When it originally debuted near the start of the new millennium, the Toyota Tundra was considered by many people to be the first import full-size pickup truck to truly go head-to-head against the trucks from domestic brands. In the Tundra's favor were a refined V8 engine and Toyota's reputation for reliability and durability. This Tundra, however, ultimately found more of an audience with recreational pickup buyers than with hard-core users.
Second-generation Tundras, however, are significantly bigger and more capable. As an American-built truck with true full-size proportions, the second-generation Tundra features three cab sizes, three bed lengths and a choice of three engines. In pretty much every measure, the Toyota Tundra stands equal to competing 1500-series pickups.
Current Toyota Tundra
The full-size Toyota Tundra comes in regular cab, Double Cab and CrewMax body styles as well as base and Limited trims. The Double Cab is essentially a large extended cab with four forward-hinged doors, while the CrewMax is an extra-large crew cab. Available bed lengths for the regular cab and Double Cabs include both a 6.5-foot and an 8-foot bed, while the CrewMax comes with only a 5.5-foot bed.
Some Regular Cabs and Double Cabs have as their standard engine a 4.0-liter V6 rated at 270 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque. Other Tundras receive a 4.6-liter V8 putting out 310 horses and 327 lb-ft of torque. The big engine option is a 5.7-liter V8 cranking out 381 hp and 401 lb-ft. The V6 gets a five-speed automatic transmission, while the V8s are hooked to six-speed automatics. All versions are offered with rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.
In addition to its strong V8s, the Toyota Tundra stands out thanks to its passenger-friendly cabins. The extended Double Cab features traditional front-hinged doors, making day-to-day usability easier than Chevy and Ford trucks with the more traditional reverse-opening access doors. The Tundra CrewMax, meanwhile, is truly enormous, featuring excellent legroom and a rear seat that not only slides but reclines as well. Feature highlights include a standard rearview camera and available smartphone integration.
There are some downsides, however, including a sometimes jiggly ride quality, below-average fuel economy and driving characteristics than can make it feel bigger than it really is. But the latest Tundra continues to be one tough truck that certainly meets the needs of today's buyers.
Read the most recent 2014 Toyota Tundra review.
If you are looking for older years, visit our used Toyota Tundra page.