2018 Toyota Tundra

2018 Toyota Tundra Review

The Tundra is capable but comes up a little short on feature availability and efficiency.
3 star edmunds overall rating
author
by Calvin Kim
Edmunds Editor

Shopping for a full-size truck can be a challenge. Though there are only a few models to choose from, deciding which is best can be daunting. Toyota's offering for consumers is the 2018 Tundra. Some shoppers will undoubtedly appreciate the Tundra's V8-only powertrains, and others will enjoy the relatively straightforward ordering process compared to domestic rivals. And though the Tundra doesn't have a wealth of bells and whistles to choose from, it does have appealing core competencies. It can tow more than 10,000 pounds and is quite capable on the occasional off-road trip.

But rival full-size trucks have all benefited from recent overhauls, and the Tundra hasn't seen an all-new revision since 2007, which means the 2018 Tundra lags in advancements compared to the current segment leaders. Most manufacturers offer a diesel engine option for efficiency and torque over long hauls or turbocharged gasoline engines for superior performance and fuel efficiency. Even suspension technology has increased such that most rival trucks ride more comfortably.

Ultimately, the made-in-America 2018 Toyota Tundra has its share of good qualities, but it's not enough to push it to the top of the full-size truck category this year.



what's new

All 2018 Toyota Tundras get refreshed styling this year and Toyota's driver assist package called Toyota Safety Sense. This package includes forward collision warning and mitigation, lane departure warning, auto high-beam control and adaptive cruise control. A new TRD Sport package is available on select SR5 trucks. The standard cab is no longer available.

we recommend

Picking a Tundra is all about what kind of truck you need and the features you want. But if you're having a hard time choosing, maybe go with the SR5 model with the TRD Off-Road package with options (the one that includes the SR5 upgrade package) for off-road parts that won't interfere with its towing and hauling capabilities.




trim levels & features

The 2018 Toyota Tundra is a full-size pickup that is available in one of five trim levels: the base SR, the value-conscious SR5, the flexible Limited, the upmarket Platinum and the specialized 1794 Edition. Two engines are available, both V8s: a 4.6-liter (310 hp, 327 lb-ft) and a 5.7-liter (381 hp, 401 lb-ft). From there, you'll pick a body style (the regular Double Cab crew cab or extra large CrewMax) and one of three bed lengths (5.5-foot short bed, 6.5-foot standard bed and 8.1-foot long bed). Note that Toyota limits certain combinations of the above, and feature availability can also vary depending on the region of the country in which you live.

Highlights for the base SR (Double Cab body only) include 18-inch steel wheels, heated mirrors, a windshield wiper de-icer, a damped tailgate, a rearview camera, an integrated trailer brake controller, a tilt-only steering wheel, Bluetooth, a 6.1-inch touchscreen interface, and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player and a USB port. Also included is forward collision warning and mitigation (with automatic braking), lane departure warning, automatic high beams and adaptive cruise control.

Going with the SR5 gets you foglights, variable intermittent windshield wipers and an upgraded tech interface that includes a 7-inch touchscreen, HD and satellite radio, traffic information and a navigation app. The crew cab adds a power-opening rear window and an overhead console.

The SR5's Upgrade package adds front bucket seats with a power-adjustable driver seat, a center console (with storage and console shifter), a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and a larger 38-gallon gas tank when equipped with the 5.7-liter V8. There's also a TRD Sport package that adds 20-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, a hood scoop, body-colored mirrors and bumpers, LED headlights and foglights, TRD shift knob, floor mats and graphics.

The Limited builds on the Upgrade options package equipment with 20-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, movable tie-down cleats, automatic dual-zone climate control, leather upholstery, an upgraded power driver seat and a power-adjustable passenger seat, a power horizontal-sliding rear window (extended cab), a navigation system and additional stereo speakers.

At the top of the heap, the Platinum trim level comes with distinctive styling elements, LED daytime running lights, power-folding and auto-dimming mirrors, a sunroof, heated and ventilated front seats, driver-seat memory functions and a 12-speaker JBL sound system.

The 1794 Edition really only differs from the Platinum in terms of its exclusive exterior and interior styling elements.

A TRD Off-Road package can be added to the SR5, Limited and 1794 Edition. It includes 18-inch TRD wheels, off-road tires, LED headlights, trail-tuned shock absorbers, skid plates and tow hooks.



trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Toyota Tundra CrewMax 1794 Edition (5.7L V8 | 6-speed automatic | 4WD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current Tundra has received some revisions, including an upgraded infotainment system and new driver safety aids. Our findings remain applicable to this year's Tundra, however.

