2018 Toyota Tundra 4x4 Limited CrewMax new car reviews

The Toyota Tundra is a big truck, and the updates for 2018 only reinforce that fact: beefier front-end styling and, starting this year, an all-four-door lineup. “Reflecting ongoing trends in the segment,” the release states.

More bigness: Only V8 engines are offered–still either the 4.6- or 5.7-liter. Properly equipped, a Tundra can tow 10,200 pounds.

Toyota is also very eager to play up the fact that the Tundra is built in Texas, home burritos as big as your head. In fact, you can now order a 1794 Edition Tundra. “The 1794 Edition reflects a western lifestyle theme with its exclusive saddle brown premium leather-trimmed seating featuring embossed leather and ultra-suede accents,” the release states. “Matching soft-touch materials also accent the shift console, the front and rear door trim, and the instrument panel.”

A TRD Sport package is also new to the Tundra. The release explains all: “The new TRD Sport package gets its own look with body-color surround for the honeycomb-style grille, color-keyed mirrors, bumpers and hood scoop, and it rides on 20-inch silver-painted aluminum alloy wheels with black accents. The Sport package upgrades the SR5 to include LED headlights, LED daytime running lights and LED fog lights. A TRD bedside graphic makes sure no one misses this custom-looking truck. The TRD Sport is available in Super White, Magnetic Gray, Midnight Blue Metallic, Blazing Blue Pearl and Barcelona Red Metallic.   “Of course, TRD stands for Toyota Racing Development, so there are some tangible changes to the Tundra TRD Sport’s chassis, such as a TRD anti-sway bars and sport-tuned TRD Bilstein shocks. A TRD shift knob and floormats complete the look inside.”

Our test vehicle had neither package, however. We sampled a 4x4 Limited Crewcab fitted with the 381-horsepower, 5.7-liter V8. That $1850 Limited package added things like front and rear parking assist, cross traffic alert, JBL audio and some more theft-protection measures. The optional sunroof added another $850 to the tally. After delivery and stuff, our truck came in at $49,295.

Other staff views

David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

How big is the Tundra? I got to look down upon Suburbans.

How big is the Tundra? The rear seat offers more space than my first apartment.

And how big is the Tundra? Well, that’s really all I got. It’s a big, big truck.

If you can get past its bigness—yeah, I wouldn’t want to park this on a daily basis—I like its back-to-basics nature. It has big, easy-to-read gauges. The controls are easy to use. It doesn’t have a push-button transmission. The rear seats flip up so you can carry more of your junk inside the cabin. I never had to consult the owners manual in order to change the radio station.

While it’s all-Toyota, the Tundra still feels a bit like an American truck. You get in it, turn the key, and go do truck-like stuff.

J.G. Pasterjak JG Pasterjak
Production/Art Director

The Tundra is a nice truck. Actually, strike that. It’s a nice car that happens to be huge with a giant open bed and can tow almost five tons. So, it does all of the usual truck stuff, and dos it with aplomb, but it’s outfitted in such a way that you wonder if it will ever see an actual spec of dirt on any surface. Look, this isn’t a problem with the Tundra, as such. Its a great truck, and it does truck stuff great, and I wish I could afford the $50k+ that it would take to get into a truck like this. But I do wonder in general terms about just how nice a truck needs to be. I mean, I never want to feel a moment’s guilt when I dump a load of mulch into the bed of a truck, or that sheet of drywall gets away from me and scuffs the tailgate a bit. It feels petty to fault something for being “too nice,” but that’s kind of the trap modern trucks are falling into. The only unfortunate side effect of that is because of the way some option packages are structured, it sometimes becomes difficult to add the utility features to a truck without also adding the luxury features at the same time.

Look, I get it, automakers are making a ton of money on trucks right now, and most buyers will never use them to do actual work with, and the automakers don’t care as long as they can use them to take the money to the bank. Meanwhile I pray to the sweet lady of depreciation that the values of these trucks fall precipitously on the secondary and tertiary markets and I can some day swoop in and guiltlessly fill the back with mulch.

Join Free Join our community to easily find more articles.
Comments
View comments on the GRM forums
Carsandbikes
Carsandbikes New Reader
5/22/18 4:07 p.m.

"....reflecting ongoing trends in the segment".

In other words, EVERY other full-sized truck has this feature, and we have finally decided to get with the program, too. 

Like nearly every other Toyota vehicle, this truck is THE most conservative product in it's class.  The domestic truck manufacturers should thank their lucky stars that Toyota (seems to) believe that the key to sales success is inoffensive products. Can you imagine Toyota being brave enough to build a true Raptor-type truck....and not just a look alike?  

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
5/22/18 4:41 p.m.

