Toyota introduced the next-generation Tundra pickup truck in September 2021 and now it’s taking the wraps off its SUV counterpart. The all-new Sequoia comes to replace the aging old model that had been around since 2007 and was in dire need of a complete overhaul. Thankfully, the big SUV has been developed from the ground up and comes as standard with hybrid power.
Yes, the 2023 Toyota Sequoia gets the i-Force Max powertrain as standard, unlike on the Tundra where it’s available at an additional cost. The fullsize SUV is motivated by the same twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine as the pickup where it’s combined with an electric motor. With the power of the two combined, the body-on-frame sport utility vehicle offers 437 horsepower and 583 pound-feet of torque to perfectly match the truck.
Courtesy of the potent hybrid setup, the next-gen Sequoia has a maximum towing capacity of 9,000 pounds or nearly 22% more than the model it replaces. Mirroring the latest Tundra, Toyota will sell the three-row SUV in a new Capstone trim level for those in need of more luxury. Alternatively, the rugged TRD Pro caters to those searching for extra off-road capabilities. Lesser trim levels include the Platinum, Limited, and the entry-level SR5.
The Tundra and Sequoia ride on the same platform as the Land Cruiser and Lexus LX twins, combining an independent front suspension with a multi-link rear setup. Self-leveling air suspension is available, along with adaptive variable suspension for those who will be towing regularly. For 2023, the SUV gets a newly developed rack-mounted electronic power steering, which should translate to a much-improved steering feel.
Toyota mentions its engineers have increased rigidity and ride comfort while the hybrid powertrain works exclusively with a smooth 10-speed automatic transmission sending power to both axles. Wheel sizes vary from 18 to 22 inches, with Bilstein monotube shocks and springs tuned by Toyota Racing Development (TRD).
Regardless of trim level, all 2022 Sequoia SUVs get a 12.3-inch digital driver’s display as standard equipment, along with heated seats, a moonroof, and the Panoramic View Monitor (PVM). Adding the optional SR5 Premium package comes along with a power third row, electric tailgate, 120-volt power outlets in the cabin and cargo area, plus the 14-inch Toyota Audio Multimedia display instead of the standard 8-inch screen.
The Sequoia SR5 can also be configured with the TRD Sport package, in which case you get matte black TRD-branded wheels measuring 20 inches, aluminum pedals, and a red push-button start. The upper-spec Limited throws in the 14-inch center display as standard, along with ventilated seats featuring memory function and a heated steering wheel. To sweeten the deal, Toyota adds a power-folding third-row along with manual sunshades for the second and third rows of seats.
Those willing to pay more can opt for the Platinum grade featuring heated and ventilated second-row seats where there are captain’s chairs. The 14-speaker JBL sound system and a panoramic moonroof are part of the deal as well, along with a head-up display and LED headlights & taillights with sequential turn signals. The Sequoia Platinum also encompasses wireless smartphone charging and automatic windscreen wipers.
Aside from visual upgrades, the TRD Pro trim level gets an aluminum front skid plate for extra protection when you’re going off the beaten path. It also stands out courtesy of its retro-flavored front grille, dual exhaust, and off-road goodies like a selectable locking rear differential, Crawl Control, Multi-Terrain Select, and even Downhill Assist Control.
The new-to-Sequoia Capstone grade gets all the kit you can think of, including the largest wheels, finished in chrome, electrically deployable running boards, and semi-aniline perforated leather upholstery in black and white. An American Walnut trim adorns the center console and the passenger-side dashboard, while the front doors benefit from acoustic glass available only for the Capstone.
Built in Texas at Toyota’s factory in San Antonio, the 2023 Sequoia will be available this summer. The TRD Pro will be available to order in an exclusive Solar Octane paint, while Supersonic Red and Wind Chill Pearl are going to cost you extra as well. Regular hues include the following: White, Wind Chill Pearl, Celestial Silver, Lunar Rock, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Blueprint, Army Green, Midnight Black Metallic, Smoked Mesquite