One of the biggest hurdles for the new Toyota Tundra to overcome… is the greatness of the last generation Tundra. Meaning, the last-model Tundra (specifically 2015-2021) is so good, it’s really tough to beat. So let’s talk about the most obvious/apparent DNA change – the engine options. For the newest generation Tundra, Toyota has let go of the 5.7 V8 for a 3.5 Twin-Turbo V6. (Toyota also offers a hybrid, but our text truck was the twin-turbo.)
Like many people, I was skeptical to see the normally aspirated V8 go in the Tundra.
There’s just an engrained peace-of-mind & sense of longevity in a V8 truck.
But times they are-a-changin’. And I gotta say, Toyota’s 3.5 twin-turbo feels great. The turbos boost-up quick, and really stay in boost with the 10-speed transmission. It’s been over year since I drove the last-model V8 Tundra, but to my recollection, the new Tundra feels swifter, more effortless, and perhaps a little lighter on the front nose. And – gas mileage has improved by about 5 MPG, which was definitely noticeable in real-world application. Under the hood, the turbos seem easily accessible, which gives me a sense of comfort for longterm ownership. And the thought of tuning options for the turbocharged Tundra is kind of a whole new exciting dimension.
The new Tundra frame & chassis has been updated significantly.
The last Tundra had a boxed frame under the engine, which went to a ‘triple tech’ (good info here) frame under the cab (for flex), and then a regular c-channel frame under the bed. For 2022, Toyota has gone to a fully-boxed frame with beefier suspension & drivetrain components. That could also be part of what I was feeling in the new Tundra’s perceived ‘lightness’ over the last model. Meaning, it could be a less flex that was being felt.
While the Toyota Tundra is new in significant ways…
A lot of the core elements seem pretty familiar. The interior room feels about the same… still gloriously spacious in the CrewMax. The back window still rolls down – which is great if you want some open-air therapy. The dash is updated & the infotainment screen has gotten larger & more prominent (with Apple CarPlay). And the seats in this TRD Off-Road have a cool perforated, multi-depth pattern that seems durable & easy to clean. Exterior lighting has also been improved.
You really can’t go wrong with any Tundra.
Given the choice, I’d go with the new model over the last one… because the improvements are more than just skin & screen deep. That being said, if there was a deal to be had on the last model, it’s always a good buy. But with the way these Toyota trucks hold value, buying a new one is never a bad deal.