The Fast Lane’s (TFL) Truck division loves Toyotas. The team has spent the spring putting their 2022 Tundra through heavy-duty hauling and towing tests. It’s no surprise that when TFL got its hands on a 2023 Sequoia, with its Tundra-like drivetrain, it immediately hooked a trailer up to the full-size SUV. TFL was very impressed by how smoothly the new Toyota drives, even while towing.
The Toyota Sequoia is all-new for 2023
Toyota is rolling out the third generation of its full-size Sequoia SUV for the 2023 model year. This Sequoia rides on a new chassis shared by Toyota’s full-frame vehicles worldwide. It also benefits from a powerful hybrid drivetrain.
Toyota’s New Global Architecture full-frame chassis (TNGA-F) was originally designed for the Land Cruiser 300 (not available in the U.S.). The first North American vehicles with this next-generation technology were the 2022 Lexus LX600 and the third-generation Toyota Tundra.
Developing a unified TNGA-F architecture forced Toyota to rethink what drivers want from a full-frame vehicle. Every vehicle in the TNGA-F family has a fully-boxed frame to save weight. They improve on the outgoing vehicles’ ground clearance and approach/departure angles. They also have a solid rear axle and rear coil springs. Finally, the TNGA-F family has no V8 engines; they are all powered by various tunes of a twin-turbocharged 3.44-liter V6.
The Toyota Sequoia is a premium SUV
When Andre Smirnov of TFL Truck reviewed the 2023 Toyota Sequoia, he pointed out that the SUV’s MSRP ($58,300) has increased $8k since the 2022 model ($50,500). But at the same time, the 2023 Sequoia shares a slew of high-tech features with the new Tundra and Land Cruiser.
Most importantly, Toyota is building every new Sequoia with its premium TNGA-F engine. This is a hybrid version of the 3.44-liter V6, branded as the i-FORCE MAX. This hybrid features a regular, twin-turbocharged V6 and 10-speed automatic transmission. Between the two, Toyota installed a powerful electric motor/generator.
The i-FORCE MAX drivetrain makes an impressive 437 horsepower and 588 lb-ft of torque. Numbers are one thing, but when Smirnov got behind the wheel of a new Sequoia, he was very impressed with how it handled all this power.
New 2023 Toyota Sequoia review
When Andre Smirnov (TFL Truck) first tested a 2023 Toyota Sequoia he tried towing both a 5,000 and 7,000-pound trailer. The results were truly impressive.
The new Sequoia boasts a maximum tow rating of 9,520 pounds. Some vehicles have a high maximum tow rating, but are sluggish and even uncomfortable with that much weight. Smirnov found the Sequoia was relatively quick with 5,000 pounds. As importantly, it was impressively smooth. Even with a heavy trailer, he said he could barely discern the drivetrain shifting. This is because the Sequoia’s motor/generator is capable of launching the vehicle, smoothing out shifts, and assisting with braking.
Toyota’s choice to return to a solid rear axle for its Sequoia surprised some critics. But with rear coils, the third-row SUV rides very smoothly, even on a bumpy road. In addition, it is much more stable while towing or hauling heavy loads.
Smirnov also noted the comfortable, high-tech interior will be very familiar to fans of the 2022 Tundra. See his entire 2023 Toyota Sequoia review in the video below: