Trucks

2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro gets 100 percent more snorkel at Chicago Auto Show

Toyota didn’t stop with the Taco, adding key upgrades to every member of the TRD Pro lineup.

Toyota

Toyota announced its plan to up the capability of its TRD Pro off-road trim at the 2018 Chicago Auto Show. The 2019 TRD Pro versions of the Tacoma, Tundra and 4Runner come with 2.5-inch Fox bypass shocks on each model, plus a special little feature for the well-loved midsize Tacoma pickup.

2019 Toyota TRD Pro

The more aggressive Fox shocks on the TRD Pro vehicles can take you almost anywhere.

Toyota

The Tacoma TRD Pro is the only model of the three to receive a snorkel right from the factory. No, it's not so the Taco can take a swim with the fishes, although increased water fording may be a byproduct. The desert-spec air intake is positioned away from the wheel well... and the copious amounts of dirt and silt that can congregate there. Instead, the intake is at windshield level, essentially ensuring the Tacoma is always breathing the cleanest air possible for maximum performance.

Adding to the off-road grit are TRD-tuned front springs that give the Tacoma a 1-inch lift in front -- the better for tackling those rocks -- and Fox shocks with multiple compression and rebound zones. If you're an off-road geek, it packs five compression and three rebound zones in the front, and seven compression and four rebound in the back.

When it comes to off-road driving, if the shock system isn't dialed in, your ride is going to be slow, rough or both. The increase in zones for the TRD Pro line is sure to make the very fine dirt-worthy trucks perform even better. Shocks like these can offer a comfortable and compliant ride while commuting, but still keep the vehicle from bottoming out during desert shenanigans.

The Tundra undergoes a similar makeover, with TRD-tuned front springs giving it a 2-inch lift. Front shocks have seven compression zones and four rebound, while the rear amps it up to 12 zones total -- eight compression and four rebound. This new setup also allows for an additional 1.5 inches of wheel travel in the front and 2 inches in the rear.

The uber-capable 4Runner SUV is not left out of the loop. Front wheel travel increases by an inch and the TRD-tuned front springs give it a 1-inch lift. The 4Runner's shocks promise four compression zones and three rebound in front, with seven compression and four rebound zones in the rear.

All TRD Pro models feature piggyback shock reservoirs in the rear -- 2.5 inches on the Tundra, 2 inches on the Tacoma and 4Runner -- to provide additional oil when the going gets rough and the shocks start working overtime. The Tacoma and the 4Runner both get a 1-inch wider track, as well, a welcome change for improved stability. The skid plate's been updated, too.

2019 Toyota TRD Pro Tundra

The TRD Pro Tundra gets more ground clearance for 2019, thanks to the new suspension set up.

Toyota

Lighting gets a bump in an attempt to illuminate the dark desert landscape. The Tundra keeps it bright with LED headlights, while the Tacoma and the 4Runner will light up the night with projector-beams. LED fog lights are included on the Tundra and Tacoma.

In terms of in-car tech, the Tacoma and 4Runner now come standard with the Entune infotainment system with a JBL audio system, navigation and a suite of connected apps. Sadly, none of those apps are Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The Tacoma and Tundra come standard with Toyota Safety Sense which includes lane departure alert and high-speed adaptive cruise control. Curiously, Toyota is silent on whether this technology will come the 4Runner.

No word on the cost of any of these off-road goodies, but the TRD Pro models will be available in the fall of 2018, and pricing will probably come out closer to that time.