Mexico has the third highest diversity of passalid beetles in the World. Here we describe Tonantzin new genus, a new monotypic genus, potentially endemic to the mountains of central Mexico. The new genus is diagnosed by a new configuration of characters from the mesofrontal structure (MFS) in addition to other characters. The MFS in Passalidae has been treated either as a composite complex character or a combination of individual characters. Using a broad taxonomic sample within Proculini, we discuss the taxonomic and systematic implications of the MFS for the tribe. We define the MFS type tepetl. Given the importance of the MFS for passalid taxonomy we propose a new delimitation of the structure using boundaries based on internal and external head structures. We argue that the treatment of the MFS as a complex character better captures the nature of this structure but we ultimately find a need to standardize the way in which this structure is described in the taxonomic literature and used in phylogenetic analyses.