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Hey everyone,

After watching this forum for years, I finally decided to create my account. This forum certainly has tons of really useful information and plenty of fruitful conversations. The main reason I started searching this forum years ago (~2012) is I wanted to move away from the SUV world and get me a truck, but I wasn't sure if the Tundra was a good match for me. Now three Tundra's later, I'm still not sure... So, I'm going to get right to the point and I'm hoping some of the experienced Tundra owners can weigh in on my dilemma.

For reference purposes, here's a list of Toyota's I've owned:
Celica ('86), Celica GT ('88), MR2 ('91) - Jeep Laredo (1997) for awhile - Tundra V6 (2010), Tundra 4.6L V8 (2011, Tundra 5.7L V8 (2018)

(1) When I bought my Tundra V6 (2010) the dealer said, yah it can pull my boat, haul stuff, etc, etc.. Long story short it performed worst than my '97 Laredo inline-six in terms of pulling power and highway mileage. So that was dud..

(2) Within 6-months the dealer put me into a Tundra 4.6L SR (2011) to compensate for the V6 disaster. This truck was awesome. Pulled my boat like it was nothing, got 20 mpg highway, hauled tons of mason dirt, pulled 16-ft trailer full of furniture from Texas to Florida, whatever. It was an awesome truck, but I wanted 4x4 for some off-road action.

(3) So, after mining this forum for comparisons between 4.6L and 5.7L I decided to trade my 2011 4.6L for a 2018 Tundra 5.7L TRD. Mostly because the word on the street was "better to have more when you need it". In the past 6-months I've taken this truck once into the deep mountains of Colorado (4x4 through snow) and once into the backwoods of North Georgia (4x4 through mud and steep back gravel roads, and in those conditions it was a sweet ride. Unfortunately, most of my driving is on the highway (travel ~320 miles/week to work), so gas mileage is important.

With the 5.7L it seems that even a small payload drops the mileage. Wind drops the mileage. Driving a little above 2000rpn drops the mileage. Sure it has some nice power, but increasing the speed above 65mph drops the mileage like crazy. All of those things I could do in the 4.6L and the mileage barely changed. Long story short, the 5.7L feels like it's always pulling an invisible trailer behind it and of course that's easy money for the fuel pumps every week.

Although I have the newest, strongest version of the Tundra, I feel like I lost so much in comparison to the 2011 Tundra I had before. Of course I gained 4x4 and some off-road shocks and a bit more power, but it really doesn't feel like it was worth the jump. I wonder if the 5.7L folks have actually driven the 4.6L enough to really understand the difference, or if everyone just analyzes the tech specs and makes the assumption that bigger numbers equals way more power.

Note: Funny thing is, the best gas mileage I've seen in this truck is when driving on hills. I think because up the hill it gets 12-15mpg, but down the hill it gets 20-30mpg. Just simple physics... Of course this doesn't help me cause I live in Florida...


So for those new Tundra owners trying to figure out which way to go, let me just make these points:

1) If you're ALWAYS pulling something, then MAYBE you need the 5.7L. If you're always pulling something really HEAVY (5000lbs) then probably you need the 5.7L.

2) If you mostly drive around without a considerable payload, enjoy being able to get going off the light like an SUV, and appreciate good gas mileage most of the time, then go for the 4.6L.

3) 4x4 will drop your gas mileage regardless, so there's that.

4) Do you want the TRD upgrade, well maybe. I drove mine out to Denver were the highway roads are really wavy, and I just about puked with all of the bouncing caused by the TRD shocks. In comparison, my old 2011 Tundra SR was a smooth ride on those same roads. So, I think TRD is just for pure off-road conditions. In addition, the TRD wheels are heavy and reduce gas mileage.

At the end of the day, I got an awesome price on my new 2018 Tundra, so I really can't complain about the financial side of the deal. I stopped watching the mpg, have somewhat enjoyed the added torque, but for my routine days, the 4.6L would probably have been more suitable. I guess there's always another year and another trade.

Happy truckin!
 

