Toyota's biggest and most powerful pick-up, the Tundra, is heading to Australia for testing this year before an expected retail release.
On Wednesday, Toyota Australia confirmed its intention for local experts to re-engineer the truck, which is built in Texas, US, in a right hand drive format and evaluate the vehicle against Australian conditions.
Toyota has partnered with Walkinshaw Automotive Group to develop and build the vehicles, with prototype testing on public roads to begin in September.
Following this, Toyota will deploy about 300 of its cars around Australia from October next year as part of the final stage of the RHD re-engineering program.
Re-engineering will include the adoption of components from Toyota's global parts catalogue, including the steering column and rack, accelerator, brake pedals and shift lever from the LandCruiser 300 platform.
The vehicles will be equipped with a new inline hybrid system featuring a twin-turbo 3.5L petrol V6 - the most advanced and fuel-efficient powertrain available on this model.
In the North American market, the engine generates 325kW (437hp) and 791Nm (583lb ft) of torque and is backed by a 10-speed automatic transmission, helping it tow up to 5.4t and handle a 880kg payload.
Toyota has not confirmed if these figures will transfer to the RHD variant.
The program is being led by the company's Australian division with support from Toyota Japan and Toyota North America.
Toyota Australia sales, marketing and franchise operations vice president Sean Hanley said an Australian RHD Tundra faced further checkpoints in Toyota's global approval process before its retail introduction could be confirmed.
"... a RHD Tundra will not be available for sale in Australia until we are totally satisfied," Mr Hanley said.
It appears Toyota is not backing down in its battle with Ford for top spot on the dual cab or pick up sales chart.
Originally in a HiLux-Ranger duel, Ford upped the ante when it confirmed in March it was bringing America's best-selling vehicle, the Ford F-150 pick-up truck, to Australia in mid-2023.
In the US, the manufacturer suggested retail price on a Tundra SR5 4WD model is US$44,555, which works out to $64,000 in Australia.
With conversions often cited to start from $45,000, that could take the Aussie Tundra to six figures, putting it in the same league as the F-150, Chevrolet Silverado and Ram 1500.
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