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Old 08-18-2014, 09:21 PM   #1
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Asking for Toyota Tundra owners and tow veterans...

I apologize if this thread has been already spoken for but I couldn't come up with specifics via Search, so...

I didn't get a good response about a Nissan Titan as a tow vehicle. In addition, that one was 4wd and now I'm thinking I really don't need that. There have been a couple 4wd owners that said it was good to have when you REALLY need it but hopefully I'll be able to avoid getting stuck, and I'll have AAA for towing. I can see if I drop the 4wd in my TV search, the price goes way down (not to mention my future truck insurance) and the gas mileage goes up slightly. I'm trying to find out whether the Toyota Tundra, 2008 or newer, is a good TV. If I go that route, should it be a V8? I will be pulling a 2005 International 28 through the western states... and not necessarily very fast. I found a 2012 2wd 5.7L Crew Cab that has 9900 lbs towing capacity, 1665 lbs payload capacity, 7000 lbs GVW, 381 horsepower@5600rpm, and 401 torque@3600rpm. My trailer weighs about 6,000 lbs empty; not sure about weight yet for carrying stuff for two adults. The AS dealer says that's more than enough and he can set up my towing package accordingly. I have two months to find a TV. This has 37k miles and is going for $26k. Any opinions? Thank you in advance.
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Old 08-18-2014, 10:08 PM   #2
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Asking for Toyota Tundra owners and tow veterans...

I have an '08 Tundra 5.7 Ltr V8. And I could not be happier.
I replaced a '98 Dodge 2500 that was a real dog. Old technology.
My Tundra had 9,000 miles, yes 9,000 when I bought it. Paid $18K for it. I thought I got a really GOOD deal.
Make sure the Tundra or any truck you get has the tow package. Also with the Tundra the 5.7 Ltr V8 is the best choice.
I don't think you will be disappointed with the Tundra.
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Old 08-18-2014, 11:24 PM   #3
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I too am towing with an '08 5.7L Tundra and it is all I need when it comes to pulling my 25FB. Mine is lighter and I estimate I am running down the road right about 6500. I purchased mine new and it now has just about 65K trouble free miles, many of those towing the Airstream. Just got back today from a 1000 mile trip through western Montana. Pulled Lookout pass at 63mph and I didn't have my foot in it either. A 5.7L Tundra is a great puller.

But, as has been said many times here, it is "just" a half ton and it is limited when it comes to payload. Check the numbers and decide if your camping style will match up with the Tundra. We travel light and this has been a great TV for us.
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Old 08-19-2014, 12:39 AM   #4
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My 2008 5.7 Tundra Limited has towed both my 99- 27 foot Safari and my 95- 25 foot Excella. It has been a great truck.
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Old 08-19-2014, 01:33 AM   #5
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Thanks all. That's three consistent and favorable reviews. 9k miles for $18k? Geeesh!!!
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Old 08-19-2014, 04:18 AM   #6
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We have a 2008 Tundra CrewMax Limited TRD, 5.7L V8, 2WD, with tow package.

Besides our 19' Bambi that weighs about 4,400 pounds, we alternately tow a 27' Bayliner cabin cruiser on a triple axle trailer that weighs about 8,500 pounds.

Before buying our Tundra, we had a 1978 Chevy crewcab 3/4 ton pickup with 454 V8 and tow package. It would pull about anything, but it sucked gas (5-7 mpg on the flats while NOT towing, and 2.5-3 mpg on grades while towing our Bayliner).

Our Tundra will out-tow our old Chevy; and with our Bambi hooked up, it will accelerate up any highway grade faster than anyone would want to drive. Plus, it gets 13.5 mpg towing on the flats and 16.5 mpg in mountain driving below 45 mph. When not towing, it gets 16-18 mpg at 75 mph, and has achieved 23.5 mpg at 55 mph using cruise control on the flats.

Since purchasing the Tundra new in 2008, we have 65,000 trouble-free miles on it; and the only money spent has been for gas, a set of tires, a battery and periodic maintenance.

As others have mentioned, if you decide on a Tundra, make sure to get a 2007 or later model with the big V8, towing package and tow mirrors. These factory installed options include several heavy duty upgrades that are needed for towing. (Note: Earlier models were smaller, about the size of a Toyota Tacoma, and have less towing capacity.)

Also, you should be aware that the 2007, 2008 and possibly 2009 Tundras with 4WD had some problems in the front gearbox. I don't recall the specifics; but that's one of the reasons why we bought the 2WD model.

(The other reasons were that in years and years of previous towing experience, we never needed 4WD; so I couldn't see paying extra for an option that added weight and complexity to the drivetrain, reduced fuel economy, and cost more to repair, especially when it was unlikely that 4WD would ever be used. Also, we don't ever take our Bambi or Bayliner off-road, because it would beat them up.)

