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2012 Toyota Tundra Regular Cab

Overview
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2012 Toyota Tundra Regular Cab 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 Regular Cab

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 Regular Cab 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 952 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
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Excellent truck, performance and ride a great.

By on Friday, January 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Price, resale value, great ride and performance."

Cons: "No heavy duty options."

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

"This is my second Tundra and both have been exceptional vehicles. Performance is excellent, I tow an enclosed trailer and utility trailers; the vehicle has no problems with trailering on steep hills and handles heavy trailering loads without any problems. The ride is excellent and I have experienced no problems with either of the two Tundra's owned. The gas mileage is satisfactory, of course I would like better mileage, but with 381 horsepower you can't have everything. I would recommend the Tundra for towing up to about 11,000 lbs. Hopefully Toyota will follow Nissan's lead and consider a diesel motor and it would be nice to have options for a 3/4 ton or even heavier trucks. Performs more like a 3/4 ton truck than a 1/2 ton."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Great work truck

By on Tuesday, January 27, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 68,400

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
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Beautiful and comfortable ride."

Cons: "Extra long bed is difficult to park some places."

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

"This Tundra has it all. Extra long (8 foot) bed will hold full sheets of plywood with the tailgate closed. Snugtop cap in matching color (Cobalt Blue or Blue Ribbon paint). Crew max four door cab with premium sound system with in dash multi CD changer and JBL speakers. Front and rear parking warning system (Sonar). Very clean inside and out, runs great, lots of power in the 5.7 L V8 engine. Receiver hitch and tow package. A beast of a work truck!"

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Great truck with very few minor issues

By on Sunday, January 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,000

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
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great in the back country, great visibility,"

Cons: "Poor mileage, noisy suspension"

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

"I'm surprised Toyota can't get better mileage out of a Tundra today. Their local dealership is outstanding in all areas of service and other brands of vehicles should take lessons. I love the Toyota brand and 3 of my 4 immediate family members drive them. These should exceed 20 mpg and I hope Toyota gets this improved very quickly."

23 people out of 46 found this review helpful

Tundra Crew Max Limited TRD

By on Wednesday, January 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "its all personel taste"

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

"I had 2 Sequoias a 2008/2010 Platinum's and this Tundra an Excellent truck. I am in my 58th new vehicle, I enjoy driving this more than my Mercedes ,Smooth and quiet very comfortable, very powerful. I went to the car show to see all the trucks and I had to get a 2013 Toyota instead of a 14 due to the body style change ,they lost me on that one ,If I wanted a gm I would have got one"

8 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Excellent interior design

By on Friday, December 26, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000

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
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Dependability, easy access controls"

Cons: "Gas mileage"

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

"Only downside is the gas mileage, but what do you expect from a large, powerful full size truck. I love how convenient the interior controls are to reach and adjust. And you cannot beat that Toyota dependability. Great vehicle!"

45 people out of 87 found this review helpful

Seriously great!

By on Thursday, December 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,500

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
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfort, turning radius, towing, visibility, power"

Cons: "Bump rear window control button with knee."

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

"This Crewmax has exceeded my expectations. A daily driver over my wifes car. A 10,000 lb camp trailer hauler in steep terrain without a single hesitation. Bench seating for six people on several 1,500 mile trips was just fine. Gas mileage is 15 to 17 year around. Back country muddy roads are no problem. Visibility is great and the back up camera makes for hooking up a breeze. The turning radius impresses everyone that rides with me. I would buy another one if anything happens to my truck."

1 person out of 1 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?