Toyota went for the jugular in the 2007 model year when it introduced the second-generation Tundra full-size pickup truck with a powerful 5.7-liter V-8 engine and six-speed automatic transmission. Today, the Tundra faces much stiffer competition from Chevrolet, Ram, GMC and Ford half-ton pickups, all of which have been updated or revised since 2007. Certain configurations of the Tundra can seat up to six people.
The Tundra comes in two- or four-wheel drive and in three cab styles: regular cab, Double Cab and CrewMax. The CrewMax is the largest cab in the half-ton segment since Chrysler discontinued the Mega Cab option for the Ram 1500. The CrewMax comes only with a 5-foot, 6-inch bed, while other versions can be ordered with either a 6.5-foot or an 8-foot cargo bed.
New for 2012
A new Chrome Package for Double Cab and CrewMax trucks includes a chrome exhaust tip, chrome side mirrors, chrome door handles and 18-inch chrome-clad wheels. The Cold Area Package, heated side mirrors and daytime running lights are now standard on all models, and a backup camera is a new feature of the Limited trim level. The instrument panel now has a black finish, and the towing package is no longer bundled with other options and must now be ordered separately.
Toyota made sure this Tundra wouldn't have sand kicked in its face by designing a big, brawny pickup that looks like it could bully any truck on the market — at least from the front. The massive grille, sculptured hood and husky bumper present an intimidating head-on view. From the side, the Tundra is rather conventional. A deck-rail adjustable tie-down system is optional for all cargo beds.
Exterior features include:
- 17-, 18- or 20-inch wheels
- Optional power-sliding rear window
- Optional power moonroof
The Tundra's interior is designed to accommodate working people. The control knobs are easy to grip, even with work gloves, and the gauges are easy to read at a glance but placed at the end of long barrels in the dash. There are plenty of storage options, especially with a center console that can hold a laptop and hanging files. Even the regular cab Tundra has enough room behind the seats to hold five-gallon paint buckets. The seats are wide, supportive and comfortable. The Platinum Package adds luxury touches that until now were only available in trucks like high-end Ford F-150s.
Interior features include:
- Standard dual-zone air conditioning
- Two front 12-volt power outlets
- Front bench or bucket seats
- Optional leather upholstery
Under the Hood
Mechanical features include:
- 270-horsepower, 4.0-liter V-6 with aluminum block and cylinder heads, dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder, with 278 pounds-feet of torque
- 310-hp, 4.6-liter V-8 with aluminum block and cylinder heads, dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder, with 327 pounds-feet of torque
- 381-hp, 5.7-liter V-8 with aluminum block and cylinder heads, dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder, with 401 pounds-feet of torque
- Five-speed automatic transmission (V-6)
- Six-speed automatic (V-8s)
- Four-wheel drive available on V-8 models
Trailer-sway control and brake override technology are standard. Trailer-sway control uses a truck's stability control sensors to detect unintended side-to-side movement at the rear wheels while towing and uses the truck's antilock braking system to counteract yaw caused by unwanted trailer motion.
Other safety features include:
- Antilock brakes
- Electronic stability system
- Side-impact airbags for the front seats
- Side curtain airbags
- Optional backup camera