Toyota Tundra features an i-FORCE 3.5-L Twin-Turbo V6 engine with dual variable valve timing. It pumps out 389 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque. It’s paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission with Sequential Shift. Owners of the truck will experience an estimated 17 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway.
Operators can choose between several drive modes while on the job, including two Tow/Haul modes. When it’s time to put that mode into action, load the trailer up to the Tundra’s maximum towing capacity of 12,000 lbs. One Tundra towing feature that’s definitely worth a mention—especially for fleet vehicles driven by a different person and towing a different trailer each day—is the Tundra’s 7-pin trailer connector that, once a trailer is plugged in, automatically calculates the trailer length without any operator input. Talk about plug-and-play. And no matter which trailer or which driver is in the front seat, the Tundra can suit.
LIMITED TRIM LUXURIES
It didn’t take long to discover the Tundra’s comfortable drive. And that is accomplished through its luxurious details, starting with its media system. The truck features a 14-inch multimedia screen with SiriusXM and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It’s equipped with Dual Zone automatic climate control, or as I like to call it, “his and hers A/C.” Sit your bum on plushy SofTex-trimmed eight-way adjustable, heated and ventilated driver and front passenger seats (complete with lumbar support). Rear seats are 60/40 split with the ability to fold up and out of the way for tool and equipment storage in back.
Additional features equipped on the truck’s Limited trim package include: JBL 12-speaker system; Limited Power package (with wireless smartphone charging, cabin power supply, and bed lights); technology package; and the TRD Off-Road package.
Let’s dive into that TRD Off-Road package. The package includes many upgrades to make off-road journeys more accessible for fleets and consumers, starting with its 20-inch TRD alloy wheels and all-terrain tires. Up next is an off-road suspension with Bilstein shocks, mud guards, skid plates, electronically controlled locking rear differential, Crawl Control (CRAWL), Multi-Terrain Select (MTS), and Downhill Assist Control (DAC).
And what off-road package would be complete without the details? The Tundra TRD Off-Road package features a red TRD engine start button, a TRD leather shift knob, aluminum sport pedals, TRD grille, and bed-side decal.
When driving the Tundra off-road, I took advantage of its Crawl Control mode (CRAWL). Toyota’s CRAWL system automatically adjusts the brakes and throttle on five speed settings to allow operators to focus on navigating. CRAWL mode is great for novice off-road drivers in instances when covering terrain that requires extremely low speeds and high torque. If the desire is to bound along terrain at higher speeds (even 20-30 mph) engaging CRAWL would not be ideal. Throughout the trail, the Tundra handled fairly well.
The new Tundra isn’t shy of some of the industry’s latest safety features. Drivers will experience Toyota Safety Sense 2.5. The safety system features a Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection along with radar cruise control with a full-speed range. Drivers will also have the assistance of a Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Lane Tracing Assist, auto high beams, and Road Sign Assist (RSA) that detects traffic signs such as stop signs, speed limit, Do Not Enter, and more. Once RSA detects a road sign, a graphic of the sign is displayed on the Tundra’s Multi-Information Display, or the information cluster.
The truck also features an ever-helpful Blind Spot Monitor with RCTA. For those that haul equipment and trailers, the Tundra features Trailer Brake Control and Trailer Sway Control, and its Blind Spot Monitor also has a Trailer Merge Warning.
Synonymous with safety these days is technology. The previously mentioned 14-inch multimedia display is more than just for Apple CarPlay and navigation, it’s also the monitor for the truck’s multiple camera views, including the Panoramic View Monitor (PVM) that gives drivers a 360-degree view of the truck and its surroundings.
I had the truck on loan for a week. I drove it any chance I had and was able to log plenty of city miles, highway miles, and off-road miles. The Tundra was definitely a step-up from the Tacoma in terms of driver and passenger comfort, which was on par with some of the more premium models of other pickup manufacturers. And for a truck with this much tech, luxurious features, towing aid, and power, it comes at a decently reasonable price point—one that fleet owners can appreciate at this time.
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