The 2022 model year will be a big one in the pickup truck segment. We’ve already told you about the forthcoming Ford F-150 Lightning, which will be among the first all-electric pickups when it goes on sale next spring, followed by battery-powered trucks from Rivian, Tesla, and GMC.
But there are also changes coming to more conventional pickup segments. Ford and Hyundai have established a new compact category with their latest truck models, and two more familiar pickups will soon arrive with new designs that have been a long time coming. Read on to learn what you can expect from the pickup truck segment next year.
2022 Ford Maverick
The 2022 Ford Maverick is the brand’s all-new compact pickup truck, and its second pickup with a hybrid powertrain option after the full-size F-150 PowerBoost.
Riding on a platform shared with the Escape crossover, the Maverick adopts that model’s front-wheel drive underpinnings. That drivetrain is the only one you can get with hybrid power, which matches a 2.5L four-cylinder with an electric motor and continuously variable transmission (CVT) for 191 hp.
If you want a Maverick with AWD, choose the non-hybrid 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which puts its 250 hp/277 lb-ft of torque through an eight-speed transmission. This is the engine to get if you want to max out the Maverick’s 1,814-kg (4,000 lbs) towing capacity; the hybrid is good for 907 kg (2,000 lbs).
Among the Maverick’s most useful features is a three-position tailgate that you can use to support cargo longer than the truck’s 4.5-foot bed.
2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz
The Santa Cruz is Hyundai’s first-ever pickup truck model for Canada. Like the Ford Maverick, it’s a compact that shares a platform with a small crossover – in this case, the Tucson.
Standard all-wheel drive puts down 281 hp/311 lb-ft of torque from a 2.5L turbo four-cylinder engine and an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
Hyundai says the Santa Cruz can tow 2,268 kg (5,000 lbs). To add practicality to the truck’s small bed, Hyundai added a weatherproof trunk under the bed floor.
2022 Toyota Tundra
Toyota doesn’t redesign its large truck models very often, so the 2022 Tundra pickup is a big deal: the model’s first all-new design since 2007. Under the Lego-brick styling is the new Tundra’s all-V6 engine lineup, which makes it the only full-size truck with no V8 option.
The standard engine is a twin-turbocharged 3.5L V6 that makes 389 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque, 9 hp and 78 lb-ft more than last year’s 5.7L V8. Buyers looking for more than that can shop the optional hybrid powertrain, whose electric motor boosts output to 437 hp and 583 lb-ft.
Inside, the Tundra can be optioned with a digital gauge cluster and a 14-inch infotainment touchscreen that is among the largest in the auto industry today, never mind the truck segment.
The 2022 Toyota Tundra is set to be in showrooms by the end of 2021.
2022 Nissan Frontier
In early 2020, Nissan started priming the marketplace for a redesigned Frontier mid-size pickup with a plan to put a new powertrain in the old version (which had been around since 2005) for the 2020 model year and then reveal an all-new truck for 2021.
The COVID pandemic had different ideas, forcing Nissan to continue selling the old Frontier unchanged for 2020 and skip the 2021 model year altogether.
If you’re a fan of Nissan trucks, your patience is finally rewarded with the 2022 Frontier, which features the new powertrain and wraps it up in fresh styling.
The engine is a 3.8L V6 with 301 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque, which comes mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission, replacing the outgoing Frontier’s 261-hp 4.0L engine and five-speed. Also gone is a four-cylinder that powered entry-grade versions of the old truck.
A $41,948 starting price makes the Frontier one of the most expensive choices in the mid-size truck class (the Honda Ridgeline starts higher, at $45,535) but Nissan is hoping they can attract buyers with the new Frontier’s improved driving feel and fuel economy.
2022 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra
General Motors has updated its Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size models in a bid to stay current against their Ford F-150 and Ram 1500 rivals.
Both brands refreshed their trucks’ exterior styling to make them look wider, while a new dash gives the Silverado and Sierra cabins a more spacious feel. A new dash houses a big 13.4-inch infotainment touchscreen, and most trims also have a 12.3-inch digital gauge display.
The infotainment system boasts built-in Google and Amazon Alexa functionality, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Both the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra will also offer GM’s Super Cruise hands-free driving system for the first time.
A 2.7L turbocharged four-cylinder engine – the only four-cylinder in the full-size class – gets a torque boost of 72 lb-ft for a new total of 420 lb-ft. If you opt for GM’s 3.0L diesel inline six-cylinder, you’ll get 1,814 kg (4,000 lbs) more towing capacity than if you’d bought a 2021 model.
The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra will go on sale across Canada in the first quarter of next year.