We never thought we’d never see a third-generation Toyota Sequoia, but here it is! After 14 years in the making, the 2023 Toyota Sequoia has entered its third generation with a few more changes than expected. The drastic styling change is a given, but what’s under the hood matters most in a full-size, seven-seat SUV.
For the first time in its lineage, the 2023 Toyota Sequoia is strictly available with a hybrid powertrain derived from – no surprise here – the all-new Toyota Tundra Hybrid arriving this spring. With that in mind, the third-gen Sequoia is riding on a similar TNGA-F platform as the new Toyota Land Cruiser (which we won’t get in the USA), Lexus LX 600 (which we do get, thankfully), and of course, the also-new third-gen Tundra pickup truck.
Toyota’s reputation for durability and reliability is unparalleled at this point. Still, we sincerely feel the automaker is taking its mantra of “don’t fix what ain’t broke” a little too far. The outgoing Sequoia has been on the market since 2008 (same for the Tundra), so Toyota is making up for it by giving the 2023 Sequoia a host of new and innovative features.
Hybrid V6 Powertrain
Gone is the thirsty yet venerable 5.7-liter V8 engine. The 2023 Toyota Sequoia has a 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 gasoline engine under the hood. It also has a single electric motor and a meager battery pack. It all sounds underwhelming, but hear us out.
Toyota’s i-Force Max Hybrid powertrain generates 437 horsepower and 583 lb-ft. of torque. That’s more horsepower than what you get in a new Chevy Tahoe, Nissan Armada, or GMC Yukon, and the torque figure is unheard of in its class. Only the most potent Ford Expedition Platinum (440 horsepower from its twin-turbo V6) can trump the Sequoia’s power output. Impressive, right?
Sequoia’s hybrid powertrain has a 10-speed automatic gearbox turning the rear wheels or all four wheels depending on the trim level. The SR5, Limited, Platinum, and Capstone (yes, the Sequoia is getting a luxury-oriented Capstone trim like the Tundra) have a 2WD or a part-time four-wheel drivetrain, the latter having 2WD, 4WD High, and 4WD Low. Meanwhile, the TRD Pro is only available in 4WD.
How Much Can The 2023 Toyota Sequoia Tow?
The new Sequoia is an excellent hauler with more power and torque in the equation. It can now tow up to 9,000 lbs., whereas the outgoing model can only muster 7,400 lbs. Toyota’s Trailer Backup Guide is standard on TRD Pro and Capstone to make trailering as easy as pie.
Of course, the Jeep Wagoneer and Ford Expedition can tow more (10,000 and 9,300 lbs., respectively), but it’s nice to know the new Sequoia has grown some muscle underneath that rugged yet modern body style.
The 2023 Toyota Sequoia has a bold and massive front grille, new headlight clusters, emphasized wheel arches, and a chiseled stance. However, the rear styling is a bit different. The front is aggressive and rugged, but the rear styling is more dignified – there are hints of the Lexus LX and Land Cruiser on the Sequoia’s rear hatch and taillights, and it’s all for the better.
“Our primary design goal for Sequoia was to create a sophisticated yet tough and active lifestyle SUV that looks capable of handling a diversity of big adventure needs,” said Kevin Hunter, President at Toyota’s Calty North American design studio.
The 2023 Sequoia has an independent front suspension and a new rack-mounted electric power steering system. At the back is a multi-link rear suspension. In addition, there’s an available load-leveling rear height control air suspension and Adaptive Variable Suspension to cope with heavy-duty activities. Together, those components deliver better ride comfort and sportier handling, which are nice to have with a big SUV.
Toyota Sequoia Trim Levels
In the coming months, Toyota will reveal more detailed specs and the pricing of the 2023 Sequoia, but the automaker was kind enough to tell us what’s in store across the range for now.
The base Sequoia comes generously equipped with a moonroof, heated seats, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, 18-inch wheels, and a panoramic view monitor. The SR5 Premium Package adds a 14-inch infotainment touchscreen, power-folding third-row seats, Softex upholstery, a hands-free liftgate, and 120-volt power outlets in the front and rear of the cabin.
Additionally, the SR5 TRD Sport Package adds 20-inch matte-black TRD wheels, Bilstein monotube dampers, TRD coil springs, aluminum pedals, and a red TRD push start button, to mention a few. Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 is standard across the lineup and includes pre-collision detection, dynamic radar cruise control, lane departure alert, lane tracing assist, automatic high beams, blind-spot monitoring, and many more.
Sliding third-row seats that move up to six inches and an adjustable cargo shelf system are both new additions to the 2023 Toyota Sequoia. The latter is a removable shelf that can be adjusted in multiple configurations depending on your storage needs.
The Sequoia Limited builds upon the SR5 and adds heated/ventilated front seats with memory functions, a heated steering wheel, and manual sunshades for the second and third row. Toyota’s TRD Off-Road Package is available for 4×4 variants of the SR5 and Limited. The package adds a selectable locking rear differential, muti-terrain select, downhill assist control, Bilstein dampers, TRD coil springs, a red front axle driveshaft, and unique 18-inch wheels, among many others.
The Sequoia Platinum gets more premium features like heated and ventilated second-row seats (or captain’s chairs), a 14-speaker JBL premium audio system, a heads-up display, LED headlights, LED taillights, sequential turn signals, wireless charging, and rain-sensing wipers.
Sequoia TRD Pro
The 2023 Toyota Sequoia TRD Pro is the most rugged and off-road capable of the bunch. It has standard second-row captain’s chairs, a heated TRD steering wheel, and TRD accents on the shift knob and seats. The features list includes a TRD roof rack, FOX internal bypass dampers, an aluminum front skid plate, a selectable locking differential, a unique front grille with an embedded TRD light bar, marker lights on top of the grille, bespoke 18-inch black alloy wheels, and dual exhaust tips.
Capstone is the most luxurious Toyota Sequoia available. It has 22-inch chrome wheels, chrome exterior accents, power running boards, semi-aniline leather-trimmed upholstery, open-pore American Walnut interior trim, and acoustic glass in the front doors. It also has a Capstone logo with LED mood lighting on the dash like the Tundra Capstone.
The 2023 Toyota Sequoia leaves the factory with a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. Since the new Sequoia is a hybrid, it also has an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty for the inverter and control module, while the battery pack has a 10-year/150,000-mile warranty.
In addition, the 2023 Sequoia comes standard with a ToyotaCare plan to cover scheduled maintenance items and two-years/25,000-miles worth of 24-hour roadside assistance. It makes sense to look into an extended warranty if you drive more miles than the average person. This comprehensive guide will shed light on whether a Toyota extended warranty is worth considering.
2023 Toyota Sequoia: Pricing & Availability
Pricing remains forthcoming, but Toyota said the 2023 Sequoia will arrive at dealerships this summer. Our free and easy search tool* will help you get the best price on a new Toyota Sequoia regardless of trim level. That tool will also reveal the invoice price to help you negotiate a better deal.
Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.
Photos & Source: Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
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