SEMA 2021, the biggest aftermarket car show in the world, run annually by the Specialty Equipment Market Association, returned in-person this month. Around 50,000 auto technicians, customisers, restorers and media attended the three-day event held in Las Vegas.
Toyota is a long-time SEMA supporter and was back with a huge display this year, featuring the ever-popular GR Supra show cars, the Toyota USA vintage vehicle fleet and a variety of current GR sports cars and TRD Pro trucks. The stars of the show were four new custom truck builds:
Tacozilla Tacoma Camper
First of the new show trucks was this distinctive camper, a backwoods, overlanding-ready ‘micro-house’ rig that pays tribute to Toyota campers from the 1970s and ‘80s. The goal for lead builder Marty Schwerter and the Toyota Motorsports Garage team was to create a camper that could go anywhere on the planet and navigate the same steep trails that a normal off-road Toyota Tacoma (the North American equivalent of the Toyota Hilux) can tackle.
Complete Customs of McKinney, Texas, took care of the bodywork and the distinctive paintwork, with heritage-inspired Toyota Racing Development (TRD) stripes. The fully insulated interior features a 1.2m x 1.2m skylight above the living room, teak sauna-style flooring; a full bathroom with hot-water shower; a kitchen and a 3D-printed dining table that converts to a backlit piece of wall art.
TRD Desert Chase Tundra
Toyota’s Tundra full-size pick-up is all-new for the American market in 2022. To help celebrate the launch of the third-generation model, TRD decided to showcase it as a chase support vehicle. Again built by Toyota’s regular special projects guru Marty Schwerter and his team, the TRD Desert Chase Tundra highlights the pick-up’s Invincible off-road heritage.
At the heart of the show truck is the Tundra TRD Pro with its new, 3.5-litre V6 hybrid engine and 10-speed automatic transmission. The package produces 437bhp and 790Nm of torque from 2,400rpm. The builders added a long-travel suspension and a wide-body kit. It also features carbon-fibre wings and bed sides.
TRD Desert Chase Tundra has rear and side-facing lights and a front-facing Rigid light bar with room for up to eight lights. The light bar can be electronically raised when needed and lowered below the roofline to eliminate wind noise and help improve aerodynamics. In the flatbed are a custom-made roll bar, a custom-mounted off-road jack, a CO2 bottle, fuel and water containers, two roll bar-mounted spare tyres and an ARB Tred Pro Recovery Board, all secured using the existing OEM bed bolts and bolt locations.
Tacoma Overlanding Concept Vehicle
The American overlanding market continues to grow in popularity and for this year’s Tacoma Overlanding Concept, Toyota partnered with Kurt Williams of Cruiser Outfitters in Murray, Utah, to build a capable but affordable overlanding truck. The team created an efficiently packaged truck capable of carrying outdoor explorers and their provisions, gear, and backwoods toys, while serving as the basecamp for day hikes or setting up a more permanent camp. All can be quickly stowed away when it’s time to move on to the next adventure.
Based on the Tacoma SR5, the Overlanding Concept features an assortment of premium off-road components and overlanding equipment that adventurers need, including a Mule mid-size MAP (multipoint attachment panel) and Baki bed rack system with a Yakima rooftop tent, ARB lights and compressor, Expedition One rock sliders and a WARN Zeon winch.
2022 Lifted and Accessorised Tundra
The truck features a new TRD lift kit that provides 66mm of extra ground clearance and improves off-road performance by increasing the approach, departure, and breakover angles. Other suspension upgrades include Bilstein front and rear dampers with taller TRD coil springs and forged upper control arms. There is also a TRD skid plate and cast aluminium running boards, a bed extender, dash camera, folding hard tonneau cover and TRD Off-Road wheel and tyre package.