2017 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro Will Run the 2017 Mint 400

Toyota SEMA TRD Pro B II

Want to build credibility for your new off-road mid-size pickup truck? Well, if you're Toyota, you deliver an all-new 2017 Tacoma TRD Pro to Camburg Racing in Huntington Beach, Calif., and let the Camburg engineers build their dream race machine for the stock mini class of the 2017 Mint 400. We first saw the Tacoma TRD Pro at the 2016 Specialty Equipment Market Association Show, which runs Tuesday through Friday in Las Vegas.

The race will be a way for Toyota to highlight its newest pickup's incredible off-road abilities and for Camburg Racing to have a blast building and testing it while collecting data for Toyota about the new TRD Pro trim level.

The Mint 400's stock mini class requires racers to keep their vehicle in stock configuration, with the exception of upgrades necessary to make the vehicle race safe. That means Camburg needed to install a full cab and bed roll cage, properly supported race seats, five-point harness seat belts, a fire suppression system and a fully protected fuel-cell tank. After that, the only other thing Camburg did was lightly modify the rear suspension and shocks locations, add slightly taller and more aggressive 32-inch General Grabber X3 mud-terrain tires (with heavy-duty KMC wheels) and install a little extra cooling for the stock V-6 engine, six-speed transmission and steering pump.

"Our goal was to keep the TRD Pro as stock as possible. That's why we wanted to race in the stock mini class — it's always been one of our favorites because there could be three vehicles you compete against or 12; you just never know who's going to show up. ... If you stick your head in our truck, you'll see it's your basic Tacoma dash and console," said Jerry Zaiden, co-founder of Camburg Engineering.

No doubt Toyota will collect all sorts of data and feedback from Camburg during the buildup and the shakedown runs before the race, as well as during and after the full running of the Mint 400. We'll have to wait and see whether some of this intel makes it into the next iteration of the Tacoma TRD Pro or the next-generation Tundra TRD Pro. In the meantime, we'll be watching this truck closely and reporting about its performance in the upcoming Mint 400 set for March 4, 2017, in Las Vegas.

Toyota is not the only truckmaker to race a pickup in the Mint 400. Ford used the 2016 Mint 400 and the over-arching race series as a kind of punishing laboratory to calibrate and gauge overall performance of the 2017 F-150 Raptor. Of course, the Raptor ran most of the season in a class of one, so it will be interesting to see how this the TRD Pro performs against real competition.

Zaiden said Camburg is hoping to average around 35 mph over certain stretches, while going wide-open throttle over others; that means the team is hoping to cross the finish line right around the eight-hour mark, barring any (oh-so common) mishaps.

Manufacturer images


Toyota SEMA TRD Pro Int II

Toyota SEMA TRD Pro Rear II


Sorry, no credit for Toyota, unless they only add safety features and nothing else, period.

Add the safety stuff, then race the truck and if it completes the race in one piece, then I'll be impressed--and eat crow!

the whole front suspension of the truck will be stock, looks like the simply changed to spring under axle mid/long travel leaf springs and needed to modify the shackle mount points. And per the article the rear shock location was moved.

Now I agree that the 3.5 V6 and drivetrain should be ran 100% stock, all this proves is the 3.5 needs extra cooling to compete in an actual off road race. I'm pretty sure when Toyota raced the 5th gen 4runner and the TRD Pro Tundra they didn't have to add any extra cooling to the drivetrain.

Yeah, all they did was mod it into being a race truck. Come on. How is a suspension lift, tire and wheel upgrade, and performance cooling kit a stock vehicle anymore?

Yup. Fail.

Of course the Raptor changed their shock tuning so it's not technically stock either

Toyota normally run their engine compartments 10 degrees cooler than their competitors! I agree that rear suspension does look heavily modded/ tuned.

I see that Camburg knew enough to toss those wimpy control arms and ball joints up front. If only Toyota would stop ripping off customers and give them a real front suspension on their TRD Pro.

That's what ford needs is a fire suppression system.

OK- found the press release- the front uses a 2.5" Fox coil-over PLUS a 3" Bypass shock. The rear also uses a 3" bypass. That means none of the hardware that separates the TRD Pro from the TRD OR remains.

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