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2008 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab

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2008 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab Review

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The 2008 Toyota Tacoma may be the Japanese automaker's smallest pickup, but it has long since left the realm of the compact courier. The Tacoma is the best selling pickup in its segment and dwarfs the Ford Ranger and Chevrolet Colorado in every area that counts. Its closest competitors are now the Dodge Dakota and Nissan Frontier and, while worthy opponents, neither can match the Tacoma's long history of reliability and high resale value. Wrapped in muscular, aggressive sheetmetal and touting the most powerful V6 engine ever to grace a small Toyota, the Tacoma has much to offer those who take their pickup trucks seriously.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a capable pickup larger than a Ford Ranger, but not as massive as a Dodge Ram, look into the 2008 Toyota Tacoma. When it comes to reliability in this segment, many organizations rank it at the top of its class.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you've driven the Honda Ridgeline or Nissan Frontier and were impressed by their car-like ride and handling, you might be disappointed that the Tacoma still drives very much like a truck.

What's New for 2008

Toyota Racing Development (TRD) offers a TRD supercharger for Tacomas equipped with the 4.0-liter V6 engine, which can be purchased and installed through the dealership. Also new for 2008 is the TRD Off-Road Rugged Trail Package that includes a locking rear differential, Bilstein shocks, 16-inch Baja wheels, black overfenders and additional skid plates.

Driving the Tacoma Regular Cab
Driving Impressions

The Tacoma we tested was a Double Cab, long-bed model equipped with a V6, four-wheel drive, five-speed automatic transmission and the SR5 package that includes a limited-slip differential. Put the...

... pedal to the floor and you can feel and hear the powerful V6 working, conveying a refined sort of ruggedness. On the highway, our Tacoma rode rather nicely, but it almost seemed out of its element negotiating city streets. In general, the Tacoma always felt like it'd be happier hauling or towing something or negotiating rocks in a river. On one hand, that's exactly the attitude many buyers will require for a truck. On the other hand, the Tacoma's competition includes some other very capable trucks that offer a more "car-like" daily driving experience -- namely the Honda Ridgeline and Nissan Frontier.

Six-Speed Manual
The Tacoma's six-speed manual transmission helps take full advantage of the available 236-horsepower V6.

Functional Bed
All Tacomas feature a composite inner bed with built-in storage compartments and four rail-mounted sliding tie-down cleats.

2008 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab Details
Interior

Getting into and out of the 2008 Toyota Tacoma is easy, and the firm seats are designed with pleasant bolstering and adjustability to fit most body types and sizes. A recessed, three-ring instrument cluster looks handsome and is in clear view. Most, if not all of the controls are easy to reach and adjust, and steering wheel-mounted controls for the radio are available. Overall, the midsize Tacoma feels very roomy. On the Double Cab, the big back doors open up to a back seat as roomy as that in many small sedans.

Exterior

The 2008 Toyota Tacoma succeeds by blending classic Toyota truck styling with design features of some larger domestic models. Oversized headlamps and a wide trapezoidal grille dominate the Tacoma's assertive-looking exterior and, at a glance, the Tacoma might be mistaken for a domestic truck. The overall exterior of the Tacoma is well done, and an impeccable level of fit and finish is a known characteristic of Toyota products. Double Cab models offer a class-first roof-rack system that attaches to the roof rails. Integrated deck rails found in the bed can be used to secure optional accessories, such as the fork-mounted bike rack and diamond-plated storage boxes. The Tacoma's bed features a protective composite bed liner that is both durable and light.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The two-wheel-drive Tacoma's base four-cylinder engine displaces 2.7 liters. Other standard equipment includes an AM/FM CD sound system, anti-lock brakes (ABS), tachometer, two instrument panel powerpoints and rear mudguards. Access Cab X-Runner and Double Cab models include bucket seats with center console, power mirrors, power windows and power door locks.

Optional Equipment

Options include the 4.0-liter V6, four-wheel drive and SR5 Packages, which add color-keyed overfenders and front bumper, chrome grille surround and a chrome rear bumper. Transmission upgrades from the base five-speed manual include a four-speed automatic, five-speed automatic and six-speed manual. Optional body configurations include Access Cab and Double Cab models, plus a long bed. Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) is available on all models, while traction control with Hill-start Assist (HAC) is available on V6 models with automatic transmissions. There are also a myriad of TRD parts available including the Off-Road Package and supercharger.

