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2016 Toyota Tacoma: Everything You Need to Know


After a long stretch, Toyota’s popular Tacoma is getting some intensive upgrades for 2016. And the improvements are going to seriously please both loyal fans and newcomers.

With new midsize pickups hitting the scene, like Chevy’s Colorado and GMC’s Canyon, the arrival of the totally refreshed Tacoma at Portsmouth, NH Toyota couldn’t be more timely.

Check out the changes that are going to make the 2016 Toyota Tacoma the pickup to beat.

Modernized Looks

The 2016 iteration of the Tacoma has an all-new appearance, with a much more aggressive looking grille and a squarish front face.

The new Tacoma will sport Toyota’s timeless logo in the center of it’s hexagonal grille, while the pickup’s name will appear on the tailgate.

Both alterations align with the design of Toyota’s Tundra, giving the Tacoma the look and feel of a larger truck, while still keeping all the advantages of a midsize model.

Stronger revised wheel flares not only lend to the Tacoma’s muscular look, but they also allow for greater wheel travel.

And the hood itself is taller and beefier. On either side of it, newly stretched headlights give off a sleeker vibe. The truck comes standard with projection beam lamps, and LED daytime running lights are also available.

A Brand New Body

Pretty much everything about the upcoming Tacoma has been redone. It’s new frame is reinforced with high grade steel, increasing rigidity.

And the Tacoma also has a brand new body that’s comprised of hot-stamped steel for durability. Though incredibly strong, the body is actually lighter weight due to the process used to construct it.

Another thing that will definitely please Tacoma lovers is that a locking tri-fold hard tonneau cover is available for the first time. Owners will be able to keep their gear secure when they’re away from the vehicle, offering more peace of mind.

Upgraded from the Inside Out


The 2016 Tacoma is an entirely different truck under the hood. Toyota is going to offer two different engine options, a 2.7-liter four-cylinder, and a 3.5-liter V6 for those who need more capability.

Though many people were wondering if there would be a diesel version, Toyota has confirmed that they will not be offering one right now.

The company felt it was too difficult to deal with diesel due to emission regulations. Diesel emissions are required to be no higher than those allowed for gasoline engines.

But in order to meet that requirement, an expensive after-treatment system is necessary. Toyota felt that consumers would not see a return on their investment if they had to pay several thousand dollars more for their pickups.

With the cost of diesel being higher than gasoline, it was clear that it would take owners a number of years to recoup their upfront costs, and that was not a direction that Toyota wanted to go.

However, the company has said that the new V6 is remarkably efficient and should deliver similar fuel economy to what people were hoping for with a diesel version.

An all-new six-speed transmission is also going to lend to the Tacoma’s efficiency. But for diehard off-roaders who still want full control, a new-six speed manual transmission will be available.

Other big news is the Tacoma’s retuned suspension which offers a smoother ride on the pavement and better than ever performance off-road.

And four new wheel designs that range from 16 to 18 inches will also help to give drivers the ride feel and performance they’re looking for.

Drastically Improved Interior

Those who got to take a closer look at the 2016 Tacoma at the Detriot Auto Show were raving about its impressive new interior.

The dash configuration is much more user-friendly, and soft high quality materials make the surroundings extremely inviting.

Toyota also invested a lot of time and energy in reducing the amount of noise that enters the pickup’s cabin. With tighter seals, a multi-layer acoustic windshield, a sound-absorbing headliner, and a floor silencer pad, 2016 models are the quietest Tacomas ever.

A particularly neat plus that the pickup will also have is a standard GoPro mount by the rearview mirror. Toyota knows that Tacoma lovers are big on adventure, so installing the mount seemed only fitting.

There are also a slew of available features that buyers can add to dress up the interior. Leather trimmed seats, a power moonroof, wireless charging, push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, and enhanced touchscreen audio are all up for grabs.

Lots of Trims to Choose From


There are five trim levels for the new Tacoma, and it will be offered with rear or four-wheel drive. These are the available grades:

  • Work-ready SR
  • Iconic SR5
  • Athletic TRD Sport
  • Tough-as-nails TRD Off-Road
  • Top-of-the-Line Limited 

TRD models are specifically inspired by Toyota Racing Development’s all-terrain racing history, and they come replete with the latest off-roading technology.

First on the list is the new Multi-Terrain Select system which allows drivers to adjust settings based on the type of terrain they’re taking on. Whether it’s a rocky incline or a series of muddy ruts, the system governs wheel spin and helps improve traction.

But Multi-Terrain Select isn’t the only trick the Tacoma has up its sleeve for those who love to hit the trails. As part of the package, you’ll also find:

  • An Automatic Limited Slip and Locking Rear Differential
  • Hill Start Assist Control (HAC)
  • Active Traction Control
  • Crawl Control 

And all manual TRD Tacomas come with Clutch Start Cancel. With the press of a button, drivers can override the clutch interlock when starting the engine, making it safer and easier to recover from a stall on a steep incline.

The 2016 Tacoma is by far the most capable midsize pickup that Toyota has ever brought to the table, and its radically enhanced look and feel are definitely ready to please a wide range of pickup enthusiasts. When it’s released later this year, Rochester Toyota will be the best place to take the new model for an exhilerating test drive.