After almost six months of ownership, I’m still totally thrilled with my 2007 Toyota Tundra 5.7 L double cab pickup truck. Every time I drive this truck I inevitably have some thoughts about how superior this truck is to the 2001 Dodge Ram that I owned prior to the Tundra. That’s not to say that the Ram didn’t serve me well but it was time to replace it due to age and the fact that we moved into a 55+ community which prohibits leaving dually trucks in the driveway and the dually would not fit in the garage. Another factor in my purchase of the 2007 Tundra is that I tow a 2002 Sunline TR280 travel trailer that is 29’ long and has a towing weight of about 8,000 lbs. when fully loaded. So, with these considerations in mind, I started my search for a full sized pickup with enough power to pull the trailer and I wanted at least an extended cab so we would have a second seat. During my search for a 2-4 year old truck, I found that although there were quite a few trucks available within a 100 mile radius, finding one with low mileage and in excellent condition wasn’t an easy task. Let’s face it, full sized pickups are used as work trucks, and the majority of them look like it after a few years of use. During my search, I was open-minded about purchasing any full sized truck from Ford, Chevy, Dodge or Toyota as long as the truck met my needs. After reading about and researching trucks from the various manufacturers, I was leaning towards either a Toyota or Ford product. After spending a few weeks looking, I found the truck I’m reviewing at a Toyota dealership that lured me in with their internet advertising. My Tundra was a one owner privately owned truck that was purchased at the same dealership, and had been extremely well maintained. Being a certified use vehicle, I also liked having a one year warranty on the vehicle (excluding normal wear & tear components).
5.7 liter v-8 engine with automatic transmission, 4 wheel drive, 5 1/2’ truck bed, standard factory bed liner, power seat (driver’s side), standard sound system, ac, power windows, power door locks, sliding rear window
I’ve added: Westin side step bars, Lund trifold truck bed cover, Husky storage tray (installed under the rear seat)
Note: if you want all the specs, check out the 2007 Toyota Tundra at emunds.com, kbb.com or other web sites specializing in autos and trucks.
OK…..let me tell you what I love, like and dislike about the 2007 Toyota Tundra. I’ve only owned one other pickup, the 2001 Dodge Ram 3500 dually with a V-10 Magnum gas engine. So, any comparisons are few and I won’t even make any comparisons to comparable trucks by Chevy, GM, and Ford. And, when buying a truck, so much of what makes a truck owner happy is how it performs the work and/or tasks at hand.
Let’s face it….although today’s trucks benefit from some great designers, a pickup truck is a box with a cab! That being said, the Toyota has a nice design and looks “sharp”, I would have been just as pleased with a Dodge or Ford. In terms of function, the four door design of the double cab is great. Each door opens independently and hinged at the front….no more having to open the front door to access the rear door as when we owned the Ram. The tail gate features a dampening mechanism which means that once the latch is released, the gate will slowly drop down (“Look Ma…no hands!). The 6 1/2’ truck bed certainly doesn’t provide the same cargo area as the 8’ bed I had on the Ram, but it has hauled a lot of cargo in the past few months due to our move to a new house and my son moving into a different apartment. The standard bed liner seems to be consistent with what you find on other trucks. My one complaint with the bed design concerns the metal trim that has the bed liner tucked behind it. The clamping mechanism that locks my Lund tonneau cover exerts some pressure on this metal rail, and the metal flexes quite a bit. The solution is to add a rail kit to the truck, and at this point, I don’t want to spend the $$. It’s a minor thing, but indicative of how Toyota has tried to reduce the weight of their trucks. My truck features bright red paint with chrome and black trim. The trim and finish is excellent, and I’m lucky that the previous owner really kept the truck’s paint/finish washed and waxed.
Toyota’s 5.7 liter engine is incredible. One of the reasons why I looked at Toyota trucks is their tow ratings….up to 10,000 lbs. with properly equipped trucks. In normal driving (no heavy loads or trailer in tow), the Tundra has a lot of pep…when you put the metal to the metal, it will really accelerate quite quickly. However, a more gentle approach to acceleration will help your gas mileage. Based upon the onboard computer, I’ve seen gas mileage as high as 19 mpg and as low as around 13 mpg. When traveling on the thruway or interstate, I can count on 16 to 18 mpg with 16 to 17 mpg the more common figure. In mixed driving, some stop and go, some highway, 14 to 16 mpg seems to be the norm. And, city driving will quickly bring the average down to the 13 mpg territory. Considering the size and powertrain of the Tundra, these figures are pretty good (best I ever got with the Dodge dually was 10 mpg). My trailer towing experience is very limited thus far as I’ve only taken the trailer on the road for about 110 mile trip that was a combination of city and highway driving. On that one day drive, the gas mileage was between 11 and 12 mpg. Considering the size and weight of my trailer, that isn’t too bad and I will update this review when I have some actual travel trailer trips to measure gas mileage when towing under different road conditions. It’s also important to note that the gauge for the transmission fluid temperature is a well-appreciated standard feature, and the temperature didn’t rise while towing the trailer.
