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2007 LA Auto Show: Toyota Unveils All-New 2008 Sequoia - COMPLETE VIDEO

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LOS ANGELES - November 15, 2007: Toyota unveiled the second-generation Sequoia full-size sport utility vehicle at a press conference at the 2007 Los Angeles Auto Show. Sequoia is completely new for 2008, with a new body, a new interior, a new chassis, an available new 5.7L V8 engine/six-speed transmission combination and an increased focus on efficiency, performance and driver/passenger comfort.

Since the Sequoia was introduced in 2000, the world has changed. With both gasoline prices and environmental concerns on the rise, Toyota's engineers and designers have taken steps to increase not just the 2008 Sequoia's performance and comfort, but also its efficiency and environmental awareness.

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To that end, the Sequoia is equipped with an available powerful new 5.7L V8 engine that generates excellent fuel efficiency and very low emissions.

An all-new platform now provides exterior dimensions that are competitive with other vehicles in the Sequoia's class. Inside, highly efficient packaging gives the new Sequoia a very roomy cabin and a capacious luggage space.

In his efforts to be sure he got the 2008 Sequoia right, Chief Engineer Motoharu Araya immersed himself in American culture for two-and-a-half years as he began his design brief for the Sequoia. He even went so far as to live for a time with an American family that owned a fullsize SUV so that he could better understand the way SUV users relate to their vehicles. He also used the Internet to circulate a questionnaire so that he could acquire detailed information about how Americans use their SUVs and what their preferences are, right down to the side of the vehicle on which drivers prefer their fuel fillers to be located. The result is a class-leading vehicle with the efficiency, performance, comfort and convenience that SUV buyers want.

Engines and Transmissions An available new DOHC 5.7L V8 engine enables the 2008 Sequoia to provide acceleration performance that is among the leaders in its class, especially while towing. Sequoia engineers developed the new engine to produce 381 hp, one of the highest outputs in this vehicle class. This engine, which is ULEV-II compliant, uses four valves per cylinder and Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) to produce 401 lb-ft of torque.

Dual VVT-i continually alters the phase of each camshaft by operating the oil-control valve and controlling oil pressure on the advance/retard chamber of the VVT-i cam pulley through signals from the engine control computer. It produces optimized valve timing, contributing to higher output and increased efficiency.

Compact pentroof combustion chambers and high-strength pistons that are resin-coated to reduce friction, low-tension piston rings and a low-friction valve train that uses roller rocker arms also are important features of this engine, as is an Acoustic Control Induction System that changes the length of the intake manifold runners based on engine speed and throttle opening. The exhaust system, constructed of stainless steel, uses a valve in the main muffler to alter exhaust flow, reduce exhaust noise and improve performance. It also employs four catalytic converters – two for cold starts and two main.

As a result, the 2008 Sequoia provides the acceleration desired by users and an available towing capacity of 10,000 lbs. In addition to the available 5.7L V8 engine, the 4.7L iForce V8 continues to be offered as standard.

A smooth-shifting electronically controlled five-speed automatic ECT (Electronically Controlled Transmission) is mated to the standard 4.7L V8, while a new six-speed ECT automatic is part of the powertrain package when the available 5.7L V8 is selected.

This transmission benefits from hydraulic pressures that are very carefully controlled for smoother shifts, and from highly accurate gear-tooth surfaces that help ensure low noise levels. A Tow/Haul mode that extends use of the lower gear ratios also is part of this transmission's package.

Both transmissions are controlled by floor-mounted shifters and are equipped with torque converters that use Toyota's flexible lock-up control for enhanced fuel efficiency, and both transmissions can be shifted sequentially.

Additionally, the six-speed transmission's torque converter will lock up in fourth and fifth gear, as well as in sixth gear.

On four-wheel-drive models, a two-speed transfer case that contains a lockable Torsen limited-slip differential is used to transmit power to both the front and rear wheels. Interestingly, this transfer case, with its 1:1 high-range gear ratio and its 2.618:1 low-range gear ratio, uses a durable six-gear planetary ring instead of the more usual four-gear ring. The transfer case is shifted electronically via a rotary knob within easy reach of the driver, and it locks with the push of a button. High-capacity universal joints are used in the drive line to accommodate the available power of the engines.

The front and rear differentials are larger for added strength and measure 8.7 inches in diameter (front) and 10.0 inches (rear). The standard differential ratio is 3.909:1, with an optional 4.3:1 ratio available as part of Sequoia's towing package.