2020 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition CrewMax Review

Messages
1,899
Location
NY, USA, etc.
I recently spent a week driving a 2020 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition Crewmax. Here are my thoughts. [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] The Exterior Still Looks Good While the third generation Tundra that debuted in 2014 is largely unchanged, there are subtle updates that make the truck look more modern. Things like the chrome grille and LED daytime running lights make sure the truck stands out from the rest. The TRD Off-Road Package adds sharp looking machined aluminum wheels. If you really want your Tundra to stand out, opt for the Voodoo Blue paint color. It really looks great in the sunlight. [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] One gripe I do have with the truck is bed access. There's simply no easy way to get in and out of the bed, or reach items in the middle. I had to stand on the rear tire to remove a couple of five gallon fuel cans from the bed. Toyota does offer an accessory step, but for a truck that costs over fifty grand, I think that is something that should come standard. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHUk-8fSepA&feature=emb_title Best Interior in a Half-Ton [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] The 1794 Edition is named after the JLC Ranch in Texas, where the Tundra and Tacoma are manufactured. 1794 is the year the ranch was founded. As such, the 1794 Edition Tundra has a western-themed interior. Maybe it is the wood grain on the steering wheel, dash, and shifter. Or possibly the La-Z-Boy-like premium brown leather bucket seats that are as comfortable as they are supportive. Either way, the inside of this truck will rival any luxury car in its price range. My favorite feature was the automatic high beams. On rural two lane roads, the truck took care of the headlight dimming and allowed me to focus on more important things like deer running across the road. Once they did engage at the wrong time and flashed someone for no reason. Sorry about that, guy in the black Audi Q5. I also had some passengers complain about the hard plastics on the dash. I honestly don't understand why some people automatically fault an interior just because there are hard plastics somewhere that are tangible. Areas like the top of the dash, knee kick panels, steering column, and glovebox are indeed hard plastic in this truck. It didn't bother me once, but some may find fault in the lack of soft-touch materials in these areas. One thing that could definitely be improved was the JBL Stereo's low-end punch. Even with nine speakers, the bass just wasn't there. The mid and high range audio sounds great, even over bluetooth. I just wish the bass response was better. The eight-inch touchscreen could use some updating, but it was nice to have hardware buttons for the home and volume controls. Everything worked as intended, and was simple enough where the owners manual wasn't needed to begin playing tunes. [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] The rear seats in this truck are enormous. There's just as much leg room in the rear of the truck as there is in the front. I also like how the entire rear window slides down into the cab, as opposed to only a tiny port window that slides horizontal in Double Cab Tundras. Underseat storage was missing from this truck - folding the rear seats up only exposes the floor. A minor inconvenience, all things considered. This truck also had the factory spray-in bedliner and an optional deck rail kit. Other than a few tie down loops, the rest of the bed is fairly basic. I would definitely option this truck with a tonneau cover and maybe even some LED lights, to make things more secure. Still The Best V8 Powertrain [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] I cannot say enough positive things about the iForce 5.7L V8 engine. Not only does it sound great, but at 381 hp and 401 lb.