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2014 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab

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2014 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.5

For decades the Toyota Tacoma, this country’s by-far most-popular-compact pickup, has built a well-deserved reputation for ruggedness, durability, capability and long-term value, and the 2014 model will continue that tradition. Legions of satisfied owners have used their Tacomas for working hard and playing hard, and its popularity just keeps on growing. Its likely competitors have dwindled. The Ford Ranger and Dodge Dakota are gone, the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon have aged (although newer versions are on the way), the Nissan Frontier is not offered in as many configurations, the Honda Ridgeline is rather more SUV than truck. For 2014 the Tacoma continues on, still clearly on top of the segment and available in any configuration of cab, powertrain and trim level imaginable.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you’re in the market for a compact truck your search should begin, and will likely end, with the 2014 Toyota Tacoma. Essentially, it will do most of what the larger trucks will do, and without the bulk, fuel consumption or cost. It deservedly tops the entire segment.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The Tacoma is a compact pickup so, reasonably, it won’t tow or haul as much as a full-size truck. And if you really don’t haul much and want a smoother ride, check out the Honda Ridgeline.

What's New for 2014

The 2014 Toyota Tacoma is offered with four levels of Entune audio, which leverages a smartphone to provide fully integrated access to navigation, entertainment and information services. A new SR appearance package is available for the Tacoma PreRunner and 4x4 Access Cab and Double Cab base models. The X-Runner is discontinued.

Driving the Tacoma Regular Cab
Driving Impressions

The 2014 Toyota Tacoma’s compact dimensions make it more easily maneuverable than a full-size pickup. It’s predictable, responsive and easy to drive and park, the ride is acceptable (and is...

... helped with a load in the bed), and it gets down the road in a straight line and around the corners with no surprises. When fitted with the off-road suspension the ride is, understandably, on the firmer side. The base 4-cylinder engine is perfectly agreeable for its purpose, but the 236-horsepower V6 is much stronger and a lot smoother without much of a penalty in fuel consumption. The 4-cylinder can be matched with a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic, and the V6 has either a 6-speed manual or 5-speed automatic; all transmissions operate smoothly and shift as they should. Some folks feel the seats are somewhat close to the floor, but it’s a minor concern.

STRONG V6 ENGINE
The Tacoma’s available 4.0-liter V6 engine is powerful, smooth and responsive, and works well with either the 6-speed manual or the 5-speed automatic transmission. And it does all that with only a relatively modest reduction in fuel economy.

FUNCTIONAL BED
All Tacomas feature a composite inner bed with built-in storage compartments and four rail-mounted sliding tie-down cleats. The setup is handy, functional and durable.

2014 Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab Details
Interior

The 2014 Toyota Tacoma offers an interior that’s clean, functional and well-suited to the needs of truck owners. Instruments and controls are easy to see and use, and there are cup holders and other storage spots throughout. The front seats are supportive and comfortable. The rear seats in the Access Cab model are best for children or adults on short trips, but the rear seats in the Double Cab are much better, with storage both under the seat and in a separate compartment accessed by flipping down the seatback.

Exterior

Even though it’s a compact, the 2014 Toyota Tacoma looks every inch a truck, with a rugged and muscular attitude, a big grille (chrome on higher-end trim levels), pronounced fender bulges, large bumpers and a generally workman-like feel from front to rear. The base version has black bumpers and grille, the PreRunner has the off-road look, and the option packages, from SR5 Extra Value to TRD Off-Road to Limited, add their own details. As would be expected of Toyota, the quality, fit and finish are as good as it gets.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Standard equipment for the 2014 Toyota Tacoma includes the 2.7-liter 4-cylinder engine of 159 horsepower and a 5-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, an AM/FM stereo with single-disc CD system, anti-lock brakes (ABS), front side-impact and side-curtain airbags, traction and stability control, tachometer, two instrument-panel powerpoints and rear mudguards. Regular Cab 4x4 models with the automatic transmission add standard bucket seats. Access Cab and Double Cab models include bucket seats with a center console, power mirrors, power windows and power door locks. All models include Entune Audio, which leverages a smartphone to provide fully integrated access to navigation, entertainment and information services.

Optional Equipment

Many of the options for the 2014 Toyota Tacoma are grouped into packages, and not all are available on every version of cab size or powertrain. Packages include the SR5 Extra Value Package, four TRD Off-Road Extra Value Packages, and the Limited Package. Among the major selections are the 4.0-liter V6 engine, the choice of a manual or an automatic transmission, and 4-wheel drive. Beyond that, the options are many and are linked with cab configurations, powertrain choices and trim levels.

Under the Hood

The base 2014 Toyota Tacoma engine is a 2.7-liter 4-cylinder of 159 horsepower and 180 lb-ft of torque. It gets the job done but we prefer the available 4.0-liter V6 of 236 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque, as it’s much stronger and smoother and its fuel-economy penalty is not unreasonable. Both engines feature Toyota’s Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) which helps to reduce the compromise between higher-end horsepower and low-end torque. Depending upon engine and drivetrain, maximum towing capacity is 6,500 pounds and maximum payload is 1,500 pounds. There are four available transmissions, 2- or 4-wheel drive (2WD or 4WD), three cab configurations, two cargo bed lengths and numerous other choices.

