The new Toyota Tacoma hasn't debuted yet, but we're already getting a preview of a new trim level called Trailhunter. Teaser photos offer a glimpse of a headlight, a section of the grille, and a close-up of the rear bumper with some hefty tow hooks in plain sight. A badge on the tailgate in the form of a compass also identifies this as a Trailhunter trim level.
What exactly is Trailhunter? In a very short press release, Toyota confirms the name and describes it as something built from the ground up with off-roading and overlanding in mind. To that end, it will feature "purpose-built engineering and robust components" but that's all Toyota offers at this time. Barring future teasers on the next-gen Tacoma in Trailhunter trim, we'll have to wait for its official debut to learn more.
Speaking of which, a debut obviously didn't happen on April 4 as suggested by Toyota's clever Tacoma social media post from the end of March. Instead, that was the kickoff date for an official teaser campaign on the new Tacoma, starting with confirmation of an I-Force Max hybrid powertrain. Whether it's the same 437-horsepower V6 hybrid setup used in the Tundra or something else remains to be seen, but electrification will be offered in the new Tacoma in TRD Pro Trim, and possibly others.
Ironically, another unplanned Tacoma teaser also dropped on April 4. A series of shadowed images leaked online, showing the truck's overall shape along with its various lighting features. Among them was a glimpse of its center lightbar, likely reserved for up-spec TRD trims or the Trailhunter trim teased here.
Gallery: Toyota Tacoma Design Patent
Of course, we've pretty much seen the long-awaited new truck already. Leaked patent images appeared in January 2023, revealing lots of edgy lines and bulky proportions similar to the larger Tundra. The images originated from Brazil and were said to be of design patents, so it's certainly possible the final product in North America could look at least a little bit different. However, the headlight design seen in this new teaser is a match to the leaked patent images.
Toyota introduced the Trailhunter name at the 2022 SEMA Show, promising a series of trucks devoted to overlanding.
"Trailhunter trucks will come straight from the factory equipped to meet the needs of overlanding enthusiasts," said Lisa Materazzo, group vice president of Toyota Division marketing. "These trucks will be developed in-house by our engineering teams and will be the most capable OEM overlanding solutions designed to meet Toyota’s legendary quality, durability, and reliability standards."
Look for the 2024 Toyota Tacoma to debut sometime in the next two months.