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Half-ton Pickups - The full field

tundrahqtundrahq Posts: 5
edited March 2014 in Toyota
tundraheadquarters just completed it's comparison of the Dodge Ram to the Toyota Tundra, and it was interesting to read that the Dodge Ram was safer, the frame better, and the Ram looked better.

However, it also said that the Ram got I guess it wasn't pro-Dodge.

In any case, anyone had a chance to compare the two trucks themselves?

Here's the link: s/


  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    In case you weren't aware, the 545RFE automatic transmission that's used behind the 4.7 and 5.7 Hemi engines have six forward speeds. Five are used in sequential shifting, but for kick down has an alternate second gear which improves acceleration.

    As far as towing capability, many will tell you that the truck manufacturers are playing the numbers game. Many wouldn't even attempt to pull 10,000 pounds in a half-ton pickup despite the rating.

    As to the comments about the Hemi fuel consumption, come on guys! The only thing gross about the Hemis fuel consumption was your exaggeration. You know as well as anybody that the EPA test is the only fair comparison between vehicles. I know many RAM owners that typically get 14-15 MPG around town. It's how the vehicle is driven. I had one of our company's maintenance trucks for better than a week and that Hemi delivered just over 16.

    The new Tundra sounds like a nice truck, and I guess it would be a little too much to expect you guys to be completely objective. But you could at least try.
  • chris206chris206 Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 Dodge Ram with the 5.7 hemi, I love the truck, I bought it new and have 20,000 miles on it now. I have pulled some very very heavy loads and it did great, BUT the gas mileage it BBBAAAAAAAAAADDDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!! the EPA ratings are not right on this vehicle. I have drove it everyway in the book and it still does not get over 11 mpg in the city and 14 on the hwy. Usually my numbers are more like 9 mpg.
  • tundrahqtundrahq Posts: 5
    Ya...that's what we've heard (and seen).

    Not that gas mileage is a huge consideration when buying a truck, but 9mpg is rough. Here's to hoping it gets better!
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    Edmunds had a long-term Jeep Commander test vehicle with the Hemi engine, and it too got really lousy mileage.

  • tent2tttent2tt Posts: 46
    I am trying to find a reliable truck with as good gas mielage as possible that can tow a maximum 5,500 lbs hard sided (not fold-down) travel trailer (that's the GVWR fully loaded up + 2 passengers)without overtaxing the engine going up hill and while still getting decent gas mileage towing and around town (particularly around town). Decent gas mielage to me is at least 20 mpg when not towing. I noticed that several versions of the Tacoma have a GVWR tow rating of 6,500 lbs, but no one seems to be using them for towing trailers--why is that, if the tow rating is that high? Would it overtax the Tacoma? I have seen one posting about using a Tundra for towing loads, but the gas mileage on the Tundra looks awful. Does anyone out there use have a Tundra for towing a travel trailer? If so, how much do you tow, how does it do uphill and what's the towing and non-towing real world mpg? Is it true that I should get a Dodge Ram 2500 with Cummins Turbocharged diesel instead? I haev seen numerous posts on travel trailer sites by people saying that they can get 20mpg empty and 11-15 mpg towing (heavier weights than my prospective TT) in their Dodge Ram TCD with the Cummins engine, but the overall reliablility of the Dodge, Ford and Chevys seems very worrisome compared with Toyotas great consumer report ratings and reliability reviews. I need a truck that I can take to travel that will be reliable, strong and get good gas mileage, especially when I drive it when I am not towing. Any suggestions would be appreciated!
  • p51bp51b Posts: 1
    I have a 2003 Toyota Tundra with the 4.7 liter gas engine; 4 wheel drive; automatic transmission; tow package with transmission oil cooler; and 71,000 miles on the truck. I have had zero problems with this truck. I change the oil and filter every 3-4,000 miles and am running Mobil 1 5W-30 fully synthetic oil. I change the transmission fluid, front and rear differential fluids, transfer case fluids, power steering fluid; every 50,000 miles. And coolant every 2 years.
    I am towing a 2005 Prowler 25 foot travel trailer that weighs loaded maximum 5,500 pound; and using an Easy Lift Hitch with anti-sway bars.
    I take it out of overdrive on even the slightest hill or bucking a headwind.
    This 4.7 liter engine has enough power to tow this trailer and am getting about 10-12 miles per gallon while towing.
    I get 16-17 MPG driving the freeway at 65 MPH (not towing).
    I am considering upgrading to the 2007 Tundra with 5.7 liter engine that delivers 100 more horsepower. I also am considering the Dodge RAM 2500 Heavy Duty with cummins turbo diesel engine. I have had such good luck with the 4 toyota cars and trucks that i have owned over the last 20 years; that i am reluctant to switch over to the Dodge.
    I don't think you will find a more reliable and trouble free truck than the Toyota.
    The Dodge is definately more of a towing rig than the Tundra; and the turbo-diesel will get a little better MPG. The 64,000 dollar question is---What will it cost to maintain the Dodge for 200,000 miles??? My Toyotas that i have owned all went over 264,00 miles and were still running with the orginal engines and transmission with no problem (with consistant preventative maintenance/changing lubricants). Lubricants are the lifeblood of moving components and reduce friction and wear and is very inexpensive preventative maintenance.
  • tent2tttent2tt Posts: 46
    Thanks for your response, p51b,

