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Toyota Tundra Updates Are Coming And Ford Should Be Worried

Interview / Comments

As should GM and Ram.

The timeless saying "if it isn't broken, don't fix it" applies perfectly to Toyota vehicles like the Tundra, 4Runner, Sequoia, and Land Cruiser. The current second-generation Tundra launched way back in 2007 and was last updated for 2014. It hasn't changed since, aside from a few packaging details. While it doesn't enjoy the same sales success as the Ford F-150, Chevy Silverado, and Ram 1500, Toyota still sells lots of them. The Tundra has a deeply loyal following, makes a profit, and is here to stay – along with those aforementioned SUVs (the current Land Cruiser's platform is Tundra-derived).

But when will redesigns or, at the very least, serious facelifts arrive? We sat down with Toyota vice president and general manager Jack Hollis at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show and talked, among other topics, trucks and SUVs.

"Like the Tacoma, Tundra sales also increased this year, by around two or three thousand units," Hollis said. "In a marketplace (full-size trucks) that's growing nationwide that's not good enough for Toyota. But we are working on something and we have to get better and produce a new one." He couldn't provide a specific time frame but did hint at something arriving within the next three or four years. Question is, will this be another Tundra refresh or a complete redesign? Time will answer.

Despite the Tundra's age, Toyota dealerships across the US are still asking for more. "We keep offering them more Tacomas but they want Tundras," Hollis added. As we learned not long ago, Tacoma sales remain solid, a huge payoff for Toyota's long-term commitment to the mid-size truck segment.

"Tacoma is killing it. We stayed in it, unlike Ford, and killed it," Hollis said.

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Because rivals like Ford are now doubling down on trucks and SUVs, Toyota will have no choice but to reply and Hollis couldn't emphasize enough the automaker's commitment to truck and SUV customers.

"We're in these segments to stay and our customers will appreciate what'll be coming. The days in which Ford and other automakers assumed small cars like the Fiesta were the future are now over, and Toyota is being forced to reply.