Toyota Ultimate Overlanding Rig: The TRD-Sport Trailer

We try to stay abreast of “ALL THINGS TOYOTA!” OK, maybe all things Toyota 4X4… but this one simply slipped by. But too, we did not attend SEMA 2020, and we missed the virtual SEMA360 as we were simply busy buried deep into our work here at Red Line Land Cruisers. But, this unique piece of overland kit caught our eye at first glance as we discovered it while “Googling” to remember the company (TruckHouse) that is making the modern Chinook/Sunrader’s for the Toyota Tacoma that we mentioned in this post!

OK, let’s get on with it! Yes, Toyota Motor Sales, USA, subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corporation of Japan, has created this “unique” piece of overland kit. We say “unique” in quotation marks because making trailers out of Toyota pickup truck beds is quite unique to Toyota Motor Sales, but it is NOT unique to the Toyota customer base (and some non-Toyota customers), as we’ve seen tons of trailers made from old Toyota pickup truck beds! Because we are IH8MUD FANS, here is one fine example, “Matt’s Toyota Truck Bed Trailer.” But another case in point, a quick Google search of “Toyota truck bed trailer” will show you lot’s of examples.

Toyota, a brand known for its deep off-roading roots and rugged reliability, today unveiled the TRD-Sport Trailer, a creative ‘basecamp’ solution concept vehicle allowing overlanding explorers to quickly set up camp and then continue on their remote adventure. In a challenging 2020, Toyota opted for a two-wave strategy to celebrate pure performance, both on and off road, and the TRD-Sport Trailer helps anchor the company’s second wave of SEMA builds.

Toyota previously unveiled four builds in its wave one presentation at SEMA360, held Nov. 2, 2020. “Overlanding has been picking up steam for quite some time, but 2020 just put it over the top,” said Ed Laukes, group vice president – Toyota Division Marketing. “Given Toyota’s solid off-road credentials and reputation, we thought it would be really cool to create the ultimate overlanding companion to our pickup and SUV lineup.” Overlanding is an extremely popular and growing trend, providing adventures in a year when many have faced challenges taking traditional vacations.

The TRD-Sport Trailer’s inspiration began when Bob Kupina, Senior Program Manager, Toyota Motor North America Research and Development, saw a trailer made from a Toyota Tacoma at the Overland Expo WEST in Flagstaff, Arizona. Kupina and team got the ball rolling with a cool base concept, but then Toyota turned to Marty Schwerter and the team at Motorsports Garage to take the concept to the next level… and beyond. Toyota really saw the Tacoma bed as a perfect overlanding platform. It’s well built and offers a lot of space, giving the ability to take things to the extreme.

All the while, the plan was to make the best use of the available space, adding all the creature comforts while maintaining a low center of gravity and a great approach angle. The TRD-Sport Trailer features a scissor-lift that raises an innovative rigid platform several feet out of the bed. There’s a Yakima four-person tent with an awning and fly fishing-pole holders, a custom-built toilet and trash can, a refrigerator, a hot water heater, a shower with curtain, a generator, an Optima Yellow Top battery, a 16- gallon fresh water reservoir tank, a 15-gallon grey water holding tank, and a slide-out sink and stove.

And that’s just for starters! Schwerter worked closely with partners Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s to make sure the TRD-Sport Trailer was properly equipped with important outdoor gear like fishing poles, tackle and nets; waders and wading boots; coffee mugs, cookware, and other essentials. When fully deployed, the TRD-Sport Trailer creates a campsite with ample room, and to illuminate the surroundings the team added multiple RIGID A-Series Accessory LED Lights that pack a powerful punch while drawing an extremely low amount of power. When lower light is needed, say for star gazing, explorers can switch to lower-level lighting thanks to multiple Yakima SunBelt light strips. The package rolls on TRD Pro wheels fitted with General Grabber X3 285/70/17 rubber. Cripwerx Engineering assisted with the build, and KC’s Paint Shop painted the creation using BASF paint mixed to match the Tacoma’s OEM Cement Gray color and added custom graphics provided by The Decal Source.

All the TRD-Sport Trailer’s conveniences allow explorers to extend their adventures in comfort. The end result is an overlanding multi-tool that pairs perfectly with Toyota’s pickup and SUV lineup.

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