This is a truck, a big truck. The 2013 Toyota Sequoia is one of a breed diminishing in market share. The base price range is $42,950–$63,565, depending on which of the trim levels (SR5, Limited, Platinum) is chosen. The Sequoia SUV is based on Toyota's full-size pickup, the Tundra. As a truck, it does what a truck is expected to do. Up to eight people can be seated comfortably, and a large load of cargo can be hauled across town or across country.
As fine as a thoroughly modern hybrid city car might be for budget purposes, sometimes a big lug is needed to do the hard work. That is where SUV's like the 2013 Toyota Sequoia come in. A people- and cargo-transporter extraordinaire, the Sequoia will also handle any weather condition facing it. The heavy Toyota is very thirsty however, so budget planning will be necessary for those longer trips. One monetary advantage is that the Sequoia holds resale value better than other large SUV's.
New For 2013
The 4.6-liter V-8 has been discontinued. A Blue-ray Disc rear-seat entertainment system is now offered. Partway through last year, the Sequoia received Toyota’s Entune infotainment system.
The 2013 Toyota Sequoia would not make a big splash at an international auto show. It is too standard, with traditional sport utility vehicle styling. That means one box for the engine and another bigger, longer box for the passengers and cargo. This is not to say it is ugly. Handsome enough it is, but adventuresome styling touches went somewhere else. The front is a massive affair, communicating strength and purpose with thick horizontal chrome bars. Under the grille a large secondary air intake dominates the bumper. Standard wheels are 18-inch alloys. Optional 20-inch rims are available.
The body is all curves and smooth surfaces. The deceptively tough rig looks right at home in front of an Airstream camper trailer. Creases and bends are rounded and soft, with the exception of the top edge of the back bumper. Taillights are rounded with top edges slightly uplifted toward the side, where they wrap around the corners. Sturdy-looking luggage racks ride on top, and the rear glass has a spoiler which looks like a 50's windshield visor in reverse. The window pillars, except for the A-pillar, are all thick, implying solid rollover protection. The upkick on the lower panels behind the rear wheels looks a bit too dainty for the overall appearance. The Sizzling Crimson Mica finish somehow slims down the Sequoia.
Interior & Cargo
As mentioned above, the 2013 Toyota Sequoia is an eight-passenger conveyance. The seats are supportive and comfortable. Multiple configurations are possible. A surfboard can fit by folding down the right or left passenger seats in the second and third rows. For the nicer models, a power liftgate and backup camera are available. The Red Rock leather is particularly visually appealing and warm. Side seats in the middle row not only have seatbacks that fold out of the way, but the seats slide forward as well. That feature, with widely opening rear doors, enables easy access to the third row. The navigation screen rides above the climate controls. Several controls are mounted on the steering wheel.
Updates have appeared in the entertainment system, with a back seat Blue-ray Disc player option. Standard on every Sequoia are Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. Entune is available to enable a smartphone to access Pandora, MovieTickets.com or iHeartRadio. For versatility and storage, there are two glove boxes on the front passenger side, one above the other. On cloudy days, sunglasses can be stored overhead in a dropdown bin. When the kids in the back start causing distraction, another dropdown bin contains a convex rear view passenger mirror for checking out the problem. Cargo space is decent even with all seats up at 18.9 cubic feet. Cavernous proportions appear with the second and third rows folded down: 120.8 cubic feet will swallow a lot of gear.
The first safety feature this sport-utility vehicle has is its sheer size. The 2013 Toyota Sequoia is supremely capable towing a trailer. For safety, a trailer-sway control is available, and a tire-pressure monitoring system comes standard. The occupants are protected with front, side, side curtain, and front knee air bags. Heated outside mirrors and windshield wiper de-icers add security for winter driving. Auto-dimming outside mirrors are a unique safety enhancement.
The earlier-mentioned Entune system can also deliver real-time traffic and weather updates, which could prevent headaches on a cross-country ramble. Anti-lock brakes, plus traction and stability control are standard equipment. Ordering backup sensors can bring extra peace of mind. The Platinum version Sequoia has a blind spot monitor as standard.
A powerful 5.7-liter, 381 horsepower V-8 provides movement. Fuel use is in the range of the old muscle cars, at 13/17-18 mpg city/highway. For that reason, the 2013 Toyota Sequoia will not be the best daily driver, even with the six-speed automatic transmission. The upside is that the SUV can tow 7400 pounds, carrying eight passengers at the same time, with the roof rack fully loaded. Drivetrain options are rear-wheel or four-wheel drive.
Large crossovers will beat the handling and steering capabilities of the Toyota, which is best suited to wide roads with lazy curves. The characteristics of a truck manifest themselves in sub-standard body control and sedate response to driver inputs. A captain's view of the traffic gives the driver a sense of control, and torque seems endless. The Sequoia will not resist when power is summoned. Even so, if the plan were to work the truck to full capacity, the optional auxiliary transmission cooler would be a wise purchase.
Key Competitors For The 2013 Toyota Sequoia
- Chevrolet Tahoe
- Ford Expedition
- GMC Yukon
- Nissan Armada