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 |  Sep 17 2012, 1:01 PM

Toyota has updated its eight-passenger Sequoia SUV for the 2013 model year, adding the Japanese automaker’s first Blu-Ray rear seat entertainment system and a 5.7-liter V8 as standard on all models (SR5, Limited, Platinum).

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 |  Sep 08 2011, 4:44 PM

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Toyota recently announced an updated version of its Tacoma pickup for 2012 and has now revealed pricing, with the top-selling truck starting at $16,875.

The 2012 Tacoma will emphasize driving comfort, usability, and convenience. Exterior enhancements include a facelift with new hood, headlamps and fog lights. Two new shades of paint, Spruce Mica and Nautical Blue Metallic, are new for 2012 as well. Tacoma’s interior gets an update too, providing a new steering wheel, new gauge cluster, a new center instrument panel, as well as several interior trim updates. TRD Sport and Off-Road models get to have extra water-resistant fabric seats while Access or Double Cab models benefit from heavy duty all-weather flooring.

But really, the nice surprise from the new Tacoma is that it will be one of the first Toyota vehicles to have the new Entune multimedia/infotainment system. Entune is designed as a collection of popular apps and data services including Bing, Pandora, movietickets.com, live traffic and weather, sports and stocks. Smartphone tethering is also available. Entune subscriptions will be free for the first three years.

Powertrains available for the 2012 Tacoma are the base 2.7 liter I4 and the premium 4.0 liter V6, pushing 159 hp/ 180 lb-ft and 236 hp/ 266 lb-ft respectively. Both engines will have Toyota’s variable valve timing VVT-i for better efficiency and stronger torque. Finally, selections for transmission are either six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic.

The 2012 Tacoma maintains its regular cab, access cab, and four-door double cab in 4×2 and 4×4 configurations. Pricing will start from $16,875 and reach $27,835.

GALLERY: 2012 Toyota Tacoma

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 |  Jan 04 2011, 4:33 PM

Toyota will release a new in-car telematics system, dubbed Entune, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week. Taking a page from Ford’s SYNC and MyFordTouch systems, Entune will oversee navigation, entertainment and smartphone connectivity services.

Entune will also support apps like Bing, Movietickets.com, Pandora. Toyota will only approve apps if they are confident that they won’t cause distracted driving, but any sort of screen that features multimedia connectivity is a hazard if you ask us. Of course, voice activation will be standard, as will satellite and HD radio receivers.

The full list of supported smartphones wasn’t available immediately, but with an Entune app available via iTunes, BlackBerry AppWorld and Android Market, Toyota looks to have all the major bases covered. Toyota’s Jon Bucci touted the fact that Entune can work with older smartphones and won’t require constant upgrades that would be impossible to run on anything but the newest handsets. The software upgrades would be available via wireless internet connection, and customers could avoid having to reflash the software at a dealership.

[Source: Toyota]