The popularity of compact crossovers is threatening the existence of traditional large SUVs. In fact, it is rare to find SUVs sharing a platform with full-size pickup trucks anymore. The 2018 Toyota Sequoia falls in this diminishing category of SUVs as it shares its platform with the Tundra pickup truck. The SUVs features a rugged exterior look, a heavy-duty engine and a huge cabin space. The current generation of the SUV has gone for a decade without a major redesign since debut in 2008 so a revamp has been long overdue. The model’s biggest shortcoming is its poor fuel efficiency compared to other rivals in its segment.
2018 Toyota Sequoia Exterior
The SUV is getting its mid-cycle refresh after 10 years in operation. Among the new updates include a new grille with each trim featuring distinctive grille inserts and a more aggressive bumper. The models will also feature LED headlights, LED DRLs as well as LED taillights as standard features. The base model rides on 18-inch alloy wheels with an option for 20-inch alloy wheels which are standard on higher trims.
The major change is, however, the addition of a TRD Sport trim that join the previous SR5, Limited and the top Platinum trim. The TRD Sport features a unique front bumper and grille, metallic black side mirrors, smoked taillights, and a mix of black and chrome on its TRD Sport badges. It rides on 20-inch dark alloy wheels as standard.
Three new exterior colors are on offer, they are Toasted Walnut Pearl, Shoreline Blue Pearl and Midnight Black Metallic. The TRD is offered in Midnight Black Metallic, Magnetic Gray Metallic and Super White.
The cabin has also received noteworthy updates including a new center console, a modified gauge cluster as well as a 4.2-inch instrument-panel display. Although the cabin features a high dose of plastics, it is very spacious allowing passengers to enjoy ample legroom. Legroom for the second-row seats can be expanded by sliding the seats back; sliding the seats up expands the Sequoia’s cargo space.
The base SR5 has a 6.1-inch touch-screen that is used to access the Entune infotainment system. Other standard features include power-adjustable driver’s seat and Bluetooth streaming. Limited and Platinum trims add 3rd-row seats, an option for captain chairs for the second row and a power liftgate. The Limited trim comes with leather upholstery and heated front seats as standard features. The Platinum trim adds a wood-like trim, a rear seat entertainment system, a navigation system, ventilated front seats as well as a huge 9.0-inch touch-screen for its infotainment system.
To set it apart, the new TRD Sport features unique styling characterized by a TRD shift knob, TRD floor mats, dark leather captain chairs as well as TRD Sport door-sill guards.
The SUV’s huge size means the model can hold a humongous amount of cargo. With the third row seats in place, the Sequoia provides 18.9 cubic feet of feet of cargo space, folding the third-row seats expands cargo space to 66.6 cubic feet and to an amazing 120.1 cubic feet upon folding the second and third-row seats. The SUV can accommodate up to 8 passengers.
There are a number of optional packages offered across the trims to further customize the model the way you want such as making the cabin look more premium and luxurious, adding a premium audio system or customizing it for more functionality; Toyota offers numerous options to ensure you get the most out of the SUV.
The Toyota Safety Sense-P, a suite of autonomous driver-assist safety systems is standard across all trims. Among other features, it includes radar-based adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning and automatic high beams.
Engine and performance
The 2018 Toyota Sequoia SUV is unchanged under the hood; it is powered by the same 5.7 L, V-8 engine that delivers 381 hp and 401 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels (in standard form) via a 6-speed automatic transmission system. AWD is available on the SR5, Limited, as well as the Platinum, trims at an extra $3,225 fees. The transmission system features a tow/haul mode that enables the driver to maneuver the vehicle when hauling large loads or when towing a trailer. The SUV is capable of towing 7,400 lbs. RWD models return 13 mpg, 17 mpg and 15 mpg on town, highway and combined drives respectively while AWD models are rated at 13 mpg, 17 mpg and 14 mpg on town, highway and combined drives respectively. Despite its huge size, the SUV acceleration is remarkable as it only requires 6.7 seconds to hit 0-60mph.
The SR5 and Limited trims are equipped with double-wishbone at both ends; the Premium trim has a dynamic variable air suspension. The TRD trim brings muscular anti-roll bars at both ends and TRD-tuned Bilstein shocks.
Price and release date
The base 2018 Toyota Sequoia SR5 starts at $49,595 inclusive of $1,295 destination charge. A Premium package is available for the model for an extra $3,810. The Limited trim starts at $58,090. Available packages for the Limited trim include a 7-passenger seating package available for $300, an Entune Premium JBL Audio and Convenience package worth $1,250 and a Rear-Seat Blu-Ray Disc Player Package worth $1,920. There are two other packages that include different combinations of the features available on the above-mentioned packages; one is worth $3,170 and the other $3,470.
The Platinum trim fetches $65,305 for the RWD. There are no extra packages for the Platinum trim. The automaker is yet to make known prices of the new TRD Sport trim but going by other TRD versions, the model will slot between the Limited and Platinum trims in terms of prices. Sales are set to commence later this month or early October.