Future Toyota pickup trucks across the globe may share one common platform, regardless of segment and configuration. Thus, the mid-size Tacoma and full-size Tundra will reportedly ride on shared bones, according to an Automotive News (subscription required) report on Monday.
The report cited anonymous sources familiar with Toyota's next-generation pickups that claim the new platform, internally called F1, will underpin every truck next decade. That includes the Toyota Hilux, which is sold globally. The strategy would mimic Toyota's approach to passenger cars and crossovers, which increasingly share the Toyota New Global Architecture platform, commonly referred to as TGNA. The platform allows the automaker to build multiple vehicles on one architecture and share crucial components.
2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro
Currently, the Tacoma and Tundra are both built at the same factory in San Antonio, Texas. Some Tundra production also takes place in Mexico. Moving both trucks to a shared platform would create a more efficient production process. Details on what the rumored shared platform means for design and new features are unclear. Toyota said it does not comment on future product.
However, a shared platform could bring its own drawbacks. Toyota will need to engineer the platform to ensure the Tacoma and Tundra are the right sizes for their respective segments. A common architecture could create a Tacoma that's too large, or a Tundra that's too small. Analysts said the common platform could also make for a heavier-than-necessary Tacoma, should it share parts with the larger Tundra. Between engineering right-size trucks and producing a heavier pickup, the automaker will likely opt to ensure the Tacoma is sized right. The mid-size pickup remains a sales leader and outsells the full-size Tundra handily.
2019 Toyota Tacoma
It's also possible the next-generation pickups will include hybrid technology. Toyota pledged to fit every vehicle it sells in the U.S. with some sort of electrification. Keep in mind, "electrification" can be as simple as a 48-volt mild-hybrid system, such as Ram's eTorque system.