This morning at the Chicago Auto Show, Toyota U.S.A. unveiled the completely redesigned 2014 Tundra pickup truck.
With the redesign, the 2014 Tundra doesn’t lose its manly good looks. The front has become more angular and squared off. The grille, hood scoop, and air dam have been enlarged and are now framed in striking chrome and brushed aluminum. The headlights are angled off and pulled slightly upward. The fog lights now rest in deep, cornered insets. The rest of the body remains similar to the prior model. There are some modified features; such as squared off wheel wells, taillights that no longer wrap around the side panel, and a redesigned truck bed. The Tundra will be offered in three cab styles – the two-door Regular Cab, four-door Double Cab, and four-door CrewMax, all of which are available 4x2 and 4x4.
Inside, the Toyota design team aimed to improve the ergonomics, utilitarianism, and aesthetic appeal of the Tundra. The truck will be offered in four trim versions – the basic SR5, the Limited, the luxurious Platinum, and the Western inspired 1794 Edition. The SR5 will feature metallic accents and contrasting fabrics. The Limited will come with leather seating and wood-style trim. The Platinum is fitted with premium, perforated leather seats and chrome seat and console accent badging. The Platinum trim also features 12-speaker JBL audio system, heated and ventilated front seats, navigation, and Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert. The 1794 Edition includes all the options of the Platinum trim level but with muted Western flair. The 1794 sports premium saddle brown, embossed leather seating and a soft touch instrument panel.
While these are welcome updates to the Tundra’s looks, the redesign extends past a mere nip and tuck. The steering system and shock-absorbing valving have been revamped, giving the full-sized truck a more stable and smoother ride. Under the hood, the Tundra offers three powertrains – the standard 4.0-liter Dual Overhead Cam (DOHC) V6 which pushes out 270 hp and 278 lb.-ft of torque, the 4.6-liter DOHC i-Force V8 which offers 310 hp and 327 lb.-ft. of torque, and the 5.7-liter DOHC i-Force V8 which boasts 381 hp and 401 lb.-ft. of torque. If this wasn’t impressive enough, Tundra continues its workhorse heritage with its tow package, which has a maximum tow capacity of 10,400 lbs – making it the only full-sized pickup truck to comply with SAE J2807 towing standards.
The Japanese automaker continues to emphasize the Tundra’s “Made in America” status with an advertising campaign complete with apple pie; a visual metaphor stressing that 75-percent of the full-sized pickup contains North American content. Considering that the Tundra’s main competitors are the Detroit legacies Chevy Silverado, Ram 1500 and upcoming Ford Atlas, Toyota’s U.S. born and bred push is an understandable tactic. We’ll see if Toyota can make up some sales with this new breed of Tundra.