Consider the Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition for Cowboy Cosplaying
Do you long to live the “simple life” as a rancher somewhere in the west instead of working as an accountant in Virgina Beach? Loath the pine needles in your yard, wishing instead you could look out your window to see tumbleweed skipping along the arid plain? Do you fantasize about your horse being your only confidant as you move 1,000 head of cattle before the season’s first snow? Have you shopped for boot spurs despite you not really knowing their purpose? Do you want your pickup truck to be brown, inside and out? If you answered yes to some or all these questions, it’s time to talk to your Toyota dealer about the western-themed 2024 Tundra 1794 Edition.
I recently spent a week behind the wheel of the 2024 Tundra 1794 Edition, complete with the optional i-Force Max hybrid V6 cranking out 437 horsepower and 583 pound-feet of torque. And it is wholly out of place in the piney urban sprawl of Atlanta despite the area being riddled with pickups of all varieties. I was cosplaying a cowboy in which the only recent stampede was among upper-class housewives trampling others in the pursuit of a bright pink Stanley drinking cup.
My 1794 Edition, meanwhile, was a symphony of brown. I suppose the hue was selected to bolster its ruggedness. Of course, the exterior paint wasn’t called “brown,” rather it is dubbed, “Smoked Mesquite.” Because if Toyota fails to sell you the mental image of the Tundra conquering the dusty soils of the west, they’ll at least invoke the interest of the type of men that invest thousands of dollars into smoking equipment to serve up a piece of charcoal that, at least once, was a flavorful cut of cow (Note: this is not a criticism of BBQ, rather, the type of guys who think they are a pitmaster despite having the same cooking ability as a badger).
The massively spacious Crew Cab is also decked out with a heavy helping of brown trim and wood accents. The upholstery was “rich cream leather,” though of course, you can have more brown with “saddle tan” cowskin seats. I am glad mine went with the former, as that much brown in my life, even for a week, is bound to cause a stint of depression. Brown is a way of life to which I do not subscribe.
It might sound as if I’m picking on Toyota for trying to sell the 1794 Edition to insurance adjusters who believe they could drop their enemies in a high-noon shootout before the “bad guy” removed his six-shooter from its holster. And I am. But Toyota isn’t alone in trying to use a kind of “desperado” theme to sell a truck. After all, Ford has its King Ranch trim. The Silverado 1500 High Country model logo features mountains, as if to say, “It’s the manifest destiny of pickups.” Ram will sell you a Big Horn, a Longhorn or even a Rebel. Nissan doesn’t have such a trim, but it will sell you a Titan in Baja Storm Metallic — otherwise known as brown.
Despite feeling out of place in my western-themed pickup, the 1794 Edition is worthy of attention. It’s based on the Tundra’s Platinum trim, so it gets plenty of upscale features. Creature comforts include heated and ventilated seats throughout, a JBL sound system and driver seat memory. Tech highlights include 14-inch touchscreen and 12.3-inch digital instrument panel, wireless charging and a digital rearview mirror.
Features for doing actual truck stuff include household outlets in the bed and cabin, a composite bed and a trailer guidance system. Buyers can choose from either a 5.5- or 6.5-foot bed.
I didn’t do any hauling – my raised ranch style home is not connected to an actual ranch. However, the 1794 Edition with the i-Force Max option can tow up to 11,050 pounds, which slightly trails the max towing for the Big Three pickups.
‘Round these parts, however, few use their half-tons for such purposes. Instead, the Tundra serves as a family hauler and commuter, and the i-Force Max powertrain is up to the task. Acceleration is — to fit the 1794’s theme — lickety split, and the 10-speed transmission is unobtrusive and smooth. Don’t let the “hybrid” lead you to believe it has a parsimonious thirst for firewater, however. The i-Force engine will net buyers 20 combined mpg with RWD, according to the EPA. That’s just two mpg better than the non-hybrid SR5 trim. Consider the i-Force Max a hybrid that prioritizes performance over economy.
The Tundra delivers a mostly comfortable ride with nothing out back, and the seats are supportive. The massive infotainment screen is crisply colored and reacts quickly. Navigating its menus, or even changing the SiriusXM station, can be an exercise in patience despite some appreciably chunky dials and switches for other inputs.
Overall, the 2024 Tundra accomplishes its apparent mission of being just different enough from the Big Three without sacrificing general capability or convenience. The i-Force Max powertrain’s grunt is certainly appreciated, even if it doesn’t save much at the pumps. Springing for the 1794 Edition nets plenty of desirable amenities, whether you use it in suburban Atlanta or in San Antonio, where it gets its namesake.
If you desire to cosplay as Clint Eastwood’s Man with No Name, only with a truck, the 1794 Edition is a solid choice. Me? I’ll stick with the Platinum, which costs a fistful of dollars less with generally the same equipment. Better still, it’s not brown.