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The Toyota Tacoma-based concept camper is a retro ride with cool modern upgrades.


Retro 1970s colors and modern overlanding capability come together in Toyota’s wild new “Tacozilla” camper concept.


Those of a certain age may recognize the SEMA build’s inspiration as the Hilux-based Toyota x Chinook camper collabs of the 1970s/80s, as Motor 1 notes. The vintage yellow, orange, and bronze-accented white body painted by Texas’ Complete Customs is the most obvious reference to the retro motorhomes.


However, the Tacozilla is based on a current-gen Tacoma TRD Sport, and the Toyota Motorsports Garage went to great lengths to engineer a loaded and livable ride that follows the modern microhouse trend while still accommodating occupants over six feet tall.


“Our goal was to build a vehicle that is engineered correctly but also made to look really cool,” said project leader Marty Schwerter. “We really didn’t want it to look like a refrigerator on the back of a truck, so you’ll see it’s all rounded edges.”


The rounded aluminum camper frame was designed to sit within the base truck’s dimensions. Over 100 hours were spent crafting a buckled rear door that doesn’t disrupt the structure’s tapered lines.


The fully insulated interior—illuminated by a pop-up Lexan skylight—features teak-sauna style flooring, a full bathroom with a hot-water shower, a full kitchen with a stove and sink, leather bench seating, and a 3D-printed dining table that doubles as a backlit piece of wall art when stowed. A raised platform above the cockpit provides space for bedding.


The Tacoma’s original rear fender flares were fitted onto the Tacozilla’s wheel well openings, allowing for two extra inches of clearance. For traction, the team fitted a set of 285/70/17 General Tire Grabber X3 all-terrain tires. Other custom bits include a separate fuel tank filler to isolate fumes, and a second battery in the Tacoma’s engine bay to help supply additional power.


The Toyota Tacozilla Camper is completely custom, and it might not even be street-legal. But based on the splash it made at SEMA, perhaps the Japanese marque will consider launching a conversion kit. Dare to dream.


Brandon Friederich

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Desoto, TX 75115





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