The truck market is very competitive in the US, and no more so than in Texas. Toyota has decided not to try “to be all things to all men.”
So Toyota decided to trim down its powertrain profile by phasing our one engine option, but at the same time making up for it by offering more optional packages to this full-size pickup. Infotainment system update brings Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The remaining engine choice is a 5.7-liter V8 delivering 382 horsepower and 401 lb-ft of torque. It’s married to a six-speed automatic transmission.
However, power has its drawbacks. Tundra achieves 13 mpg city and 17 mpg highway for a 15 mpg average.
Toyota has had the 5.7-liter engine under the hood since 2007. Its power is rock solid and reliable. Yet, most competitors have updated their engines. The only real problem is this big, powerful truck is thirsty. Toyota gives it a 38-gallon fuel tank to maintain range.
Towing capacity depends on the model and trim, but the maximum towing on the Double Cab ranges from 9,400 to 10,000 pounds. CrewMax models offer a max of 8,000 to 9,200 pounds.
My test drive vehicle was the CrewMax short bed, with four-wheel drive. The CrewMax config gives you a choice of a SRE or Limited trim. The more abundant Limited trim was my selection.
The unique TRD Pro contents feature BBS forged-aluminum 18-inch TRD wheels, FOX coil-over performance front shocks, remote reservoir internal-bypass rear shocks, Rigid Industries fog lights, TRD dual exhaust featuring black chrome exhaust tips, and TRD aluminum stamped skid plate. Spray-in bedliner provides long-lasting protection for the truck bed.
Black leather front bucket seats with TRD Pro logo and red contrast stitching make for a handsome and masculine interior. A handle would have been helpful on the driver’s side to help mounting into the front seat.
Admittedly, Tundra’s cabin has not been radically updated in some time. It looked a little dated to me, but historic simplicity features were easy to identify and use. Large knobs for climate control, hard buttons to bring up center screen menus, and dials for volume and tuning were my kind of worthy items. The nice, large air vents get the cabin cooled or warmed quickly.
Several Tundra models, like this TRD Pro CrewMax, can be equipped with the 12-speaker JBL Premium Audio. This infotainment system features navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, AM/FM/HD Radio, Bluetooth hands-free and music streaming, USB media ports, and two USB charging ports. The 8-inch touchscreen has great clarity, but I would have preferred a wider screen.
Outside, full LED headlights complement Rigid Industries LED fog lights. Standard Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) driver assist technology suite includes Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Departure Alert, and Automatic High Beams.
Tundra is a power performer. The strong engine provides a no-nonsense acceleration. The deep growl sounded great to me as the noise exited the dual exhaust.
Tundra TRD Pro handles nicely with remarkable steering even though it has a tight turning circle. But it is an awful lot of truck for city use where tight parking would be the norm.
The MSRP for the 2020 Toyota Tundra starts at $33,575 for the base SR, and the TRD Pro trim starts at $48,655.
3-year/36,000-mile Basic Warranty
5-year/60,000-mile Powertrain Warranty
5-year/unlimited miles Corrosion Perforation Warranty
Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this newspaper or firstname.lastname@example.org.