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Redesigned 2021 Toyota Sienna goes hybrid-only, gets bullet train-inspired design

The redesigned Toyota Sienna features looks inspired by the Bullet Train.

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Toyota unveiled its all-new 2021 Sienna today at its North American headquarters in Plano, Texas. The fourth-generation minivan has been reworked by Toyota's designers, engineers, and product planners from the ground up with a goal of redefining the segment.

Playing to the crowd of family haulers that expect more versatility, technology, safety, and fuel economy, the new model ups the ante on all and even colors outside of the lines, with attributes that take it in the direction of people-pleasing SUVs and weekend getaway-mobiles.

2021 Toyota Sienna The Sienna's front end incorporates design found on the Toyota Avalon and Camry.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Available all-wheel-drive; an optional onboard vacuum and refrigerator; and Yakima accessories, such as a rooftop carrier, cross bars, and bike rack, among other items; plus a tow rating of up to 3,500 pounds--enough to tug a compact camping trailer--help it even play in the space of the ever-broadening group of overlanding vehicles. A factory optional 1,500-watt inverter with 120-volt AC outlet can power camping equipment.

Exterior

Designed, engineered, and assembled in the U.S, Toyota used a virtual reveal to show off the minivan's bolder looks and the updated hybrid powertrain that comes standard on all trims levels. The bones for the newest-gen model come from Toyota's TNGA-K Platform, also used in the Camry, which provides improved driving dynamics.

Toyota will sell the 2021 Sienna in LE, XLE, XSE, Limited and Platinum trims.

Seeking to broaden the characterization of minivans, a top objective of the design team was to was to optimize the best of minivan function and, at the same time, infuse a tincture of provocative styling, by adding strong overall proportions, accented by a shoulder-themed body lines and widened fender flares.

2021 Toyota Sienna The rear of the model is dynamic and shows some family resemblance.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Sienna's freshened face was inspired by the iconic Shinkansen (bullet train), bringing the impression of sleekness and speed. Its high-mounted headlights stretch to the sides and appear windswept, while the massive lower grille gets slim, high tech LED fog lights pinned to the corners.

At the rear are thin bands of LED lighting, an integrated black taillight canard for style and improved aerodynamic performance, and a deeply-sculpted tailgate with an integrated spoiler. The 2021 Toyota Sienna XSE trim adds dark 20-inch split five-spoke wheels and a more aggressive bumper treatment.

The sporty XSE and lavish Platinum grades fill their wheel wells with standard 20-inch aluminum clad wheels with P235/50R20 tires for FWD – the first-ever 20-inch wheels on a Sienna. The Limited FWD grade comes standard with 18-inch wheels.

Powertrain

Every Sienna in the Toyota lineup will get its power from a 243-horsepower hybrid powertrain that matches a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with two electric motors. Like the 2020 Highlander, the engine in the 2021 Sienna is paired with an electronically controlled CVT with sequential shift mode.

The Japanese automaker claims the minivan gets a class-leading, manufacturer-estimated 33 mpg.

2021 Toyota Sienna Toyota has decided to only sell hybrid versions of the Sienna for the 2021 model year.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Drivers can choose from EV, Normal, Eco, and Sport drive models. The model is capable of performing some functions on all-electric power utilizing EV mode.

This powertrain is different than the Chrysler Pacifica PHEV. That van requires owners to plug it into a wall socket in order to charge the battery. Otherwise, it runs purely as a hybrid model.

The Sienna's 7-inch multi-informational display in front of the driver on the instrument panel includes an indicator that illustrates the vehicle's regeneration status and provides scoring functionality.

As they did with the 2020 Highlander, Sienna is being offered with both a hybrid powertrain and all-wheel drive. Front-wheel drive is standard. The new electronic on-demand system utilizes a separate independent electric motor to instantaneously power the rear wheels, when additional traction is needed and at all vehicle speeds. It sends 80 percent of torque to the rear wheels to aid in front traction and helps in cornering maneuvers, by reducing understeer. Power distribution from front to rear varies with conditions-- from 100:0 in constant-speed driving to 20:80 on slippery surfaces.

Of note, the Sienna's 8-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty covers all hybrid-related components, including the battery.