-ft. of torque at only 3600 RPM, it is a useable engine for a variety of different purposes. I had zero complaints while towing a 20′ boat full of fuel on a tandem-axle trailer with three people in the truck. Even on hills, the truck had great power. The tow/haul button was used, and I kept the truck in S4 as recommended on the Tundra forums. I know the transmission is "dated," but I had zero complaints about it. I was impressed with its tuning, and loved how it downshifted while braking in D. This is one of the few trucks, if not the only half-ton truck, where I felt comfortable leaving the shifter in D at all times. It would be a shame if Toyota changed this transmission for the sake of adding more gears, and it only takes one glance at the GM 8-speed fiasco to see how well that worked out. In this case, dated is good. [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] One issue I did have was with the four-wheel-drive system. In fact, I had the same problem on the Tacoma TRD Pro that I tested recently. I had a hard time getting the truck in and out of 4LO. I followed the procedure exactly as it was outlined in the owners manual, and I still could not get it to engage. On the boat ramp, I ended up using 4HI instead. I've driven trucks that were nearly twenty years old that went in an out of 4LO without any issues. Maybe the truck just needed to get broken in some more. The truck had great steering feel (for a truck.) Toyota still uses hydraulic steering rather than electric assist, and I think that plays a big part in how the steering behaves. The Bilstein shocks and off-road tires did contribute to a somewhat truck-like ride, but it never felt skittish and was always predictable - even while towing. Best Reliability and Resale = Toyota Tundra This is the number one reason for buying this truck. Reliability and resale. According to MotorBiscuit, who gets their data from Consumer Reports, the number one most reliable pickup truck is the Toyota Tundra. And according to KBB, who knows a thing or two about used car values, the number one pickup truck for highest resale value is the Toyota Tundra. These trucks just seem to run forever. Check out this thread on Tundras.com. It is a roster of members with the highest mileage on their 2014+ Toyota Tundras. bobontuesday, 226,000 miles on a 2016 redhat, 176,000 miles with routine maintenance paulskie, 160,000 miles on a 1794 Edition Or you can just check out this Tundra with one million miles on its original V8 engine. It is a second gen with a 4.7L V8. Now at 770,000 miles, the transmission did lose reverse. It also needed an alternator and a water pump in those one million miles. They also did the timing chain as part of regular maintenance. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TL7fyyUNRmA&feature=emb_title If you're trying to get the most truck for your money, the Toyota Tundra is going to win every time. With award winning reliability and resale, it is hard to justify buying any other brand. The powertrain is bulletproof, the engine sounds great, and the truck can handle anything half-ton that you can throw at it. The 1794 Edition adds an interior that rivals most luxury cars, and the truck is offered in a variety of exterior colors to suit anyone's taste. 2020 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition CrewMax Specifications [Linked Image from chrisleoonline.com] Base Price $ 48,775 Price As Tested $ 55,199 Layout Front engine, part-time 4WD, 5-passenger, 4-door pickup truck Engine 5.7L iForce V8, 32-valve DOHC w/ VVT-i, 381 hp @ 5600 rpm, 401 lb.-ft. @ 3600 rpm Transmission 6-speed automatic Curb Weight 5,670 lb. Payload/Towing Capacity 1,530 lb./8,800 lb. Fuel Capacity 38 gal. Overall Length/Width/Height 228.9 in./79.9 in./76.2 in. Wheelbase 145.7 in. Bed Length/Width/Height 66.7 in./66.4 in./22.2 in. EPA Fuel Economy, City/Highway/Combined 13 MPG/17 MPG/14 MPG Observed Fuel Economy 16.4 MPG Photo Gallery
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Messages
46,124
Location
New Jersey
Nice write up, even if more of an op/ed then a review. I like the photos you've taken. Does it have a real wood accented wheel and trim, or is it faux? To me, the exterior is nothing to write home about, and this truck would not be on my personal list as a top two or three choice, based upon mechanical or aesthetic basis... but all majors seem to have uglied up their trucks. The Colorado and Tacoma are the only ones I'd say are reasonably handsome... maybe the ram. But these giant ugly grilles really make them look bad (to me), regardless of how "functional" they may be. Just my opinion... thanks for sharing!
 