I suspect that any front gearbox problems were fixed under warranty years ago. However, you might want to make a note for future reference.

Also, please be aware that the Toyota Tundra 4WD is NOT full-time; it should only be used for driving off-pavement, or in mud, snow, sand, etc. If my memory is correct from when I researched the Tundra in 2008, driving with 4WD engaged on dry pavement will seriously affect handling, especially when cornering, and it may damage the drivetrain.
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Old 08-19-2014, 06:50 AM   #7
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We are still looking for our Airstream, but bought a new 2014 Tundra V8 5.8 liter crew cab with tow package and 4 WD. We know we can now save up for the Airstream, and TV won't be a factor.

The 4 WD is selected by moving a dial on the dashboard. So you only have it "on" if you manually select it.

It is my daily driver, and replaced a Honda Pilot. I LOVE driving my Tundra. The 2 things I like about my model the best are that mine has the rear window that rolls all the way down completely. So it's like having a convertible in the shade. I can cruise at highway speeds with the back window down with no loud blustery wind in my face, but that open air feeling.

Second thing I like is how the rear seats fold up flush against the back of the cab. The floor space in the backseat area is about as large as the back of the Pilot had behind the second row. So for my trips to the store, running errands, etc, I can easily put everything in the back seat, no need to use the truck bed unless I am actually hauling something.

I am averaging 15.2 MPG all around with a mix of probably 65% city 35% highway driving.

And it does fit in the garage.
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Old 08-19-2014, 07:25 AM   #8
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You should watch this:
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Old 08-19-2014, 07:42 AM   #9
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Then watch this one

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Old 08-19-2014, 08:47 AM   #10
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Very Happy

We have a 2011 Tundra that we use to tow our Safari, now have 47,000 trouble-free miles on it and couldn't be happier.

It has ended up being my daily driver as well and while it doesn't get "quite" the gas mileage that my wife's Camry gets.....

At some point will upgrade to a 25 or 27 foot to get bigger bathroom and get away from the corner bed, but based on the way it tows, have full confidence that I will be happy with it for years to come.

For what it's worth, this is the 5th Toyota product that we have had in the family in the last 40 years and have been very happy with all of them.

Plus I get constant comments from folks about how much they like the Spruce Mica green color.

Dana
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Old 08-19-2014, 09:45 AM   #11
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2010 Tundra Double Cab 2x4, 5.7L. tows our 2008 Classic 25fb which is 6000lbs empty. Hitch weight is close to 1200lbs when the trailer is loaded and I have two bikes on the Arkiva tongue bike racks. I use an Equalizer with 1000lb bars. I haven't towed it in the Rockies yet but it has been fine driving around the Ozarks hills. Longest trip was from DFW to Orlando. Mileage is in the 11mpg to 13mpg range driving 60mph. With the 26 gallon tank a 250 mile range is possible. I chose not to get the crew cab because the bed is shorter and I didn't need the big back seat. The double cab is big enough for most back seat passengers. I have the SR trim level which has basic AC controls nothing fancy. I purchased the towing mirrors and installed them myself. I typically tow out of overdrive in 5th gear and the mileage doesn't seem to suffer and the transmission doesn't shift unless you encounter a hill. If the road is flat I'll shift to 6th. RPMs at 60 in 5th are around 2000rpm and 6th about 1500 to 1600.
I think you will be happy with a Tundra. The 5.7L is a beast in third gear and so far will maintain 55-60mph on the hills I've encountered so far. When I was looking for my Tundra I chose the transmission shifter on the console rather on the steering column. Makes it easier to shift.
If you are going to be doing a lot of boondocking a 4x4 would be advisable.

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Old 08-19-2014, 11:04 AM   #12
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2011 Tundra SR5 as a Tow Vehicle

We pull a 2008 Safari LS with slide out with our Toyota. As you know this trailer has a very heavy tongue weight and GVW. Our Toyota is equipped the same as the vehicle you are looking at. We have had no issues or problems towing this trailer, tows great with an EZ-Lift hitch and 1000 bars. Gas mileage is around 12.5 towing at 55 mph, around 11 at 60-65 mph. We currently have 100,000 miles on our truck and looking to get another 50,000 at least.
Happy RV'ing,
Hank and Cheri
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Old 08-19-2014, 11:35 AM   #13
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Thank you again... I think you all have made a very good case for a Tundra being a dependable TV. I'm finding out most AS owners are partial to their current TV, usually after past experiences, and like with children, they tend to be partial to the vehicle that tows their home on wheels. Definitely the modern day horse - they can grow on you.

- Jeff
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Old 08-19-2014, 12:35 PM   #14
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Another question: how do you 2wd pick up owners deal with winter driving with an empty truck bed? Do you use a bale of hay? Do you ever wish you had a SUV instead?
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