    You are the first Tundra owner I have heard from. I have heard from 4 Tacoma owners who've been able to tow around 5K lbs., though one out of the 4 said he "white-knuckled" it every time (then got a Dodge Ram 2500).

    Reading the Dodge forums gets me all freaked out that I will be dealing with one headache after another, bad warranty coverage issues and the fact that I don't know squat about diesels. But then I hear from Dodge owner like that one who loves his rig and I start thinking about the power and relatively good mpg (however, the '05 and newer models do not seem to be getting as good as the older models. The 2002- 2003 models seem to be the best). I am so confused right now.

    The city and hiway mileage on the Tundra seems really low, though the towing mileage seems reasonable. Part of me feels that if I am going to get that huge of a truck, seems like it ought to be a diesel, but then it's the reliability issue... so I am back to looking at Toyota...Geez, can someone please get me off this see-saw? I want a truck with the Dodge Ram's power and at least 21-24 mpg hiway and at least 14-17 mpg towing and I want it to be as reliable as Toyota! Is that just too much to ask for my hard-earned money?
  • adamb1adamb1 Cookeville, TNPosts: 122
    The only time I have seen single-digit fuel economy with my '03 QC HEMI has been towing a trailer.

    That said, I've never come close to the in-town figure on the windon sticker. I routinely averag 11.5-12.5 mpg in town. On the interstate, I have seen 16-17 mpg.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    A look in to the Ford and GM diesel forums seems to indicate a fair amount of issues as well. In fact, it looks to me like there are more angry Powerstroke owners out there than disgruntled Cummins' owners.

    Most of the Dodge diesels owners I know or have spoken to have had little problems. Yes, I have noted a couple that had problems. But the majority have been please with the Cummins' motor and the truck.

    I have an acquaintance that thought his Dodge diesel experience was going to be bad because so many GM and Ford owners told him he would. I spoke to him a while back and he remarked that after four years he was convinced that even the Dodge platform was far superior in his opinion (He owned GMs before).

    In my experience as a former fleet manager, I believe the Cummins' is the best you can get in a light duty pickup.

    Best regards,
  • Like tent2tt I want a pickup that can safely tow 5000-7000 pounds when needed (which is a few times per year), that will get good gas mileage both city and highway, and that will be a reliable vehicle that will last for years.

