For a glorious vista, Tacoma Washington is the place to be. With glorious views of Mt. Rainier and the Puget Sound surrounding the city, it’s a photo opportunity waiting to happen. For a rugged, rough, and tumble truck, the Toyota Tacoma is what you want to drive.
Backed by a fantastic reputation from Toyota, the Tacoma recently underwent a redesign for the 2016 model year, and you’d barely recognize this year’s version. The truck was built to be a smaller sized pickup option in the Toyota lineup, playing younger sibling to the Toyota T100, but it offers full-sized potential.
An Upgrade from the Hilux
Released in 1995, as a mid-year release and classified as a compact pickup, the Tacoma was meant to replace the Toyota Hilux. The Hilux was most commonly known, in the U.S., simply as the Toyota Pickup. The name Tacoma was based on the name given to Mt. Rainier by Washington’s indigenous peoples. The second generation of the Tacoma released in 2005, was classified as a midsize truck, and at this time was seated right beside Toyota’s latest full-sized truck release the Toyota Tundra. Now in its third generation, with a brand new 2016 redesign, the Tacoma may be the smaller of the two, but not in attitude.
The third generation Tacoma is all new and full of attitude. From the brand new fender design to an aggressive front end, this mid-size pickup is every the off-road monster it’s big brother is. Available in four different trim levels, and eight stylish colors, the Tacoma is built using a brand new high strength steel that it every bit as durable, but much lighter than the steel used in previous generations. A 3.5 liter V6 engine and a towing capacity of over three tons, its able to haul nearly every piece of outdoor equipment you’ve got while still maintaining a healthy mileage per gallon when not towing. While a 6 speed automatic transmission comes standard on the Tacoma, those who need the feeling of control beneath their skin can opt for the six speed manual transmission.
Often, the interior of pickups is a forgotten part of the puzzle. Their interior features are usually pared down versions of what can be found in the manufacturer’s cars and SUVs, because usually pickups are purchased for their moving and towing capacity, and not for the enjoyment of the ride. However, with the Tacoma, the interior materials can handle being on a jobsite all day long, but will also provide a comfortable ride if you commute to the office during the day. With a better seal around the cab, no matter where the road takes you, you won’t hear it inside the cabin. With other additional features like dual zone temperature controls and an available power moon roof, the interior of the Tacoma isn’t a puzzle missing a piece, it’s the perfect fit.
In recent car models, technology has become as important as the powertrain functions, and the towing capacity. Toyota doesn’t hold back with the tech-heavy design of the Tacoma. Featuring smart key technology, the Tacoma won’t have you fishing for your keys in order to unload your purchases, as your proximity will both unlock the doors and allow you to start the truck as well. With off-road enthusiasts, the standard Go Pro mount on the windshield can record all of your adventures or misadventures; the choice is yours. When carrying a bed full of cargo, backing up can be a challenge in and of itself, but with a standard backup camera, reversing harmlessly in the Tacoma will be a snap.
All the Perks
With traditional truck drivers, safety has to be a concern, as taking a truck off-road can be sometimes potentially hazardous. Tacoma’s door design is built to make sure you and your passengers reach your destination safely, by using stronger materials, and specialized design. The Tacoma also comes equipped with Toyota’s signature Star Safety System that features stability control, traction control, anti-lock brakes, and other safety features. With available lane departure warning systems, rear parking sonar, and blind spot monitoring, this truck will feel safe enough to carry your precious family or your favorite toys without worries.
The younger, smaller version of the Tundra, the Tacoma is such, in name only. Bigger and better than any other mid-size truck on the market, and backed by Toyota’s stellar reputation, the Tacoma is the obvious choice. Whether driving to get the best view of Mt. Rainier, driving to work, or making your way across the country on a getaway, this midsize truck will feel like a full-sized decision.