Home » This Might Be The Upcoming Toyota Tacoma

This Might Be The Upcoming Toyota Tacoma

Toyota Pickup Leak Topshot

It’s an exciting day for Toyota pickup fans. Motor 1 recently found Brazilian patent drawings of a new Toyota truck, and there’s a chance they could depict the next Tacoma.

Mind you, an upcoming Tacoma is just one possibility. This thing could also be the next Hilux given that the Tacoma isn’t currently sold in Brazil — or this could be something else entirely. What we can say for sure is that this definitely looks like a Toyota truck. Not only are several authors listed on the patent employed at Toyota’s Calty design studio, but the truck itself plays host to a bunch of Tundra styling cues.

Front Three Quarters

Thankfully, the Tundra’s gaping grille doesn’t make an appearance here, but the sharp, blocky lines of Toyota’s big pickup truck really seem to have carried over onto this truck. I’m really digging the boxy bed, sharp door crease, and jaunty cab spoiler, all of which give this truck a sporty yet practical feel.

Toyota Pickup Leak Front

The hexagonal grille mesh and diamond-cut alloy wheels suggest that this could be some sort of TRD model. Not a full-on TRD Pro, but a TRD Off-Road with milder dampers and styling. If current TRD Off-Road offerings are anything to go by, it’s a pretty good package that serves most peoples’ needs just fine.

Toyota Pickup Leak Side Profile

Judging by the profile shots, approach and departure angles look fairly good for a crew cab pickup truck. While we have no idea what running gear will sit underneath this truck, rumors suggest that the next Tacoma will get a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with available hybrid assistance, so that’s one powertrain possibility.

Toyota Pickup Leak Rear Three Quarters

If you’re thinking that these patent drawings look familiar, there’s a very good reason for that. Aside from the grille and wheels, this thing’s practically identical to the bZ pickup truck concept Toyota showed off more than a year ago. It was a handsome rig then and is still a handsome rig now, so I’m excited to see Toyota develop the concept further.

Toyota EV Pickup

If I hazard to make an educated guess or two, this truck could be a “Beyond Zero” model of some sort. While that label is better-known on the bZ4X electric crossover, the new Prius features a “Beyond Zero” emblem since its production is carbon-neutral, so that bit of flashy branding isn’t exclusively confined to EVs. What’s more, I reckon that this patented truck could be a production model, as the bZ3 sedan was effectively on stage at Toyota’s big EV event prior to the public knowing what it was. Both the bZ3 and the bZ SDN concept are pictured below, so you can see exactly how close the two are.

Bz3 Vs Concept

[Editor’s Note: It’s possible that the white pickup truck concept that Toyota showed in late 2021 wasn’t actually an EV (there’s a rendering going around that actually shows it with an exhaust pipe and solid rear axle — two things you won’t find on an EV). Perhaps it was a hybrid? In any case, this patent tells us it was more than just a simple design study, and like Thomas said, I think it could be a look at the future Tacoma, which could be had with different powertrain options, including electrified ones. The patent drawings show a traditional grille that you might expect to see on a gasoline or diesel-powered truck. -DT]

Given that the previous Tacoma and Hilux each lasted roughly 11 years on the market and that the current models are roughly nine years old, I wouldn’t be surprised if both of those trucks get replaced soon. It might even make sense to take the Tacoma to a wider global audience, given how well-equipped trucks are enjoying popularity in countries like England and Australia. In any case, keep an eye out for future Toyota announcements. I suspect a truck that looks a lot like this thing may be coming down the pipeline.

(Photo credits: Toyota)


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26 Responses

  1. It could be either/either but don’t expect the proportions of the North American Tacoma to be suitable for the rest of the world… especially Asia and Africa but also South America.

    Personally, I’d just like to be able to buy a basic farm vehicle…so I’ll probably look to Chinese or Indian brands for that now.

  2. Toyota is in a challenging place with its ancient trucks. On one hand, offerings like the 4Runner, Taco, and GX460 are laughably old, ridiculously under equipped compared to the competition, and powered by engines that would be right at home in the 90s. On the other hand…that’s exactly what their customers want.

    All of those vehicles sell as soon as they hit lots, if not before. Many of them command premiums, and the residuals on them are nucking futs. 3-4 year old examples with 50,000 miles on them are still selling secondhand at shockingly close to MSRP. I’ve actually poked around online at 4Runners (my dad thought he wanted one until his old, Audi loving ass rented one and realized it’s an actual truck) and I’m trying to nudge the wife towards a GX460 as our eventual family hauler because…REASONS….and it’s nuts how well they hold their value.

    She says she only wants cars she doesn’t have to worry about, and something on this platform is as worry free as you can get. But anyway, I’m not jealous of Toyota in this situation. They’re very much in need of bringing these relics into the 2020s, but if they do too much they have a whole hell of a lot of loyal customers they’re going to disappoint. People that want a Toyota want a Toyota.

