Is the Toyota Tundra Really All It Could Be?
You deserve more truck than Toyota is giving you, and that needs to change. Fast.
The Toyota Tundra is a truck I adore. I have had more than a half-dozen review models over the last three years, and my father-in-law purchased one to replace his Ford on my recommendation. But I have finally reached my limit on Tundra love, and it is time to admit that in today’s market it is an objectively bad truck.
And it’s all Toyota’s fault.
At its core, it comes down to age. Toyota is notorious for stretching its model lines out for years longer than any other automaker. And frankly, when Toyota makes a new car, it’s so far ahead of the curve and so well built that it can survive an 8-year life-cycle when everyone else can barely manage five. But the Tundra is a truck, and the truck market in America is brutal.
You see, despite the total visual overhaul that came in 2014, the Toyota Tundra is basically the same truck that debuted more than a decade ago at the 2006 Chicago Auto Show. That’s why you won’t find a recent Tundra review from me in the pages of YotaTech. I had two Tundras in for review last year, but neither truck felt different in any meaningful way from models I reviewed in 2014, 2015, and 2016. And compared to the other new trucks I was testing, in many ways the new models felt worse.
In 2006, the Tundra was something special. It was exciting and interesting and it told the world that Toyota was taking trucks seriously. The new Tundra’s 10,000 pound tow rating and 381 hp V8 were massive shots across the bow of the Detroit Three. Chevy’s “performance” model Silverado SS was only making 345 hp from its 6.0L V8. Ford was even farther behind with just 300hp coming from its top-trim 5.4L V8.