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2018 Toyota Tacoma Double Cab KBB Expert Review

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KBB Expert Rating 8.8 / 10
This Car - 2018 Toyota Tacoma
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Consumer Rating 7.7 / 10

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KBB Expert Review

KBB Editors' Overview

By Scott Oldham -- Contributing Editor

America’s best-selling midsize pickup for more than a decade, the comfortable and capable 2018 Toyota Tacoma has been improved with new standard safety technology, including a Pre-Collision system and Lane Departure Alert. Available in six trim levels and over 30 configurations, the new Toyota Tacoma enjoys a stellar reputation for excellent durability and reliability as well as on- and off-road performance. Two engines are available starting with a 2.7-liter 4-cylinder that makes 159 horsepower. We recommend the 278-horsepower 3.5-liter V6, which can be paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission or a 6-speed manual. And when equipped with an optional V6 Tow Package, the Tacoma can tow up to 6,800 pounds. Competitors include the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, as well as the Nissan Frontier.

You'll Like This Car If...

Few vehicles are as versatile or as personally customizable as the 2018 Toyota Tacoma. With six trim levels and over 30 configurations available, there’s a new Tacoma to fit any budget, any want and any need. If you’re looking for a reliable work truck, a capable surf wagon, a durable dirt-bike hauler, a comfortable daily driver or an ultimate off-road adventure vehicle, you’ll like the 2018 Tacoma.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Both the Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon offer a diesel engine, which the Tacoma does not. Both also offer superior interior comfort to the Toyota as well as onboard Wi-Fi. Also, if your needs include full-size loads or large-scale towing, you’ll reach the Tacoma’s limits quickly and should consider a full-size truck like the Toyota Tundra.

What's New for 2018

For 2018 all Tacoma models gain Toyota Safety Sense electronic driver aids as standard equipment. It includes Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert with Sway Warning System, Automatic High Beams and High-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control. Most trim levels also get a new and distinct grille treatment. The 5-speed manual transmission is no longer available.

Driving It Driving Impressions

In most driving environments and situations, the Tacoma’s 159-horsepower 2.7-liter engine is powerful enough, but climbing grades with a full load in the bed will require some planning and probably full throttle. Plus, the 4-cylinder can get a little rowdy when you rev it out. This is also easily fixed by choosing the 3.5-liter V6. This engine makes 278 horsepower and significantly improves the capability of the 2018 Tacoma, and it makes the Toyota a more enjoyable pickup to drive. The 6-speed automatic transmission isn’t exactly state of the art, but it works well with both engines. The V6 and 6-speed manual combination is rewarding to drive. Seating is comfortable and overall visibility is excellent; however, the Tacoma’s pedal and steering-wheel placement may be an issue for shoppers with long legs. The Tacoma also rides well, with less chop than you might expect from a small pickup.

Favorite Features

This clever system, which is also found on Toyota’s sedans as well as Lexus cars and SUVs, scans the road ahead for obstacles including other vehicles and pedestrians. When a possible collision is detected it will warn you, but if you do not take action to avoid the accident, the system will apply the truck’s brakes for you.

The TRD Pro is the ultimate off-road-capable Tacoma. It’s also the most expensive at about $43,000, but its unique list of specialized hardware is worth it. These trucks get Fox shocks, additional ground clearance and thick aluminum skidplates, as well as special tires and other equipment and trim. The Tacoma TRD Pro and the Chevy Colorado ZR2 are the elite off-road machines in this class.

For vehicle details and pricing notes… Read More
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