The Tacoma is powered by either a 2.7L 4-cylinder that makes 159 horsepower, or by a 3.5L V6 that makes 278 horsepower.
The Tacoma is offered with a wealth of customization options but it comes in six trims: SR, SR5, TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, Limited and TRD Pro.
The base SR version can be ordered with either the Access Cab, or with the 4-door Double Cab. The Access Cab comes with a standard length bed, while the Double Cab is only available with the short bed. Standard equipment includes 16-inch wheels, power windows and door locks, a backup camera, an Entune audio system with Bluetooth connectivity and a deck rail system to help secure loose objects in the bed.
The SR5 allows buyers to choose both the bigger cabin and the longer bed. SR5s include keyless entry, a 4.2-inch multi-information display in the instrument cluster, SiriusXM satellite radio, fog lamps and a bit more chrome on the exterior of the truck.
The TRD Off-Road version adds both style and off-road utility to the Tacoma. Special 16-inch wheels look mean and stylish while functional additions include a locking differential, crawl control and a multi-terrain select driving aid. Options on the TRD Off-Road include dual-zone climate control and a sunroof. The bigger V6 engine is standard on the model.
Where the TRD Off-Road is rugged, the TRD Sport is slick and stylish. Like the TRD Off-Road, the TRD Sport is only available with the V6 engine. Wheels are 17-inch alloys, while the interior gets a premium sound system and a wireless smartphone charger. The bed features a 120V outlet while the daytime running lights use ultra-bright LEDs. A smart key is also standard on the TRD Sport.
The Limited comes only with the larger cabin and a V6. It adds color-keyed bumpers and additional exterior chrome, polished 18-inch wheels, automatic climate control, a powered moonroof and heated, leather-trimmed seats.
Finally, the TRD Pro offers LED headlights, 16-inch TRD Pro Black alloy wheels, unique exterior grille, badging, and hood scoop, leather-trimmed seats with a special headrest logo, a power sliding rear window with privacy glass, dual-zone automatic climate control, and blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert. Standard off-road technologies include an electronically locking rear differential, front skid plate, FOX internal bypass shocks, a cat-back exhaust, multi-terrain selection and crawl control.
Last year, Roadshow reviewed the 2018 Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport. That review focused on the "truck stuff" -- things trucks are actually built for, like hauling items and venturing off the beaten path.
Now, it's time to review 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport, but instead of doing the same thing with a relatively unchanged truck, I'm flipping the script and seeing how it performs as a lifestyle enhancer. With truck prices rising ever closer to low Earth orbit, these vehicles need to fill multiple roles, hauling gravel and humans in equal measure.
As it turns out, a little bit of perspective goes a long way. While the 2019 Tacoma might shine in the dirt, when it comes to daily duties, it may leave you looking for something a little more civilized.
The Good The Tacoma is capable and packs plenty of standard safety tech.
The Bad On-road ride quality and fuel economy are middling, and it's hard for a tall driver to feel comfortable.
The Bottom Line As a proper truck, the Tacoma beams with value, but mall crawlers will be better off with something more crossover-y.
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