When Toyota¿s T100 pickup was introduced to the automotive press a couple years back, the reaction was like a parody of that part in Wild West movies where the good guys sense that something¿s wrong. You know the line: "It¿s quiet. Maybe too quiet." The script didn¿t need much alteration for the T100: "It¿s nice. Maybe too nice." Which was an oblique way of saying that the T100, conceived to challenge the all-American realm of full-size pickups, was short on power. With a 3.0-liter V6 as its biggest engine, the T100 simply didn¿t match the muscle of the U.S. trucks. Toyota shopped around Big Three truck operations hoping to buy an American V8 for the T100. But the answer was "no sale". And Toyota didn¿t want to compromise its Lexus line by adapting the Lexus V8 for use in a truck. Nevertheless, Toyota has found more power for its big truck for 1995. By substituting a new 3.4-liter, DOHC 24-valve V6 for the previous 3.0-liter SOHC version, Toyota gives the T100 a 25 percent increase in horsepower and, more important in a truck, 22 percent more torque. The net is a powertrain that gives the T100 parity versus the base engines of its competitors. It¿s still a nice truck. But nice no longer equates with anemic.
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