To clarify on that Four Door statement: 

 

They don't make a regular cab anymore, but they do make two different types of four door pickups. They also make ones with smaller rear doors called the Double Cab:

My dad has a 2008 SR5 Double cab, and aside from some slight trim changes, it's the same truck. You can actually fit adults in the back of these ones, and they have a real bench seat that folds up for added storage. 

TasdevEngineer2of3
TasdevEngineer2of3 New Reader
5/22/18 5:02 p.m.

Was always a Ford truck guy - had 4 or 5 of them. My last one spit out a spark plug cruising down the highway somewhere outside of east Nowhere, Alabama (at night). That was the end of Ford for me. About 3 days later I bought a year old Tundra. Got the Toyota given the reliability reputation. Nice generic truck with great power and the second best towing truck owned to date albeit crappy gas mileage around town. Depreciation is a wonderful thing. 

Furious_E
Furious_E SuperDork
5/22/18 5:28 p.m.

In reply to Tony Sestito :

My dad had a '14 Crew Max that he traded last year for a '17 Double cab. The Crew Max is just ridiculous, rear seat legroom of a limo. I'm 6'3" and could stretch my legs out fully without touching the front seats. The Double cab is still perfectly comfortable for me, and the increase in bedspace is more than worth the trade off. If you ever want to actually use one of these as a truck, you will miss the space in the bed much more than the cab.

I should also point out that the only reason my dad traded the first truck to begin with was because they offered him $3k less on trade than he paid for it new, needing $1k worth of tires to boot. The resale on these is insane. Plus, he ended up with a truck closer to the spec he wanted in the first place, the cab/bed configuration especially.

MazdaFace
MazdaFace HalfDork
5/22/18 5:44 p.m.

Love love love the 1794. Give me one in cavalry blue and I'd never drive another truck. 

NordicSaab
NordicSaab HalfDork
5/22/18 6:41 p.m.

Just bought a '17 with the 1794 package. It has just about everything you could ever want without the cutting edge nonsense. 

ultraclyde
ultraclyde PowerDork
5/22/18 7:57 p.m.

I used to hate the body style on these but its growing on me a lot. One in that fabulous cavalry blue, double cab and 4x4 would suit me fine.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
5/22/18 9:38 p.m.

Can you get a front seat arrangement that seats three? Or put another way, can I buckle all six of us up in one?

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito PowerDork
5/23/18 7:38 a.m.

In reply to mazdeuce - Seth :

I know on the older ones, like my dad's 2008 SR5, you can get it configured that way. We've stuffed six of us in that thing on occasion. If it's the same way it used to be, the lower trim levels have a 40/20/40 front bench with a fold-down armrest AND storage under the seat. 

Jaynen
Jaynen UltraDork
5/23/18 8:34 a.m.
mazdeuce - Seth said:

Can you get a front seat arrangement that seats three? Or put another way, can I buckle all six of us up in one?

If you look at some of the "work truck" spec'd ones etc they still have a front bench. The telltale is to look for the shifter on the column some of the SR-5 ones also

TR7
TR7 Reader
5/23/18 9:31 a.m.

If I ever need a new truck I am going to be very unhappy by the lack of extended cabs available. I dont need or want a limo with a 4ft bed. What I need is just a bit more extra space behind the front seat to store junk I dont want to keep in the bed, and maybe a jump seat with the small clamshell doors.

MrChaos
MrChaos Dork
5/23/18 9:33 a.m.
TR7 said:

If I ever need a new truck I am going to be very unhappy by the lack of extended cabs available. I dont need or want a limo with a 4ft bed. What I need is just a bit more extra space behind the front seat to store junk I dont want to keep in the bed, and maybe a jump seat with the small clamshell doors.

F150, Colorado/Canyon, or the Tacoma will be your only choices.

Tk8398
Tk8398 Reader
5/23/18 9:37 a.m.

I don't understand how people afford these, I feel like unless you make $150k+ (and that's assuming you live in a place with reasonably priced housing) it would be way too expensive.

MrChaos
MrChaos Dork
5/23/18 9:38 a.m.
Tk8398 said:

I don't understand how people afford these, I feel like unless you make $150k+ (and that's assuming you live in a place with reasonably priced housing) it would be way too expensive.

84 and 96 month car loans are becoming popular

 

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
5/23/18 9:42 a.m.
MrChaos said:
Tk8398 said:

I don't understand how people afford these, I feel like unless you make $150k+ (and that's assuming you live in a place with reasonably priced housing) it would be way too expensive.

84 and 96 month car loans are becoming popular

 

They're too expensive.. 96 month loan????  Hello upside down.

TR7
TR7 Reader
5/23/18 10:32 a.m.

In reply to MrChaos :

The F150 is still an option, but the others are not full size trucks.

Our Preferred Partners
HXygFfvbijEecntEUWqjL9yEDXGdoPe0