Sales numbers for the Toyota Tacoma in the United States have been fairly steady since 2018. Toyota has sold between 238,000 and 252,000 midsize trucks over the last four years but for 2022, they’re on pace for less than 217,000. Why the decline in sales?
One viewer on Youtube wrote this, “Toyota is stuck in 1990. It’s 2022 and this truck is not competitive. Gas mileage is terrible. Interior is terrible. Engine power is terrible. Infotainment is terrible. Who would spend 50k on this truck?“
Another viewer wrote this, “The tacoma is the least reliable midsize truck. Look it up. Toyota tacoma used to be good . They stink now . People cant adjust and live in the past.“
For many years, the Toyota Tacoma was the default choice when it came to midsize trucks. It offered everything truck buyers were looking for and had few competitors. There are now more choices in this segment, but the Tacoma remains a top contender. Much of its appeal comes from a reputation for durability, off-road capability, and a lineup that offers everything from a two-wheel-drive extended cab up to a four-wheel-drive TRD Pro. Base models come standard with a four-cylinder engine with 159 horsepower while higher trims get a larger V6 with 278 hp. Both cab styles feature four doors, but the extended cab uses smaller reverse opening rear doors while the crew cab gets standard, full-size rear doors. Both 5- and 6-foot bed lengths are available along with rear- or four-wheel drive. Upgrade packages from Toyota Racing Development (TRD) gives the Tacoma improved performance on the road or in the dirt depending on the package. The Tacoma’s interior favors function over form as most of the controls use large knobs and buttons. Recent improvements to the user interface have made the touchscreen controls easier to operate, but it’s still not the best system in the class.
Key competitors include the Ford Ranger and newly redesigned Nissan Frontier, along with long-time rivals, the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon twins. There’s also the Jeep Gladiator which matches the Tacoma for off-road capability but lacks the diverse array of configurations.
The 2022 Toyota Tacoma is available in six trim levels: SR, SR5, TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, Limited and TRD Pro. The trim levels, two cab styles, and two wheelbase lengths make for numerous configurations. Nearly all trims offer either rear-drive or part-time four-wheel drive. The exception is the TRD Pro, which is four-wheel drive only. On most Tacoma trims, optional part-time four-wheel drive adds approximately $3,000 to the truck’s price.
The SR’s starting price is $27,915 (including a $1,175 destination fee). It comes equipped with power windows, power door locks, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with audio controls. A 7-inch touchscreen and a variety of standard safety systems are part of the package. It even gets driver safety features such as automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure alert, and automatic high beams. The bed’s deck rail system includes four tie-down cleats, allowing owners to secure cargo quickly.
Starting at $29,705, the SR5 adds a 10-way adjustable driver’s seat and an 8-inch touchscreen, plus the option to upgrade to a premium audio system. Buyers can also add a navigation system and choose different wheels. The SR5 offers the Trail Special Edition package on V6, short-bed models that includes bronze wheels, oversize tires, a suspension lift, locking differential, and distinctive exterior badging. The SR5 is our choice for its strong value and wide range of options.
The TRD Sport ($34,825) takes its cues from Toyota Racing Development, the brand’s in-house performance division with a specially-tuned suspension designed to improve on-road handling. It includes a wireless smartphone charger, proximity keyless entry, LED daytime running lights, sporty exterior accents like a hood scoop, an in-bed 120V power outlet, a leather-trimmed shift knob, and wide-angle fog lights.
The TRD Off-Road trim ($36,105) features upgraded Bilstein shocks and retuned springs for improved handling in the dirt along with distinctive 16-inch wheels and tires, a gray grille, hood scoop, and color-keyed mirrors and door handles.
The upscale Limited trim ($40,670) includes a laundry list of comfort and convenience items and exclusive 18-inch polished alloy wheels. It also has a panoramic-view camera, LED headlights, chrome exterior accents, color-keyed bumpers, a power-sliding sunroof, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a JBL premium audio system, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.
The top-of-the-line TRD Pro ($47,350) is for off-road enthusiasts who want maximum capability. It uses a suspension fortified with remote reservoir Fox shock absorbers, retuned springs for a taller ride height, underbody skid plates, and TRD wheels with oversized, all-terrain tires. It also offers distinctive exterior colors along with plenty of “TRD Pro” badging to make sure it’s clear you’re driving the most capable Tacoma on the block.