OK, on to the next in a series on pickup trucks. The 2005 Toyota Tundra Double Cab LTD 4X4 V8 is Japan’s way of going Off Broadway to say “I can do anything you can do, better, I can do anything better than you. Yes I can, yes I can…” Remember the lyrics to Annie Get your Gun?
Well, can they? Chrysler, GM and Ford would take issue with that and America still has the corner on the truck market. Why, because they are better, older or more experienced? Probably a little of each. But Toyota for one Japanese company is putting the pressure on with the likes of Tundra and Tacoma (publication March 12) while Nissan hits hard with the Frontier and Titan.
To see the seriousness of competition in the truck market one only need look at the heavy advertising push of the Japanese to look as tough as the image portrayed by Dodge Ram “Grab life by the horns”, Ford Tough and “Built Like a Rock” Chevy.
Handling & Performance:
This is serious stuff. Trucks are the business end of transportation and we all expect they are the closest thing to indestructible go anywhere vehicles. They must pull a house, carry a ton of rock and sand or lighten the job of hauling a load of bricks. And all the time it has to do zero to 60 in under 7 seconds. We don’t ask much, huh? Well this Tundra helped me do all those things and you gotta believe the Big 3 are on notice that Japan is here to stay in the truck market.
A truck’s a truck’s a truck… well perhaps unless you forget about the marvelous Retro Chevy SSR we talked about recently, a truck is rather boring and more utilitarian by nature. And in the end all the hoopla about design means little when considering how well do they do all the stuff a truck needs to do for you.
Fit and Finish:
Great. And that’s ok, but not all that necessary. I’d rather have a 110 outlet in the back of the cargo area and tie downs. Hey this is business, and even if you don’t haul a ton of hay home to the range you need practical goodies to entice me to choose between the competition. Are you listening Truck makers?
All trucks are over priced.
I would prefer, as noted above, more truck adornments than all the luxury items that should be optional. A truck should have neat utility ideas put into action. That’s what real men want in their helpmate.
Standard equipment should include a Skill and Chain Saw, Rotating Hammer Drill, hay loader, and power outlets and cargo lights. I’ll bet if manufacturers asked designing engineers to give a little thought to what “Tool Time” things guys like, they would draw a lot of interest to their products by adding such things.
Come-on guys think!
As always, review the application you primarily intend for a trucks use in your life and then find the one that fits best. Ok, so I have a keen sense of the obvious, but often we get distracted by how cool they look and then spend years regretting the choice. Kinda like looking for a wife, eh.
Toyota Tundra $16-33,000, Ford F-150 $20-36,000, GMC Sierra 1500 $18-42,000, Chevrolet Silverdo 1500 $18-39,000, Nissan Titan $23-35,000, Dodge Ram 1500 $21,355.
Perceived Toyota quality, V-8 power, roomy and comfortable ride.
Poor fuel economy which you’d expect as the flip-side of having V8 power.
4.7 liter 282 hp V8 engine, 5-speed automatic trans, touch select 4 WD system, power steering and power vented ABS front disc and rear drum brakes, tire pressure monitor, fog lamps, dbl wall cargo bed with tie down hooks, rail caps and locking tailgate, mudguards, captains chairs center console, 60/40 split rear seat, AC, AM/FM with cassette and CD players and steering wheel controls, power windows, locks and mirrors, anti theft with remote entry, cruise control and tilt steering wheel.
15 City and 18 Highway MPG.
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