    What are my best bets?
  • I've been a loyal Dodge fan for years, but the issues I had with my '02 Ram were nearly intolerable, so that is why I switched to the '07 Tundra. It can do nearly as much as most 3/4 ton trucks, with a gas engine, and so far I'm getting nearly 19mpg on the highway and about 14mpg city. Not too bad for a big truck. Now my father just recently traded in an '04 Ram Quad Cab 2500 that had the Hemi. He used it to tow a 34' travel trailer that weighed nearly 10,000lbs. His best mpg came after he installed a cold air induction kit and a free flowing exhaust system, but that still only netted him just under 8mpg. He got an '07 Ram MegaCab with the new 6.7L Cummins turbodiesel. It tows that tt without a problem. He hasn't gotten to take it on a long enough trip yet to get the real world mpg when towing but he's guessing around 12-14mpg. But he doesn't expect it to get much higher than that when he isn't towing. His is a 2WD and I would highly recommend that set up for any heavy, long term towing. The only downside to the diesel seems to be more preventive maintenance like 12qts of oil and a water filter of some kind that needs checked every month. His is very nice and would easily tow 5,500lbs. I can tow his tt with my Tundra. The mpg are not great, about 10.5mpg, but it can do it. My suggestion...get the new Tundra. It will easily tow the weight and is likely to have fewer problems. The Tacoma is strong enough to pull it, but the mpg will be bad when towing and they are not that much better than the full size Tundra when not towing mpg wise. My friend's Tacoma only gets 21mpg hwy. Hope this helped.
  • :shades: I just bought a new 2007 Dodge Ram 1500 5.7L and it does great gas wise. I stomp it off the line all the time after stop signs and stop lights and not only do I love the power but gas mileage isn't all that bad. I get around 12-16 in town and 20-27 on highway. I love power behind the engine. I've towed a couple good loads of brick and cement and it drives like nothing was behind it. I took my truck to the Toyota dealership right after buying it and asked a couple guys there if they could tell me how there truck was better than mine. They had nothing to say but "IT HOLDS IT VALUE BETTER". I got a Laramie with Nav. and everything and made them sell it to me for $31,000. The Toyota's price with everything I had in my truck was so exaggerating! I'm glad I went to dodge.
  • bugchuckerbugchucker Posts: 118
    Tundra does hold its value better than any truck. Ram is not in the same class as a Tundra. They were probably laughing at you for stopping at the Toyota dealership with your new Ram. Why waste time with you? Damage is done.
  • I give you maybe two years before you get rid of that Dodge and buy a new Tundra. After taking that Dodge in for repairs many times you will change your whole attitude about these fine Tundra's. :)
  • deodudedeodude Posts: 1
    I just bought a 2007 Dodge Ram 1500 5.7L Lonestar Edition and currently have 658 miles on it. In Texas we love to gun it on every light and every sign. When I do gun it, I only get 10.6 mpg around town. But I am currently averaging 12.7 miles around town and that is driving the speed limit and gradually accelerating from a dead stop. On the highway I average between 18-21 hwy. I also have Flowmaster 40 dual exhaust and plan to purchase CAI (True Flow). I would like to know what you have under the hood that makes your gas mileage better then mine. When you gun it all the time. :confuse:
  • Well the 12MPG around town I can buy, but 27MPG on the highway? Were you coasting down the side of a mountain? And is that real world or are you letting that little computer tell you? Even with the Hemi shutting down 4 cylinders at highway speeds, I can't imagine getting much over 20MPG. And I agree with bugchucker...wait until you have to take your truck into the shop every month because something else is wrong! Trust me, I lived it.
  • What do you mean "Not in the same class"?
    Tundra Ram
    5.7 5.7
    300 something HP 300 something HP
    1/2 ton 1/2 ton
    I can get the same exact features on both.
    what's the difference? :confuse:
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    The difference is that you don't have camshaft or trans failures. Can you imagine having either of those within the first 1000 miles of ownership? I can't but that's what happened with the new and improved 2007 Tundra. And if you want to see frame flex well I can link to a video that will blow your mind.

    Here are a few links on the previous reliable Tundra:

    Based on a history like that one wonders what's in store for the new 2007 Tundra. Hopefully it will have a better history than the previous model.
  • So are you with me and the Ram or against me and with the Toyota?
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    I'm impartial. I'm just helping you out in pointing out the problems with the past and current Tundra and it's not the perfect truck some think of it to be.

    A truck is a truck is a truck. As long as it does what you want it to, that to me is what it is for. Course some do it better than others but at what price and for perceived reliability.

    What do I own? '03 Ranger, '05 Titan, '02 Yukon Denali. What do I use to haul or pull heavy loads? A '02 Dodge 3500 van. It will carry more than any of my trucks or a Tundra for that matter. Try loading a pallet of Quikrete in any half ton and I'm sure you will be looking at a bent frame.
  • Do you really thing that will mess up my truck? I loaded it with 3 Refridgerators and it handled prewtty well.
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    I've seen a lot of strange things at Home Depot. One was a pallet of quikrete loaded onto a Ford ranger. The ranger was riding on its mudflaps. The forklift driver asked the owner are you sure you can haul the load safely? The reply was no problem. Course his mudflaps will be shorter when he arrived at wherever he needed to get to unless he broke down on the way there.

    Another incident was when a driver of a late model 1500 Dodge Ram told the forklift driver to place the pallet of 12" block tile over the rear tires and it will be ok. Course he didn't remove the tailgate forcing the forklift driver to place the load toward the rear of the bed then pushing it further in over the rear tires. Watching as he did this (I'm the curious type). I noticed that the gap between the cab and the bed opened about 2". The truck owner standing to the side didn't notice so I told him you might want to remove the load and check your truck.

