The Tacoma isn’t just a reliable member of the midsize truck segment, but it is also a part of the off-roading community. Since its inception, it has provided customers a dependable platform for many off-road enhancements, and Toyota has been offering ever-more adventurous off-roading options to its Tacoma lineup. In 2022, Toyota offers it’s somewhat brand-new Trail Edition some aesthetic as mechanical improvements, and the incredibly powerful TRD Pro gets even more than that with its suspension components. The model was introduced last year.
Trail Edition was a limited-production model based on the low-cost SR5 trim level and included some off-road and practical features like bed boxes that could be locked. The 2022 model will feature Toyota has added an automatic rear differential that locks as a standard feature and a small lifting of the suspension (1.1 inches of front lift and 0.5 inches for the rear) as compared to the other Tacomas to provide the truck with a bit of more capability and clearance while off-roading. The truck also takes the traditional grille design from TRD Pro. and adds bronze to the lettering. Do you love the trendy, bronze-colored wheels? They’re available too. In the case of TRD Pro, it gets an increase in suspension than Trail Edition (1.5 inches in front, but 0.5 inches back) and a brand new wheel-and-tire configuration.
The Tacoma has smooth steering and handling and is generally simple to drive. The biggest issue is brakes, which feel a bit grabby and could cause nosedive during hard stops. We’d like to see that the 3.5-liter V6 felt more supple and responsive, but it’s got enough power to get the job done. The transmission shifts smoothly and gets the most from the engine. Tacoma excels and stands over all other models on the off-road, except for the Gladiator. The Tacoma is equipped with the capability, gearing, and clearance to conquer the toughest terrain, and the throttle and brakes make it incredibly precise and controlled in low-range crawling conditions.
How enjoyable is Tacoma?
Indeed, the Tacoma wasn’t a bad vehicle to be in; however, changes made at the time of 2020 helped make it better. A fully adjustable driver’s seat with 10 ways is standard in V6 vehicles, and the seat provides long-range comfortable for drivers of every shape and size. The more robust side-window glass cut down on wind noise compared to previous times, but Colorado and the Ridgeline are still ahead on this front. This is also true in ride quality, as Tacoma is still a bit more difficult than its most smooth-riding rivals. The Tacoma features efficient cooling and heating and is easy to set in its climate systems.
How’s the interior?
Tacoma’s biggest drawback is its high step. If you can overcome that, the rest is easy once inside. The controls are intuitive and easy to use, including the huge infotainment display and the newly redesigned knobs and physically-located shortcut buttons. The power seat with 10 ways offers an increased range of adjustment than the pre-2020 models; however, we’d like to see the steering wheel that telescopes pulled out more. The seat’s downward adjustability can improve the roominess of the front seats. However, other dimensions are identical as before. Its visibility is great due to the top of the hood’s shape, large side windows, and a forward-facing and side-looking camera system.
The most recent Tacoma has a good supply with technologically advanced features. Toyota unveiled a new screen in 2020 with bigger dimensions, sharper map graphics, and faster response times than earlier models. Additionally, you get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphones, and Amazon Alexa. Navigation built-in is a cheap upgrade option and is likely to be worth it in case you’re thinking of getting away from the cell phone range often. Toyota’s approach to the standard active safety technology is impressive. Autonomous cruise control, adaptive emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, high automatic beam control, and the driver drowsiness alarm are available on all models.
The 3.5-liter V6 engine and six-speed automatic combo earn 20 mpg combined (18 city/22 highway) in 4WD trim and 21 mpg combined in rear-wheel-drive models. We tested a 2016 TRD 4WD Off-Road for more than a year and averaged 18.6 mpg over 40,000 miles of use. We were able to exceed the highway rating on several road trips, and there are good reasons why our truck may have come up just over 1 mpg short.