Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. This week: Toyota drops all-new Tundra for the first time since 2007, Acura and Motul team up for Rad NSX Type S pace car, and Audi steals Ken Block for EV development.
2022 Toyota Tundra
Undeterred by the leaks that exposed the first all-new Tundra since 2007, Toyota unveiled their new full-size pickup as planned this week with all the details. This is about as new as a pickup can get. Toyota hasn’t left much of anything untouched for the third-generation Tundra. That includes its styling which uh, has people talking.
But starting from the ground up, it’s built on a new high-strength boxed, steel-ladder frame with an aluminum-reinforced composite bed (GM’s marketing department has taken note) and fully redesigned multi-link rear suspension. These structural improvements enable a towing capacity of up to 12,000 pounds and a max payload capacity of 1,940 pounds. That’s an improvement of roughly 1,800 pounds for towing and 210 pounds for payload. Toyota will continue to offer two cab configurations, both of which are four-door cabs because that’s all people buy anymore. You can opt for the Double Cab and CrewMax. The former offers a choice of a 6.5-foot or 8.1-foot bed while the latter can have a 5.5-foot bed or 6.5-foot bed. It’s unclear if Toyota will offer a single cab ever again.
Other big changes come in the powertrain department which has dropped the V8 and added a hybrid option. The only engine you can get at the moment is a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6, which on its own produces 389 horsepower and 479 lb.-ft. of torque. But when paired with a hybrid motor mounted in the bell-housing called i-FORCE MAX, that jumps to 437 horsepower and 583 lb.-ft. of torque. Let’s just say those specs are very competitive in the current market. A new ten-speed automatic transmission is standard as well, because no matter how much the internet cries, a manual is not coming in a new pickup. And they didn’t publish 0-60 times but the magazines will figure that out soon enough.
Moving on to the cabin and all (okay, some) of the tech features packed in there. It’s a very new and very modern-looking interior with plenty of screen space. Toyota calls it “Technical Muscle” which I guess works. The centerpiece for it all is the available 14-inch touchscreen which houses Toyota’s latest Toyota Audio Multimedia system. An 8-inch touchscreen is standard and both support Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which is something everything except some six-figure supercars can do. It’s feature-rich with cloud-based navigation using Google’s latest data at any time, but it can also work offline by storing previously-downloaded map data. That’s not the only screen in the cab though, as a 12.3” digital gauge cluster is an available option with a part-analogue, part-digital cluster remaining as a standard feature. There’s other cabin features too, such as an available panoramic roof, heated and ventilated front seats, rear sunshade, and loads of towing and off-road aids. There’s also a ton of safety features – far too many to name. Just know that your 2022 Tundra will be very well equipped as standard and can have so much more added to it.
Saving the best or worst for last, the exterior. The leaks from a month or two ago proved it was going to be polarizing. It’s taken the world’s love affair with giant grilles to an extreme. Jason Torchinsky said that the front fascia looks like Hulk Hogan, and I have not been able to unsee that since. It’s just a strange and obnoxious series of design choices that I still can’t wrap my head around. Toyota says it’s “bold” in the same way they tried to convince us that buying a Camry was bold. Looks are subjective, but I’d have nothing bad to say about the 2022 Toyota Tundra if not for *gestures wildly*.
Pricing is not available yet but it will go on sale later this year.
[Sources: Toyota, Jalopnik]
Motul does up an Acura NSX Type S for pace car duty
With the Acura Grand Prix at Long Beach this weekend and Motul’s close involvement in all things motorsport, they’ve collaborated with Acura for this weekend’s pace car. The results are absolutely fantastic.
Acura correctly chose to showcase the NSX Type S this weekend as it leads the field, but Motul got involved to take it to a new level of rad. It’ll be wrapped in this stunning retro Motul livery which takes inspiration from some of the 80s and 90s race cars that they sponsored. The white and red is complemented by brushed gold HRE Vintage FMR 527M 2-piece wheels. All in all, it’s basically perfect. I suspect (hope) that some NSX owners will be copying this.
Ken Block partners with Audi for electric vehicle development
Everyone’s favorite tire-slayer has partnered with Audi for “exclusive join projects in the field of electric mobility”. The surprise announcement dropped this week as Ken Block continues to move on from the world of Gymkhana into the world of doing whatever he wants.
Previously he had a decade-long partnership with Ford and before that he was with Subaru. But after the Ford deal lapsed and he handed the reins to Gymkhaha to Travis Pastrana, he’s become something of a free agent. He’s competing with Subaru again for the American Rally Association, running Baja with a brand-less trophy truck, and still gets to enjoy the Fords he’s built with Hoonigan Racing over the years, including a rad Escort Cosworth.
This announcement though sees him partner with Audi for the first time and it could produce something very special. While he gets to play around with some of the legendary Audi race cars that inspired him as a kid, his main job is to collaborate with the brand on electric mobility. They’re light on details of what that means, but it almost certainly means electric motorsport. I suppose a future Gymkhana could feature an Audi EV race car, similar to the Ford Not-A-Mustang Mach-E 1400 from RTR. But it could also mean an electric Dakar effort as he was photographed next to the Audi RSQ e-tron, which was previously confirmed to be competing in Dakar next year.
Ultimately, Ken Block is a creative guy with a genuine passion for fast, fun, tire-shredding machinery. Whether it’s a Ford, a Subaru, or an electric Audi, he’ll continue to entertain and bewilder. We’re looking forward to where they go with this.
What’s your automotive news?
That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.
Have a good weekend.