2019 Toyota Sequoia Review

2019 Toyota Sequoia - Toyota's behemoth continues tradition of power, comfort.


Big sport utility vehicles share notable characteristics. They provide gracious amounts of interior room for the comfort of small or large bodies and they have little or no regard for fuel economy.

A recently tested 2019 Toyota Sequoia is an example, although other full-size, moderately priced (for a large vehicle), body-on-frame  SUVs also could serve as examples such as Chevrolet's Tahoe/Suburban, Nissan's Armada and Ford's Expedition.

Cadillac's Escalade, Toyota's Land Cruiser, the Lexus LX and Land Rover Range Rover are exemplars too, but these vehicles are in a class by themselves and that class is luxury SUVs with prices soaring into the $80,000s and $90,000s and beyond.

While driving a Sequoia on Interstates and suburban roadways, the tested Sequoia averaged 13.8 miles per gallon of fuel usage. Two adults were aboard most of the time. Seventy-five percent of the driving was on Interstates. The Environmental Protection Agency rates this SUV's fuel usage at 13 mpg city and 17 mpg on the highway.

No luggage and minimal materials (no more than 25 pounds) were stored in the carpeted and lighted 120-cubic-foot cargo area. If the third row is flattened , cargo area is 66.6 cubic feet. If second and third rows are upright, cargo volume is 18.9 cubic feet. A nice feature of this vehicle is that the third row, folds flat by power. For more storage, the TRD has a roof rack as standard equipment.

Adding $3,810 to the suggested retail price of $54,640 was a TRD sport premium package. That package included seven-passenger leather-trimmed seats with contrast stitching, heated and power front seats, the power reclining and fold-flat third row seats, Entune audio with navigation system and App suite, automatic-dimming rearview mirror with compass and Homelink universal transceiver. Delivery of this vehicle, normally an $800 to $1,000 cost, is free. Sequoia's four models are priced from $49,050 to $64,760. They share a 5.7-liter, 381-horsepower V8 engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The transmission has a tow-haul mode as well as sequential shift mode and uphill/downhill shift logic.

Standard equipment includes power moonroof with sunshade, power rear-quarter windows, door locks, express windows and exterior mirrors, 16 cup and bottle holders, black running boards, Bilstein front and rear performance-tuned shock absorbers, engine and transfer case skid plates as well as front and rear anti-sway bars, perforated leather and heated second-row captain's chairs.

Safety features include the norm of antilock braking system, brake assist, traction and stability controls, seatbelts and headrests, child seat anchors and door lock protection, airbags for the three rows including all-row, roll-sensing side curtain airbags. Above the norm are pre-collision with pedestrian detection system, radar cruise control, automatic high beams, blind-spot monitor, rear backup camera, lane departure alert, sway warning and sonar front and rear parking assist.

The current TRD model is basically the same as last year's but with black trim for grille and exterior mirror covers. If comfort is wanted and fuel economy is not an issue, this vehicle is worth a look.

TRD model of four-wheel-drive 2019 Toyota Sequoia
Type: full-size, three-row, seven-passenger sport utility vehicle
Price: $58,450
Engine: 5.7-liter, 381-horsepower V8
Transmission: six-speed automatic with tow-haul mode, off-roading high-low transfer case
Fuel tank: 26.4 gallons
Fuel: regular unleaded
Towing: 7,400 pounds
Wheelbase, length, width, height in inches: 122, 205.1, 80, 77
Leg room in inches, first, second, third rows: 42.5, 40.9, 35.3
Weight: 5,730 pounds
Tires (P275), black alloy wheels: 20-inch
Turning curb-to-curb: 38.1 feet
Warranty: three years or 36,000 miles, five years or 60,000 miles powertrain
Assembly: Princeton, IND
Information: www.toyota.com/sequoia

Jerry Kuyper

Born on a southwestern Minnesota farm, Jerrold E. Kuyper quickly became familiar with tractors, pickup trucks and related agricultural equipment. He left that behind to graduate from Augsburg College in Minneapolis and attend graduate schools in Evanston and Chicago. He was hired as a reporter for the Kenosha News, a daily newspaper in Kenosha, WI. After a stint of a dozen years at the Kenosha News, he became a columnist, layout, page and sections editor at the Northwest Herald, a daily newspaper based in Crystal Lake, IL serving northwest Chicago suburban communities.

While with the Northwest Herald he helped create, write reviews and opinion columns as well as edit the newspaper's Wheels section, a 16- to 40-page broadsheet that appeared weekly in the newspaper's Friday edition. Wheels was devoted to reviews of new vehicles, looks at automotive history, current trends in the automobile world and columns by automotive enthusiasts. Midwest Automotive Media Association members who contributed to reviews and columns included Mitch Frumkin, Phil Arendt, Matt Joseph and James Flammang as well as photo journalist Doug Begley and dragster specialist Fred Blumenthal.

Kuyper, who lives in Salem Lakes, WI, is a founding member of MAMA, is married, has three children and six grandchildren.