    If I were them I think I’d continue to offer the old powertrains alongside the new ones for a few years. Let the folks who want the dinosaurs have the dinosaurs but also offer some more efficient, less brutish options for the folks who want that too.

    1. Get the GX460. You won’t regret it. I picked mine up 2 years with 90k mile for 1/3 the original price, but it looks like they have gone up a bit since then. I am also a fan of 2010-2013 front grill/bumper so I ended up with a 2013, but I know lots of people apparently want to drive around looking like the Predator.

  3. I’m way more interested in the new powertrain and transmission that are supposed to be coming than I am in the styling, but I will be very glad to see it not end up with the Tundra’s gaping maw.

  4. My theory is that Toyota will merge Hilux, Tacoma, 4Runner, Prado and Fortuner onto one platform. It doesn’t make sense to have five vehicles across two platforms, when they could save on R&D costs by having them on one. The new Prado is due (I note its coming to the US as “LandCruiser”) this year, given that the 4Runner and Tacoma share the platform they will be updated soon. Hilux is due to be replaced in 2025 – but Toyota is having their butt whipped by the new Ranger, so I suspect they will bring replacement forward to the end of 2024. I reckon that the 4Runner and Fortuner will become the same car, taking 4Runner mildly downmarket in the US, but bringing Fortuner mildly up to be more competitive with MU-X & Everest, they will then take the Prado even further upmarket to fill the hole left by the 300 as it is now astronomically expensive. So I reckon that you are definitely looking at the next Tundra/Hilux here as they will merge the truck.

    1. I feel like something like that has to happen. I wonder on the GX in Lexus showrooms too, currently Prado based – with the larger RX/Highlander-derived 3-row Lexus TX coming out, I’m not sure they’ll need the GX even if it is different in mechanicals.

  5. I feel like you could make this Taco almost interchangeable with the new Nissan Frontier.

    As another comment said, I’m far more interested in the drivetrain. I’d like a Tacoma sized truck. I don’t want a 16 mpg ancient V6 in there. I know several Tacoma owners who feel like they should have just got a Tundra with the amount of fuel they have the feed the Taco.

    1. tundra owner, and former taco owner….I don’t ever regret moving up to a tundra its better in every way except trails. The real old Gen 1 tacos I regret moving on from mine, but the modern ones arent anything worth writing home about.

  6. I sure hope they don’t drop the door sills for the 4th gen. If they keep it as is (maybe raise the greenhouse) then everything about this is going to be great.

  7. Unless the new Taco has ultra special portal axles front and rear that have so much clearance that you can’t see the front suspension, rear axles, etc. then these patent leaks show nothing of note beside the fact that it’ll be available in a 4 door short bed configuration (BIG SURPRISE THERE!)

  8. I think it looks like a scaled-down Tundra.
    I’m really hoping Toyota fixes the Tacoma, it’s not terrible but isn’t very good either.
    The current model feels quite cramped, you sit on the floor, legs forward, and the steering wheel is way too low. The seats are possibly the most uncomfortable I’ve ever sat in.
    I’ll probably won’t miss the gutless 3.5 v6 (Atkinson engine in a truck? just why? MPG is still low.) or the 6-speed auto that keeps hunting gears.
    I don’t really get the appeal of the current generation, besides reliability.

    1. 100% agree. I own a current generation V6 that gets worse mileage than my previous F-150. The 6 speed auto seems to be constantly confused. It doesn’t know whether to go up or down or just linger when you really need a shift. The interior feels tighter than a Corolla. Oh and the peeling paint after just 3 years along with a big “F-you/out of warranty” from ToyotaUSA doesn’t make me like it any better. My F-150 was nine years old and still had better paint. Why did I buy the Tacoma? I needed a 4 door truck for family reasons and Tacomas are awesome! Right?

    1. Plug-in hybrid takes my money the second they open orders.
      If they don’t do a PHEV, I don’t know. Depending on some things, a PHEV Santa Cruz would probably meet most of my needs, and there’s a rumor one is coming. And Ford should be considering plug-in Maverick.

  9. This reminds me of one of my favorite wife stories. A couple of years ago we were taking a ride in the country. On a lovely two lane twisty road we got behind a Tacoma going maybe 30 mph. After what seems like forever I mentioned that some people call them the Taco. About a minute later my wife says, “They should call them the Coma. MOVE YOUR ASS UP THERE!” I love her so.

    1. I mean, a fresh taco looks like an old taco. It’s whats inside that makes the difference. In this case, its going to be a very different truck to gen 2/3

    1. No joke. I was ready to go over the images with a magnifying glass to look for minute changes.

      As an aside–let us embiggen images, Autopian! It would be nice to be able to click and get the full size image.

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