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Experience Joy with the Toyota Tundra 2022

Image Source: Jack Skeens / Shutterstock

Introducing the all-new 2022 Toyota Tundra which embraces cutting-edge technology with a hybrid powertrain, a coil-spring rear suspension, and the latest features. This full-size pickup truck now offers a hybrid variant, three available bed options, and two four-door cab sizes. While it may not have the extensive range of configurations and electrification options like the Ford F-150, it sets itself apart by adopting a coil spring rear suspension akin to the Ram 1500.

Taking a long overdue step forward, the revamped Tundra now provides a smoother ride, a range of more efficient powertrains, and advanced off-road and towing capabilities that rival its top competitors. The modernized infotainment system speaks volumes about Toyota’s dedication to upgrading key aspects of the third-generation Tundra, solidifying its position at the forefront of its class.

The 2022 Toyota Tundra signifies a significant advancement. Although still large and robust, the new Tundra appears more streamlined compared to its previous iterations. With crew cab and extended cab options featuring four doors, the new Tundra’s distinctive omega-shaped grille exudes a commanding presence. The redesigned truck is slightly wider, approximately two inches taller, and 4.7 inches longer when equipped with short or standard beds, or 2.2 inches longer with the long bed and extended cab.

Differentiating between trim levels are seven grille designs, ranging from honeycomb to slat styles, with the top-of-the-line TRD Pro model flaunting a light bar beneath the iconic Toyota logo. TRD Pro variants boast a wider track and muscular fenders, resulting in an overall width of 81.6 inches, 1.4 inches more expansive than other models. Complying with federal regulations, three amber lights adorn the front center, a feature shared with Heavy Duty trucks along with the Ford F-150 Raptor and Ram 1500 TRX.

The inverted horseshoe shape over the ridged hood creates an impression of muscularity. Standard LED headlights and DRLs seamlessly integrate with the blocky fenders, extending the truck’s visual appeal. The pronounced fenders and angular wheel cutouts are united by a recessed character line along the lower half of the doors, complimented by a choice between eight fresh 18-inch or 20-inch wheel designs that add flair to the overall profile. Access the power liftgate effortlessly using a conveniently located bump switch near the driver’s side taillight or the accompanying fob.

The 2022 Toyota Tundra offers potent twin-turbo V-6 engine options for enhanced efficiency. The base 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 delivers 389 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque, providing ample power to engage the standard 18-inch wheels. Notably, peak torque is achieved at 2,400 rpm, and the twin-turbo setup effectively eliminates any hint of lag, propelling the Tundra swiftly despite its size. Aluminum body panels assist in offsetting the added weight from the supplementary equipment, resulting in a slight increase in weight ranging between 5,400 and 5,700 lb for crew cab models.

The 10-speed automatic transmission effortlessly shifts through gears with seamless transitions, albeit showcasing a slight delay during passing maneuvers at cruising speeds. Particularly noticeable is the momentary pause when downshifting to seventh gear or below to access the necessary power.

A standout feature of the 2022 Tundra is the availability of a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 hybrid engine generating 437 hp and 583 lb-ft of torque at 2,400 rpm. A motor generator positioned between the engine and transmission delivers a performance boost while driving. This hybrid system powers engine stop/start functionality, regenerative braking, electric assist, and low-speed EV driving under 18 mph. Operating quietly during low-speed and off-road scenarios, the hybrid engine exhibits swift acceleration and lighter overall performance compared to the base V-6. Exclusive to the new Capstone trim and TRD Pro models, the hybrid powertrain is also an option for Limited, Platinum, and 1794 editions. Housed beneath the rear seats is a 1.87-kwh nickel-metal hydride battery pack in the Tundra Hybrid, resulting in a slight reduction in interior space due to the absence of rear underseat storage in the Hybrid model.

