Toyota’s social media team have dropped a picture of the upcoming new Tundra full-size ute ahead of its US market debut later this year.
The photo seems to have been published in retort to some online leaks. “Some people don’t know how to keep a secret,” went the Twitter post.
The Tundra’s first full-model-change in 14 years comes hot on the heels of the new LandCruiser 300 series revealed last week.
Naturally, Toyota has put its best foot forward by showing off the top-of-the-pile Tundra TRD Pro variant (see the bonnet decal), with blacked-out wheels and guards, Falken Wildpeak AT tyres, rock rails, and a menacing grille flanked by crisp LED headlights.
The Tundra gives the Big T a much-needed contemporary competitor to the Ford F-Series, Chevrolet Silverado, and Ram 1500 – three of the biggest-selling vehicles of any type in the sprawling US market.
US reports talk about a twin-turbocharged V6 – presumably the 305kW and 650Nm 3.5-litre petrol that’ll be used in the LandCruiser 300 in some markets (Australia will launch as V6 diesel only though), mated to a 10-speed automatic.
The outgoing Tundra rocks a thirstier 5.7-litre V8.
Toyota last week teased the market with a picture of a new Tundra engine cover. The use of blue on the lettering seems very reminiscent of its hybrid marketing colour, and a petrol-electric Tundra is expected at some point to rival the hybrid Ford F-150.
What about Australia, you say? Toyota’s local division has made no secret of its desire to sell the Tundra here alongside the top-selling HiLux and LandCruiser, however the US factory has always focused on left-hand drive.
The new Tundra is expected to ride on a new TNGA frame architecture, just like the LandCruiser 300 does. This platform certainly allows RHD, it’s simply a matter of market demand versus the tooling cost. We’ve asked the question…
Full-size US trucks are a prosperous business in Australia: General Motors Speciality Vehicles sells Chevy Silverados that are re-engineered to RHD by Walkinshaw in Melbourne, ditto Ateco which sells Ram 1500s.