Texas Sized Tundra:
First Drive 2004 Toyota Tundra Double Cab

By: Arv Voss
Posted: 12-08-03 10:30 © 2003 PickupTruck.com

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Toyota first began building trucks back in 1935 -- it wasn't until 1965 that the Japanese automaker entered the U.S. marketplace with a diminutive hauler called the Stout. Roughly, only 4000 Stouts were sold over its three year lifespan, but it paved Toyota's way into the American truck scene. The sub-compact Stout eventually led to the production of Toyota's full size Tundra, which first bowed on our shores in 1999.

Toyota just introduced their biggest and best Tundra to date -- the Tundra Double Cab (or D-Cab). It's all new, with a redesigned frame, and it's larger than previous Tundra offerings.

Tundra's lineup now consists of a Regular Cab, an Access Cab, and the latest D-Cab which sports four full sized doors. The D-Cab is nearly one foot longer overall than its predecessors (6-inches longer than Ford's F-150), with a wheelbase that measures 12.2 inches longer. It is also 4-inches wider. The D-Cab takes on a carriage-style look, with the cab curving in from top to bottom, and the bed curving in to meet it. The D-Cab Tundra features body-on-frame construction, with a fully boxed front section and a rolled C-frame rear section, stabilized by an X-type cross brace aft.

The Tundra D-Cab national press launch took place in San Antonio, Texas on the site where Toyota's newest U.S. plant will be built. The location consists of 2,700 acres, just outside the city on an ancient rancho, which has remained in the same family since its origin as a Spanish land grant. 700 acres of the site have been set aside as green space for public enjoyment. The plant will be constructed at a cost of $800 million and will employ 2,000 workers. Annual production for the Tundra full-size trucks at the new plant is expected to be 150,000 at start-up in 2006. The launch location was deemed appropriate, since one of every seven full-size pickup trucks sold in the U.S., is sold in Texas.

The D-Cab will come in two trim levels: SR-5; and Limited, with power provided by Toyota's 4.7 liter DOHC, 32-valve i-Force V8 with a cast iron block and aluminum alloy heads. The engine produces 240 horsepower @ 4,800 rpm and 315 pound feet of torque @ 3,400 rpm. It runs on unleaded regular-grade gasoline, is certified as a ULEV vehicle. and mates to an electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission. The Double-Cab is available in 4x2 (rear-wheel drive) or 4x4 Four-Wheel drive configurations.The 4x4 system is Toyota's pushbutton shift-on-the-fly (up to 62 mph) Touch Select. The shift-on-the-fly applies only from 4x2 to 4x4 Hi -- 4 Lo requires stopping and shifting to Neutral before engaging. The same procedure is required to exit 4 Lo. Throttle control is electronic with intelligence or ETCSi.

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