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Reviews Used Truck Guide: 2014+ Toyota Tundra

17:50  15 may  2021
17:50  15 may  2021 Source:   driving.ca

2021 Toyota Tundra Long-Term Review, Part 1 of 3

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a car parked on the side of a mountain © Provided by Driving.ca

With decades of baked-in experience with trucks and 4x4s, the Toyota Tundra hit model-year 2014 with a significant update which featured revised looks, enhanced features, and a new interior treatment.

Though much of the underpinnings of the Tundra were carried over, the 2014 model-year updates served to keep Toyota’s popular pickup relevant and appealing in a highly competitive segment, which also included models like the RAM 1500, Chevrolet Silverado and Nissan Titan.

Offering shoppers a time-tested and familiar platform and drivelines, the 2014+ Toyota Tundra is popular among shoppers who prefer to drive a pickup with proven and familiar tech.

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  Pickup Review: 2021 Toyota Tundra The Toyota Tundra is pretty old if you look at it in car years. But it’s only middle age if you look at it in truck years. No matter which way you cut it, 2007 was a long time ago and that’s when this generation of Toyota Tundra debuted. Sure it was refreshed for 2014 but the hard points like the engine, transmission, and chassis largely carried over. But trucks age slower than cars. The things we want from a truck aren’t as affected by the passage of time as the things we want from a car. And the Tundra? It’s aging well. The Tundra is Toyota’s competitor to the impossibly best-selling F-150 and other full-size domestic trucks.

Look for standard V8 power throughout the line, with options including two V8 engines – a 4.6-litre, 310 horsepower unit, or a 5.7-litre unit with 381 ponies. Look for automatic transmissions all around, as well as no shortage of trim grades, body configurations, and special edition models to cater to a wide range of needs and tastes.

If you’ll use your Tundra for towing, consider a 2016 or newer unit if it’s in your budget: for this year, an upgraded towing package was fitted, complete with a transmission cooler.

Here are 5 important things to know, before you buy a used Toyota Tundra.

a car driving down a dirt road with a mountain in the background:  2021 Toyota Tundra © Toyota 2021 Toyota Tundra

Cam tower oil leak

Some Tundra owners have reported oil leakage from the cam towers on the 5.7 litre V8 engine. Many have a not. Leaky cam tower seals, or leaky camshaft seals, can cause visible oil leakage from the engine, which may or may not result in a visible oil leak beneath the vehicle. On your test drive, carefully check the oil level, and carefully inspect the engine for signs of this leak—seeking professional assistance if you’re not sure how.

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Though this issue didn’t affect most units, it could result in an expensive repair outside of warranty, which could cost you money. For best results, have the specific unit you’re considering checked over by a technician before you buy.

Slow starting

Once you’ve returned from your test drive, the Tundra’s engine will be nice and warm. Turn it off for 5 minutes or so, and then, restart it. Some owners say they’ve experienced difficulty re-starting a warm engine after a few minutes, in this situation. Most have not.

If the engine struggles to re-start while warm, or takes too long to fire back up, there may be a problem with its fuel system, caused by a bad calculation within the engine computer. Toyota issued a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) to help dealers correct this problem, via a simple software update.

a blue truck driving down a dirt road:  2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro © Derek McNaughton 2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro

Braking system check

Having the Tundra’s braking system checked out before you buy can save you money and headaches, while improving safety on the road. A braking system check is relatively quick and easy, and can provide plenty of peace of mind.

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  2011 Toyota Tundra: What You Need to Know Good safety scores make the 2011 Toyota Tundra a practical choice among full-size trucks. Reviewers loved the Tundra’s powerful engine choices and spacious crew cab body styles. The 2011 Toyota Tundra is ranked: #6 in 2011 Full Size Pickup Trucks #42 in Used Full Size Trucks under $25K Reviewers said that the 2011 Tundra’s handling fell short of some rivals. They noted that the Tundra has a firm suspension, which results in a particularly rough ride. The 2011 Tundra’s base engine is a V6 that few reviewers tested. Most tested Tundras equipped with one of the two available V8s, which provide ample power.

In addition to general braking system condition and wear, a technician will also check the parking brake during a pre-purchase inspection (PPI), which has been identified as a problem area by some owners who say the parking brake may become weak over time.

If that’s the case, the parking brake may not hold the Tundra in place when in use, and this may prevent the truck you’re considering from passing its safety inspection. Fixing a weak parking brake is typically a quick and inexpensive process that can prevent headaches down the line.

Maintenance is key

Even the most reliable vehicles on the road can become a problem waiting to happen if not cared for properly by past owners. As vehicles age, ongoing maintenance and care are more important predictors of reliability and dependability than the badge on the vehicle’s hood.

Translation? The Toyota badge doesn’t make a second-hand Tundra reliable – the way its past owners cared for it does. Always seek out a used unit with full servicing records for maximum peace of mind, remembering that a warranty claim (if required), can be denied if you can’t prove that none of the vehicle’s servicing and inspections have been skipped.

2017 Toyota Prius V: What You Need to Know

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The most reliable used Toyota Tundra for you will tend to be the unit that’s been the best cared for by its past owners. If full service records aren’t available, consider a full fluid-change and tune-up as a first step after your purchase, for maximum peace of mind.

a close up of a car:  2020 Toyota Tundra Crewmax TRD Pro © Jil McIntosh 2020 Toyota Tundra Crewmax TRD Pro

Driveline and suspension check

On your test drive of a used Tundra, a few exercises can coax telltale warning sounds from the vehicle driveline and suspension, which can give potential issues away.

Be sure to drive over a rough surface after quieting the vehicle’s cabin, listening for unwanted popping or clunking sounds from beneath the vehicle, which could indicate suspension wear or the need for replacement parts.

While parked, turn the steering wheel fully from one side to the other, several times and at several different speeds. If anything sounds or feels unusual in the process, have the steering rack and front-end checked for signs of wear.

Lock the vehicle into first or second gear at a low speed and prod the throttle repeatedly to rapidly load and unload the Tundra’s driveline. This  might be uncomfortable from the driver’s seat, but any clunking or banging sounds you hear in the process, especially from the rear of the truck, can be taken as a sign that further investigation of the driveshaft, differential carrier, and motor mounts is required.

Note that the use of some non-factory suspension or driveline parts can negatively impact the Tundra’s performance, durability and warranty.

Final thought

These tips are designed to help test-driving shoppers more easily identify possible trouble areas reported by some owners. An attentive test-drive and shopping process that focuses on the areas above can help you find a first-class example of a second-hand Toyota Tundra.

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The 2017 Toyota Yaris has an almost-perfect predicted reliability rating and good crash test scores, but its underpowered engine, poor handling, and stiff seats keep it from ranking higher than midpack among subcompact cars. The 2017 Toyota Yaris is ranked: #9 in 2017 Subcompact Cars #23 in Used Subcompact Cars $10K to $15K #24 in 2017 Hatchbacks #31 in 2017 Affordable Small Cars #33 in Used Small Cars $12K to $14K #39 in Used Hatchbacks $12K to $15K Is the 2017 Toyota Yaris a Good Used Car? The 2017 Yaris is just an average used subcompact car.

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