Whitehorse, Yukon — In what was surely a moment of madness, I somehow agreed to corral two wandering Toyota Tundra pickups from the Arctic — and bring them back all the way to Toronto.

The journey, like Jude Law walking back to Nicole Kidman in Cold Mountain, will take days, yet undoubtedly feel like weeks. The two trucks — one a ’22 TRD Pro, the other a ’22 longbox Crewmax SR5 TRD Off Road — were driven up to the Arctic Ocean last month by the good lads at Truck King. The boys set out in a test of endurance that saw the two Tundras escape relatively unscathed, in what was a spectacularly scenic voyage from Vancouver to Whitehorse to Inuvik and then on to the Arctic Ocean, eating up so much dirt along the Dempster Highway it took hours to get it all off.

But how to get these wayward Tundras, both prototypes, back to Toyota’s headquarters in Scarborough? How to get them farther back than they have been driven thus far? Flat deck? Transporter? Hire a driver? Toyota’s manager of public relations, Romaric Lartilleux, weighed the options. Why not ask a couple of auto writers to drive the trucks — all 5,450 kilometres home? Most of them aren’t too bright, he must have assumed, surely one or two might take the bait.

are we nuts? driving two 2022 toyota tundras from whitehorse to toronto

2022 Toyota Tundra Photo by Derek McNaughton

And so we begin.

With my colleague and friend Jeff Wilson writing for AutoTrader, we begin the drive Wednesday May 11th from Whitehorse, Yukon, pointing the hoods of these full-size pickups south. Averaging about 750 kilometres per day with plenty of stops along the way to photograph the rich geographic splendour that is Canada, we should hit the GTA in a week, sticking to Canadian soil all the way even though it is shorter to cut through the U.S.

Our trip will take us to Liard Hot Springs, B.C., Dawson Creek, B.C., Lloydminster, Alta., Neepawa, Man., Ignace, Ont., Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., and countless towns, villages and hamlets in-between. By comparison, the Truck King guys had it easy: We have Saskatchewan and Manitoba to contend with, the infinity of the horizon as hypnotizing as it is lonely. And then Northern Ontario, which is a planet unto itself, orbiting in endless bewilderment of stunning natural beauty.

Toyota, of course, is paying for the fuel, a bill that might just cost Mr. Lartilleux his job. Assuming the trucks average 17 L/100 km, which might be a bit high depending on road conditions, weather and wind etc., that’s 935 litres of fuel per truck. At a staggering average of $2.10 per litre (yes, we’re all getting hosed), that’s $1,964 in gasoline for the drive back — per truck — or just shy of $4,000 for the two of them. How much was that flat deck?

are we nuts? driving two 2022 toyota tundras from whitehorse to toronto

2022 Toyota Tundra Photo by Derek McNaughton

The trucks are bone stock and ride on an all-new, fully boxed frame, and coil-spring rear suspension. As everyone knows, the V8 in the last generation Tundra has been replaced with a new 3.45-litre twin turbo V6. The TRD Pro, now a hybrid-only model and about to go on sale, produces 405 horsepower and 583 lb-ft of torque. The regular non-hybrid Tundra produces 389 horsepower and 479 lb-ft. They both promise to achieve better fuel economy — how much better will be part of what we discover. If there are any issues with either truck, we will report them. If they break, throw a check engine light, or squeak or rattle or groan, the events will not be sugar coated.

After three flights and an overnight in the Edgewater Hotel in Whitehorse, we’re starting the day Wednesday with the biggest buffalo breakfast we can find in town, before hitting the road armed with plenty of snacks. We will, of course, update the journey on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

We hope you’ll come along for the ride.

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