Standard rear-wheel drive is featured across the 2022 Tundra lineup, with most customers opting for the four-wheel-drive configuration, which comes standard on the TRD Pro variant. All models come equipped with an electronic limited-slip rear differential and a two-speed transfer case that necessitates shifting into neutral to engage 4H or 4L modes.

Supporting the Tundra’s robust performance is a new, lighter double wishbone suspension in the front and a multi-link rear suspension featuring coil springs in lieu of the traditional leaf springs. This translates to a composed and quiet on-road experience, minimizing bouncing commonly associated with an unladen bed, while also exhibiting improved stability during turns. However, a noticeable vibration within the cabin between 65 and 70 mph is observed with the 20-inch wheels installed.

Out of the five suspension options available, the rear air suspension may seem the most advanced, albeit it’s restricted to three preset heights tailored for specific functions: the Low setting transitions to Normal speeds above 8 mph, primarily designed for bed loading and unloading; the High setting shifts to Normal at speeds exceeding 18 mph, intended for low-speed off-road ventures. A manual switch conveniently located on the center stack facilitates switching between the three height settings within the specified speed limits, although the automatic mode offers a simpler alternative.

The inclusion of available adaptive dampers, similar to those found on Lexus performance vehicles, enhances ride quality by smoothing out road imperfections for a more comfortable urban driving experience. These dampers must be paired with the air suspension for optimized performance. Models equipped with adaptive dampers introduce Sport+ and Comfort modes, influencing damper stiffness and steering responsiveness.

Present within SR5, Limited, and 1794 models, the TRD Off-Road packages include monotube Bilstein shocks in place of the standard twin-tube shocks, along with 18-inch or 20-inch TRD wheels, a distinctive grille, skid plates, mud guards, and an electronic rear differential lock for 4WD models. TRD Pro grades feature 2.5-inch Fox internal bypass shocks with a 1.1-inch front lift, a unique TRD-specific front stabilizer bar, an aluminum front skid plate, and all-terrain Falken tires.

The 2022 Tundra effortlessly navigates off-road terrain, although the ample dimensions of the TRD Pro model may pose challenges when maneuvering through tight turns bordered by trees. Nonetheless, the new model delivers a smoother, quieter, and technologically advanced driving experience compared to its predecessor. Exclusive to the TRD Pro model is a hill descent control button facilitating pedal-free descents on steep slopes, allowing drivers to focus on navigating obstacles. Via the console dial, drivers can adjust the descent speed within the 3-18 mph range or override the system entirely by engaging the throttle. Notably, the system operates smoothly without the abruptness commonly found in rudimentary variants.

The same control button activates a Crawl mode ideal for low-speed uphill cruising, making uphill travel more seamless. Featuring a ground clearance of up to 10.9 inches on the TRD Pro model (11.2 inches for the SR5 crew cab), engaging the High setting on the air suspension provides added protection to the differential during rough terrains. Side mirror cameras offer enhanced visibility of blind spots between the wheels, complemented by a front camera providing comprehensive coverage essential for navigating narrow rocky ascents without external assistance. Additionally, the new side mirrors equipped with LED trailer lights enhance visibility during nocturnal parking, projecting light towards the trailer’s side.

All models, except the base variant, come equipped with two tow haul modes that enhance performance when towing heavy loads exceeding 5,000 lb. In Tow+ mode, shift response is delayed, and throttle mapping is adjusted to accommodate heavier loads, bringing about a weightier steering feel and optimized suspension compression for improved stability. Notably, the twin-turbo engine may exhibit some lag when towing heavy loads. In contrast, the hybrid engine responds promptly and effortlessly navigates inclines without strain. The SR5 extended cab model equipped with the standard engine boasts a maximum towing capacity of 12,000 lb.

