• Oct 24, 2007
A couple of days ago we told you about two new issues with the Toyota Tundra that were drawing the ire of some owners. The first is the "rumble strip" transmission problem, for which Toyota has promised to replace the torque converter box of any affected truck. The other issue involved tailgates that were experiencing metal separation and cracks under load, some even deforming out of shape. Mike Levine from Pickuptruck.com again took the owners' complaints to Toyota for a response. Toyota said that it's aware of the issue but has received few complaints so far, and the cause is under investigation. Also, any owners affected by metal separation on their tailgates can visit a Toyota dealer, who will fix or replace the tailgate under warranty if it's determined the damage occurred under normal use.
The Tundra tailgate issue was first reported by owners themselves on the TundraSolutions.com forum. According to Levine who watched in real time as more and more owners organized on the forum, gathered evidence and eventually started an online petition, there has never been a movement like this begun and carried out by owners themselves to have an automaker address a grievance. And it worked, too! For it's part, Toyota is doing what it should be doing at this point: promising to fix the problem. It can't go back in time and change what caused the "rumble strip" issue in some transmissions or a batch of tailgates to experience metal separation, but it can fix those issues on trucks that have already been sold to both loyal and new Toyota customers alike. Nevertheless, the fallout from these quality issues will still be felt by Toyota, which has yet to back down from its goal of selling 200,000 Tundras this year.

[Source: Pickuptruck.com]


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  • 35 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      God that thing is ugly.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hey, Willem- I'm with you. In my misguided youth, I sold datsuns for a number of years. Those japanese vehicles had much inferior sheet metal on the exterior. We used to bet on who could launch a paper cup filled with coffee the furthest off the top of a B-210 by slamming the door. The doors were really tight, but the metal on the top of the car would mushroom upwards enough to throw a coffee cup in the air!
        • 7 Years Ago
        Thanks, I knew someone on here would readily recall how over-hyped those vehicles were and are and why nobody ought to be surprised when Toy trucks are revealed to be the thin-metaled pieces of crap that they are. Oh, wait for it... the spin is coming... wait for it... the lack of thickness of sheetmetal must be a weight-loss regime for helping to keep our planet green! Because, we know that Toy is all about the planet and not making huge, gas-guzzling behemoths like the Big Three, right?
      • 7 Years Ago
      I am a toyota fan and it upsets me to see all of these problems. But my experience has been that Toyota will do whatever it takes to get them corrected/replaced. Toyota didn't get to where they are today by not taking care of customer. It is unfortunate tha these problems exist but humans make mistakes and that is life. Toyota will get these problems fixed and the customers will be taken care of.
        • 7 Years Ago
        It took a class action suit for them to recognize the sludge issue and they STILL denied responsibility.
        • 7 Years Ago
        A company that is fighting at all costs to be the number 1 manufacturer in the world has let its quality controls fall to levels below GM in the eighties. They too will learn that consumers will not buy a Toyota JUST because is it a Toyota anymore. GM and Ford have had to get their quality standards to world class to regain lost customers so Toyota better learn from their mistakes and stop bringing out new product just for the sake of new product.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Artie43,

        I'm sorry to say that Toyota got where it did today by paying to keep it's many mistakes a secret. Now that they are in a full profit mindset, they won't care what their customers think.

        They have truely become brainwashed by their own PR spin machine and really think they are superior. Their distain for all things American (except for money that is) makes me sick and I shutter to think of what they think of the people that buy their product and are not from their own JDM.
      • 7 Years Ago
      "This was a factory defect. It should have nothing to do with the warranty," Osman said.

      Lol. That's exactly what a warranty is for.
      • 7 Years Ago
      "But my experience has been that Toyota will do whatever it takes to get them corrected/replaced."

      Like sludge or suspension parts 10 years after the fact?

      These guys are just like any other company.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I am usually not a fan of Toyota, and I am definitely not a fan of the new Tundra. Honestly, though, they are doing quite well to have just begun getting into the full-size truck market.
      • 7 Years Ago
      www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2007/03/nhtsa_tundra.html
      interesting!
      • 7 Years Ago
      TundraSolutions isn't the first forum to start a petition. There are plenty of forums who start petitions about issues. Now actually getting a response from the manufacturer is completely a different subject.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Ah, the online petition. Where, for some strange reason, every person named Jack Meoff in the world gathers to unite under one banner.

      Don't read too much into this... I'm sure people, you know, actually reporting problems to Toyota had more of an impact on this than anything.
      • 7 Years Ago
      What's this normal use crap? Extraordinary use is normal for a pickup truck. I can't imagine a contractor going near a Tundra now. Toyota should have stuck with making cars.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I see plenty of buckled tail gates on domestics too, put a 300 lb iron pipe on the tail gate and go bouncing down the road and you're going to damage the tail gate. Is that considered normal use? Perhaps. Is it a warrantable manufacturing flaw? Not in my book. Now with this being Toyotas first kick at the full size truck can, I'm sure they have some more development to do. They have had design flaws in the past that persited until the next big redesign like the head gaskets blowing in the 3.0L V6 in 90s 4 Runner. In hind sight it would seem easy to recreate everything people will do to their truck in testing but it is not. People who buy the first run of a completely new vehicle should be prepared for problems like this. Even if toyota gives everyone that asks a new tail gate, it will probably be the same one that failed and a note to be more careful with it, the next refresh of the truck will probably have a beefier design.
        • 7 Years Ago
        tankd0g,

        There's a difference between a tailgate that's all bashed up from something bouncing or scraping it and one that's ripping apart at the seems- litterally from a 400lb load (spread over ramps) for a couple minutes.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Notice it's only if the damage occurred "under normal use". What is normal? Many of the posters on the tundra boards report this separation and buckling of the tailgate metal due to loading and unloading ATV's using ramps. Some even say theirs are separating due to people sitting on the tailgate. You buy a truck to be able to do these things.
        • 7 Years Ago
        No, toyota can define normal use like this.

        Under normal use*

        *does not include loading/unloading ATV/Motorcycles/Lumber/Sitting or standing on taigate/ or any other heavy objects
      • 7 Years Ago
      People are reporting damage to the tailgate from loading ATVs and golf carts! Does the "truck that's changing it all" slogan mean it's designed solely for hauling home a new toilet from Home Depot?

      In an age where the people who buy trucks for show purposes and commute to desk jobs in them (and maybe haul a toilet once in awhile), and those people are abandoning trucks in droves, shouldn't Toyota make a truck that can do what it's advertised to do - e.g. - haul an actual load without damage?

      Toyota's marketing went after "real truckers," whatever that means. Hint to Toyota: some people actually use trucks for what they were intended for! You are flirting dangerously close to Honda El Camino II territory.
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