2000 Tacoma New Car Test Drive
It's a given that Toyota makes tough, high-quality trucks. The basic Tacoma pickups offer economy and value and those Toyota attributes of quality, durability and reliability. The TRD (Toyota Racing Development) trucks are designed to be sporty, fun-to-drive off-road warriors. These spunky TRD trucks, available in either 2WD or 4WD are just the thing for people who want to play on rough tracks, moguls, or sand dunes. Or for those who have to deal with snow, mud, or ice as part of winter life. Surprisingly, though, the TRD trucks feature a superb ride on pavement-a ride that belies the serious offroad suspension underneath them.
There's something for everybody in the Tacoma line-up. Base 4X2 Tacomas start at just under $12,000. Frugal in features, these are working machines powered by an economical 2.4-liter inline 4-cylinder engine that will push them along for many years of reliable service.
If you want something a little more rugged in appearance and performance you might want to look at a Tacoma PreRunner. These 2WD trucks feature an off-road suspension. They are available in either regular cab or the extended Xtracab configurations. Choose between a 2.7-liter inline-4 and a 3.4-liter V6. PreRunners start at about $14,000.
The 4X4 end of the line is also available in regular and Xtracab configurations, with either the 2.7 4-cylinder (starting just over $16,000) or the 3.4-liter V6 (starting at just over $19,000). The Xtracab 4X4 Limited, which starts just under $25,000, comes loaded with features and chrome.
You can add a TRD off-road option package to 2WD PreRunner or 4WD Xtracab models except those equipped with 4-cylinder and automatic transmissions. The TRD package adds Bilstein shocks, locking rear differential, increased-rate front coil springs and rear leaf spring suspension, modified camber rear springs, a larger stabilizer bar, 31x10.5R15 white-letter Goodyear tires, overfenders (color-keyed on Limited models), and special graphics. As a $435 option on the V-6 Xtracab Limited, it's a bargain.
This fall, Toyota will introduce Double Cab (four-door crew cab) and Step Side models.