Under the Hood

Both of the Tacoma's engines, the four-cylinder and the V6, feature Toyota's VVT-i technology (Variable Valve Timing with intelligence) that minimizes the compromise between low-end torque and peak horsepower. Combined with a choice of four available transmissions, two- or four-wheel drive, three cab styles and more, Toyota makes it easy to get exactly the pickup you want. Maximum towing and payload capacities are 6,500 pounds and 1,495 pounds, respectively.

2.7-liter in-line 4
159 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
180 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/25 (2WD, manual), 19/25 (2WD, automatic),
17/22 (4WD, manual)

4.0-liter V6
236 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
266 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/19 (2WD, manual), 15/18 (4WD, manual),
16/20 (2WD, automatic), 16/20 (4WD, automatic)

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2008 Toyota Tacoma Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 1491 Ratings for the 2005 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.2/10
    Quality
    9.3/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    9.2/10
  • Comfort
    9.0/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

an excellent local hauler

By on Monday, April 25, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 16,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "a pleasure to drive"

Cons: "A turbo would help"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"We have made several short trips across the state and things have gone well. Last year we went from Spokane, WA. to Rapid City, SD, not good, spent too much time in lower gears. our city mpg is about 18 and hwy is 24. This is an excellent truck but not for crossing the continental divide. I do like this truck very much and it is my 2nd Tacoma, I just wish I had gotten a V-6."

6 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Best Truck I've Ever Owned!

By on Saturday, April 02, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 231,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Everything!"

Cons: "Small Gas Tank"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"It's going to be really hard to say good bye to this truck. She has 231,000 miles and going, but it's time to let someone else enjoy her amazing performance and reliability. She's been my side kick since January of 2007. Sometimes I think I'm the truck's sidekick. She's been amazing and incredible, and even then, that's an understatement. Unfortunately I can't afford the same truck brand new. The new models start at $5,000 more than what I paid for mine in 2007. I definitely plan to buy a Tacoma sometime in the future when I can afford a truck again. In the meantime, I have to settle for a car :( This truck has been outstanding. Only broke down once in Toyon,CA due to the battery. Other than that, never had any other issues. Till this day, she can tow like a beast, and she has the tenacity to accelerate up to speed when merging onto the freeway. Hardly any vibration at higher speeds even with her miles. I strongly recommend! If you want a truck that drives like a car, tows like a beast, whose reliability is as sure as death and taxes, the Tacoma is your truck!"

16 people out of 26 found this review helpful

Reliable, tough looking....a 10 in my book

By on Thursday, March 31, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 8,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "tough looking reliable comfortable"

Cons: "mpg could be better"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

late afternoon getting ready for a weekend dirt bike trip

"There are only a few things that make this different than a trd off road version. In my eyes, they are significant. First, Toyota matched up the perfect suspension and lift kit that makes the trd pro just look that much tougher than a regular trd off road package and the price is not that much more. I am extremely happy with this truck and believe it or not get many compliments on the looks."

7 people out of 14 found this review helpful

late afternoon getting ready for a weekend dirt bike trip

great truck....

By on Friday, March 04, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 236,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "everything ."

Cons: "nothing"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"this one has 236,000 and is still going stronge and looks great. this is my second one and I love it . the first one I had 213,000 and I still see it on the road. looking to get 2016 soon . love these trucks.."

12 people out of 19 found this review helpful

I love this truck but, I just do not care to drive

By on Wednesday, February 24, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 41,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Very nice vehicle, drives very well, turns heads!"

Cons: "I have no cons. I just do not drive much."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have really kept very good care of this truck. As of now, no tears or cracks. This is really a very safe and reliable truck. (My husband has a 2014 4dr Tundra and we have a little s10). Awesome truck that someone else might really enjoy. *I owe $12k on it and it just sits here on my carport looking beautiful and bright white. (I'd like to Sale for $25,000)"

12 people out of 31 found this review helpful

WAAAY OVERPRICED for what you get

By on Monday, February 22, 2016

I owned and sold this car

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
3/10
Reliability
5/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
2/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "style, towing capability"

Cons: "almost everything else"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"got this truck when it first came out in my honest opinion I think I paid way too much for it,definitely not the best value for a "truck" I learned. sold it after 3 years. main reasons are space (I am 6'1 tho), stereo!, navigation, MPG for a smaller pickup, power, and last but not least cost of repairs.""

18 people out of 36 found this review helpful

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