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2012 Toyota Tundra CrewMax

Overview
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2012 Toyota Tundra CrewMax Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.4

Toyota's full-size Tundra Pickup truck is a genuine workhorse every bit the equal of long-established pickup trucks from Ford, Chevy and Ram. Although offered only as a half-ton model, the 2012 Toyota Tundra full-size pickup is a very capable machine, with horsepower, towing and payload numbers the same or better than its domestic (and one foreign) rivals. The U.S.-built 2012 Toyota Tundra leads the pack in a number of areas, including safety. In fact, the Tundra was the first full-size pickup to receive a Top Safety Pick award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS.org).

You'll Like This Car If...

If you need a tough and rugged truck that knows how to pamper its occupants, the 2012 Toyota Tundra is worth checking out. With the right configuration, the Tundra's payload exceeds one ton and towing capacity can go to 10,400 pounds.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're used to the smaller and more nimble Toyota Tacoma, the 2012 Toyota Tundra may feel far too large. Maneuverability and fuel economy are hardly the Tundra's strong points, and unlike some larger competitors, there is no 3/4- or 1-ton model, dually rear end or diesel-engine option.

What's New for 2012

The 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup has its options list simplified to a few well-equipped packages, adding a new Chrome Package on Double Cab and CrewMax models. The Limited and TRD Rock Warrior trims gain a standard rearview camera.

Driving the Tundra CrewMax

Driving Impressions From behind the wheel, there is no getting around that the 2012 Toyota Tundra full-size pickup is a really big truck. A tall, upright seating position makes it easier to...

see over the big hood, but the Tundra's overall girth, like all trucks in this segment, requires some top-notch driving skills when navigating narrow roads or confined quarters. The Limited trim's rearview camera is a great help when parking or attaching a trailer and really should be standard on all models. As for how the 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup drives, we found the big Toyota offers excellent steering feel and a better highway ride than some of its competitors. The good handling and solid body have everything to do with the Tundra's frame, which features a fully-boxed front section, partially-boxed C-channel under the passenger compartment and more flexible open C-channel below the bed. Of the two V8 engine choices, we prefer the 5.7-liter V8. With 381 horses on tap, this engine has no problem moving the Tundra even with a full cab and a loaded bed.

Comprehensive Accessories
Toyota offers a comprehensive assortment of more than three dozen dealer-installed items, including exterior and interior trim upgrades, cargo-bed accessories and performance and handling enhancements from Toyota's performance brand, TRD.

i-Force 5.7-liter V8
The 2012 Toyota Tundra's optional i-Force 5.7-liter V8 makes 71 more horsepower than the also-optional 4.6-liter V8, yet, with the technology of variable-valve timing and the benefits of a 6-speed automatic transmission, almost matches the fuel economy of the standard V6. Both the engine and transmission are built in the U.S.

2012 Toyota Tundra CrewMax Details
Interior

A big project can call for hauling big people and bigger equipment, and the 2012 Toyota Tundra has both areas covered. CrewMax models can comfortably hold up to six adults plus provide multiple storage areas for toolboxes, jumper cables and extra gear. Adding to the Tundra's comfort level is a rear seat in the Double Cab model that has more rearward angle than in other trucks, making the small space more suitable for long trips. If 4-passenger (or more) accommodations are what you seek, however, it's the CrewMax you'll be wanting. With its fore-and-aft-adjustable rear seats and adjustable seatback, the 2012 Toyota Tundra CrewMax pickup is the ultimate people-hauler.

Exterior

The 2012 Toyota Tundra full-size pickup boasts the tough, in-your-face attitude demanded by full-size pickup buyers. Although still clearly a product of Toyota design, the Tundra's huge chrome grille surround, prominent hood bulge and sculpted lower door edges make it as formidable as any of its rivals. While the base Regular Cab model looks rather pedestrian with its black grille and bumper, up-level trims show off a lot more chrome and flashy options. The Double Cab model features shorter half doors for accessing the small rear seat, while the CrewMax models are easily identifiable by their longer cabs, shorter beds and long rear doors. Toyota also offers a Work Truck package that equips the 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup with a vinyl bench seat, rubber flooring and a choice between the 4.0-liter V6 or the 4.7-liter V8.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Standard equipment on the most basic 2012 Toyota Tundra Regular Cab pickup includes a V6 engine, limited-slip differential, trailer sway control, dual-zone manual climate controls and an AM/FM stereo with a single-disc CD player. The SR5 trim of the Double Cab and CrewMax includes power front seats, AM/FM stereo with 6-disc CD changer and heated outside mirrors. The Limited trim level includes a billet-style grille, front and rear parking sonar, rearview camera, heated leather seats, a bed-rail system and a JBL audio unit. With 270 horsepower, the standard 4.0-liter V6 is more powerful than many V8s of the recent past. Only those who regularly haul massive loads and tow large trailers will truly miss the extra power of the optional V8s.