    When the driver removed the pallet, the 2" gap didn't move back to its original position. The result? One Dodge truck with a bent frame. Needless to say the owner was pissed. Would've been cheaper for him to rent the 2500 GMC Home Depot has than to have ruined his truck. Course he could have a body shop try and rebend the frame. But what good is that at this point?

    Three refrigerators weigh at most 1000 lbs unless we're talking double door humongous. A pallet of quikrete is 40 bags x 60 lbs. + the weight of the pallet making it well over a ton. I wouldn't try that on any half ton even if it could carry the load would it be able to stop it safely? And why risk a bent frame on a new truck when you can rent one for $20 an hour?
  • Thanks for the look out. I had never really thoght about the frame bending in that spot. What do you think a bout a trailer to hall stuff? good looking out. :)
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    Not a towing expert here but you can check this site for advice.
  • OBYONE,It is kinda nice that you post your links about the Tundra,still waiting for you to post links to the Rams 8 recalls last year ,as a matter of fact please post links to recalls and problems from the medium 2.5 and compare them to the Tundra please, :P
  • For years we heard how bad dodges were, from chevy and ford people, of course, but the folks we knew that had them didnt seem to have many problems with them. after owning fords for 20 years and the dealer and ford really sticking it to us on a windstar and two of our f150s, we converted every thing except the new holland tractors, from ford to dodge. we have a 2003 RAM 1500 with 93,000 miles, a 2004 1500 with 67,000 miles, and a 2005 3500 with 51,000. Weve only had the 2004 in to the dealer once for a blown instrument cluster, the other two Rams have never had to go back to the dealer for anything. i don't know how much better a toyoto tundra could be, but a few months ago i read in the corning paper about frames rusting through on toyota trucks. compared to our ford trucks the rAms have been terrifically reliable trucks that work all day and night on our farm and ranch operation. and none of our rams have been recalled either, so i dont know where that's coming from.

  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    There have been six recalls on RAM going back to 2002:

    1. 2002-2006 ANZO replacement lamps do not have an amber side reflector.

    2. 2002-2006 CK Motorsports replacement lamps do not have a side reflector.

    3. 2004 alternator harness may rub on valve cover stud (4.7 motor only).

    4. 2002-2003 Aftermarket batteries may leak electrolyte onto an ABS connector and cause ABS circuit failure.

    5. 2003 PCM Software fault with Cummins diesel engines and manual transmissions may experience elevated idle speed after extended cruise control use.

    6. 2002 Certain 4X4 versions the rear axle flange weld could fatigue and allow the brake caliper assembly to rotate.

    I believe the frame rusting issue is on the Tacoma pickup models. I know of one 2002 that you can stick your finger through the frame rails in certain areas. I've not heard of this problem associated with the Tundra.

    Someone mentioned the supposed infallibility of Toyota. I can testify that on each occasion to Hoselton Toyota, where we bought our '99 Avalon, I have seen at least one Tundra with the transmission out being repaired or rebuilt. Our Avalon has had the transmission apart twice now for irratic shifting. Coupled with having to replace all of the fuel injectors (one twice), the oil sludge problem, weird electrical problems, wheels corroded through causing leaks and eventual replacement (at $380 a piece!!!), six sway bar links ($100 a piece), and a fish pond of water in the damn trunk, the last thing I mention to anybody is Toyota reliability.

  • So now we are comparing the entire Toyota lineup to the Ram? Are you sure you want to compare Toyota to Chrysler? any how check this out , .......Forbes' Dan Lienert studied the NHTSA's recall numbers for 2006 models and compiled a list of the most recalled vehicles sold in the U.S. The worst? The 2006 Dodge Ram with a total of seven recalls. It was recalled for a bad brake control unit, a defective front suspension, potentially faulty airbags and transfer cases, possibly bad seatbelts, defective rearview mirrors and missing exterior lighting. We're not sure that includes the Ram recall we told you about last month. Second place also went to Dodge, with the Durango scoring six recalls..........There are cheap recalls and there are expensive recalls. Luckily for the Chrysler Group the current recall of 86,333 '06 Dodge Rams built between Nov. 7, 2005, and April 27, 2006 amounts to little more than adding grease to wheel bearings. Unfortunately for 2006 Ram owners if this issue is left unchecked it can lead to road noise and vibration and can eventually result in a loss of control and a crash. please feel free to bring up toyota recalls , as i will gladly plaster this forum with Chryslers Turds.
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