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Welcome to the forum. Having a 2012, which was the last year you could get a 4.6L in the Sequoia, I enjoyed your writeup.
 
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I'll try to keep this short:
For the record I don't tow and rarely haul anything.

My 2005 SR5 DC had a 4.7 that I drove for 10 years.
It was fine, never thought it lacked power.
Think I got around 14.5 MPG.

My 2014 SR5 DC has a 5.7 that I know doesn't lack power.
It more fun to drive and goes when I want/need it to.
Need more fun, I push the tow/haul button.
I get around 13.5 MPG.

I met a guy locally that wanted to hear my BAM exhaust before buying one.
He was impressed with the muffler setup.
I let him drive the truck.
He was even more impressed with my 5.7 and how much more power it had than his 4.6.
He left seriously considering trading in his 2016 4.6 for another Tundra with a 5.7.

So when in doubt, get a 5.7...:D
 
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So this is a thread about Tundra gas mileage. How am I doing so far?

And the relative disappointment of your older model Tundra gas mileage performance vs. this here 2018 Tundra. How am I still doing?

So. Let's see. Between you 4.6L Tundra and your 2nd 5.7L Tundra something has happened. And that something has you befuzzled. If not just flat out unhappy. O.K. I'm jiggy with that.

But what has changed? Hmmm. "I'll take ****ed up federal guvmunt initiatives for two hundred Alex." Some 4 or maybe 5 years ago the benevolent imperial federal guvmunt. Under the tutelage of a certain person announced that by 2025 automotive manufacturers, IF THEY WANTED TO SELL INTO THE UNITED STATES MARKET, would have to have a CAFE of............of..............of.................55 miles per gallon. That's right. What are the effects of federal stupidity like that? I offer that you're experiencing and living it. Oh. And you paid A LOT of money for the guvmunts benevolency.

Touche.
 

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Hey everyone,

Although I have the newest, strongest version of the Tundra, I feel like I lost so much in comparison to the 2011 Tundra I had before. Of course I gained 4x4 and some off-road shocks and a bit more power, but it really doesn't feel like it was worth the jump. I wonder if the 5.7L folks have actually driven the 4.6L enough to really understand the difference, or if everyone just analyzes the tech specs and makes the assumption that bigger numbers equals way more power.


Happy truckin!
Part of the reason you don't see a bigger increase in performance, is that your 2011 4.6L was geared differently, and was actually slightly faster off the line than a comparable 5.7. when they body style changed in 2014, so did the gearing. Some people think the new gen feels a little more sluggish, and people complain that the transmission hunts for gears a lot more in the mountains. Non of this is a power issue though, it is a gearing issue.

It seems like people just look at the specs, and run with how much better the 5.7 is on paper though. Or they say how much better it is, because thats how they justify the extra money they spent on it... Don't get me wrong, I have driven the 5.7 tundras and they are great. they have great power, pull and haul with ease. you can pass just about any one on the highway. But I can do everything in my 4.6L that I would do in a 5.7, I can do it just as good, just as fast, and I get slightly better mpg doing it. Only thing I can't do is beat a 5.7L in a drag race. I assume bigger tires and lifts effect the 4.6 trucks a little more than 5.7 trucks, but My truck is not lifted, so not an issue for me.

I'll probably get some thumbs down for this post, But I really think the 5.7L is overkill for a lot of people who buy them. Unless you tow a camper or heavy trailers, there is no real advantage.
 
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Part of the reason you don't see a bigger increase in performance, is that your 2011 4.6L was geared differently, and was actually slightly faster off the line than a comparable 5.7. when they body style changed in 2014, so did the gearing. Some people think the new gen feels a little more sluggish, and people complain that the transmission hunts for gears a lot more in the mountains. Non of this is a power issue though, it is a gearing issue.

It seems like people just look at the specs, and run with how much better the 5.7 is on paper though. Or they say how much better it is, because thats how they justify the extra money they spent on it... Don't get me wrong, I have driven the 5.7 tundras and they are great. they have great power, pull and haul with ease. you can pass just about any one on the highway. But I can do everything in my 4.6L that I would do in a 5.7, I can do it just as good, just as fast, and I get slightly better mpg doing it. Only thing I can't do is beat a 5.7L in a drag race. I assume bigger tires and lifts effect the 4.6 trucks a little more than 5.7 trucks, but My truck is not lifted, so not an issue for me.

