2013 Toyota Sequoia Expert Review

3.6 Overall Score
Performance 3.5 Comfort 3.4 Styling 3.4 Value 3.2

Editor's Overview

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia offers full-size room for eight, a powerful V8 engine, and the quality and reliability that have become the hallmark of Toyota trucks and SUVs. Sure, the Sequoia costs a bit more than the competition, but with its stellar resale value, you'll make the difference up and more come trade-in time.

You'll Like The 2013 Toyota Sequoia If...

If room and comfort for eight passengers takes priority over maximum towing ability or fuel economy, the 2013 Toyota Sequoia is a hard choice to argue against. Cool features, such as the Blu-Ray DVD rear-seat entertainment system, should go over big with the kids.

You May Not Like The 2013 Toyota Sequoia If...

If maximum towing and horsepower are your first priority, the Ford Expedition or Chevy Suburban 2500 is probably going to make a better choice.

What's New

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia now offers just one engine choice for all trims: the 381-horsepower 5.7-liter V8. Also new is an available Blu-Ray DVD entertainment system and Toyota's Entune multimedia audio system.

Interior Features

Where some SUVs have a 3rd-row seat that is best suited only for children, the 2013 Toyota Sequoia offers adult-sized seating in all three rows. The Sequoia's 2nd-row bench seat features three independently movable sections that travel fore and aft, as well as fold flat. For those who don't require a bench seat, Captain's-chair-style seats are available, as is a power-folding 3rd-row seat. Access to the 3rd-row seat is made simpler by wide and long rear doors and the sliding 2nd-row seats. Stylistically, the Toyota Sequoia's interior may leave you bit underwhelmed, with plastic parts that feel a bit hard and the absence of rich wood trim.

Exterior Features

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia is not only the longest SUV Toyota makes, it's the widest and the tallest, too. Because the Sequoia's front and rear axles are pushed as far from each other as engineers could manage, the Sequoia looks much longer than it really is. The expanded wheelbase is the primary reason for the Sequoia's roomy interior, not to mention its admirable stability at highway speeds. The Sequoia's short front and rear overhangs give the big SUV plenty of leeway when approaching steep angles, like those encountered when off-road adventuring or serving duty on a sharply raked boat ramp.

Driving Impressions

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia SUV is most appreciated when asked to haul numerous passengers and their belongings over vast distances. The available air-spring suspension delivers a ride as smooth and enjoyable as in some luxury sedans, and a healthy slathering of sound-deadening material throughout the Sequoia's cabin keeps exterior wind and road noise to a minimum. Don't get us wrong, the Sequoia for 2013 is still a large and heavy SUV, but its independent rear suspension and precise power steering make the 6,000-pound hulk quite easy to command. Aids such as the available proximity-warning system and rearview video camera help diminish the difficulty encountered when attempting to park or maneuver such a large vehicle. And, we should point out that while the Sequoia is able to successfully tackle gravel roads, wet and slippery boat ramps and steep snow-covered driveways, it is not a serious off-roader.

Pricing Notes

The 2-wheel-drive 2013 Toyota Sequoia SR5 has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting just under $43,000, while the mid-level Limited starts closer to $52,500. Opting for 4-wheel drive will add a few thousand more, and the top-of-the-line Platinum edition pushes past the $60,000 mark. Overall, the Toyota Sequoia's price range overlaps that of the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban 1500. And when it comes to residuals, the Sequoia holds its resale value better than any other large SUV. To find out what kinds of deals consumers in your area are making for their Toyota Sequoias, check out the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price.

Notable Equipment

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia SUV's standard safety features include anti-lock brakes and electronic traction and stability control. Larger disc brakes all around and the brake-assist system help to minimize emergency stopping distances. The Sequoia has eight airbags, including full-length side-curtain head protection and front-row knee protection. The Sequoia SR5 comes with standard 18-inch wheels. A powerful, 3-zone climate control system helps keep all passengers comfortable. Sliding, 40/20/40-split 2nd-row seats maximize rear-passenger legroom, and the rear bench seats fold forward to create a large, flat cargo area. The steering column has both tilt and fore-and-aft adjustments.

