Research

2012 Toyota Tundra Review

The Car Connection Expert Rating Breakdown?

8.0
on a scale of 1 to 10
Styling
7.0
Expert Rating
Performance
8.0
Expert Rating
Comfort & Quality
8.0
Expert Rating
Safety
8.0
Expert Rating
Features
9.0
Expert Rating
Fuel Economy
5.0
Expert Rating

The Car Connection Expert Review

Just as tough as the competition, the 2012 Toyota Tundra isn't quite as rugged-looking, as fuel-efficient, or as strong in the towing department.

It's been a big, expensive experiment, and the Toyota Tundra is clearly a glass half full for Japan's biggest automaker. Toyota had plans to conquer the big truck market just as it had done in sedans and economy cars. Almost $2 billion later, and the Tundra sells about a third as well as the Ram 1500, and far off the pace of the big GM and Ford pickups.

It's not outdated like today's Nissan Titan, but the Tundra suffers from some of the same problems as that other Japanese pickup. Like the Titan, the Tundra doesn't quite look like the other full-size pickups, a liability in a market where image is second only to outright capability. Even the Tundra's interior grasps for carlike cues, misfiring on both the look and finish.

On performance, the Tundra isn't very far behind the competition. Its big V-8 powertrains have more than a little Lexus in them, in terms of smoothness and power delivery. But the mainstream V-8 Tundra barely outpaces the base Ford F-150 now, and the Tundra's towing capacity has stayed the same, while some of the domestics now outclass it by a thousand pounds or more. The Tundra has a sometimes choppy ride, though, like the smaller Tacoma pickup. And gas mileage has been on the rise in Detroit, but it's lagged in San Antonio, where the Tundra is built.

Of course, the Tundra meets the big guys head to head for choice in drivetrains, body styles and bed lengths. It's also up to the task in safety, where it has a share of the lead, and in the outright span of its lineup, which covers all the ground between work trucks and pseudo-luxury-SUV trucks, with only a few of the latest tech features left on the table.

If anything, the Tundra still looks a little too imported, and drives a little too big, even for the people who dream about hauling capacity and off-road capability. Truck sales are down sharply, so it's hard to judge the Tundra a success or a failure, since the last few years don't give suitable comps. Toyota has plenty at stake in the truck market now, and for sure, the rapid, yearly improvements in the Ford and Ram trucks don't make the Tundra's job any easier.

The Car Connection Consumer Review

1 Review
5 star
100%
4 star
0%
3 star
0%
2 star
0%
1 star
0%
Rate and Review your car for The Car Connection! Tell us your own ratings for a vehicle you own. Rate your car on Performance, Safety, Features and more.
Write a Review
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
For 2012 Toyota Tundra

I believe this one is a Winner

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
This review is for my Tundra Limited 4 x 4. Purchased it used 25000 miles. It has all the " Bells and Whistles " you could want. First owner added running boards that extend and retract when the doors are... + More »
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
Saturday, September 5, 2015
2015 Toyota Tundra CrewMax 5.7L FFV V8 6-Speed AT 1794 (Natl)

Huge improvement from my 2013 Tundra I had

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
The interior is awesome, I got mine with every option came in at 57k. Worth every penny. The sound system is Great. Much better then the Denali system I had in 2009. The leather seats look amazing and the... + More »
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
For 2015 Toyota Tundra

Worst vehicle I have ever owned.

  • Overall Rating
  • Interior/Exterior
  • Performance
  • Comfort and Quality
  • Safety
  • Features
  • Fuel Economy / MPG
  • Reliability
Purchased my 2008 Tundra new. Later that year it accelerated out of control. Curiously as part of the acceleration problem the stereo system blew out when it accelerated. I believe it's an ale trivial problem... + More »
people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful? Yes
See all user reviews »
Looking for other models of the Toyota Tundra?
Read reviews & get prices
Compare the 2012 Toyota Tundra against the competition
Compare All Cars