Safety

The 2021 Sienna comes standard with second-generation Toyota Safety Sense (TSS 2.0), a comprehensive active safety system. Click here to learn more about the system. Additional safety-centric features including electronic vehicle stability control with traction control, brake assist, anti-lock brakes, and Smart Stop Technology.

2021 Toyota Sienna Sienna models wear blue and black Toyota badging, denoting their hybrid powertrain.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

The standard backup camera shows a projected path for reversing, while higher grade models have a wide-angle monitor to show more. A bird's eye view camera with perimeter scan allows for a 360-degree view. A curb view is also available.

Interior

Designers used "confidence, refinement, and smart innovation" as themes for the Sienna's modernized cabin, which has a high seat position and up to 18 cupholders. The instrument panel has been crafted with stout, horizontal layers. The large infotainment touch screen, smart storage, and a console that connects the elements in the center of the vehicle provides personalized space for driver and front passenger. Similar to the Chrysler Pacifica, an open area allows storage of larger items, such as a purse or bag.

The base Sienna LE and some XLE models come equipped in an eight-seat configuration with two captain chairs, a long slide second row seat and a stowable middle seat. Some XLE minivans, as well as the XSE, Limited, and Platinum are seven-seat models featuring the Super Long Slide second-row captain's chairs with the Limited and Platinum FWD models sporting ottomans. The available Super Long Slide second-row captain chairs slide 25 inches, giving impressive legroom.

2021 Toyota Sienna The interior of the 2021 Sienna leaves all 2020 Sienna attributes behind (and that's a good thing).Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

Cloth upholstery is standard. Mid-grade models get SoftTex seats while high-end Siennas come equipped with leather upholstery.

Features

The 2021 Sienna comes with a long list of standard and available features including:

  • Sienna LE (standard) - 9-inch infotainment touch screen, six-speaker sound system, AM/FM radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, seven USB ports, hands-free phone capability, voice recognition and music streaming via Bluetooth, satellite radio, Toyota Connected Services, Wi-Fi capability
  • Sienna LE (available), Siena XLE (standard) - 9-inch infotainment touch screen, eight-speaker sound system, AM/FM/HD radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, seven USB ports, hands-free phone capability, voice recognition and music streaming via Bluetooth, satellite radio, Toyota Connected Services, Wi-Fi capability, Safety Connect (free three-year trial), Siri Eyes Free
  • Sienna XSE (standard) - 9-inch infotainment touch screen, eight-speaker sound system, AM/FM/HD radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, seven USB ports, hands-free phone capability, voice recognition and music streaming via Bluetooth, satellite radio, Toyota Connected Services, Wi-Fi capability, Safety Connect (free three-year trial), Siri Eyes Free, navigation
  • Sienna XLE and Sienna XSE (available) - JBL audio system that includes a 12-speaker sound system, 1,200-watt amplification, and Clari-Fi digital restoration technology

Buyers can option their models with a variety of packages including the LE Plus, XLE Plus, and XSE Plus packages. Sienna Limited and Platinum minivans have no packages to choose from, but are available with the buyer's choices of two add-ons: a digital rearview mirror and a 1080p rear seat entertainment center with an 11.6-inch display, HDMI input, remote control, and two wireless headphones. The rear entertainment center is also an option o XLE and XSE models.

2021 Toyota Sienna A new center console design seeks to maximize storage space and provide a compartmentalized front row.Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

The top-tier Sienna Platinum has a long list of amenities and premium features including kick-open and closed sliding side doors and rear gate, quad-zone climate control, heated second-row super-long slide captain's chairs with ottomans, a segment-first power tilt/telescoping steering column with heated steering wheel, refrigerator, a digital rear-view mirror, 10-inch color head-up display, and 12-speaker JBL Premium Audio system. A vacuum is standard on Limited and Platinum trim levels.

Also on the list of improvements was the objective to bring "library quiet" to the interior, and to improve conversational hearing. Aiding that effort s the Driver Easy Speak system, which transmits the driver's voice through the audio system to the rear speakers. Honda has installed a similar feature in the Odyssey.

Pricing

The 2020 Toyota Sienna starts at $31,640. Expect the 2021 model to be priced slightly higher thanks to a host of new technology and fresh design. The current model tops out just over $45,000 but with the addition of a new top-tier trim level, expect the highest-cost 2021 Sienna to go for near $50,000.

