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.
2018 Toyota Tacoma OVERVIEW
The latest Toyota Tacoma stands out in the crowded midsize truck segment. Starting at $26,195 (which includes a $995 destination charge), the 2018 Toyota Tacoma’s six grades are available in 30 configurations. An impressive towing capacity, multiple package upgrades along with better than average standard safety and technology features allow consumers to customize a Tacoma to fit their needs, budget, and style with relative ease.
What's New for 2018
The Tacoma received a needed exterior redesign three years ago that remains mainly unchanged for 2018. An important update is the addition of multiple safety systems, such as emergency automated braking assist, a forward collision warning system, and adaptive cruise control on its base SR trim. Toyota has replaced the five-speed manual with a six-speed version, while several trims include a fresh color pallet, and minor grille upgrades.
Choosing Your Toyota Tacoma
The 2018 Toyota Tacoma comes standard with a 2.7-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces a 159 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. An optional 3.5-liter, V6 engine that boasts 278 horsepower and 268 pound-feet of torque is also available in the base SR for an additional $6,495 (that includes stepping up from the base Access Cab to the four-door Double Cab, which is itself a $1,060 upgrade). For trims that offer rear-wheel drive standard, four-wheel drive can be added for an additional $3,075.
The V6 engine comes with a towing package that includes a Class IV towing hitch, transmission and engine oil cooler, and a 6,800-pound tow rating. Each powertrain combo is paired with a six-speed automatic, while some TRD upgrades are available with a six-speed manual that trims $1,630 off the base price. The four-cylinder engine in the rear-wheel drive configuration returns an EPA-estimated 19 miles per gallon city and 23 mpg highway. The four-wheel drive option maintains the same estimated city mpg, but drops highway mileage slightly to 22 mpg. Surprisingly, the V6, which nearly doubles power output over the four-cylinder does not compromise fuel economy, returning 19 mpg city and 24 mpg highway with rear wheel drive, and 18/23 mpg for the four-wheel drive model. TRD grades with manual transmission reduce highway mileage to 21 mpg.
The six grades for 2018 include the base SR, SR5, TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, Limited and TRD Pro.
If driving a manual transmission is not a problem, consider the 2018 Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport. It’s packed with options, and with the six-speed manual transmission and V6 engine, the Tacoma is a fun to drive mid-sized pickup. Even by selecting the automatic transmission, consumers can add the Premium Package and tonneau cover and keep the base price under the TRD Off-Road.
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