This week we test the 2013 Toyota Tundra Limited CrewMax 4×4 pickup. Our Toyota Tundra is a fully loaded with the 381 horsepower 5.7 liter flex-fuel V8 mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.
This combination is rated at 14 mpg city and 18 mpg highway. We achieved 14.5 mpg combined in our week with the Tundra which is pretty average these days for a full sized truck like this.
The six-speed transmission shifts well and has a haul mode for towing. The Tundra has plenty of power with the big V8 and it works away relatively quiet and smooth. It doesn’t have a loud exhaust tone like say the Nissan Titan.
Our Tundra had a full load of features including the extra Bilstien shocks and skid plate with the TRD off-road option package. Driving around town and on the freeway the Tundra is easy to maneuver. It rides smooth as silk on pavement with a solid chassis composure.
On the trail, the Tundra exhibited excellent control and ride even in the rougher of roads. There was a little kickback in the steering over rough ruts and rocks, but little shaking or shuddering from the chassis.
With the Limited grade we had leather seats, center console, memory settings for the power seats and the top end touch screen audio system with navigation. The power roll-down rear window and power sunroof made summer nights good for cruising.
The design of the interior is showing its age however. The dual cockpit design of the center stack looks cool, but places the radio and hvac controls closer to the passenger than the driver. Tuning the stereo requires bending over to reach the knob.
As we traversed a lot of back trails the interior’s buttoned down solidness was impressive, offering up few rattles and shakes on the rougher ruts and washboard roads. It remains quiet and solid in a way Ford and Chevy can learn from.
The rear seat area of the Tundra Crewmax is one of the largest in its class, only second to the Ram MegaCab. It had more room than Ford or Chevrolet but it does come at a price, the cargo box. The bed is only 5′-6” long making its hauling capacity pretty small.
Ford, Chevrolet, GMC, and Ram all offer a solution to this with an optional 6′-5” bed and longer wheel base. Toyota doesn’t.
The styling is trademark Toyota with just enough excitement and chrome to attract truck buyers, but its never over the top. The TRD graphic on the back side is about the only thing that jumps out at you as extravagant.
Overall we were impressed with the total package of comfort and drivability of the Tundra, which offers up something decidedly different from Ford, Chevrolet, GMC and Ram.
For a full review and photo galleries see ActivityVehicle.com