All-new MY22+ Toyota Tundra Suspension

If you’re looking into a Tundra lift kit for your Toyota, you might find yourself a little lost with all the different components that go into a suspension system so I wanted to put together a “glossary” of terms with visuals to briefly explain what all these suspension parts are. If you are completely new to suspension, you’re going to hear a lot of new suspension terms, but even if you are familiar, there might be some new components you come across especially when there’s an all-new chassis change such as the TNGA-F platform on the 3rd gen 2022+ Toyota Tundra.

I hope this guide will help you understand most of the components that go into a suspension system and when it comes time to get an aftermarket Tundra lift kit, you won’t be overwhelmed with all the suspension terminology being tossed around on the internet.

Most importantly, I hope I can help users understand what they need, and what they don’t, when piecing together an aftermarket lift kit because there aren’t a lot of companies out there (yet) doing 100% complete packages on the 3rd gen Tundra. I’ve spent a lot of hours researching for a Tundra lift kit myself and I found myself putting together my own kit in a-la-carte style from various vendors. The nature of this requires a lot of research or customer support to ensure you’re not spending $1,300 on some 6061 billet aluminum upper control arms that your setup doesn’t require.

2018 Tacoma Leaf Spring Rear
2022 Tundra Coil Spring Rear

What is TNGA-F?

The all-new 3rd gen 2022+ Toyota Tundra got a major suspension overhaul on the TNGA-F (GA-F) platform which is the same body-on-frame chassis design as the new 2021 Land Cruiser and Lexus LX SUV variants. The biggest and most important update on the suspension is the addition of coil springs on the rear instead of the leaf springs found on the previous generation. Coil springs are superior as they are lighter and more comfortable than leaf springs.

Toyota is offering 6 different suspension system for the MY22+ Toyota Tundra:

  • Base
  • Base with Rear Air Bags
  • TRD Sport
  • TRD Off-Road
  • Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS)
  • TRD Pro with factory Fox Suspension

Front Suspension Components

Listed below are some of the front suspension components that can be found across all 6 different MY22+ Toyota Tundra suspension systems.

Upper Control Arms (UCA)

2022 Tundra Upper Control Arm UCA

Probably one of the most common terms being thrown around when researching for an aftermarket Tundra lift kit. The Upper Control Arm aka UCA is one of two control arms that connect the Front Knuckle to the chassis allowing vertical articulation of each front wheel. There is one on the driver side front and one on the passenger side front. This is a popular modification for owners going with more than 2.5″ of additional lift in the front because the factory UCAs restrict the additional movement introduced from the new lift kit. This can also lead to less-than-ideal alignment settings if the caster and camber max out due to the changed suspension geometry.

Front Shocks/Dampers

2022 Tundra Front Shock Damper

The goal of a shock absorber AKA damper is to absorb kinetic energy from the pavement which your vehicle is driving on. Inside the shock is an oil-filled chamber with a piston to control the dampening characteristics – think of a manual bicycle tire air pump and how hard it is to pump really fast. Although that’s the common understanding of a shock, did you know the oil is also used to transfer the kinetic energy into heat? It then dissipates the heat into air which is a critical component to the reliability and performance of the shock. That’s why there are more advanced remote reservoir setups (think those blue shiny King Shock reservoirs) which allows better heat dissipation when controlling high/low speed rebound and high/low speed compression. We won’t get into that here though.

Front Coil Springs

2022 Tundra Front Spring

The coil spring is just one of many different types of springs used to store and release energy. For this automotive suspension use case, when I say energy I mean the bumps on the road. Just like the shock absorber, the coil spring absorbs the kinetic energy and compresses the spring and then works with the shock absorber to provide a smoother ride. Coil springs come in different spring rates depending on the weight of the vehicle. When owners add more weight to the vehicle (metal bumpers, winch, etc.) it is recommended to swap out the coil spring with a higher spring rate to support the additional weight.

Front Outer Tie Rods

2022 Tundra Front Outer Tie Rods

Tie Rods are responsible for turning your wheels and is a critical component for dialing in your vehicle’s alignment setting. It is connected from the power steering, which is a Rack and Pinion style on the Tundra, to the Front Knuckle. There is an “inner” portion of the Tie Rod which connects directly to the power steering rack first. The inner tie rod usually has a threaded male rod-end which mates with the female outer tie rod to adjust the length and dial in the wheel alignment.

Front Sway Bar

2022 Tundra Front Sway Bar

The Front Sway Bar’s job is to reduce body roll on the vehicle during cornering or pavement irregularities which cause lateral side to side movement. It’s more a safety feature and hardcore off road enthusiasts actually end up disconnecting their sway bars as it restricts suspension travel/droop. The sway bar on the Tundra connects to each Lower Control Arm through an Endlink.

Front Sway Bar Endlinks

2022 Tundra Front Sway Bar Endlinks

Sway Bar Endlinks AKA Front Stabilizer Links connect the Sway Bar to the Lower Control Arm. Aftermarket companies make heavy-duty versions of these endlinks because the factory ball joints may fail during repeated off-road use. Off-road enthusiasts, as mentioned previously, will most likely disconnect their endlinks to increase their suspension travel, however the majority of recreational off-roaders leave their sway bars connected as it is still pretty capable.

Front Bump Stops

2022 Tundra Front Bump Stop

The front bump stops prevents the front shocks and springs from compressing more than 100%. You don’t want the shocks and springs to max out during compression as it will generate an uncomfortable shock through the chassis. Bottoming out may potentially cause physical contact with other suspension components as well causing damage overtime.

Front CV Axles

2022 Tundra Front Axles

Constant Velocity (CV) axles are responsible for delivering power generated from the engine to spin the wheels. Power is generated from the engine, through the transmission, into the differential, and to the CV axles which finally spins the wheel. CV axles are different from other non-CV axles because the lubricated joints allow the shafts to rotate freely even when the angles change with the suspension.

Front Lower Control Arms

2022 Tundra Front Lower Control Arms

In simple terms, the front lower control arm (LCA) connects the wheel to the chassis. The LCA plays a huge role in allowing the wheel to maintain proper contact with the ground as it travels up and down on the terrain. It’s also a very important component in the suspension because the sway bar, shock/damper, and knuckle all have a major role with the LCA.

Front Knuckle

2022 Tundra Front Knuckle

The front knuckle houses the wheel bearing to mate the wheel via the hub. The front upper and lower control arms connect to this piece and is a major part to the double wishbone suspension setup found on the Tundra. As described previously, the tie rod also connects to the front knuckle to actuate steering.

Rear Suspension Components

Listed below are some of the rear suspension components that can be found across all 6 different MY22+ Toyota Tundra suspension systems.

Rear Shocks/Dampers

2022 Tundra Rear Shock Damper

Similar to the front shocks, the rear shocks provide dampening capabilities that work with the spring to provide a comfortable ride. Unlike the front suspension, the rear shock/damper is independent from the spring – what we call a divorced setup. Technically, the rear can never be called a true coilover on the Tundra.

Rear Spring

2022 Tundra Rear Spring

The rear spring is an all-new part on the Tundra’s rear suspension as previously it used leaf springs. Leaf springs are known to handle payload much better, however coil springs provide a much more comfortable ride. It’s also worth to mention it weighs a lot less than leaf springs and is easier to swap out.

Rear Lower Links

2022 Tundra Rear Lower Links

New to the TNGA-F platform is the multilink suspension which includes a 5-link suspension which works in tandem with the coil springs, dampers, and sway bar to control all six degrees of freedom of the axle. The Rear Lower Links work in conjunction with the Rear Upper Links to control pitch, yaw, and fore/aft movement to stabilize the truck.

Rear Upper Links

2022 Tundra Rear Upper Links

Similar to the Rear Lower Links, the Rear Upper links connect the chassis to the rear axle providing stability to the rear suspension system. The purpose is to control pitch, yaw, and fore/aft movement.

Panhard Link

2022 Tundra Panhard / Track Bar

Also referred to as a track bar or track rod, the Panhard Link increases lateral rigidity of the rear suspension and axle. The suspension can move longitudinally, up and down, as that is what the damper and spring is designed to do. However, side to side (lateral) movement can cause damage to the drivetrain and other suspension components like bushings there it’s best to limit lateral deflection.

Rear Sway Bar

2022 Tundra Rear Sway Bar

Same as the Front Sway Bar, the Rear Sway Bar limits wheel lift caused by body roll during high G corners. It reduces the loaded corner from compressing the spring too much while allowing the other side of the axle to maintain tire contact with the ground to increase mechanical grip. For off-road drivers looking for maximum suspension travel, it is common to see disconnected links, however it makes street driving a lot more dangerous.

Rear Sway Bar Endlinks

2022 Tundra Rear Sway Bar Endlinks

The Rear Sway Bar Endlinks are visible by looking into the rear wheel well and it’s located right above the Rear Lower Link. This piece connects the chassis to the sway bar. As mentioned in the section before, this is the easiest way to disconnect the sway bar for off-roaders looking to increase travel.

Rear Bump Stops

2022 Tundra Rear Bump Stop

If you make contact with the Rear Bump Stop, that means the suspension is not able to do it’s job, which is to provide maximum mechanical grip with the ground. However, the Bump Stops are there to protect the chassis from shock if you do compress your suspension over 100% of the allowed travel.