Evaluating Toyota’s Electric Pickup Against Cybertruck and F-150 Lightning

Where does Toyota stand? Comparing two unique creations.

The Toyota company is presently in the midst of comparing various sizable fully electric pickup trucks, which include the Ford-F-150 Lightning, the GMC Hummer EV Pickup, and the recently introduced Tesla Cybertruck.

Multiple insiders from Toyota’s development team informed Motrolix that the company is currently conducting trials of electric trucks at two of its American campuses. This hints at the possibility of a new model being in the works, specifically tailored for the US market. The benchmarking process includes personnel from different departments collaborating to gather data and assess performance.

In situations where one is not well-versed in the procedure, car manufacturers frequently acquire competing products in order to thoroughly test and inspect them for areas of potential enhancement. This practice is exemplified by General Motors’ examination of the popular Ford Maverick and Kia’s current investigation into their Tasman midsize pickup’s performance compared to the Ranger Raptor.

According to the benchmarking procedure, it appears that Toyota is making efforts to introduce electric trucks in the mainstream market. The renowned Toyota Hilux has already undergone electrification but as a mere test subject. The latest version, Hilux BEV Revo, seems to be targeting the commercial sector, providing customers with the opportunity to cut costs on diesel fuel. It may come as a surprise that Hiluxes are utilized for diverse underground duties in mines, making an emissions-free exhaust a significant selling feature.

Throughout the years, Toyota has given indications that they are working on a mass-market product. These hints have been dropped frequently and most recently in late 2021 when Toyota and Lexus revealed 16 different concepts. One of these concepts was an electric truck that had a distinct design which would later be seen on the 2024 Toyota Tacoma.

The presence of the Tacoma EV concept hints at the possibility that Toyota is developing an all-electric version of the popular truck, possibly adopting a similar approach to BMW. Just as BMW offers the option of a traditional ICE (internal combustion engine) with their 7 Series, they also have the electric i7 for those who prefer it. There’s no reason why both types of vehicles can’t coexist.

Toyota has been notoriously lagging behind in the realm of electrification, but there is a different perspective to consider when it comes to their hesitance in producing more electric vehicles. At present, their only offerings are the bZ4X and Lexus RZ, which have not been particularly popular on the market. This conservative approach can be attributed to the Japanese automaker’s caution. This was made evident during our conversation with Mike Sweers, Toyota’s executive chief engineer for the Tundra, Sequoia, Tacoma, and 4Runner, who stated that they have no plans to create an electric version of the Tundra until the necessary infrastructure greatly improves. It is likely that this same reasoning was applied to the other three models under his supervision.

Following Sweers’ remarks, there have been two noteworthy developments. One being Toyota’s revelation of plans to construct a brand new BEV manufacturing facility in Kentucky and the other being the adoption of Tesla NACS charging technology, allowing for convenient access to over 20,000 Supercharger stations, greatly simplifying the process of charging electric vehicles for customers.

It is evident that Toyota is conducting trials on various cars, leading us to believe that a Tundra EV could potentially be the initial release, with an electrified version of the Tacoma following closely behind.

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