The brake gain setting allows incremental adjustments for controlling trailer sway and applying additional braking force to the trailer when towing heavy loads or traversing steep downhill grades. Accommodating up to 10 trailer profiles, the system offers manual inputs for trailer length, detectable through the array of cameras integrated into the vehicle. An innovative trailering aid marketed by Toyota as “Straight Path Assist” simplifies the trailer alignment process, relying on the driver’s perception of aligning the trailer straight with utmost precision.The destination of your choice can be easily reached with the help of the surround-view camera system. This system projects panoramic views of both the truck and trailer, the cargo bed, and the hitch on the spacious infotainment screen.

When compared to the previous V-8 model, the 2022 Tundra’s twin-turbo V-6 engine is much more efficient. It surpasses the retired V-8’s EPA ratings of 13 mpg city, 18 highway, and 15 combined for rear-wheel drive models. Toyota’s estimates for the Tundra hybrid stand at 20 mpg city, 24 highway, and 22 combined for rear-wheel drive, and 19/22/21 mpg for 4WD, lagging behind the 2022 Ford F-150 Hybrid. The standard safety features in the 2022 Tundra ensure the well-being of occupants and also contribute to preventing potential accidents. The model comes equipped with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, active lane control, automatic high beams, hill-start assist, and a rear-seat reminder. Optional safety enhancements include blind-spot monitors, a surround-view camera system, and side-mirror cameras.

The interior of the 2022 Tundra has undergone significant upgrades from its predecessor. It features large touchscreens integrated into a dashboard that can be adorned with walnut, leather, and other cozy materials. Despite the presence of plastic vents that slightly diminish the dashboard’s quality, the interior offers an array of soft-touch materials. While some may find it challenging to identify the toggles for temperature and fan speed, owners are likely to become accustomed to it after a few days. The center console boasts a gear shifter and can be equipped with amenities like wireless smartphone charging, padded armrests, and more on select trims.

For those interested in synthetic leather upholstery and 8-way power front seats, the SR5 package offers a satisfactory choice. Alternatively, opting for the Limited trim grants access to heated and cooled front seats for added comfort. The Platinum and 1794 trims present top-tier finishes, including leather and walnut wood trims, as well as ambient lighting. The Tundra may not match the luxury of rival trucks’ executive trims, but its interior remains a haven of comfort accessible without the need for an executive-level salary.

The availability of power rear windows allows for enhanced versatility, allowing for a connected and relaxed driving experience. The Tundra offers bed options such as the 5.5-foot short bed, 6.5-foot standard bed, and an 8.1-foot long bed exclusive to the extended cab variant. An innovative bump switch feature on select trims simplifies the process of opening the tailgate, complemented by a power corner step for easier access to the bed. The new resin composite bed provides protection against rust and dings, though it reduces the interior dimensions slightly.

The tech features of the 2022 Toyota Tundra demonstrate a significant evolution compared to its predecessor. The inclusion of large touchscreens and wireless smartphone connectivity emphasizes the model’s modernity. The introduction of the 14.0-inch touchscreen on select trims sets a new standard in user experience, featuring improved visuals, enhanced voice commands, and dual microphones. Optional features such as a panoramic roof, heated and cooled front seats, and a digital instrument cluster further enhance the overall driving experience.

The pricing for the base Tundra SR model starts at $37,645, including destination charges. Opting for the Limited trim, which accounted for a significant portion of sales with the outgoing model, adds a variety of premium features. The Limited Hybrid variant offers increased power and efficiency, making it an appealing option for potential buyers. The Platinum and 1794 trims offer similar equipment with distinct finishes, catering to various preferences. For off-road enthusiasts, the TRD Pro and Capstone models deliver outstanding performance capabilities at higher price points.

In conclusion, the all-new 2022 Toyota Tundra exemplifies the culmination of Toyota’s dedication to excellence. Boasting efficient powertrains, advanced technology, and refined driving dynamics, the Tundra sets a new benchmark for pickup trucks. With its versatile features and capabilities, the 2022 Tundra is sure to appeal to a wide range of drivers, offering top-notch performance both on and off the road.

Image Source: Jack Skeens / Shutterstock

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