Christopher Little

Quick Spin: 2020 Toyota Tundra

New in 2007 and refreshed in 2014, the second-generation Toyota Tundra is going to still be with us at least thru 2021. While the platform itself is definitely aging, Toyota hasn’t let the technology get quite so out-of-date. Several year-over-year updates have added technology features to this 2020 Toyota Tundra 1794 Edition. After a week with the Voodoo Blue behemoth, we find that some of the creature comforts do keep the Tundra feeling modern on a daily basis.

The 1794 Edition is named for the year the cattle ranch was founded at the site in San Antonio, Texas where Toyota manufactures the Tundra. This explains the 1794’s cowboy-inspired interior. Saddle brown leather, suede inserts, wood trim, and unique floor mats set the cabin apart. Otherwise, the trim brings all the standard features of the Tundra Platinum. That means the Crewmax cab, heated and ventilated front seats, a power moonroof, an 8″ touchscreen with navigation and JBL Audio, and Toyota Safety Sense with blind spot monitor with rear cross traffic alert, lane keep assist, and radar cruise control. 2019 brought LED headlights and Android Auto/Apple CarPlay capability to the Tundra. For the 2020 model year, the Tundra gains key-less entry with push-button start. If other trim levels are of interest, Toyota has dropped the 4.6L V8 from the lineup entirely, meaning all 2020 Tundras come equipped with the big 5.7L V8.

Technically, no news is typical Toyota news. The 5.7L V8 still produces 381 horsepower and 401 lb-ft of torque and connects to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Our tester arrived equipped with TRD Off-Road Package, which adds Bilstein shocks, all-terrain tires, and additional skid plates. The impact to the normally cushy road-going Tundra is noticeable. Despite retaining the 18″ wheels, the off-road tuned suspension is slightly stiffer. More noticeable, however, is the tire noise from the all-terrain tires. We don’t recommend the package unless you need to do any serious off-road driving. Besides, the 1794 Edition looks better with its optional upgraded wheels anyway.

One thing the 1794 Edition’s saddle interior does not look good with is the optional Voodoo Blue paint color. In fact, without the black accents and wheels of the TRD Pro trim, the Voodoo Blue doesn’t look very good on the Tundra at all. The Smurf blue seems to glow off every massive body panel of the truck in any light. But it clashes so glaringly with the interior, we found ourselves embarrassed to open the door.

A lack of mechanical innovation means the Tundra is running on 14-year-old hardware. That might not be a problem for some, and speaks well for the reliability to the platform. It also helps keep costs down and resale values up. The well-optioned top trim 1794 Edition is at least $10,000 less than top-trim trucks from Ford and Chevrolet. And have you shopped for a used one lately? The 2020 Toyota Tundra has been kept current by continual technology updates. Despite its age, the Tundra continues to be a comfortable and affordable daily driver.

-Christopher Little

2020 Toyota Tundra 4×4 1794 Edition Crewmax$51,675
TRD Off-Road Package$155
Running Boards$345
Power Tile/Slide Moonroof$850
Spray on Bedliner$579
Destination Charges$1,595
As Tested Price$55,199

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2 replies »

  1. The new Tundra looks awesome. I remember putting Bilstein 5100 for my ’00 Tundra which I got from 4Wheelonline. It’s great that they even include the Bilstein shocks on the TRD package. The color of the interior looks good but I think it doesn’t match the exterior color.

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