Super Tundras

Superlift helps late-model Toyota owners ride on 35s

Feb. 05, 2009 By Tom Morr, Morr Ink

Many Toyota truck owners have chip-on-their-shoulders attitudes about their rigs: FJ pilots have always felt more highly evolved than their Jeeper colleagues. Now that Toyota offers American-made fullsized trucks (and a NASCAR program), its owners can go toe-to-toe mechanically and verbally with Detroit Three enthusiasts.

In business since 1975, Superlift knows Toyota owners well. These enthusiasts have high expectations, loudly touting products they like and unabashedly bash ones that let them down.

Superlift's 6" current-model Tundra system comfortably fits 35" tires: LT285/65R20 BFG All-Terrain T/As (34.7" advertised height) on 20x8.5 Pro Comp Knight-Khrome Series 9066s are shown here.

Today's IFS lift systems from reputable manufacturers are durable, installer-friendly and offer highly refined ride quality. The differences are in the details. Companies that have R&D departments often start with factory engineering data when designing a suspension system.

Superlift begins with all relevant OE information available for its CAD-CAM design process. Computer-generated prototype parts are made by Superlift's in-house manufacturing facility on computerized laser cutters and CNC mills. Superlift then test-fits the system and (off-) road-tests the kit on actual vehicles. Valuable off-road performance insight comes from shake-down sessions at the 1,200-plus-acre Superlift ORV Park in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Although "knock-off" companies save on R&D costs, Superlift stays price-competitive by doing much of the parts manufacturing itself -- no middle-man mark-up.

Cost-conscious front lifting uses the OE struts with preload rings and spacer "hats."

Kit Features/Benefits

• The front compression-stop brackets are separate from the crossmember assembly. This deletes as many as 16 bolts and related hardware compared to some competing kits.

• For 4x4 applications, Superlift's differential-mounting arms are offset, allowing the brackets to be welded in controlled slots during manufacturing. This results in a stronger mounting system.

• Some kits use "crush tubes" inside their plate-steel front crossmembers. In contrast, Superlift opts for contoured plates at critical stress areas. CAD-CAM modeling and real-world testing verify superior strength and alignment.

• For 4x4s, Superlift includes a skidplate that ties together the control-arm crossmembers, even though the relocated diff doesn't extend below the bottom face of the front crossmember.

• In the rear, 4" lift blocks cost-effectively level the vehicle without compromising ride quality.

• Brakeline relocation brackets are included. Four different carrier-bearing drop spacers are available depending on vehicle configuration.

• For cost-effectiveness, spacer "hats" allow the OE front struts to be retained.

While some manufacturers are back-burnering their 6" lift-kit development for late-model trucks, Superlift feels its system is too good to keep under wraps. This kit is engineered to offer the performance and value Toyota owners demand.


Extended-length ductile-iron knuckles simplify installation and improve handling. Here, the OE dust seal has already been transplanted to the Superlift knuckle (right).


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Highlights of the installation, which involves frame-cutting, are shown on Page 2.


In 4x4 applications, the Toyota crossmember must be clearanced so the differential can be lowered. This restores proper driveline and steering angles.

Diff relocation brackets retain some of the OE hardware. Reinforced eye-rings that have urethane bushings are stout mounts.


The kit's lower-control arm crossmembers are made of 3/16-inch plate steel that's reinforced in critical areas. Further, Superlift uses OE-style cam-plate slots on its crossmembers


When retaining the OE coilovers (Bilsteins on TRD models), they need to be disassembled using a strut compressor so that the Superlift billet preload spacers can be inserted. (The spacers firm up the spring rate slightly to improve handling with the higher center of gravity.) "Hats" span the increased distance to the struts' OE fender mounts.


The Superlift knuckles accommodate the OE ABS and brake-hose brackets. Swapping the stock tie-rod ends side-to-side allows them to be mounted on top of the new knuckles' bosses.

DOM-steel tubular kicker braces secure the rear crossmember to the Tundra's frame. Superlift includes a steel skidplate to tie the control-arm crossmembers together.

Rear lift uses a 4" block on each side. Brake relocation brackets and carrier-bearing spacers make Superlift's kit comprehensive.

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