The Toyota Tundra is among the oldest vehicles on the road today, as it went through its last redesign back in 2007. We expect the 2021 Tundra to continue this trend and be a carryover vehicle, though it will have a few new special-edition models: the Trail Special Edition and Nightshade Special Edition.
As a carryover, we expect no big visual updates to the 2021 Toyota Tundra. We expect it to continue with the same bold but simple look it’s had since its 2014 refresh, including a large grille that varies by trim level, clean body lines, angular headlights, and a “TUNDRA”-stamped tailgate. It’s a truck’s truck in a class that is quickly changing.
Inside, we expect no changes. This cabin has also seen little updating since its 2014 refresh but said refresh was significant and brought in a more modern steering wheel, gauge cluster, and tech. Since that reworking, we’ve seen a few more tech updates, but its design has stood pat.
For buyers seeking a redesign, there are reports that the 2022 Tundra will be a full redesign.
Buyers will be able to get their hands a few new things in the 2021 Tundra lineup thanks to two special-edition models.
The new tundra Trail Special Edition will be based on the SR5 trim and will gain black exterior badging, plus black seating with tan stitching, all-weather floor mats, the 1794 Edition chrome grille with a color-keyed surround, special-edition wheels, and an insulated lockable in-bed storage area.
The Nightshade Special Edition will be based on the upscale Limited trim and will gain black leather seating, a dark-chrome grille, black mirror caps, door handles, wheels and exhaust tips, and dark-chrome badging, body moldings, lower grille, and fog light surrounds.
Under its hood, we expect the 2021 Tundra to again remain the same. It will offer just one engine: a 5.7-liter V8 that pumps out 381 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque. This power will flow through a six-speed automatic transmission and out to the rear wheels. Four-wheel drive will be an option. For buyers seeking a more rugged pickup, the TRD Pro model will continue to bost Fox shocks, an off-road suspension, and rugged tires.
Though the Tundra is dated, the current model shines in safety tech with its standard adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warnings, and automatic high-beam lights. That said, the Tundra struggled in IIHS testing with a “Marginal” score in the driver-side small-overlap test and a “Poor” rating in the passenger-side small-overlap test. These substandard ratings prevent this pickup from even sniffing a Top Safety Pick rating, as we expect this to remain the same in the 2021 Tundra.