USED 2012 Toyota Tacoma FOR SALE NEAR ME

155 vehicles within 100 miles of
Zac Estrada
Automotive Editor - March 29, 2012

Expert Rating

4.8 (Excellent)
18 City / 22 Highway

Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

2012 Toyota Tacoma OVERVIEW

The Tacoma comes in a number of different cab sizes and bed lengths, as well as trim levels. The Regular Cab is only available as a base model with a 2.7-liter four-cylinder, three-passenger bench seat and a 6-foot bed. But it can be had with either two or four-wheel drive and with a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. Opting for a V6 4x4 Double Cab sinks fuel economy to as low as 16 MPG city and 21 MPG highway – some versions of Ford's F-150 with the EcoBoost V6 do better.

V6 Access Cabs and Double Cabs can be had with either a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic. Access Cab has two small doors and two small seats behind the front passengers for four-passenger capacity. Double Cabs have four full doors and seating for five passengers and most come with a five-foot bed. The Base Tacoma is a no-frills work truck, while PreRunner models get more cosmetic enhancements and off-road gear to look like the 4x4 models. The X-Runner is a lowered, sportier version of the Access Cab that has two-wheel drive and the V6, 18-inch alloy wheels and a hood scoop. The TRD Off-Road Package on 4x4 models adds upgraded mechanicals for more serious adventuring.

The Nissan Frontier is the Tacoma's direct competitor. It combines rugged good looks with a strong V6. The Tacoma beats it by offering a regular cab for drivers who want to prioritize bed length and offers superior in-car technology with the Toyota Entune system. The Honda Ridgeline is less direct. Its unibody platform comes from the Pilot and Odyssey and it comes only as a four-door with one bed length. The Ridgeline is more carlike than the Tacoma and offers unique features like a lockable cubby in the bed. But the bed is shorter than ones offered on the Tacoma and it has less towing capacity and off-road capability.

Thanks to its size, powertrain options and wide array of cab sizes and trim levels, the Tacoma remains the perfect pick for buyers shopping for a pickup truck but who want to avoid the bulk and poor economy from full-size models. The strong V6 and availability of both a tuner-looking X-Runner and serious 4x4 models means there's likely to be a Tacoma for every buyer's tastes.

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