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2020 Toyota Tundra

2020 Toyota Tundra

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$33,575 — $52,930 MSRP
157
Photos
Crew Cab Pickup
5-6 Seats
15 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 6 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Roomy cabin
  • Important active safety features standard
  • Drop-down power rear window available

The Bad

  • Dated interior
  • Lack of drivetrain choices
  • Fuel economy
2020 Toyota Tundra exterior side view

What to Know

about the 2020 Toyota Tundra
  • Apple CarPlay, Android Auto now standard
  • Two cab styles
  • Seats up to six
  • 381-hp V-8 engine standard
  • Rear- or four-wheel drive
  • Off-road-oriented TRD Pro model available

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2020 Toyota Tundra Review

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

We got to see a light refresh of the 2020 Toyota Tundra at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show, and the new Tundra features some tech updates both inside and out. Check the video for more.

Toyota has never been a top player in the full-size pickup truck market, but the Tundra has always sold well and is noted for its excellent reliability. For 2020, the second-generation Tundra carries on with the same powertrain from when it was introduced in 2007, yet it’s still relevant today. I recently tested the slightly updated 2020 Tundra TRD Pro (the most off-road-capable Tundra) while towing and off-road to see if it’s the ultimate work and outdoors truck.

Off-Roading With the Tundra TRD Pro

To start my week off with the Tundra, I took a trip to the Little Sahara Recreation Area in Utah for some play. This involved roughly 80 miles of highway driving one way, giving me a good idea of the Tundra’s high-speed pavement manners. The 5.7-liter V-8 with 381 horsepower and 401 pounds-feet of torque and six-speed automatic transmission had plenty of power to get up to speed, merge onto the freeway and pass slower-moving vehicles out on the country roads. My specific TRD Pro model came with a payload capacity of 1,235 pounds, which is on the lower end for this size of truck. Having the lower payload allows Toyota to tune the Tundra for a smooth on-road ride, and the truck always felt stable and linear on the highway.

Once in the sand, I was impressed by how well the Tundra was able to grip given the near highway tread of the 32-inch-tall Michelin LTX A/T2 tires. As far as all-terrain tires go, the Michelin LTX A/T2s are some of the least aggressive tires on the market. Much of the reason the tires did so well was that traction on the sand was high. Temperatures were in the low 40s and the sand was wet with snow on the north-facing slopes. Power from the V-8 made climbing the dunes an easy task. The TRD-tuned Fox 2.5-inch front and rear shocks handled the undulations in the sand without any noticeable heat or fade. The extra ride height of the TRD Pro was beneficial in many situations with better approach, departure and breakover angles than the rest of the Tundra lineup. Maybe I didn’t play hard enough, but the Tundra never got stuck in a place that it couldn’t drive out of under its own power.

In 2WD, I found that the traction and stability control systems can’t be fully disabled — but if I disabled them in 4WD, then switched into 2WD, the systems stayed off. This workaround allowed for some 2WD sand drifting. Some people prefer high-speed off-road driving in 2WD because it’s easier to bring the rear end around in the corners.

Towing With the Tundra TRD Pro

New for 2020, all Tundras come with a Class IV receiver hitch and a factory-installed trailer brake controller. This is a great idea that all manufacturers should implement in all full-size trucks and SUVs. To test this, I towed a trailer weighing in at just under 6,000 pounds with a 1,000-pound tongue weight. Typically, it’s best to keep the tongue weight as close to 10% of the trailer weight as possible, but this setup gives a good idea of how much the truck will squat when loaded to its max. Toyota recommends using a weight distribution hitch for any trailer over 5,000 pounds or tongue weight over 500 pounds, but I was unable to secure one for the few hours that I had the trailer. Without the weight distribution hitch, the heavy tongue weight caused the Tundra to sag significantly in the rear. Even with the sag, I never felt the suspension bottom out, and the load was always controlled and stable, with no steering issues. I had no problem getting up to speed or stopping the trailer in a reasonable distance.