On Sale

The 2021 Toyota Sienna will go on sale in the fourth quarter of 2020. Pricing is expected to be announced closer to its on-sale date.

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The 2023 Sequoia is all-new and a huge improvement over its predecessor.

Toyota

The Toyota Tundra and Sequoia were two of the oldest vehicles on the market, but that's all different now. The new Tundra is already on the streets, and today Toyota released a load of specs and details on the all-new 2023 Sequoia. The full-size SUV gets a major update for the new model year with completely fresh styling, impressive new tech, and a powerful standard engine. We don't have pricing details yet, but Toyota says the 2023 Sequoia will be available starting in summer 2022.

2023 Toyota Sequoia In addition to new styling, the SUV gets a twin-turbo hybrid V6 powertrain and a load of updated tech.Toyota

Five trims of the Texas-built SUV will be offered: SR5, Limited, Platinum, TRD Pro, and Capstone. All 2023 Sequoia models get the impressive twin-turbo V6 hybrid i-Force Max engine from the all-new Tundra. It makes 437 horsepower and 583 pound-feet of torque, and sends it to the rear or all four wheels through a ten-speed automatic transmission. The powertrain delivers a max towing rating of up to 9,000 pounds, which is a solid number and a massive increase over the previous Sequoia.

Toyota offers automatic-leveling air suspension and adaptive suspension settings with modes for Comfort, Sport S+, and Custom. The Sport drive modes also improve throttle response and changes transmission shift points. The electric motor handles most propulsion duties below 18 mph, but after that the gas engine steps in. The motor is constantly involved when the truck is in Tow/Haul mode.

2023 Toyota Sequoia TRD Pro models get under-body cladding and beefier tires.Toyota

Similar to the high-end treatment given to the Tundra, Toyota will offer a Capstone trim for the new Sequoia that brings unique upholstery and trim materials, 22-inch chrome wheels, power side steps, American Walnut inlays, and more. That said, even the standard Sequoia SR5 offers plenty of standard gear. A 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster is standard, along with heated seats and more. An available Premium Package adds an enormous 14-inch infotainment display, power third-row seats, a hands-free liftgate, and additional power outlets.

Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 will also be standard for the SUV. The system includes a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection and daytime cyclist detection, adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, and rear seat reminders. Blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alerts is also standard.

2023 Toyota Sequoia The new Capstone trim is a super-plush trim with an interior rivaling those in many luxury brands.

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New full-size SUVtoyota

Toyota teases new SUV that could be updated Sequoia

The teaser image gives zero detail on the new SUV.

Toyota

Toyota recently retook the title of world’s largest automaker and has its sights set on refreshing some of its oldest models. The Tundra full-size pickup truck got the treatment late last year, and now we’re seeing teases of a new SUV from the auto giant. The image, released yesterday, is likely of a new Sequoia, which is based on the Tundra and is equally as overdue for a refresh.

2022 Toyota Sequoia If the tease is of a new Sequoia, it will replace the 15-year-old current-generation model.Toyota

After 15 years or so on sale in its current form, the Sequoia is old enough to earn a learner’s permit of its own at this point. All of its competitors offer newer and more intuitive technology, a larger variety of advanced safety gear, and more efficient powertrains. In the teaser, we can see a sharply chiseled rear quarter panel and shapely tail lights, but not much else. If it is a Sequoia, the styling marks a significant shift in the SUV’s outward appearance.

The shadowy image is the only tidbit Toyota has shared so far, but we can draw some information from the recently released Toyota Tundra pickup truck, with which the Sequoia typically shares a platform and powertrain elements. The all-new 2022 Tundra dropped the 5.7-liter V8 that powered it for years, in favor of a pair of twin-turbo V6 engines, one of which is a hybrid. That means we could see a new Sequoia with the same engines, delivering up to 479 horsepower.

2022 Toyota Sequoia We're likely to see a TRD off-road oriented model.Toyota

The new full-size SUV will likely also get some of the tech updates that Toyota bestowed upon the new Tundra. That could mean up to a 14-inch infotainment touchscreen with a new, more intuitive user interface and over-the-air updates. Refreshed safety features are almost certainly on the list of Sequoia changes as well.

Toyota hasn’t nailed down an official reveal date or any other information for the new SUV, but has said that more details are coming soon.

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