Last edited:

oilpsi2high

Thread starter
Messages
1,899
Location
NY, USA, etc.
I think it's fake wood (plastic.) Some Tundra guys have had issues with it cracking. This truck had a little over 4,000 miles on it and the wood was like new. Looks are pretty subjective, but this truck looks a lot better in person. Most modern vehicles look better in person. It's hard to photograph in 2D the many angles and proportions new cars have nowadays.
 
Messages
2,561
Location
WY
Sounds like you are biased.What you like and what is objective are at odds in your review. For $55k you can get an American truck that meets or exceeds the Toyota as far as fake wood etc. You will also get vehicles with competing horsepower,torque and upwards of 50% better fuel mileage depending on options. The Toyota is great. The real proof lies is in the number of registered pickup trucks on the road and who builds them. The bottom line never lies. Toyota comes in 4th place. Sorry if I hurt your feelings.
 
Messages
18,538
Location
Michigan
It's a nice write up...I get the feeling you really like it. wink Driven in one of these, and without a doubt they are nice trucks. Have a friend who has a 17, and it's been a flawless truck since he has owned it. While I could say the power train is dated, it has no issues, recalls or quirks... I think if they offered deals on them I would consider one. Don't need fancy, just a more base model.....
 
Messages
13,194
Location
Maricopa Arizona
Best V8? With the worst MPG and the Tundra is slow. It's so slow it's slower than the GM 5.3 trucks. The interior is a cheap rip off of the previous F150. Don't worry Toyota will make it right soon with a 450HP turbo V6.
 
Messages
3,746
Location
Chicagoland
Originally Posted by dave1251
Best V8? With the worst MPG and the Tundra is slow. It's so slow it's slower than the GM 5.3 trucks. The interior is a cheap rip off of the previous F150. Don't worry Toyota will make it right soon with a 450HP turbo V6.
I think the fuel economy is bad just because of its antiquated transmission. And I certainly wouldn't call the interior the "best in a half ton."
 
Messages
17,182
Location
...
Great looking truck. Everyone else has those giant grills that try to make them look like a Peterbilt. The truck is American through and through. Don't let the naysayers tell you otherwise.
 
Messages
3,031
Location
Florida
Nice truck! Slow! Ya right. Mine is 12 years old and is a great truck. I get 16 mpg consistently. The motor is easy to work on when needing to replace plugs, belts, coolant, etc.. A plug change takes about 2 hours if you take your time. They have Iridium plugs which are rated for 100,000 miles. The only pain with this truck is the skid plate and oil filter.
 

Astro14

$100 Site Donor
Staff member
Messages
13,095
Location
Virginia Beach
Once again, the posts come down to two categories: 1. Those who love their Tundra. 2. Those who have never owned one. My 2016 1794 edition Tundra has been a great truck. It's done everything I've ever asked and exceeded my expectations. The review reflects my experience with the truck, save one, mine doesn't seem to have any issue getting into 4 wheel low. But I don't use low range often. I, too, wish the sound system had more punch. But it's still great at medium volume on a long trip. I just towed a trailer up to Vermont, delivered furniture and moved my son into his first place, and drove back. 2,000 miles in the Tundra in five days. It performed wonderfully, as a tow vehicle, as a passenger carrier, as a road trip machine. Still love the Tundra.
 
Last edited:
Messages
5,342
Location
Southeast Texas
Toyota makes a fine truck. No doubt about that. The Tundra at my work site is very durable and performs great. Still, anything I read saying that whatever is the best-best-best at everything, its sounds like a promotional ad. Few people would put the Toyota interior above the RAM, for example.
 
Messages
17,916
Location
NH
Looks sharp. Did they change the transfer case? IMO that might be the weakest bit on my truck--it really needs a locking center diff. Part time 4WD can't be driven on wet pavement--not that I need that--but in winter conditions the pavement can go from wet to snow very quickly (and back and forth). But worse than that, most driveways do require one to turn the steering wheel, and driveline binding then pops up. I guess with standard all seasons that's not an issue on snow, but with snow tires my truck would roll maybe 6 feet then stop while making a 3 point turn into the driveway, then I'd have to gun it to spin a tire... but it wouldn't climb the driveway in 2WD if it was covered in snow so I was stuck in 4WD. Rather primitive. No rear locking diff either but I've managed so I'm not sure I'm "upset" at not having one. Oh and did they fix the traction control button? On mine it's... unprintably bad. I have to not be moving, doesn't have to be in park but it's not allowed to be moving. Then I push the button once, quickly like. Then I push and hold for 3 seconds. Then I push and hold 3 seconds. Now I finally have TC and VSC off so it will move in snow. If I push it again, TC & VSC are on, but if I want them off then I have to do that procedure again. [I've seriously thought about putting in an Arduino widget to have it turn that off whenever I start the truck.] I'll echo the oil filter and skidplate is not well done. On the flip side, it holds 8 quarts and lacks most of the things we fear (DI, AFM, etc) with only a really long timing chain to worry about--and I just haven't heard much about the chains going bad on this model. I wonder if the cam tower oil leak and the water pump woes have finally gone away... Cruise control does not work well in my truck, but it may be because it's the low torque motor--it will often downshift twice and then hunt if I use cruise on hills. Again, it's probably my truck--lower torque yet higher final drive ratio, it probably just can't utilize sixth real well (I usually lock it out if I'm not going to exceed 60mph). I presume they fixed that? I see the gas tank finally got larger, 26 gallons goes fast in normal driving--I can't imagine getting sub-10mpg on a long trip. Payload looks like it came up too. Mine is 1,240lb which is pretty low--1,500 is much better. Those are nice updates.
 
