The 2017 Toyota Tundra is a full-size pickup with loads of room, good cargo and hauling capacity and several standout features.
While the Tundra is capable, holdovers from the last major upgrade leave it at a disadvantage compared to the Ford F-150 and the 2017 RAM 1500.
With available seating for up to six, the 2017 Tundra is available in a range of configurations and trim levels to match your need.
2017 Toyota Tundra Review Summary
While the rest of the full-size pickup class offers multiple engine options, the 2017 Toyota Tundra only comes with a standard V8. That’s great for power and towing, but it hits hard when it comes to fuel economy.
The 2017 Toyota Tundra starts at $30,120 and the new TRD Pro model comes in at $46,110 if you need a full off-road experience.
We spent our time in the Tundra SR5 4×4 with the Off Road Package and SR5 Upgrade Package, both of which are worth looking into if you are using the Tundra as a daily driver and not just a job site workhorse. The Safety and Convenience package adds on Blind Spot Monitoring, rear cross traffic alerts and the very helpful front and rear parking assist sensors that let you know when you are close to something.
2017 Toyota Tundra Performance
The 2017 Toyota Tundra we tested included the $2,030 TRD Off-Road package that gives the Tundra 18-inch rims, Michelin LTX all terrain wheels, Bilstein dampers, skid plates under the truck and a TRD Off-Road decal on each side of the bed.
While the ride is not outlandishly rough, you will feel bumps on city streets and on the highway. On rougher roads the dampers deliver better performance helping diminish the impact you feel from large potholes or very rough railroad crossings.
Toyota still uses hydraulic-assist steering, which doesn’t deliver the same feel as the electrically assisted steering you will find on most competing full-size pickup trucks. This means you need to perform more adjustments to stay on target.
The only engine option is a 5.7-liter V-8 that performs well but hasn’t changed much since the debut in 2007. This delivers 381 horsepower and 401 lb.-ft of torque. Acceleration is good with plenty of power left to overtake a slower car on the highway, but Ford and Chevy full-size pickups will deliver faster 0-60 times. A six-speed transmission shifts expertly into higher gears and has no trouble downshifting to a lower gear.
Toyota equips the SR5 standard with a towing package and trailer brake control that is rated to pull 9,800 pounds.
We saw a combined fuel economy of 15.6 miles per gallon with a good mix of highway and city driving. This is good for a V8 but lower than the fuel economy you can choose on competing pickups with a V6. This is slightly better than the EPA rating. Thankfully the 38-gallon fuel tank that comes with the SR5 upgrade package delivers long driving ranges without refueling.
2017 Toyota Tundra Design & Interior
The Quicksand color on our 2017 Toyota Tundra SR5 was divisive, but you can opt for a multitude of color options. The paint protection film will help keep it looking fresh even as you test your off-road chops or use the truck for work. Although not new, the design still holds up well in 2017.
Opt for the SR5 upgrade package that replaces the front bench with two bucket seats and a large storage area. This also adds power controls for the front seats, a larger fuel tank and other upgrades. There are no heated seats unless you go up to the Limited trim level.
The cabin definitely looks dated compared to the modern looking cockpit look and feel you’ll find inside Chevy, Ram and Ford trucks, but it remains functional.
One thing we loved, and all of our passengers enjoyed, was the slide-down rear window. With all the windows open you get an almost convertible like feeling of wind rushing through the cabin. Plus, it’s just a straight up cool feature.
The rear seat includes an insane amount of space that will accommodate anyone you pick up and all of their gear. The back seats also fold up for more floor storage when you need to keep cargo away from the elements. Plan to invest in some steps for the sides if you haul shorter passengers often, or at least park near the curb.
The movable tie downs help secure cargo in the bed and you can lock the tailgate to secure cargo under a cover. The tailgate slowly opens so there is no slam when letting it down and it’s light enough that anyone can close it.
2017 Toyota Tundra Tech & Safety
The 2017 Toyota Tundra includes a 7-inch touchscreen, voice controls, Bluetooth connectivity and a backup camera, all standard.
The system is easy to use, very capable and while there is no support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto it is above average. There is optional integrated navigation that you can use to get around without fiddling with your phone.
The touchscreen responds to taps easily and it is easy to pair to your phone and use all the options. The screen is not easy to see with polarized glasses on, which is not a problem for most in-car screens, but definitely an issue on the touch screen and for the screen in the center of the dash.
Toyota’s speakers in the Tundra are anemic, lacking volume or depth. While we don’t need audiophile sound in a pickup, we expect better.
With the optional Safety and Convenience package, you gain a blind spot monitoring system and the front and rear parking sensors that make driving and parking much easier in tight spaces. This is an upgrade that everyone should add to the Tundra.
The headlights in the 2017 Toyota Tundra SR5 are not bright enough, nor do they throw light far enough for a new vehicle in 2017.
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