When it arrived on the scene, the genuinely full-sized, second generation Toyota Tundra appeared to have the goods to take on the likes of Ford, GM and Dodge. With it’s brawny styling, 381 horsepower iForce 5.7-liter V8 and 10,800 towing capacity, along with Toyota’s reputation for quality, ads declared “the truck that’s changing it all.” However, after getting off to a healthy start, the Tundra hasn’t enjoyed anywhere near the success its maker originally hoped.
Despite selling almost 100,000 units for 2008, demand has tapered off and less than 80,000 units found owners last year. The economy is no doubt partly to blame, but the Tundra hasn’t been well received on many fronts. The trucks are indifferently put together by Toyota’s usual standards and were included among the high-profile recalls that have plagued the company over the last few years. As demand has slumped, Toyota has also centralized all Tundra production at the Texas plant original conceived to produce it, with Tacomas now joining it on the assembly line to take up the slack in sales.
However despite these issues, sources inside the giant Japanese automaker have said that a next generation Tundra is on the drawing board, likely scheduled for release as a 2014 model, even despite impending (and tough) fuel economy standards slated to take effect for 2016.
What kind of powertrains and features this new Tundra will incorporate however, have yet to be determined; but with Nissan and likely Ford and GM set to introduce new or significantly revised full-size 1/2 ton pickups in 2014; it would seem there’s logic in Toyota’s decision to persevere in the full-size pickup market, even though the Tundra’s SUV cousin, the Sequoia, will likely be canned in the near future.
[Source: Pickup trucks.com]