Adventure: 2019 TRD Pro Family Drive On The Rim Rocker Trail

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Overlanding Made Easy by TRD Pro

It was an authentic testdrive of a triumvirate of authentically upgraded models. Instead of waking up in a hip hotel room, listening to a preordained product presentation delivered by a collective of automakers’ subject-matter experts with PowerPoint infographics and demographics and then heading out on a road course for a few hours—that, perhaps, included a dirt road along with a section of mud and ruts—we awakened to bird songs, the scent of pine trees, and a sunrise that painted the sky in hues of yellow, orange, and red. There was no tarmac in sight!
2019 TRDPro Family Drive

  |   2019 TRDPro Family Drive

We packed our gear, folded our tents, and stowed a wide array of personal items in a trio of ’19 TRD Pro vehicles. The Tacoma’s large bed was packed with overlanding paraphernalia for our team that included a small cadre of auto writers and a support crew from Toyota and Expedition Overland. After a fireside breakfast, we set up the front seat of the ’19 Tundra with water bottles, snacks, cameras, phones, and goods that we would want to keep close at hand for our second day on the Rimrocker Trail. Climbing into the cabin, we surveyed the trail ahead and took in the stunning landscape and thought, We’re on the job and this is the view from the office today; if you love trucks, SUVs and off-roading, it doesn’t get much better than this!
2019 TRDPro Family Drive View

  |   2019 TRDPro Family Drive View

It was day three of a four-day trip that was designed to show off the prowess of the three upgraded ’19 TRD Pro models. Our first day included an excursion over Imogene Pass with members of the FJ Summit club on their annual run that is headquartered in Ouray, Colorado; this 12-mile-long historic mining trail runs from Ouray to Telluride, ascends over a 13,000-foot pass, and is renowned for its panoramic vistas. The trail requires low range, high ground clearance, and vehicles with good approach, departure, and breakover angles, which made it a veritable playground to take turns in each of the newest Tundra, Tacoma, and 4Runner TRD Pro models. It also gave us an opportunity to hang out with the Summiters and their off-road parade of FJ models in the backcountry and in town, where we joined in the throngs of Cruiser-lovers in a street fair that celebrated this Toyota model, the off-road lifestyle, and family fun.
“The FJ Summit is an off-road event specifically for Toyota enthusiasts, so it was a great venue for showing off our newest off-road trucks and SUV,” explained Josh Burns of Toyota’s Product and Communications team. “It also allowed our guests [media participants] to organically connect with Toyota owners and enthusiasts—and to enjoy the amazing trails of Ouray, as well as to traverse 132 miles of the 160-mile-long Rimrocker Trail.”
2019 TRDPro Family Drive Off Road

  |   2019 TRDPro Family Drive Off Road

The History: From Mexico to Montrose

You’d be mistaken if you think the TRD Pro Series came to market as a response to the unexpected and still-surging popularity of Ford’s Raptor and other street trucks with off-road upgrades like Chevy Colorado ZR2 and the Ram 1500 Rebel. Toyota’s storied off-road-racing victories in the grueling Baja 500 and Baja 1000 date to the legendary Ivan “Ironman” Stewart, who joined the Toyota Factory Team in 1983, and the TRD Pro lineup continues a long line of TRD packages for Toyota trucks dating back to 1997, when the first TRD Off-Road package was introduced for Tacoma. First unveiled in ’14, the TRD Pro lineup was called “the ultimate tool to get you there and back.”

2019 TRDPro Family

  |   2019 TRDPro Family

The 2019 Trucks

Available on four-wheel-drive models of the ’19 Tundra, Tacoma, and 4Runner, all TRD Pro series vehicles showcase the continuing evolution of Toyota’s high-tech components, adding unique styling and a host of impressive off-road equipment. The newest generation’s upgrades are both cosmetic and functional, while powertrain specs remain unchanged for all. Tacoma and 4Runner carry over Crawl Control, Multi-terrain Select, and rear locking differentials, while the Tundra TRD Pro returns from a one-year hiatus with new forged wheels and Fox shocks.

First used on the ’17 Tacoma, all of the TRD Pro models now feature 2.5-inch TRD Pro–exclusive Fox internal bypass shocks, which are equipped with 46mm pistons to deliver increased wheel travel over the outgoing dampers. Specifically tuned for the TRD Pro package, the aluminum-bodied Fox shocks deliver impressive performance and excellent damping over a wide variety of driving conditions. The front shocks are paired with specially tuned TRD springs that provide additional lift over a standard model, giving each vehicle an aggressive, heightened stance for improved trail-conquering capability. Each truck receives a bespoke rear setup and a host of additional cosmetic features.

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