I'll probably get some thumbs down for this post, But I really think the 5.7L is overkill for a lot of people who buy them. Unless you tow a camper or heavy trailers, there is no real advantage.
Agree with your conclusions but not all the reasons. The gearing of the 5.7L did not change in 2014. See the specs attached (gear ratios on Page 2).

I could be wrong, but from what I've read it just "feels" like the 5.7L gearing changed because in 2014 the throttle mapping was revised so that you have to press the gas pedal farther (or engage tow/haul) to achieve the same "go".
 

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With the 5.7L it seems that even a small payload drops the mileage. Wind drops the mileage. Driving a little above 2000rpn drops the mileage. Sure it has some nice power, but increasing the speed above 65mph drops the mileage like crazy. All of those things I could do in the 4.6L and the mileage barely changed. Long story short, the 5.7L feels like it's always pulling an invisible trailer behind it and of course that's easy money for the fuel pumps every week.
I get your overall point to the entire post. I appreciate what you're saying and for the most part agree that realistically, for what most people actually use their truck for, it wouldn't make much difference which size V8 they had.
But the above doesn't make much sense to me.
I agree that with the tow pkg gearing, fuel economy isn't great above 65 mph simply because of the rpm. (Kinda wish they would look into an 8spd option for the Tundra).
But if you took 2 identical trucks, the one with the smaller engine, that's geared more for hwy speeds will naturally get better fuel economy. But when taxed and loaded, the smaller engine will always suffer a higher % of efficiency loss than a larger engine with more torque.
If you took 2 identical trucks (let's say both are a base model 2wd with tow pkg) and towed the same weight with each, added the same payload and drove them on the same course, I highly doubt that the one with the smaller V8 would barely see a change in fuel efficiency.
You said that if you are going to be working your truck regularly, you might be better off with the 5.7. I agree with that.
But the section above contradicts that a bit.
Now, I've never driven a Tundra with a 4.6. I would assume it's a much better V8 than GM's and Ford's smaller V8s.
I know they are capable engines, as I drove a full size Ford van with a 4.6 and we have a small GM shuttle bus at work that's a lot heavier than a van or pickup and it only has a 4.8 V8. No problem doing work or moving. But neither were even close to being impressive with fuel economy. Especially when taxed.
As far as the 5.7 suffering more under any amount of stress,....that's also not exactly accurate. You have to load it up pretty good or drive it like a maniac. Pulling a lighter trailer or your typical load of crap from the hardware store in the bed is not going to kill your average MPG. I've had my 5.7 DCLB for over 3 yrs and for the last year, have heavier tires and the bed and cab have been completely filled with gear and tools 24/7. I've worked the truck harder over the last year and my average MPG went from 14.4 in the first 2 yrs to 14.1 over the last yr.
If I had a 4.6 V8 in my truck, I would have suffered a lot more than a .3 MPG loss under the same conditions.
Also, that sluggish feel in the 5.7 is the throttle response that they dialed back in the 3rd gen. My truck has it too and I hate it. My 2011 CM with the 5.7 was very zippy from a start.
 

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Now, I've never driven a Tundra with a 4.6. I would assume it's a much better V8 than GM's and Ford's smaller V8s.
I know they are capable engines, as I drove a full size Ford van with a 4.6 and we have a small GM shuttle bus at work that's a lot heavier than a van or pickup and it only has a 4.8 V8. No problem doing work or moving. But neither were even close to being impressive with fuel economy. Especially when taxed.
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This is a little off topic but.... My business partner has a 2008 ford E250 van with fords 4.6L V8. There is a drastic difference between the 4.6 in the ford and the one on the tundra. don't get me wrong, we have had no issues with the ford, and it handles 2000 + pounds in the back like there's nothing in it. But the tundra is much more powerful and faster, gets better mpg too.
 
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