Notable Options

All three trim levels of the 2013 Toyota Sequoia SUV – SR5, Limited and Platinum – are available with either rear-drive or 4-wheel drive. The optional air-spring rear suspension automatically adjusts to changing cargo, passenger and trailer weight, and contributes to a smoother ride when the vehicle is unloaded. The Limited trim offers only three standalone options: navigation with Entune audio, 7-passenger seating (2nd-row captain's chairs), and a rear-seat entertainment system that includes a Blu-Ray player and 9-inch LCD display, plus a 115-volt AC outlet. The sonar-based proximity warning system reduces strain when parking and backing out, and the satellite navigation system also includes a rearview video camera. The Platinum trim comes fully loaded.

Favorite Features


The Toyota Sequoia for 2013 provides expansive passenger room in the two rear rows, thanks to its redesigned independent rear suspension, long wheelbase and wide track. Fore-and-aft sliding 2nd-row seats allow maximization of rear legroom, and the rear doors open wide for easy access.


With Entune you can leverage your smartphone to provide such services as Pandora, MovieTickets.com or iHeartRadio, as well as real-time info on traffic, weather, gasoline prices and sports.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Toyota Sequoia is powered by 381-horsepower 5.7-liter V8 that produces 401 lb-ft of torque, which helps the Sequoia tow trailers up to 7,400 pounds. This engine is connected to a 6-speed automatic transmission, which employs a very low 1st gear for strong acceleration and two overdrive gears for better fuel economy.

5.7-liter V8

381 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm

401 lb-ft of torque @ 3,600 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/18 mpg (rear-wheel drive), 13/17 mpg (4WD), 9/13 mpg (E85, 4WD)

Editors' Notes

We'd all like to drive fuel-efficient cars such as the Toyota Prius, but sometimes the reality of what needs to fit inside those cars is far greater than the desire to be green. For those with big families and big hauling needs, Toyota offers another option, one that may not be as green as the Prius but is every bit as dependable. It's the 2013 Toyota Sequoia SUV, an 8-passenger giant with a standard V8 engine, available 4-wheel drive (4WD) and a 7,400-pound tow rating. Designed to challenge the likes of the Chevy Suburban, Nissan Armada and Ford Expedition, the Sequoia may not be tops in towing or fuel economy, but it does offer the most horsepower in its class.

Road Test Video Reviews

2013 Toyota Sequoia Owner Reviews

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Perfect vehicle for families.

2013 Toyota Sequoia SR5

I love my vehicle! It is the perfect fit for my family of six. We are able to comfortably fit and even take long car trips. There is an ample amount of storage space for our everyday errands. Having 8 seats comes in handy when our parents come to town. We are able to comfortably take 4+ hour trips with all 8 passengers. I have owned this car for 6 years and have only had to change the tires and battery so far and that wasn't until after 5 years. It has held up remarkably well to a tough life with 4 little kids, 2 dogs, and everyday use.

- Lindsay H

Big enough for our family of 8 and all of the sports our children participate in

2013 Toyota Sequoia SR5

This is a very roomy vehicle, fits our 6 children, ages 16-3 nicely. The only complaint anyone has ever had is that the seats are not always comfortable for long rides. It handles fabulously and is a low maintenance vehicle! We would definitely purchase another if given the opportunity.

- Sierra B

A comfortable vehicle for all your needs

2013 Toyota Sequoia SR5

All seats are comfortable, is tight, runs great. We can drive four hours in it and be comfortable. Holds a lot of items, storage. We use it like a truck. Would definitely buy another Sequoia. It's our go to vehicle for trips or for family get together sorry for shopping trips.

- kelly S

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