Gimmick status aside, this can actually work with a few more tweaks thrown in

Pizza chain Pizza Pie is once again digging into its bag of marketing gimmicks with the introduction of the Toyota Tundra PIE Pro. Built in collaboration with Toyota, the Tundra PIE Pro is, quite seriously, a zero-emission pickup with a robotic pizza-making factory in the truck bed. Unfortunately, the Tundra PIE Pro is nothing but a concept, dashing our hopes and dreams of one day seeing this creation pull up in our homes with a fresh pan of Pizza Hut’s finest.

What makes the Toyota Tundra PIE Pro special

2018 Toyota Tundra PIE Pro
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Did you expect anything less from Pizza Hut? This is, after all, the same company that built turntables into a pizza box. It also launched the Pie Tops II sneakers that can order a pizza, pause your TV, and command anywhere from $400 to $1,200 on eBay. Pizza Hut’s new gimmick, though, is one for the pans.

The Tundra PIE Pro traces its roots to a Toyota Tundra SR5 that Toyota’s Motorsports Technical Center (MTCI) tore right down to its bare rolling chassis. From there, it was reassembled from the ground up with a number of modifications along the way.

The truck’s conventional gas-powered drivetrain, for example, was removed completely.

In its place, MTCI installed a hydrogen fuel-cell electric power unit that was sourced from none other than the Toyota Mirai. When’s the last time you saw the Mirai giving the Tundra a helping hand?

2018 Toyota Tundra PIE Pro
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With that settled, MTCI brought in robotics company Nachi Robotic Systems to help turn the Tundra’s bed into, quite literally, a self-contained pizza factory appropriately called “The Kitchen.” The whole setup includes obligatory kitchen appliances like a refrigerator and a high-efficiency conveyor oven.

Oh, there’s also a pair of computer-guided articulating robotic arms that help in the pizza-making process.

Speaking of which, the whole process takes around six to seven minutes to complete. It starts with the first robotic arm, which opens the refrigerator and removes the selected pizza. From there, it places the pizza on the conveyor oven before returning to the refrigerator to close its doors. Once the pizza is finished with its time in the conveyor oven, the second robotic arm removes the finished pie, places it on a cutting board, and dives it into six identical slices. From there, it boxes the sliced pie up and delivers it to the waiting arms of the customer on the side of the Tundra.

2018 Toyota Tundra PIE Pro
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The whole creation is incredible in it of itself. It showcases what technology can do when used in the proper space.

According to MCTI, the Tundra PIE Pro leaves no environmental footprints.

Like the Tundra, The Kitchen is powered solely by the truck’s hydrogen fuel cell electric powertrain. The only by-products that come out of this creation are water vapor emissions. That, and the pizza, of course.

As for the Toyota Tundra, the PIE Pro is another example of the many ways you can enjoy the pickup truck. “We’ve had a hand in putting together all sorts of custom Toyota vehicles over the years, from high-performance racecars to one-of-a-kind show vehicles,” MTCI’s Marty Schwerter said in a statement. Apparently, you can now include a hydrogen-powered, robotics-infused pizza delivery vehicle to that list.

2018 Toyota Tundra PIE Pro
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Sadly, the Toyota Tundra PIE Pro isn’t headed for production, at least not yet. Don’t hope for it to happen, though, because you might be disappointed if a regular pizza delivery guy riding a scooter shows up outside your door.

Further reading

2018 Toyota Tundra for Kevin Costner by Working Complete Customs
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Read our full review on the Toyota Tundra for Kevin Costner by Working Complete Customs.

2014 Toyota Tundra High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2017 Toyota Tundra.

2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro Exterior Interior
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Read our full review on the 2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro.

Appearing at Toyota’s 2018 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show display, the one-of-a-kind, Zero-emission Tundra PIE Pro is a mobile pizza factory that takes the party wherever it goes.

“As the flagship Toyota truck, the Tundra is a workhorse in the truest sense,” said Ed Laukes, Group Vice President - Toyota Division Marketing. “Its great strengths are its extreme capability and eminent versatility, and what better way to illustrate that than by turning it into something completely unique—a hydrogen fuel cell electric-powered, pizza-making robotic vehicle!”

The Tundra PIE Pro was built by Toyota’s Motorsports Technical Center (MTCI). The overall project included cooperation from its Plano, Texas, neighbor Pizza Hut, along with engineering from Nachi Robotic Systems.

The starting point was a Tundra SR5 that was torn down to a bare rolling chassis and then reassembled from the ground up. The conventional gasoline-powered drivetrain was removed and replaced with a hydrogen fuel-cell electric power unit adapted from the Toyota Mirai.

This use of hydrogen is one more example of Toyota’s ongoing, cutting-edge hydrogen fuel-cell technical development. Sales of its hydrogen-powered Mirai surpassed 4,000 units this past September, and the company is continuing development on a hydrogen fuel cell Class 8 commercial truck fleet.

The Tundra’s bed has been converted into a virtual pizza factory on wheels—what MCTI calls The Kitchen. Totally self-contained, The Kitchen comprises a refrigerator, a pair of computer-guided articulating robotic arms, and a portable, high-efficiency conveyor oven. Like the truck itself, all Kitchen components can be powered by hydrogen fuel cell electric powertrain.

From start to finish, the pizza-making process takes between six and seven minutes. When the process begins, the first robotic arm opens the refrigerator and removes the selected pizza, places it on the oven conveyor, and returns to close the refrigerator door.

The pizza is then conveyed through a high-speed ventless oven. On the far side, a second robotic arm removes the finished pie, places it on the cutting board, divides it into six identical slices, boxes it up, and delivers it to the customer awaiting on the side of the Tundra.

The Tundra PIE Pro’s environmental impact is virtually nil—the only by-products being water vapor emissions and delicious Pizza Hut pizza.

“We’ve had a hand in putting together all sorts of custom Toyota vehicles over the years, from high-performance racecars to one-of-a-kind show vehicles,” said MTCI’s Marty Schwerter, “but the concept and technology used in this Tundra presented a unique challenge.”

The Tundra PIE Pro, along with other Toyota specialty vehicles—can be found in the Toyota display booth (#24800) in Central Hall and on the Patio Annex of the as Vegas Convention Center, Oct. 30 – Nov. 2, 2018.

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