2022 Toyota Tundra Review: A Big Step in the Right Direction

2022 Toyota Tundra Limited
The 2022 Toyota Tundra Limited is set to be one of the company's more popular models. Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The 2022 Toyota Tundra isn't just a redesigned model, it's a touch of a beg for relevancy as the truck's sales seat the model in a distant fourth place behind the Big Three's offerings.

Understanding that the Tundra isn't going to be a workhorse is a good spot for learning how it fits into the American truckscape. It's designed to be a comfortable and approachable daily driver that can do workplace, weekend warrior, and farm stuff without all the capability you'll get from the max towing and hauling champions coming out of Michigan.

Its looks in the flesh give it a level of appeal that's hard to see in photos. With qualities that make it appear as Tacoma's bigger brother, the Tundra builds on the muscular stature required of a full-size truck without making it seem top heavy or brutish.

Getting in the truck and behind the wheel, drivers will immediately feel the structural differences between the old Tundra and the new. The 2022 model is more rigid and its base is a much more solid platform from which to launch a trim level.

Toyota sells the Tundra in SR, SR5, Limited, Platinum, 1794 Edition and TRD Pro models, with the TRD Off-Road package available. Its Double Cab and Crew Cab body styles can be paired with 8.1-, 5.5-, or 6.5-foot beds. Not every bed is available with every cab option.

2022 Toyota Tundra Limited
The models has hallmark modern truck design notes like upright taillights and its name stamped in the tailgate. Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The truck comes standard with a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 engine, the same one that powers the 2022 Lexus LX, and has an available twin-turbocharged hybrid V6 power plant. The power difference between the two is vast with the non-hybrid getting 389 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque while the Tundra hybrid yields 437 horsepower and 583 pound-feet of torque.

Both engines are solid, but the higher you go in trim levels, the heavier the truck gets, negating the good of the hybrid's extra power. Buyers not turned on at the prospect of a hybrid truck can take heart in knowing that the non-hybrid is a desirable engine, just with sub-optimal mpg. Official numbers are still pending EPA certification.

Both engines are available with the two- and four-wheel drive versions of the truck. They also all come standard with a Tow/Haul drive mode.

2022 Toyota Tundra Limited
The Tundra cannot tow as much as its competition but it's still plenty capable. Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The 2022 Toyota Tundra can tow up to 12,200 pounds and has a maximum payload capacity of 1,940 pounds.

The new Tundra is okay in the backcountry in the TRD Off-Road variant but doesn't appear nearly as nimble or stable as its chief rivals, especially the new all-electric Rivian R1T.

It shines on the road, especially models with the available adaptive suspension, which works to level a load and keep passengers stable over the road's imperfections.

The truck is easy to keep in its lane, unlike the old generation, and fresh sight lines and hood styling allow for easier maneuverability that doesn't rely solely on the camera system.

2022 Toyota Tundra Limited
The truck offers some off-roading capability. Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

Braking is stable and strong, even when stopping at speed.

Buyers looking at a Tundra will find its cabin equipped similarly to Toyota's SUVs. This isn't a bad thing. Still, the model remains solidly in the truck category with a sturdy shifter, a steering wheel that feels appropriate for the size of the truck and large storage spaces.

Toyota wins with air conditioning in the new Tundra. Its large dashboard vents more freely move air around the cabin than in other Tundra generations making the arrival of cool wind an all-encompassing experience.

Buyers can option their truck with a fully-digital instrument panel, wireless smartphone charger, 10-inch head-up display, surround view camera system, rear door sunshades, a premium JBL sound system, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and heated and ventilated 10-way power-adjustable front seats.

2022 Toyota Tundra Limited
The truck is available with a large, 14-inch infotainment touch screen. Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The available 14-inch infotainment screen runs the new Toyota infotainment interface that is worlds ahead of anything the automaker has ever installed infotainment-wise in its vehicles.

In the Limited grade, the Tundra walks the line between premium and mass market models quite steadily with trim pieces and appointment materials that wouldn't feel out of place in a high-priced Highlander.

The Tundra 1794 Edition moves the needle with authentic materials that give the truck an elevated interior appearance though its surfaces aren't as plush or supple as in the Ram 1500's mid-grade and higher variations.

Toyota has given every Tundra its Safety Sense 2.5 safety and driver assist system which includes pre-collision warning with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, lane trace assist, lane departing warning with assist, automatic high beams, and road sign recognition. Blind spot monitoring is available. No hands-free driving software is available.

There's a lot to like about the Tundra, if you're willing to give it a chance. Will it move the needle for the majority of truck buyers? No. But, it is a solid entry that is worthy of consideration from those that make a truck their daily driver rather than their workhorse.