Toyota has deep off-roading roots with trucks and SUVs known for rugged reliability, so it was no surprise when the company decided to create the TRD Sport Trailer concept – an inspiring “base camp” for overlanding explorers accustomed to off-road adventure in their backwoods and a tow-ready Toyota pickup or SUV.
Originally unveiled last year as part of Toyota’s 2020 SEMA360 Showcase virtual presentation, Toyota will display the TRD Sport Trailer at its 2021 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show display (Central Hall, Booth No. 24800). Automotive aftermarket professionals finally will get an opportunity to see this wild overlanding build made from the bed of a Tacoma up close and personal.
“We built the TRD Sport Trailer to inspire Toyota owners who love to take on overlanding adventures, in order to enjoy the great outdoors,” said Lisa Materazzo, group vice president – Toyota Division Marketing. “It has ingenious features that help make backwoods life more comfortable, and there’s extra space to haul toys. I don’t know whether to call it a transformer or a Swiss army knife.”
Overlanding is an extremely popular and growing trend, providing serious adventures instead of 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 the Toyota 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 … all with the push of a button on a remote. There’s a Yakima four-person tent with an awning, 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.