First Look: 2022 Toyota Tundra and Tundra TRD Pro
Sweetheart V8 gives way to 3.5L twin-turbo V6 with optional hybrid power
The tyranny of teasers on the 2022 Tundra are finally over and the many details on the all-new truck can now be fully revealed after a first look at the third-generation Tundra — a pickup that hasn’t seen many changes since the second-gen truck debuted 14 years ago.
Revised from frame to roof, the 2022 full-size Toyota pickup breaks new ground with a hybrid engine option for several models, all of them married to a new twin-turbo V6. This marks the end to the Tundra’s V8 engine era that heralds back to the year 2000, when the 4.7L was the first-ever V8 for a Toyota pickup. That engine was a sweetheart, followed by the long-serving 5.7L workhorse.
For 2022, all Tundras get this new 3.5L twin-turbo, complete with dual intakes and water-cooled intercoolers. The engine is now paired to a 10-speed automatic transmission, replacing the old six-speed. Assembled in West Virginia, the V6 produces more torque than the old V8, delivering 479 lb-ft and 389 horsepower. When coupled with a 288V nickel-metal hydride battery nested under the rear seats, however, the boosted V6 produces 437 horsepower and 583 lb-ft of torque. That’s more than most diesels, and vastly simpler when it comes to emissions.
This “i-Force Max” hybrid uses a motor-generator with a clutch located within the bell housing between the engine and transmission, primarily to provide extra power. Toyota says it will propel the truck below 29 km/h, but also handles starting duties and supplies power for various electrical components. Standard on TRD Pro models, the hybrid will also be optional on Limited, Platinum, and 1794 models.
Toyota says even the non-hybrid engine is more fuel efficient than the outgoing V8, and claims the truck is plenty faster. Expect consumption and performance figures to be released after our first-drive test in October, just before the first, non-hybrid trucks arrive in dealerships in late November, with hybrid models arriving in March 2022. For comparison, however, Ford’s 2021 F-150 Hybrid has just slightly lower power figures and achieves about 10.5 L/100 km.
Also a first for the Tundra, the truck can now be had in Crewmax (full four-door) configuration with a 6.5-foot box. Formerly, only a 5.5-foot bed was available on the Crewmax — which keeps its much-lauded power folding rear window. Some models now even offer a full panoramic sunroof. Double-cab models get either a 6.5-foot or 8.1-foot box and a smaller rear window opening.
Not everyone will be happy that the Tundra’s cargo boxes are now composite, made from “sheet-moulded compound” and reinforced with aluminum cross members, much like the Tacoma. But those beds are durable and lightweight, if slippery at times, and a power outlet in the back is available. Bring on the bed mats.