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall3.0 / 5.0

Driving

3.5 / 5.0

Acceleration4.0 / 5.0
Braking3.0 / 5.0
Steering3.0 / 5.0
Handling2.0 / 5.0
Drivability3.0 / 5.0

Comfort

2.5 / 5.0

Seat comfort3.0 / 5.0
Ride comfort2.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration2.5 / 5.0

Interior

3.5 / 5.0

Ease of use3.5 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out3.0 / 5.0
Roominess4.0 / 5.0
Visibility3.5 / 5.0
Quality3.0 / 5.0

Driving

edmunds rating
With its strong V8, the Tundra offers legitimate performance. It's quick, and it feels capable of hauling itself through any scenario a real truck user might encounter.

Acceleration

edmunds rating
The Tundra's 5.7-liter V8 hauled our 5,872-pound test truck to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds, which is about as quick as most competitors. The six-speed automatic never hunts for gears in Drive and offers full manual control.

Braking

edmunds rating
Consistent, powerful braking is a Tundra strength. Brake feel is good, and our testing shows the truck's brakes are more than sufficient.

Steering

edmunds rating
The Tundra has steering that is accurate enough to place the truck precisely. The turning circle, at 44 feet, is respectable for a truck this long.

Handling

edmunds rating
As truck handling goes, the Tundra isn't bad, but it is big, which can make it uncomfortable on small roads. It will manage, but you'll need to take your time, place it carefully and pay attention to lane discipline.

Drivability

edmunds rating
Ample torque and low gearing mean the Tundra is jumpy off the line if you're not careful. But we quickly adjusted to the truck's power delivery. A manual shift option is useful for engine braking and gear holding.

Off-road

edmunds rating
The Tundra's automatic limited-slip differential and availability of the TRD Off-Road package give the truck genuine off-road capability.

Comfort

edmunds rating
The Tundra, when equipped with the 5.7-liter V8, lacks ride comfort relative to competitors who don't couple a towing package to their biggest engine as Toyota does. The smaller 4.6-liter V8-equipped Tundra gets softer springs.

Seat comfort

edmunds rating
Seat adjustability in the 1794 edition includes a 12-way adjustable power driver seat with power thigh and lumbar adjustability. Both front seats are heated and ventilated. But overall comfort is only average.

Ride comfort

edmunds rating
Because Toyota pairs stiff springs for towing with the 5.7-liter engine, there's no getting away from the Tundra's stiff ride, which is a shame. Driving around town, you'll constantly be reminded that your truck is capable of towing a small RV.

Noise & vibration

edmunds rating
Typical of Toyota trucks, the Tundra is loud when it's first started (fan noise, mostly), but it's also rather noisy even during cruising. Engine racket during acceleration isn't overly obtrusive, though.

Interior

edmunds rating
The interior of the Tundra's 1794 model is covered in perforated, stitched leather. These are among the nicest materials we've seen in a full-size truck.

Ease of use

edmunds rating
Climate and audio controls are within easy reach.

Getting in/getting out

edmunds rating
Four-wheel-drive Tundras are, like most 4x4 trucks, tall, which makes entry and exit awkward. The large, wide-opening doors help. The optional running boards are definitely worth the money.

Roominess

edmunds rating
The upshot of being huge is having lots of space. That's the case in the Tundra. The CrewMax cab is absolutely massive in the back. Three adults easily fit.

Visibility

edmunds rating
Front visibility and rear-quarter visibility are adequate from the driver seat. A standard rearview camera works wonders in tight parking situations. Parking sensors, included on upper trims, helps in close-quarters situations.

Quality

edmunds rating
High-quality leather and simulated suede covers the seats and interior pieces, giving the Tundra an upscale look. Small details, including a poor-fitting trim piece on the steering wheel, keep the Tundra from scoring higher.

Utility

edmunds rating
The Tundra utilizes its space well. There's a massive center console big enough for multiple average-size laptops. The door pockets are large and fitted for large drink containers. The Tundra's tow ratings are generally lower than key competitors'.

Technology

The Tundra is equipped with Toyota's Entune system, which when combined with an app on your phone, allows you to integrate various systems. It's OK, but rival infotainment systems are easier to use.

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.