The transmission performs quite smoothly. If you choose to do so, you can use the trailer haul mode which modifies the shifting points when pulling a trailer or hauling heavy loads. Using four wheel drive appears to be the same as with any 4X4 truck. Since I purchased this truck in March, I’ll have to report back later about 4X4 performance when snow is flying. I’m not an off road driver, so you’ll have to seek out other reviews to get comments about off-roading with the Tundra.
OK….many reviewers of the 2007 Tundra criticize the interior for the amount of plastic and the design of the dash with some large knobs. While I wouldn’t mind having an interior more in line with a luxury sedan, I really don’t have any complaints with the Toyota. The seats are roomy and comfortable. The rear seat is more than utilitarian…it is actually fairly comfortable for adults and the leg room is adequate (again, much better than the Ram). The standard audio system (w/o sub- woofer) has a very good sound with plenty of bass. My listening preferences are classic rock and classical music, so I’m not looking for tons of artificial bass. The audio controls allow a fair amount of customization but at times, I’d like to have a little more treble response. Plugging in my mp3 player is a snap, and fairly large control buttons on the radio/player make it fairly easy to see and make changes and adjustments. Due to the size and layout of the dash, those that are on the smaller side may find that they have to lean forward and even stretch a bit to reach all the controls. Were the members of the Toyota design team thinking that all American truck enthusists are 6’ tall and 250 lbs.???
Heating/AC performance is great and my wife appreciates having a separate control on the passenger side of the dash which allows her to control the air temperature on her side of the truck. Storage space??? There’s a lot of it….the bin between the front seats can actually be used as a hanging file folder. If you don’t use if for files, there’s plenty of room for storing your GPS equipment, MP3 player, phone chargers, etc. Not only is there a roomy glove box, there’s actually another storage bin above it that I just discovered a couple of weeks ago. And, there’s another small storage bin with a cover adjacent to the shift lever. There are three cup holders on the center console, 2 larger ones and one smaller one. Each front door also has holders for two bottles along with space for other stuff. For the rear seat passengers, there are two drink holders available on the back of the center console (drop down access) as well as one bottle holder on each rear door. Power outlet are available on the dash, console storage bin and adjacent to the console cup holders for the rear seat. The interior is also equipped with interior lights, visors, and other standard items you would expect. The rear seat is a 60/40 split and each seat can be folded upwards against the back of the seat. The tire jack is stored below the seat. Although there is room to put stuff under the rear seat, there Is nothing to keep it from rolling around or shifting to the rear floor. I highly recommend adding a Husky cargo liner. Although they are over-priced at around $120, they are specifically designed for various trucks and provide molded storage bins that can hold quite a bit of stuff and prevent it from moving around to where it could be a safety hazard.
The power and heated mirrors on the truck are nice but are not designed for towing applications. Toyota offers towing mirrors as an option. For day to day driving, the mirrors are fine, but I have purchased a set of clamp on mirrors for use when towing my trailer. At some point, I may cough up the bucks and order power tow mirrors!
So, with the Tundra, you get a very comfortable and well equipped interior, even if it isn’t as plush and fancy as some desire.
The Driving Experience:
Some may call me crazy, but I just love driving my Tundra…and I’m not a car or truck enthusiast! If I had to speculate on why I love driving my truck, I’d have to say that it is probably due to how nimble the truck is….you don’t feel as though you’re driving such a large truck. Secondly, there’s plenty of pep when you hit the gas and passing vehicles is very comparable to that of a passenger car. The ride is really quite comfortable for a large truck and the ride quality reminds me of the days when I owned a Ford Crown Victoria that had that classic large passenger car comfort versus the more firm, controlled suspension of today’s passenger cars. That being said, the Tundra doesn’t feel sloppy or slow to respond. My one complaint with the Tundra is that the design of the center and rear pillars does restrict the view somewhat. It’s important to have the side view mirrors adjusted properly and make sure you know how the design of the truck restricts your vision. I find road noise to be minimal even though the tires on the truck have a fairly aggressive tread for on/off road driving. Yeah, there’s a certain amount of engine/transmission sound when accelerating under heavy load or climbing steeper grades, but nothing that I wouldn’t consider normal for a heavy duty pickup truck.
Wrapping it up!
So, it’s pretty obvious that I’m a very satisfied owner. Since I expect to keep this truck for at least five years, I’ll update this review as needed and especially if any problems arise with the 2007 Toyota Tundra. In the meantime, I highly recommend that you take a look at Toyota trucks if you are looking for a new/newer truck. If you have any questions, please leave a comment for this review and I’ll do my best to give you an answer.
Thanks for reading my review!
Amount Paid (US$):
2007Model and Options: