One of the key elements of the Toyota Sequoia redesign for the 2023 model year is the new Capstone trim, which first debuted on the SUV’s platform sibling, the redesigned Tundra pickup truck. Capstone sits at the top of the Sequoia lineup and includes premium and exclusive features. While not quite on the level of Lexus, Toyota’s premium brand, Capstone does serve as a fine foil for another mainstream brand that takes a premium: Chevrolet’s High Country trim.
Handily, both the new Sequoia Capstone and its Chevy rival, the 2022 Tahoe SUV, made their way to the 2022 Chicago Auto Show, with the Tahoe outfit in the High Country.
Related: More Coverage of the Chicago Auto Show
This gives us a chance to see how the two stack up inside, though a full comparison will have to wait until we get to ride the recently launched Sequoia. Given that the Sequoia Capstone at the auto show is a prototype and some specs may change by the time it hits dealerships, I compared how the two stack up.
For sheer comfort, I had to give the Chevrolet a slight nod thanks to its slightly narrower center console area which allows for more knees and thighs. In other respects, the Sequoia is where it belongs: Both SUVs have a 12.3-inch digital instrument panel (standard on all Sequoia levels, and on the LT Tahoe trim and up), but the Sequoia’s 14-inch touchscreen is a dwarf. the 10.2-inch Tahoe unit.
Both SUVs also use a lot of physical control for climate, audio, and other tasks, something we’re always grateful for. I found the Sequoia layout a bit busier and perhaps more confusing; On the bright side, it has a lever-style gear selector, which I prefer over the tall Tahoe pushbutton selector on the dashboard.
Convenience here is also a boost. Both SUVs provide ample legroom for second-row passengers, and both examples in the show have panoramic roofs that interfere with my headroom a bit. Both offer heated captain’s seats, though the Sequoia also has ventilation. The real differentiating factor here is the technology: the Tahoe has four USB ports in total for second-row passengers (two USB-A, two USB-C) and an optional rear entertainment system. The Sequoia only has two ports and no entertainment system.
An added factor is Toyota’s choice to have a storage console with cupholders between the Capstone captain’s seats; comfortable for second-row passengers but makes third-row access between two seats more difficult. He is removable, at least, but if you have stuff stored there, it might be a hassle.
The quality of the materials for the two SUVs decreased from the first row to the second row, but was no more noticeable on one model than the other.
In previous generations, the third row was very different — the old Sequoia could fit adults, while the old Tahoe was a place best left for kids or adults you weren’t particularly fond of. The latest models are much more similar. With the Tahoe’s switch to independent rear suspension, the third row is now adjustable for adults, with modest knee clearance but relatively high seat height. The new Sequoia is still suitable for adults, but feels a little smaller than its predecessor, with better knee clearance than the Tahoe but a higher knee position thanks to the seat being lower off the floor. In the end, it’s a clearing of space — but Chevrolet is again victorious on the tech front, with USB-C ports on each side of the third row. Sequoias don’t have it.
We’d have to put the Sequoia’s cargo area through Cars.com’s independent volume assessment for an accurate comparison, but it’s worth noting that, while Toyota offers convenient storage racks, its flat-load floor is much higher than the bottom of its cargo hold. opens, potentially making larger items harder to load.
Both SUVs feature a foldable third row, although the Sequoia can also slide 6 inches to increase storage capacity.
Without any kind of driving comparison, I think the Tahoe High Country gets a bit of a nod here with its more tech-friendly interior. However, for the first time in a while, Sequoia wasn’t far behind.
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