The Toyota Tundra is a full size pickup truck model that has been in production in North America since 1999. The Toyota Tundra is the first pickup truck made by a Japanese manufacturer(Toyota) to become available in North America. Today, the Toyota Tundra sits in its second generation, which began with the 2007 model year. Even though the Tundra hasn’t been “completely redesigned” since 2007, the model is significantly different now than it was back then with a number of design changes, added features, and new powertrain options. The full size pickup truck class is spearheaded by some extremely popular models like the Ram 1500, Ford F-150, and Chevrolet Silverado models. However, the Toyota Tundra remains competitive, seeing a steady increase in sales each year dating back to 2016.
What can we expect from the 2021 Toyota Tundra?
There have been rumors floating around that Toyota will unveil an all-new Tundra for the 2021 model year, which would mark the beginning of the third generation Tundra. The next-gen Tundra is rumored to have extensive cosmetic changes, and a new hybrid powertrain option. It’s important to recognize that Toyota has not formally announced any notable information about the changes to the Tundra for 2021. Nonetheless, a next-gen Tundra is necessary, as the current Toyota Tundra model has a lot of cons, which will be highlighted in the next section. So, if you’re interested in purchasing a Toyota Tundra, it’s in your best interest to wait for the next-gen release in 2021.
What users tell us about the Toyota Tundra
As previously mentioned, the Toyota Tundra remains competitive in the full size pickup truck class with a steady increase in sales in recent years. However, the model has some unfavorable characteristics. For example, the available V8 engine is one of the most powerful engines in the class (about 450 horsepower), which sounds good on the surface. But, the lack of torque (500 pound feet of torque) from this engine prevents it from being a class-leader in hauling or towing capacity. Additionally, the V8 engine is one of the worst engines of any new street car model in the world in fuel efficiency. The interior of the 2020 Toyota Tundra has become extremely outdated due to being largely untouched since 2007. Overall, the current Toyota Tundra models is actually one of the worst full size pickup truck models on the United States market, despite its success in recent years.
Toyota Tundra Highlights
The interior design of the current Toyota Tundra is one of the model’s biggest drawbacks. The interior is cheap, outdated, and in desperate need of a new design. Nearly every other full size pickup model has a better interior than the current Toyota Tundra. We can expect big changes to the interior for the 2021 model year.
Despite being built on an old platform, the exterior of the current Toyota Tundra is not bad, given the fact that it has been refreshed a couple of times since the last redesign. Still, with an all-new generation Toyota Tundra on the way, big changes can be expected to the exterior of this model. As with most trucks a crew-cab configuration is part of the lineup.
The base engine option on the 2021 Toyota Tundra is a massive 5.7-liter V8 engine that makes up to 381 horsepower with a 10-speed automatic transmission. This is the most powerful base engine in its class. We also expect the twin turbo v-6 3.5-liter to be featured on the 2021 Tundra. With the rise of the Tesla truck we might even see an electric motor or at least a hybrid engine.
However, the lack of variety to this model’s powertrain is concerning since nearly every other full size pickup truck in North America has multiple engine options. Additionally, the V8 engine is a gas guzzler, making the Tundra one of the least fuel-efficient models on the road.
With the rear-wheel drivetrain, the 2021 Toyota Tundra’s V8 engine averages roughly 13 city and 18 highway miles per gallon. With four-wheel drive, it averages about 13 city and 17 highway miles per gallon. Either way, these figures are unfavorable.The 3.5-liter twin engine has a better fuel economy. The multi speed speed automatic transmission helps retaining a good fuel economy.
In tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the current Toyota Tundra has gotten mostly mixed safety scores. In some ways, Toyota made up for these scores by making the Toyota Safety Sense suite of active safety technology standard. This system includes features such as automated emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, and more.
2021 Toyota Tundra Pricing and Expected Release Date
The current Toyota Tundra full size truck has an initial MSRP of $33,435. With an all-new Tundra likely coming next year, this number is likely to increase at least slightly. Since the 2020 Toyota Tundra was released to the public in the fall of 2019, it’s reasonable to suspect that the 2021 Toyota Tundra will be introduced to the public around the same time in 2020.
Preview based on the 2020 model year as taken from the Toyota pressroom.