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At first glance, the Toyota Tundra and Toyota Sequoia might seem like two completely different animals. After all, who is out there cross-shopping a full-size truck and a full-size SUV? But at their core, the 2023 Tundra and 2023 Sequoia share quite a bit of DNA. And in some cases, it might be hard for folks to pick between the two. 

Is the Toyota Tundra and Sequoia the same?

The 2023 Toyota Tundra is a pickup truck, and the 2023 Toyota Sequoia is an SUV. Because of that, one has an open pickup bed, and the other offers three rows of seating. On the surface, it may not seem like there’s a lot to compare here. But I would imagine the choice might be difficult for a certain kind of consumer. 

A 2022 Toyota Tundra full-size truck is parked, it could compete against the Toyota Sequoia.
Toyota Tundra | Eric Boman, MotorBiscuit

When it comes to value proposition, the 2023 Tundra comes in at a lower cost. You can build out a base model for under $40k, compared to the Sequoia, which starts closer to $60k. That said that entry-level MSRP for the half-ton truck is going to give you a fairly bare-bones pickup.

A 2023 Toyota Sequoia Capstone sits in a park as a full-size SUV.
2023 Toyota Sequoia Capstone | Eric Boman, MotorBiscuit

I was able to test the 2022 Toyota Tundra Capstone for a week late last year, and I’ve got to imagine that the base SR trim is a far cry from that. The Capstone trim comes with everything from the optional i-Force MAX hybrid engine to rear air suspension. Simply put, this version of the Tundra feels more like a Lexus than a Toyota. 

If you’re someone who needs to tow, it might be best to go with Toyota’s full-size truck. The Tundra can tow up to 12,000, whereas the Sequoia maxes out at 9,520 lbs. 

The 2023 Toyota Sequoia is better for families

I know in 2023, even full-size trucks can be family vehicles. But the three rows and enclosed space of the 2023 Toyota Sequoia might make it more ideal. I also found the driving characteristics to be better on this full-size SUV. 

As a full-size SUV, the 2023 Toyota Sequoia can be a good family vehicle.
Toyota Sequoia | Eric Boman, MotorBiscuit

Despite the Sequoia coming with the same twin-turbo hybrid V6 that is optional on the Tundra, it seemed to have better dynamics. I can’t help but think Toyota did some modifications to this new engine in the Tundra to make it sound more like a V8. 

For daily use, the 437 hp and 583 lb-ft of torque sounded tamer in the Sequoia than in the Tundra. And I think that’s a benefit, especially if you find yourself taking long trips.  While testing the 2023 Toyota Sequoia Capstone, I found the ride to be compliant and enjoyable.

Much like the Tundra Capstone, the Sequoia Capstone comes with all of the bells and whistles. Nearly everything is covered in leather, so if you want a family SUV, maybe a lesser trim with cloth seats would be better.

The 2023 Sequoia rides on the TNGA-F platform. This platform is shared by a variety of Toyota products, and it certainly works well with this full-size SUV.

The Sequoia and Toyota Tundra both make the case

If you’re cross-shopping full-size trucks and SUVs, I think the Toyota Tundra and 2023 Toyota Sequoia might make the choice difficult. I had the chance to drive the Toyota Sequoia Capstone, which, much like the Tundra Capstone, brings all of the high-end features to the table. 

At the end of the day, it’s best to take your personal needs into account. Do you haul and tow often? The Tundra might be it. But if you find yourself hauling passengers and groceries more, the 2023 Sequoia could be the pick. 

As it stands, my major concern might be with the 3.4-liter i-Force MAX V6 hybrid engine. Much like my initial thoughts, Torque News agrees that the performance and fuel economy are both impressive. 

Having driven this engine in everything from the Tundra to the Lexus LX600 Ultra Luxury to the Toyota Sequoia, I thoroughly enjoy it. But you do have to wonder about longevity. Can a twin-turbo hybrid engine stand up to the mileage? Only time will tell.

Related First Drive: The 2023 Toyota Sequoia Is Good but Shouldn’t Be

First Drive: The 2023 Toyota Sequoia Is Good but Shouldn’t Be