Chrysler announced it will double production of its Ram diesel offerings to 20 percent of its mix. While Toyota Tundra fans may not see this as a big deal, they should. Here’s why.
By now most everyone has heard that Dodge is going to release a diesel version of the Ram 1500. While this news has the potential to shake up the automotive world, is it that big of a deal to Toyota?
In Automotive News, Toyota USA President Yoshi Inaba answered some questions about Toyota, including offering some interesting tidbits about the Tundra. From Automotive News (subs. req’d):
Question: Why is the Tundra having only limited success against Detroit’s full-sized pickups?
Inaba’s Answer: Let’s face it. Tundra competes in a subsegment of full-sized pickups. It does pretty good. The simple situation is with the market collapsing and fuel prices going up, it hinders us from being more aggressive and not reaching the volume where we bounce from there. We are not disappointed. We are not 100% happy, but we are not discouraged.
Here’s what I think these comments mean.
Update: Read the complete story of the diesel Tundra
According to Edmunds.com, the Tundra will be offered with a 4.5L diesel V8 for the 2010 model year. While we predicted a diesel for the 2010 model Toyota Tundra a few months ago, Edmunds.com has offered a couple of new points. First, the 4.5L diesel currently being used in the Aussie Land Cruiser is being adapted to the Tundra. We’ve since confirmed this with a couple of Toyota sources we have. Second, Toyota is also planning a larger diesel for an HD version of the Tundra, possibly due out in 2011.
We’ve confirmed that the 4.5L diesel twin-turbo found in the Australian LandCruiser 200 is the basis for the 2010 Tundra Diesel.
UPDATE: Unfortunately, this is old news. Toyota back-tracked on this announcement and these plans are dead. Read the full story on the diesel Toyota Tundra.
Boy, do we like it when we’re right…here’s the Reuter’s press release trimmed-down to the important facts:
Toyota President Katsuaki Watanabe said on Sunday the Japanese automaker will launch a diesel-powered Tundra pickup truck and Sequoia SUV in the United States…Toyota has repeatedly hesitated to committing a diesel vehicle for the U.S. market…especially for use in larger vehicles.
“I am happy to confirm that a new clean-diesel V8 engine will be offered in both the Tundra and the Sequoia in the near future,” Watanabe told a news conference at the North American International Auto Show.
The “near future” is likely to be next year…we think the Diesel Tundra will debut in late 2009 as a 2010 model.