Pickup trucks are a lot different than they were ten years ago. Vehicles that used to be used exclusively on construction sites and for towing have now morphed into a strange fusion of work truck and luxury car. Our Tundra Limited was a prime example of this. Navigation, heated leather seats, a JBL stereo, satellite radio, an iPod/USB hookup, and a floor-mounted shifter were all standard. I guess even the busy contractor wants to be coddled on his drive home.
The Tundra really showed through in the powertrain department. Its 4.6-liter V-8 produced 310 horsepower, but it sounded like it produced a lot more. The exhaust note from this engine was intoxicating; definitely not Toyota- or work-truck like. Shifting duties were handled by a six-speed automatic that was competent and willing to execute upshifts and downshifts on command and in an appropriate amount of time.
I was pleasantly surprised by the Tundra, it was much more comfortable than I expected, and was a good mix of performance and luxury.
−Brandon Turkus, Fleet Manager
To me, the Toyota Tundra felt a lot bigger than it actually was. I had a hard time keeping track of the corners of the truck. On top of that, the steering was numb and not as precise as it could have been at slower speeds. Understandably, this did very little to inspire confidence when driving in town. Parking was no fun, either. Even the Ford F-250, the hulk that it is, felt more intuitive to place evenly within lanes or guide through a corner.
The Tundra’s 4.6-liter V-8 was a major plus, making a wonderful sound as it quickly brought the truck up to speed. The interior was quite roomy and comfortable. It could stand to be updated, but it doesn’t suffer the same horrible styling as other pickups I’ve spent time in.
Generally speaking, the Tundra didn’t leave much of an impression on me. It lacked the character that some of its competitors have that make the trucks special and memorable. In all, it seemed pretty middle-of-the-road.
—John Beltz Snyder, Production Editor
Toyota’s full-size truck offering is really starting to show its age when compared with the newer entries from Ford and Dodge.
Assuming that all of these trucks are functionally about even (not a completely true statement, but they’re close enough that casual users won’t notice the difference) the Tundra’s age is really felt in the comfort department. The cabin design and material quality feels a generation behind the Ram products, and about three behind the well executed new F-150. When compared with the Ram 1500 especially, the Tundra feels as though it’s on a different, lower, level in terms of sprightliness and handling.
I’m in agreement with my staffers about this engine though. The V-8 felt really willing and generally good in most situations.
—Seyth Miersma, Editor-In-Chief
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