“World beater” 2022 Toyota Tundra to get hybrid power [Update]

TFLtruck.com reader Joe has spotted the 2022 Toyota Tundra crew cab on test near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Joe says that a Ford F-150 closely followed the prototype, and that could be Toyota engineers using the Blue Oval as the benchmark vehicle.

The 2022 Toyota Tundra in the spy shot is heavily camouflaged, but we get to see the new light set up at the front. Slim, horizontal LED light bars are visible on the bumper, and they should be the 2022 Tundra’s LED fog lights, as corroborated by a teaser and previously leaked pictures. The current Toyota Tundra, in comparison, comes with round LED fog lights in the corners of the bumper.

2022 Toyota Tundra front leaked dealer image
For the first time, Toyota will offer the Tundra with a hybrid system in the 2022 model year, it is reported.

New rear suspension system

The 2022 Toyota Tundra, expected to be offered with an optional hybrid powertrain, may get a new rear suspension in the interest of ride comfort. 2022 Toyota Tundra spy pictures published by Autoblog show one of the test mules fitted with a rear coil-spring suspension instead of a leaf-spring suspension.

TFLtruck.com has also published spy photos of the next-gen Toyota Tundra test mule with a coil-spring suspension. It reached out to Dan, an independent mechanic fixing Toyotas since 1995, to understand the development. Dan said that the rear axle and suspension geometry appear to be very similar to those of the Toyota Land Cruiser 200, the production of which ends this year.

The recently spotted next-gen Toyota Tundra test mule looked close to the production version, and so, this could be the type of suspension that makes it to the final product. 

Extensive changes for the Tundra in tow

Robby Findlay, Chairman, Toyota National Dealer Advisory Council, told autonews.com in an interview last month that the 2022 Toyota Tundra will be a “world-beater.” Findlay’s claim strengthens hopes for revolutionary changes in the 2022 Toyota Tundra. With the model change, Toyota will “really go toe-to-toe with the domestic trucks,” Findlay added.

In January, TRD JON posted a clip on Youtube showing a 2022 Toyota Tundra test mule parked between the Toyota Sienna and Toyota Venza. The spied truck could be the rumored Hybrid variant, and as pointed out from a leak previously, it has vertical tail lamps.

Video Source: youtube.com/TRD JON

A bold new design

In November last year, pictures of the new Toyota Tundra, possibly the 2022 Toyota Tundra Hybrid, leaked from what was presumed as a dealer preview, courtesy pickuptrucktalk.com. The 2022 Toyota Tundra will be the third generation of the Japanese automaker’s full-size pickup. Design changes for the third generation will be significant, giving the Ford F-150 rival a front end that looks aggressive and upmarket.

The same website had posted another photo on its Facebook page that clearly revealed a sharp hexagonal grille radiator, sleek headlamps with tall vertical DRL, and horizontal LED fog lamps inside the radiator grille. LED headlamps with DRL could be part of standard equipment across the range. One of the leaks showed the rear fascia of the 2022 Toyota Tundra with vertical taillamps reminiscent of the Hyundai Palisade and a redesigned tailgate with three clearance lights. The same image suggested a marker light placed on the wheel arches.

There should be three different grille options on the incoming Tundra, one in a simple design for the basic trim, one in a shiny finish helped with dollops of chrome connoting the premium trim, and finally in a sportive design and dark finish reserved for the TRD Pro. While the current model uses five lug nuts, spy shots show six lugs on the next-gen. One inference is that it has improved payload and towing capacity (old model: up to 10,200 pounds). Spy shots suggest that the CrewMax version’s cargo bed could be longer in the next generation, possibly 6.5 ft-long.

360-degree camera & new displays

Expect significant changes on the 2022 Toyota Tundra interior, including a cleaner center console, an intuitive infotainment system, and a larger driver information display. Various new convenience and driver assistance (Toyota Safety Sense) technologies should be part of the full model change and among the expected factory-fitted gizmos is a 360-degree camera system. In fact, spy pictures have indicated that Toyota plans to offer this camera system, which Toyota marketing calls ‘Bird’s Eye View.’

2022 Toyota Tundra Hybrid

The next-gen Toyota Tundra would be underpinned by the same platform as the 2022 Toyota Land Cruiser, the next-gen Toyota Prado, and the 2022 Lexus LX. Developed for body-on-frame vehicles, the ‘TNGA-F’ is internally called ‘F1’. It is reported that the ‘F1’ is not designed for a V8 engine, and the 2022 Toyota Tundra will likely come with a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine with 450 hp and 500 Lb.-Ft. With an electrified version of 3.5L, the Toyota Tundra Hybrid could offer customers a nice balance of economy and power, delivering an EPA-estimated fuel economy of about 30 MPG.

Meanwhile, TFL Truck speculated more than one hybrid variant of the Tundra. A plug-in hybrid could be part of the variant mix, and if that indeed is the case, the Toyota Tundra Prime would give company to the Prius and RAV4 in the ‘Prime’ family. While Toyota has said nothing about a Tundra PHEV, it has confirmed that the launch sequence in 2021, without naming the models, includes a plug-in hybrid besides two battery-electric vehicles.

The first-ever Toyota Tundra Hybrid would rival the Ford F-150 Hybrid and may cost upwards of $40,000.

On the Toyota Tundra Electric (Toyota Tundra EV)

Introducing the Toyota bZ4X electric SUV concept at Auto Shanghai 2021, Toyota said that it intends to release a pure electric pickup truck and a hybrid pickup truck. The Toyota Tundra Electric or the Toyota Tacoma Electric could be the company’s first zero-emission pickup truck in the coming years.

Toyota plans to expand to around 70 electrified models globally by 2025. This future lineup will feature 15 dedicated BEVs, including seven carrying the bZ (Beyond Zero) brand moniker. In addition, Toyota intends to bring electrification to its pickup truck lineup in the near future, including hybrid and BEV powertrains.

Toyota Motor at the debut of the bZ4X concept in Shanghai, April 2021

The Toyota Tundra hybrid was hinted at in 2020. When asked by CarBuzz if there was room for a variant above TRD Pro, Sheldon Brown, the Chief Engineer at Toyota Motor North America for R&D, said, “electrification makes sense.” “Truck owners value torque and initial response,” Brown added, referring to either the pure electric or hybrid-electric Toyota pickup truck.

2022 Toyota Tundra FAQs

What is the 2022 Toyota Tundra release date?

TopElectricSUV expects the all-new Tundra on sale in late 2021.

Will Toyota offer the 2022 Tundra as a Hybrid?

Toyota is likely to offer a Tundra Hybrid in the U.S. this time with a 3.5L V6 engine.

What is the projected 2022 Toyota Tundra Hybrid price?

The base Tundra Hybrid should be priced between $40,000-45,000.

Featured image: Joe of TFLTruck.com