As a work truck, I found that the short 5.5-foot bed on the CrewMax is almost too small. If a longer bed is needed, the 2020 Tundra TRD Pro trim is also available once again as a double cab with the 6.5-foot bed. There were still plenty of tie-down points in the bed. The side rails had adjustable tie-down points, making the process of tying down cargo an easy one. I would forgo the rubber bed mat, however, which is supposed to trap sand and dirt but ends up trapping debris and water underneath it, possibly causing damage to the bed. I would get the spray-on bedliner option or nothing at all.

The Tundra does come up a little short with a 9,200-pound towing capacity and maximum payload of 1,560 pounds in the crew cab when compared to other off-road competitors like the Ram 1500 Rebel, which has a towing capacity of more than 11,000 pounds and a payload of over 1,800 pounds. Construction trailers and camping trailers alike are within the Tundra’s towing range, though I recommend moving to a larger truck when towing over 10,000 pounds.

Tundra TRD Pro Snow Traction

After my tow test, we had another snowstorm that gave me the chance to test the Tundra’s traction on snow. I miss Toyota’s center differential lock button in both the 4Runner and Tacoma. This feature allows the use of 4WD with a Torsen limited-slip center differential on high-traction surfaces without causing driveline binding. We drove through sections of high-traction pavement interspersed with snow and ice, causing me to leave the truck in 2WD. Had conditions been worse, I would have engaged 4WD.

Tundra TRD Pro Fuel Economy

One thing to keep in mind when looking for a truck that will be used both for work and play is the fuel mileage, and the Tundra performed poorly when compared to its peers. I observed 13.6 mpg during my week with the Tundra per the computer readout. The Tundra’s EPA estimates are 13/17/14 mpg city/highway/combined, versus the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trail Boss that’s EPA rated at 16/22/19 mpg and the Ram 1500 Rebel is rated at 19/21/24 mpg. To alleviate range anxiety, the Tundra does come with a 38-gallon fuel tank that provided nearly 500 miles of range at the mpg I experienced during my test.

Who Is the Tundra TRD Pro For?

After my week with the Tundra, I was getting a feel for who really benefits the most from this truck, and it’s hard-working outdoorsmen. I found the TRD Pro to be a truck that slots in between the high-speed, desert-running Ford F-150 Raptor and a normal everyday truck. It’s not a rock crawler or off-road workhorse like the Jeep Gladiator and Ram 2500 Power Wagon; it’s most at home where the large shocks shine, on high-speed forest, fire and gravel roads. It has old-school simplicity, which reinforces it’s tough and reliable name, but it doesn’t feel outdated.

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.7
65 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(4.7)
Performance
(4.6)
Interior Design
(4.6)
Comfort
(4.8)
Reliability
(4.9)
Value For The Money
(4.7)

Read reviews that mention:

(5.0)

GMC sux

by Toyota Owner from Bedford TX on December 1, 2020

Go to Family Toyota GMC sux from the sale to service Beware Beware Beware Save money buy a Toyota best value and resale value GMC sucks Read full review

(3.0)

ok so far need new head lights

by retired from MEYERSDALE on December 1, 2020

low beam only shines out to 35 yards then it gets dark you cant see anybody walking along side the road further than that accident looking for a place to happen Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2020 Toyota Tundra currently has 2 recalls


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2020 Toyota Tundra SR 5.7L V8

NHTSA rates vehicles using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Overall
4 Star
Overall Front
4 Star
Overall Side
5 Star
Overall Rollover Rating
3 Star
Driver's
4 Star
Passenger's
4 Star
Side Barrier
5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Driver
5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
5 Star
Side Pole
5 Star
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
5 Star
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
5 Star
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Warranty

New car and certified pre-owned programs by Toyota

New Car Program Benefits

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 60,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    24 months / unlimited distance

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits

Latest 2020 Tundra Stories

See all 2020 Toyota Tundra articles

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Tundra received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker

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*MSRP and Invoice prices displayed are for educational purposes only, do not reflect the actual selling price of a particular vehicle, and do not include applicable gas taxes or destination charges.