Toyota Reveals 2014 Tundra at Chicago Auto Show

Posted by: Kenny Chan onFebruary 8th, 2013

When Toyota announced that they were going to be unveiling a redesigned Tundra at the Chicago Auto Show, there was already a buzz on some blogs and forums about the new Tundra. Spy shot photographers were wondering aloud why nobody had gotten a shot of the Tundra and many were wondering where Toyota was testing the new truck. With the new GMC Sierra and Chevy Silverado making their debuts in Detroit, and Ford trying to steal the thunder by showing a preview of what the next gen F-150 may entail with the unveiling of the Ford Atlas Concept, it was widely expected that we would see an all-new design from Toyota in Chicago.

Well, it looks like there was a reason the Tundra wasn’t spotted out doing much testing. They had already done it about 7-8 years ago when the previous generation Tundra was being designed and tested. For the 2014 Tundra, Toyota did not make any mechanical changes. The most notable change is the front end of the truck where the grill is. This is even more apparent on non-black Tundras as Toyota has chosen to surround the grill in black causing the aluminum grill to really stand out. The grill design itself has changed with Toyota opting to go with thicker horizontal bars compared with the previous grill which had slimmer bars. The design theme appears to be rigid, sharp angles. Gone are the round edges around the grill, replaced with sharp, angular edges. The headlights also lose their rounded edge, replaced with a more modern design with hard edges. Going around to the side, every curved edge has been straightened out. The front fenders and rear wheel wells have been straightened out and look boxier. If I had to choose a single word to describe the re-design, it would be “chiseled” and funny enough its exactly the word that Toyota chose to describe the new design in its press release.

The interior provided is different for each trim level with a basic cloth interior for the SR5 trim, while the limited trim upgrades the seat surfaces to leather and soft touch materials for the door and console surfaces. Moving up to the platinum grade which is designed for “the next generation of personal use truckers” aka “people that don’t really need a truck”, the seats get double-stitched diamond plate leather and are both heated and ventilated, a navigation system, blind spot monitoring, LED daytime running lights and a rear cross traffic alert system. For the 2014 Tundra, the back-up camera and bluetooth audio are both standard.

As mentioned, the 2014 Tundra redesign is all cosmetic with no mechanical changes so the engine choices remain the same as before with three powertrain choices. A V6 that produces 270 horsepower and 278 lb-ft of torque paired with a 5-speed automatic, and a pair of V8s. The 4.6L V8 delivers 310 horsepower and 327 lb-ft of torque while the beefier 5.7L V8 puts out 381 horsepower and 401 lb-ft of torque. Both of the V8s are paired with a standard 6-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission.

With this facelift for the 2014 Tundra, I suspect Toyota may be testing the waters on moving the Tundra upscale, especially with the Platinum trim. A full redesign is likely not off the table, perhaps they will show us an all-new design in a couple years to coincide with the release of the next-generation Ford F-150.



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