2.7-liter inline-4
159 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
180 lb-ft of torque @ 3,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/25 mpg (2WD, manual), 19/24 mpg (2WD, automatic),
18/21 mpg (4WD, manual and automatic)

4.0-liter V6
236 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
266 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/21 mpg (2WD, manual), 17/21 mpg (2WD, automatic), 16/19 mpg (4WD, manual), 16/21 mpg (4WD, automatic)

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2014 Toyota Tacoma Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.2
Out of 10

Based on 1496 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

Best reliability

By on Tuesday, July 19, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 199,465

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
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Reliable, low maintenance, loyal"

Cons: "Wish it had rear disc brakes for safety"

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

"This truck has been very loyal to me, I've gotten my money's worth over the years I've owned it. Maintenance is minimal, just tire rotation, balance, oil changes. Brake pad changes. Once transmission, radiator, and brake lines flushed. Never had any issues with starting. It's a truck, so it rides like a truck. If you like a car ride, get a car, right? I commute to work on it, and it's not the best on gas mileage, yet, it's a truck! I can count on it and not sure I will see another car like this one. As someone wrote, the day will come that I will have to part with it, it will be a sad day for me. The Tacoma is not perfect, but has been perfect for me."

Worst vehicle I've ever owned.

By on Friday, July 8, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
3/10
Reliability
3/10
Quality
3/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "Looks cool."

Cons: "For a truck, it cannot do truck things."

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

"Not quite sure even where to start with this vehicle, other than it is the most uncomfortable, least capable truck I've ever owned. Quiet frankly, it has turned into an expensive commuting vehicle with horrible fuel economy. I'll start with an explanation of my ratings above: Value: On paper the vehicle and specs look good. It can tow up to 6500 lbs with the Tow Package, and has a payload of 1400 lbs (approx.). It has 5 seat belts and with the TRD Sport Pkg was purchased for approximately $28k. However, the performance of the truck is very different. With 500-700 lbs of payload in the bed, the truck handles so differently, it is scary. It leans and rolls to the point I feel completely unsafe. The tow rating on the truck is decent, but again reality is very different. I tow regularly between 3500-4000 lbs and again this challenges the truck. Using this truck as a truck has also lead to major mechanical issues and thousands of dollars (+$4000) in maintenance costs over the last three years. Toyota has told me I tow and haul wrong, but the facts are; I've only used half the capability of the truck. Very disappointing. Reliability: Horrible! Spark knock - The truck has had spark knock since the first oil change. I've had the dealership run diagnostics almost every time it is in for servicing and have been told this is all normal. Very disappointing. Suspension - I have had to completely replace the rear suspension. Both rear leaf springs were bent so badly the truck had a 3 inch sag. Toyota again contributed it to towing; however, not once has the truck towed close to the towing limit. One of the front struts also blew after 15k miles. Trailer Brake Harness - With the factory tow package, the truck is pre-wired for a trailer brake controller. Toyota (and the blogs and YouTube videos) state the harness for this controller is located behind the driver kick panel. However, after hours of personally looking for this harness, having my mechanic look for it, and again the dealership look for it; the harness is nowhere to be found. Toyota has stated that I need to pay for their tech to spend any more time looking for this harness. All very disappointing. Quality: With the above issues, I rate the quality poor. Also, the seat cushions have compressed making the driver seat very uncomfortable. Driving dynamics: The truck hates to stop. Even after upgrading tires, the truck just slides when braking on dry concrete. Braking distance is unsafe! The anti-roll equipment regularly engages on freeway ramps. This system uses the brakes to "assist" the vehicle from rolling; however, is too sensitive. The last thing a driver needs is the vehicle randomly slamming on the brakes when trying to enter a freeway. I do not drive this truck any different than any other vehicle, but it is challenged. Also, the traction control system on this truck is worthless. Design: The truck looks very cool on the outside. The inside is dull and bland. Comfort and convenience: Comfort is very poor to the point of unbearable. The driving position is too low, the seats do not have adequate cushion, and only children under 5 feet can sit in the back seats. It is basically a two person vehicle. The truck can only be driven for 3 hours at a time before my back and leg pain is so great I have to get out of the truck. Not convenient on road trips, especially when towing and trips take longer. Overall rating: If there was a rating of less then 1, this truck deserves it. It is not capable of towing or hauling. It is uncomfortable. It is not reliable. Fuel economy is not remotely close to EPA rating. This vehicle is an overgrown Camry and is worthless. I have spent thousands of dollars in maintenance, and renting vehicles over the last 3 years of ownership. Very disappointing, DO NOT BUY."

3 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Toyota Tacoma is worth every penny

By on Thursday, July 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 196,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Very reliable, handles well, holds value"

Cons: "poor cup holders,"

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

"I purchased my Toyota Tacoma for yard/house work and to drive to work. It has proven to be the most reliable vehicle I have owned. It is a great drive and has adequate power for my purposes. I have never had it in the shop other than routine maintenance. I have 196K and counting on it and it is just as strong as the day I bought it."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

excellent all around

By on Monday, June 27, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 36,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "price, maintain value, driving comfort,"

Cons: "back access seating not for adults on longer trips"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"very good for two adults/two children. back access is not for long distant travel. great for extra storage."

Worst truck i have every owned

By on Saturday, June 4, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 40,000

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
5/10
Quality
2/10
Performance
Not Rated
Styling
7/10
Comfort
2/10

Pros: "None i paid way to much"

Cons: "to many to list toyotas are cheaply built but high"

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

"Uncomfortable to drive. Terrible road noise, I cant talk on the phone with hands free to much noise. Terrible gas mileage, with very little power. Truck is very under powered. I have the access cab what a waste of space."

3 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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."

7 people out of 16 found this review helpful

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