Messages
553
Location
Mississippi
NO DI, NO cylinder deactivation/MDS headaches, No spark plug breakoffs, No head gasket leaks, No massive engine failures Reliability to easily take it to 500k miles perhaps a million Geared for towing, hence poor MPG, still I'm avg 18.5 mpg in a 4x4 TRD There are some things missing and one should not have to step up to the 1794 to get a sunroof. My biggest gripe is no step up for the back. Its a pickup that you can hand off to your sons, grandsons, w/out worry
 

OVERKILL

$100 Site Donor 2021
Messages
46,043
Location
Ontario, Canada
This doesn't really come off as a review but rather a puff piece shrug The fake wood reminds me of a 2011 GMC and it is the thirstiest truck in its class. Whenever I do a review (and I've done several) I try and break it down into pros and cons. This entire piece was raving about the pros with almost no attention given to the cons, which makes it come across as extremely biased. While I appreciate the time you put into writing it, I implore you to employ a greater degree of objectivity going forward.
 
Messages
34,194
Location
South Jersey
Quote
Part time 4WD can't be driven on wet pavement--not that I need that--but in winter conditions the pavement can go from wet to snow very quickly (and back and forth). But worse than that, most driveways do require one to turn the steering wheel, and driveline binding then pops up. I guess with standard all seasons that's not an issue on snow, but with snow tires my truck would roll maybe 6 feet then stop while making a 3 point turn into the driveway, then I'd have to gun it to spin a tire... but it wouldn't climb the driveway in 2WD if it was covered in snow so I was stuck in 4WD. Rather primitive.
That was always an issue when I have driven pickups in the past. It's another reason why the Ridgeline grew on me (AWD). Different trucks with a different purpose. I like the Tundra for its durability and reliability. That is what makes it a Toyota. A lot of reviews are based on things that are subjective.
 
Messages
9,070
Location
Illinois
With the Tundra, one could go out and buy a used 2014 model... and then convince everyone that it is a brand new 2020 model. Can't do that with any other manufacturer. thumbsup
 
Messages
749
Location
Chicago
Originally Posted by buster
Quote
Part time 4WD can't be driven on wet pavement--not that I need that--but in winter conditions the pavement can go from wet to snow very quickly (and back and forth). But worse than that, most driveways do require one to turn the steering wheel, and driveline binding then pops up. I guess with standard all seasons that's not an issue on snow, but with snow tires my truck would roll maybe 6 feet then stop while making a 3 point turn into the driveway, then I'd have to gun it to spin a tire... but it wouldn't climb the driveway in 2WD if it was covered in snow so I was stuck in 4WD. Rather primitive.
That was always an issue when I have driven pickups in the past. It's another reason why the Ridgeline grew on me (AWD). Different trucks with a different purpose.
I traded my '07 Tundra for a Ridgeline and have been happily driving them for ten years. Best all around "CRUCK" to me.
 
Messages
17,916
Location
NH
Originally Posted by buster
Quote
Part time 4WD can't be driven on wet pavement--not that I need that--but in winter conditions the pavement can go from wet to snow very quickly (and back and forth). But worse than that, most driveways do require one to turn the steering wheel, and driveline binding then pops up. I guess with standard all seasons that's not an issue on snow, but with snow tires my truck would roll maybe 6 feet then stop while making a 3 point turn into the driveway, then I'd have to gun it to spin a tire... but it wouldn't climb the driveway in 2WD if it was covered in snow so I was stuck in 4WD. Rather primitive.
That was always an issue when I have driven pickups in the past. It's another reason why the Ridgeline grew on me (AWD). Different trucks with a different purpose.
Yep, I'm realizing I have too much truck for too little utility (for me). Not a great fit but not quite sure what I'd replace it with. I've said a few times that if Toyota made the Ridgeline I'd probably have one--fanboyism aside, it probably would lack VCM and would use a timing chain. Worthy of its own thread though. Waiting to see how I like our CRV in snow. AFAIK it's got a "slip and grip" system so I would probably notice very little issues. Maybe... I haven't decided if I'll get snows for it or not--not sure if we plan to drive it in the snow--but first snow we get I plan to see what it does on all seasons. grin2
 
Top