Although originally we intended to hand back the keys to our Sequoia six months ago, we decided to keep it. The primary reason we didn't want to say goodbye to our Thunder Gray Toyota was because our television production crew fell in love with its ability to swallow gear and people easily, plus the roll-down rear window turns the rear cargo area into an excellent on-road shooting platform for our photographers.

The Sequoia has proven time and again that it's a legitimate alternative to other full-size domestic SUVs on the market (Tahoe and Expedition), yet seems an easier daily driver than its competitors. Although truck-based, the Sequoia offers a carlike interior and ride and has shown itself a relatively trouble-free vehicle.

A trip to the dealer after 20,000 miles revealed the need for new front-brake pads. We thought this somewhat unusual after such short mileage, but did agree the truck had been driven hard as are most of our test vehicles.

The Sequoia needed new shoes after 26,000 miles; so we installed a set of Dunlop Grandtrek tires at a cost of $472.36. We recently had some minor body damage repaired along with the 25,000-mile service performed.