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Toyota Tacoma X-Runner Concept Has 421 Horsepower

Automakers like to highlight the off-roading capability of modern pickup trucks, but there was a time when performance-oriented pickup trucks were all about on-road performance. In a look back to those days, Toyota has showcased the new Tacoma X-Runner Concept at the 2023 SEMA show in Las Vegas. The new X-Runner Concept is a modern take on a street truck that should fill some with nostalgia.

The 2024 Tacoma X-Runner concept is a fresh take on the original Tacoma X-Runner that came out in 2005. The new build features a modified version of the current Tacoma’s TGNA-F platform that adds three extra inches of track width and additional bracing for extra strength. The platform gives the X-Runner concept a sportier stance, while bringing some extra rigidity to handle the extra output from the engine.

Toyota’s X-Runner concept features a modified version of the twin-turbocharged 3.4-liter V6 engine from the larger Tundra. The engine has been upgraded with the TRD Performance Package, which brings a total of 421 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. These figures represent a large upgrade over the 2024 Tacoma’s available hybrid powertrain which has 326 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque.

In addition to borrowing the engine from the Tundra, the Tacoma X-Runner concept also gains the Tundra’s solid rear axle, air suspension system, and electronic limited-slip differential. Toyota also fitted the concept with stiffer springs, 2.5-inch Bilstein remote reservoir shocks, 21-inch carbon-fiber wheels, and Michelin Sport tires. The result, especially when you take in all of the Tacoma X-Runner concept, is a truck that doesn’t look like anything else on the road.

The X-Runner concept features some radical bodywork that includes custom aero-fairings with functional vents that route air to the pickup truck’s 13.9-inch front brakes, which were taken from the Tundra. The hood scoop is functional and helps the engine draw in cool air, while the front and rear fascias are heavily modified. One of the coolest design elements on the X-Runner concept is the custom side exhaust outlet that’s located just below the rocker panel. Toyota finished the X-Runner concept off by painting it the original Speedway Blue color as the original X-Runner.

The cabin doesn’t get nearly as much attention as the exterior. The X-Runner concept’s interior features red seats, paddle shifters, and custom X-Runner accents, but that’s it.

We don’t think Toyota has any plans to bring a production version of the Tacoma X-Runner concept to market. Most pickup truck shoppers want a crew cab model and serious off-roading capability. Few want something that only has two seats and is meant to bring sporty performance on the road. Still, it’s exciting to see Toyota, which has some great performance vehicles on sale, showcase what’s possible with the Tacoma.

Pictured: Toyota Tacoma X-Runner Concept

Source: Car and Driver

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