2024 Toyota Tacoma revealed with many powertrain, body options
The 2024 Toyota Tacoma is finally here, and it is being offered with so many different features and configurations. But even with all the differences through this pickup truck’s lineup, there is one thing that’s consistent: It’s a new truck, not just a warmed over previous-generation model. There’s a lot to cover, so we’re going to break things down into sections to easily find the juicy details. Keep scrolling to check it all out.
Body and Chassis
The Tacoma is built on the same TNGA-F body-on-frame platform used by the Tundra, Sequoia and Land Cruiser. All of those are notably larger than a Tacoma. Shrinking it down mostly boils down to shortening the frame and wheelbase, which resulted in losing a crossmember toward the front, and a way shorter front overhang compared to the bigger trucks. Some of the other crossmembers and mounting points have been tweaked as well, and some sections of those members have slightly thinner gauge steel for cost and weight savings, since the Tacoma is not as large or in need of such heavy-duty capability as the larger vehicles.
The new body, which looks like a scaled-down Tundra with some hints of the old Tacoma, is mostly high-strength steel, with a bit of aluminum in the upper section and for the tailgate. Somewhat surprisingly, Toyota will continue to offer both an extended cab and a quad cab. The extended cab comes only with the 6-foot bed while the quad cab can have either the standard 5-foot bed or the option of the 6-foot unit. Interestingly, the extended cab only has two seats now, leaving the area behind completely dedicated to storage with lockable bins.
As for suspension, the front of every Tacoma uses a double-wishbone, coil-spring design. But the rear varies. The base SR, SR5 and TRD PreRunner models still use a live axle with leaf springs. This is the only TNGA-F vehicle to use them. Higher trims get a new multi-link solid axle design with coil springs. And there are even suspension variations when it comes to shocks, since there are unique versions for the TRD Sport, TRD Off Road, Limited, TRD Pro and Trailhunter. The Sport has stiffer shocks for road use, the Off Road has remote reservoir Bilsteins for, well, off-road use, Limited has electronically adjustable shocks, the Pro has manually adjustable remote-reservoir Fox off-road shocks (plus upgraded front upper control arms), and the Trailhunter has Old-Man Emu remote-reservoir shocks. Those latter two also sit 2 inches higher at the front and 1.5 inches higher at the rear than other equivalent Tacomas. They’re also available with electronic anti-roll bar disconnect for the front suspension to increase articulation by a claimed 10%.
Brakes are also upgraded compared to the previous Tacoma, since all of them now have four-wheel disc brakes. TRD versions get larger front brake rotors, and hybrid models add larger rears. Steering also gets a change with electric power assist.
As for capacities, the Tacoma has a maximum tow rating of 6,500 pounds and a maximum payload of 1,709 pounds. These drop depending on the powertrain, cab and trim configurations. Toyota also boasts about 7% more bed volume and 300% more storage space under the rear seats on the quad cab.
Engines and transmissions
The base Tacoma engine is a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder. It’s pretty much the same across all models as far as the engine itself, but there are multiple outputs. The SR gets the least-powerful version at 228 horsepower and 243 pound-feet of torque. This is mainly because, in order to get the price down, Toyota removed some cooling equipment and mounts for vibration that were only necessary for the higher-output versions. That higher output is 278 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque with the eight-speed automatic, or 270 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque with the six-speed manual. Both transmissions are available with either two- or four-wheel drive.
The other engine on offer is also a turbo 2.4-liter four-cylinder — but with a battery and an electric motor. The electric motor makes 48 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, and it’s fed by a 1.87-kWh nickel metal-hydride battery pack. Combined output with the gas engine is 326 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. Besides the enormous amount of power and torque, the hybrid also adds 2.4-kW of onboard power for all variety of accessories and tools. This hybrid is only available with the eight-speed automatic transmission. Unfortunately, Toyota has not announced fuel economy numbers for this engine or the entry-level ones.
Two-wheel drive is the standard drivetrain option with traditional four-wheel-drive with a low-range transfer case available. All of them come with a limited-slip differential as standard. But an electronic locking rear differential is available on four-wheel-drive models and comes standard on the TRD PreRunner, the off-road-oriented two-wheel-drive model. The Limited trim is available with full-time four-wheel drive, but only with the hybrid engine.
Toyota also notes that the CRAWL Control off-road cruise control system should work more quietly now. Hill-descent control is still available, and the manual transmission models get a clutch start cancel button like past Tacomas.
TRD Pro and Trailhunter
Two of the Tacoma trims deserve special attention, especially as one of them, the Trailhunter, is completely new. We’ll get to that one, but first we need to talk about the TRD Pro. It’s the most performance-oriented off-road version of the Tacoma. It only comes with the hybrid engine, it gets the aforementioned adjustable Fox shocks, sway bar disconnect and suspension lift. It features an off-road-designed front bumper, wide fender flares and ARB steel rear bumper and recovery hooks. Those fenders cover 33-inch Goodyear Territory R/T off-road tires. Toyota also gives approach, breakover and departure angle numbers for the TRD Pro, which are 33.8, 23.5 and 25.7 degrees respectively. There are plenty of cameras for helping with maneuvering off road, as well as hooking up trailers.
But the real show piece of the TRD Pro is the pair of bucket seats. These are not ordinary seats. These seats have suspension. Specifically, it has a set of ball joints and vertical and lateral air-over-oil shock absorbers. The air pressure can be adjusted for personal preference and weight. And the idea is that these seats will help keep the driver and passenger from being tossed around. This will help reduce fatigue and improve visibility and confidence for high-speed off-road running. They can also be locked in place for when you’re back on road and would like a little more direct feedback from the truck. And unsurprisingly, they’ve been crash tested, they’re completely compatible with all factory safety equipment, but they also retain heating and ventilation features, plus most of the power adjustments. The only thing lost is power recline due to a lack of space with the suspension components.
Now we come to the new addition, the Trailhunter. It shares much in common with the TRD Pro, such as the bumpers and fender flares. It has the same tires, too, though wrapped around unique bronze wheels. Those bronze accents extend to the vintage-style grille and interior accents. The suspension lift is the same, though it uses Old Man Emu shocks instead. It also picks up a utility bar in the bed with MOLLE mounting points to strap a variety of equipment to. In the bed, the Trailhunter has an on-board air compressor for refilling tires or other items.
Interior and other features
The Tacoma’s cabin has been fully redesigned, but it still feels very rugged with chiseled panels and rubbery grips and knobs all over. Standard equipment includes a 7-inch instrument cluster screen and an 8-inch infotainment touch screen. Those can be upgraded to 12.3- and 14-inch screens respectively. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard with wireless device charging as an option.
Toyota added a couple other nifty features inside. With the upgraded JBL sound system, there’s a center speaker in the dashboard that can be removed and used as a portable Bluetooth speaker. And on the driver’s side of the cabin, there’s a QR code hidden away. This code will take owners to a site with 3D-printer plans for all kinds of accessories such as a lantern or tool kit.
The Tacoma comes with nice safety and convenience features as standard, too. It has automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keeping, adaptive cruise control and automatic high-beam headlights.
The first 2024 Toyota Tacomas will go on sale later this year. Only the non-hybrid versions will be available at first. The hybrid will go on sale in early 2024. Pricing has not yet been announced. Stay tuned for that as well as some other details such as fuel economy in the coming months.