Used 2015 Toyota Tundra Double Cab Review
After a major face-lift just a year ago, the Toyota Tundra gets another round of changes for 2015. Toyota updated the Tundra's styling last year, and this year it eliminated the V6 engine from the Tundra lineup and added an off-road trim level called TRD Pro. But after comparing the Tundra with the latest trucks from Detroit, we come away thinking that the Tundra is still a few updates short of true competitiveness.
There's no question that the Tundra is still a seriously capable truck. No matter which trim level you choose, you'll be getting a V8 powertrain. And when it's properly equipped, the Tundra's tow ratings can match some of the best in the class. The recent remodel made the interior far more modern and refined, so if you're looking to be pampered while your truck is hard at work, the Tundra will satisfy. And if you're looking to go off the beaten path, then the TRD Pro ranks high, too, as it comes with skid plates, off-road tires, Bilstein shocks and a raised suspension -- all of which make it extremely talented when the pavement ends.
Unfortunately, the 2015 Toyota Tundra's skills don't extend much further. When it comes to fuel economy, neither of the available V8 engines are very impressive. While we weren't huge fans of the Tundra's old V6 engine, at least it had one to compete with the surprisingly impressive six-cylinder base engines offered by its American competitors. Now, you're stuck with the V8s. There also isn't an alternative such as Ford's turbocharged V6 engines or Ram's diesel-powered V6.
The Tundra's dynamic flaws extend beyond the engine bay. While traversing broken pavement, the Tundra feels more like the classic, stiff-riding trucks of the past. Lots of little bumps can be easily felt in the cabin, and there's a significant amount of road noise along the way. The Tundra may be capable in the hauling department, but when it's just you and the kids driving around it feels less refined than competitors.
As such, if you're looking for a full-size truck that's more than just competent, there are definitely some class leaders worth checking out ahead of the Tundra. The 2015 Ram 1500 is our top-rated truck for its wide range of talents, well-rounded nature and available diesel engine. Also on our top-rated list are the 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and its GM brother, the 2015 GMC Sierra 1500. Both are comfortable, capable of towing big loads and have respectable fuel economy. The 2015 Ford F-150 is completely redesigned and offers its own distinctive engine selection and more modern underpinnings. While the 2015 Toyota Tundra can hold its own against any of these, it's hard to make a case that it goes above and beyond any of them.
performance & mpg
The 2015 Toyota Tundra is offered with a choice of two V8 engines and rear-wheel or four-wheel drive.
For SR double cab models and all SR5 models, a 4.6-liter V8 comes standard. It is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and produces 310 horsepower and 327 pound feet of torque. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 16 mpg combined (15 city/19 highway) on 2WD models; 4WD versions also rate 16 mpg combined (14/18). Maximum towing capacity with the 4.6-liter engine is between 6,400 and 6,800 pounds depending on body style.
A 5.7-liter V8 is standard on 4WD regular cabs and all Limited, Platinum, 1794 and TRD Pro trims, and optional on the other models. It generates 381 hp and 401 lb-ft of torque, and comes with a six-speed automatic transmission. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 15 mpg combined (13 city/18 highway) on 2WD models; 4WD models also rate 15 mpg combined but drop a point on the highway rating. A tow package is standard on all Tundras equipped with the 5.7-liter V8. When properly equipped (and depending on body style), maximum towing capacity is between 9,800 and 10,500 pounds.
In Edmunds testing, a Tundra 1794 with four-wheel drive accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds, while a Tundra TRD Pro did it in 6.7 seconds. These are both quicker-than-average times for the segment.
Standard safety equipment on the 2015 Toyota Tundra includes antilock brakes, stability and traction control, trailer sway control, front knee airbags, front side-impact airbags and side curtain airbags that cover both rows. A rearview camera is standard across the board, while parking sensors are optional on the Limited and standard on the Platinum and 1794 Edition. A blind spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alerts is optional on the Limited, Platinum and 1794 models.
In government crash tests, the Tundra earned a four star (out of five) rating for overall safety performance, with four stars for frontal tests and five stars for side-impact tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the Tundra its best possible rating of "Good" in moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength tests. Its seat and head restraint design also received a "Good" rating for whiplash protection in rear impacts.
During an Edmunds braking test, a Tundra 1794 with 4WD came to a stop from 60 mph in 130 feet, which is about average for the segment. A 4WD TRD Pro took 134 feet, which isn't much farther, especially considering its all-terrain tires.
Despite the 2015 Toyota Tundra's sheer size, nobody's going to feel sold short by the 5.7-liter V8. It isn't a class leader when it comes to horsepower, but it remains a champ for towing thanks to its prodigious torque and well-sorted six-speed automatic. The optional TRD exhaust paired with the 5.7-liter engine makes for a nice rumble on acceleration, too. Casual users probably will find the 4.6-liter V8's performance adequate for most driving situations short of big-time towing, and it provides better fuel economy -- although neither V8 is a class standout in this department.
The Toyota's light but accurate steering makes it fairly easy to drive on a daily basis, but the Tundra feels bigger and less comfortable than competing trucks. A major reason we gave the Tundra a "B" rating was its particularly stiff ride over bumps and ruts, especially with the optional 20-inch wheels. While cruising, it's not very quiet either, which contributes to the especially trucklike feel you get while driving it.
The Tundra is pretty livable on the inside. Audio and climate dials and buttons are large and easy to reach, and the instrument cluster features two conventional and legible dials for the speedometer and tachometer. We wouldn't describe the Tundra's interior as stylish, but it is definitely functional.
Materials and build quality are acceptable, and the leather appointments in the upper trims are particularly appealing. One of Toyota's user-friendly Entune touchscreen interfaces and Bluetooth are standard across the board, and available smartphone services include features like the Bing search engine, Pandora streaming radio, real-time traffic and sports and stock information.
The front seats in every trim are broad and comfortable, but as this is a truck, you shouldn't expect much in the way of lateral support. There's a vast amount of legroom and headroom in the backseat of the CrewMax, which shouldn't surprise considering the enormity of this configuration's footprint. The folding rear seats in double cabs and CrewMaxes also provide a good amount of protected storage for valuable items you'd rather not leave in the bed.
edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.