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STYLING | 7 out of 10
Enough chrome in its grille to deplete global reserves
Attractive gauges are not as easy to read as they could be
It looks good, but it's hardly original
The Detroit News
After facing some criticism for the smallish size and lack of true work capacity on the previous version of the Tundra, Toyota went back to the drawing board and unleashed a truly full-featured and full-size Tundra in 2007. Little has changed stylistically for the 2008 Toyota Tundra, which still sports the aggressive exterior that debuted last year.
In order to properly compete with the full-size pickups offered by the Big 3, Toyota offers "44 different flavor choices" for the 2008 Tundra, according to Motor Trend, thanks to its variety of cabs, beds, and trims. Motor Trend details the possibilities, writing that the 2008 Tundra offers "three different bed sizes, three separate wheelbases covering five different cab and bed configurations, combined with three different trim packages (Tundra Grade, SR5, and Limited)." No matter which configuration you opt for, the 2008 Toyota Tundra is characterized by "a sculpted hood, huge three-bar grille and oversized vented bumper" that The Detroit News says "combine some of the best looks of the American trucks," though additionally noting that while it "looks good," the Toyota Tundra is "hardly original."
Reviews read by TheCarConnection.com generally approved of the exterior styling on the Toyota Tundra, with Kelley Blue Book writing that the "2008 Toyota Tundra projects the assertive image that buyers of full-size pickups desire" on all trim levels. They also note that "for 2008, Toyota gives the lowest-cost version of the two-door Regular Cab model styling more consistent with that of a work truck," which Cars.com says is highlighted by "a chrome bumper and matte-black grille surround rather than a shiny black bumper and surround." Edmunds also notes that "the standard-cab truck comes only in the Grade trim," though the two other cab options are available in all three trims. The one major knock against the Toyota Tundra's exterior is the profile view; The Detroit News reviewers feel that, "from the side, the Tundra looks disproportionate, especially when equipped with an extra long bed or largest cab," as the "front end looks too short and the four-door CrewMax cab looks too big."
The interior styling of the 2008 Toyota Tundra receives mixed reviews, as some praise its functionality, while others lament some gauge and switch characteristics. On the positive side, reviewers at ConsumerGuide laud the 2008 Toyota Tundra for its "large and well marked" instruments, along with the "generously sized and logically arranged" controls. Cars.com says the reason for the oversized gauges is that they "are designed to be easy to operate with gloved hands," a critical feature for work sites. On the complaint side, Edmunds finds that the "attractive gauges are not as easy to read as they could be, due to the individual binnacle design," and some of the center stack controls are "quite a stretch to reach from the driver seat, especially in Tundras equipped with the navigation system." Motor Trend seconds that opinion, claiming that the navigation system is "almost out of arm's reach for the driver."
The overall styling on the 2008 Toyota Tundra isn't bad, but there's nothing remarkable to set it apart from its competitors, either.