Update: Toyota informed us of a price change to this kit on April 15, 2021. The price has increased by $100 to $1,450.
Toyota announced Wednesday that it will begin selling a factory TRD-branded lift kit for its midsize Tacoma pickup. This new kit is not only TRD-approved and backed by a factory warranty, but it is fully compatible with the new Toyota Safety Sense (TSS) tech that has been offered on the Tacoma since the 2020 model year.
The Bilstein-based kit is compatible with all V6 four-wheel-drive models apart from the long-bed crew cab variant and the TRD Pro (which shouldn't need one to begin with). Toyota says it's good for a two-inch lift up front and about an inch in the rear. The kit also comes with a TRD-style grille replacement, which is more than just an aesthetic upgrade.
"The kit includes a new [TSS] system millimeter-wave sensor (and new camera support bracket) that is designed to precisely fit within the grille to retain the functionality of the TSS system once the kit is installed," Toyota says. "This is the only lift kit validated to be completely TSS-compatible. Also included are two matching black bezels that fill in the deleted fog lamps and complement the TRD Pro-style grille."
You'll note that we didn't mention anything about two-wheel-drive or four-cylinder models above. Toyota's announcement explicitly excluded them, so we reached out to ask whether there are any plans to offer an equivalent kit for those who don't want the 4x4 V6. No dice.
Nor does Toyota intend to offer a separate package containing only the grille and components for making a non-factory lift compatible with TSS. The spokesperson who replied to us did not elaborate, but we suspect that Toyota would rather avoid the potential liability issues of offering that sort of thing without having the ability to verify its functionality with aftermarket parts.
If you're still onboard, the kit retails for $1,350 (plus 4 to 5 hours of labor, Toyota estimates) and is exclusively available as a dealer-installed package, so you probably won't be able to just order one on eBay. It's backed by a 3-year/36,000-mile warranty on parts if installed before delivery, or a 1-year/12,000-mile warranty on parts if installed on a truck that is already in customer hands.