Optional Equipment

Most optional equipment on the 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup is packaged into either the mid-level SR5 or the up-scale Limited trims. One significant stand-alone option is a bundle that includes a DVD-based satellite navigation system, Bluetooth phone connectivity, rearview camera and a JBL audio system. The 2-door Regular Cab and 4-door Double Cab are available with 61/2- and 8-foot bed lengths, while the CrewMax has a 51/2-foot bed. The Platinum Package available on CrewMax Limited trims includes heated and ventilated seats, 20-inch chrome wheels, navigation, a power sunroof and wood-trim interior. The 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup offers a long list of dealer-installable accessories. These include remote engine start, 22-inch wheels, bed extender and numerous TRD (Toyota Racing Development) items.

Under the Hood

The 2012 Toyota Tundra offers three engine choices: the standard 270-horsepower 4.0-liter V6, a 310-horsepower 4.6-liter V8 or the 381-horsepower 5.7-liter V8. The V6 comes with a 5-speed automatic with uphill/downhill shift logic, while the V8s are mated to a 6-speed automatic. Since the 5.7 liter makes 71 horsepower more than the 4.6 liter and gets almost the same fuel mileage as the V6, the vast majority of Tundra buyers select the big engine. All three engines employ several technologies allowing them to produce both big power and reasonable economy. Variable-valve timing optimizes engine performance for changing conditions and demands, and the V8's 6-speed automatic transmission employs a low first gear to aid low-speed acceleration and two overdrive gears to maximize highway economy.

4.0-liter V6
270 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
278 lb-ft. of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/20

4.6-liter V8
310 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
327 lb-ft of torque @ 3,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/20 (2WD), 14/19 (4WD)

5.7-liter V8
381 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
401 lb-ft of torque @ 3,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/18 (2WD); 13/17 (4WD), 13/18 (4WD, E85)


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2012 Toyota Tundra Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.0
Out of 10

Based on 971 Ratings for the 2007 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.1/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.2/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

great american built truck!!!

By on Wednesday, April 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,795

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"smooth riding, excellent on long trips, tows like a beast. best purchase in a long time. will keep this for a long time."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Great Truck

By on Saturday, April 25, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 53,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fun to drive"

Cons: "Need diesel option"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Only have had a few issues with this truck. Main control chip for the engine went bad due to flex fuel problem. It was fixed and haven't had a problem since. Great truck wish they had a diesel option. Will buy this model again hope they keep building and improving on this platform."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Makes me Smile

By on Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 51,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Let me start by saying I've had most of the brands through the years - Chevy, GMC, Ford, and Dodge. I'm not sure if that makes me qualified to review or not. Toyota builds quality vehicles and this Tundra is the perfect example of that. The exterior look may not be for everyone, but every time I look at it from the front or side, it makes me smile. Perfect balance of toughness and form. Engine pulls like a Indy car, tranny shifts exactly where it should without delay (Take Note Dodge), and tows like a freight train. Ride is a little choppy but it goes exactly where pointed without complaint. Interior is made with high quality components, buttons and knobs are where they are supposed to be and work as designed. Overall one of the best full size trucks out there."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Excellent Truck

By on Sunday, April 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 130,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Driving, towing, reliability and drivability"

Cons: "Flat Paint"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is a great full size truck from Toyota, and it tows like a champ. It is reliable, dependable and a nice riding/driving truck. Gas mileage is what it is, on a flat highway with no headwind you can see 17mpg at about 67mph. It's fairly quiet on the inside and is very stable driving. The truck is big, and if you're not used to driving a big vehicle it will take some getting used to, I guess my only complaint is about the paint, like on most white Toyotas of this vintage and older, the white paint appears flat, when it's fresh out of detail it looks like a new truck, however, 3 months later it's looking flat again. Other than that it's a great truck!"

20 people out of 37 found this review helpful

Great truck for the price

By on Wednesday, April 01, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 32,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Lots of room, tows great, good interior features"

Cons: "Rough ride. no auto headlights"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I priced all the major fullsize 4-dr p/u's last year and chose the 2014 Tundra, SR5 package with 5.7l. I haul two horses to rodeos and it pulls like a champ. Mileage isn't that great, but what do you expect for a 5.7l? Ride is not as comfy as Chevy but better than Dodge. I like SR5 features of backup camera and full retracting rear window. Backseat room most of any trucks I looked at. Also, made in San Antonio, TX, which helped with delivery charge."

1 person out of 4 found this review helpful

Great truck

By on Thursday, March 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 13,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Better than every domestic truck made. period."

Cons: "slight 4x4 driving dynamic issue at 0-5 mph."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The only complaint I have is there is a wobbly driving dynamic when turning corners at very slow speed with 4 wheel drive engaged (like when turning tight corners in parking lots, etc). I assume this is because of sensors shifting the drive to different wheels or something. Otherwise I love the truck. It drives great. It is incredibly quick for a truck. Way faster than any other trucks I have driven (domestics). Hauled 1800 pounds of dirt in the back and hardly noticed. Pulled a Uhaul trailer 400 miles with no problem. I have never even been close to being stuck with it. Great truck."

4 people out of 6 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?