2021 Toyota Tacoma vs 2022 Toyota Tacoma

2021 Toyota Tacoma
2021 Toyota Tacoma
$26,400MSRP
Overview
Overview
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2022 Toyota Tacoma
2022 Toyota Tacoma
$27,150MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2021 Toyota Tacoma
$26,400MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2022 Toyota Tacoma
$27,150MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now

CarGurus highlights

Winning Vehicle Image

According to CarGurus experts, the overall rating for the 2021 Toyota Tacoma is 6.5 out of 10, while the 2022 Toyota Tacoma scores 7.5 out of 10. Given these ratings, the 2022 Tacoma is the better choice for prospective buyers. This model not only retains the core attributes that have made the Tacoma a stalwart choice in the midsize truck segment but also reflects refinements that enhance its overall appeal and user experience.

Overview

MSRP

$26,400

MSRP

$27,150

Average price

$35,328

Average price

$36,446

Listings

4361

Listings

2994
Ratings & Reviews
User Reviews
User Reviews

Expert reviews

6.5 out of 10

Expert reviews

7.5 out of 10
Pros
  • Manual transmission available
  • Easy-to-use technology
  • Excellent off-road capability
Cons
  • Sluggish performance
  • Poor handling
  • Underwhelming base engine
Pros
  • Impressive off-road abilities
  • Manual transmission available
  • Easy-to-use technology
Cons
  • Underwhelming base engine
  • Cramped back seat
  • Poor ride quality

2021 Toyota Tacoma Reviews Summary

Last redesigned for the 2016 model year, The Tacoma once dominated midsize-truck sales. In recent years, though, it’s faced stronger competition from the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon twins, the Ford Ranger, and the Jeep Gladiator. A redesigned Nissan Frontier and heavily-updated Honda Ridgeline are also on the way.

Meanwhile, the Tacoma enters the 2021 model year largely unchanged. The only updates are two new special editions—the Nightshade Edition and Trail Special Edition—and standard dual-zone automatic climate control on all V6 models.

Pickup truck buyers tend to want choices, and Toyota delivers. The Tacoma is available with four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines, Access Cab and four-door Double Cab body styles, rear-wheel drive (RWD) or four-wheel drive (4WD), and six trim levels— SR, SR5, TRD Off Road, TRD Sport, Limited, and TRD Pro—plus the two special editions.

Our test vehicle was a Tacoma TRD Pro Double Cab. The TRD Pro is the most off-road focused of the Tacoma models, so naturally, it gets standard 4WD drive. While Toyota does offer a more comfort-oriented Tacoma Limited model, the TRD Pro is also positioned at the top of the lineup.

Search for a Toyota Tacoma on CarGurus

2022 Toyota Tacoma Reviews Summary

Other small trucks have come and gone—and come back again—but the Toyota Tacoma has been the cornerstone of the segment for decades now. Though it has grown in size through the years, it has remained one of the best options if you’re in the market for a smaller alternative to full-size pickups. It’s a great option for a commuter who goes on the occasional camping, kayaking, or mountain biking adventure. The bed is good for picking up supplies to tackle a weekend project.

But the midsize Tacoma has increased competition. In the past decade, the Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon, and Ford Ranger have returned. The Nissan Frontier recently received a long-overdue overhaul. And there’s even a new crop of compact pickups, including the Hyundai Santa Cruz and Ford Maverick. So is the Tacoma still the big dog among small trucks?

Popular Features & Specs

Engine

2.7L 159 hp I4

Engine

2.7L 159 hp I4

Drive Train

4X2

Drive Train

4X2

Seating Capacity

4

Seating Capacity

4

Horsepower

159 hp @ 5200 rpm

Horsepower

159 hp @ 5200 rpm

MPG City

20

MPG City

20

MPG Highway

23

MPG Highway

23
2021 Toyota Tacoma
2021 Toyota Tacoma
$26,400MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2022 Toyota Tacoma
2022 Toyota Tacoma
$27,150MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2021 Toyota Tacoma
$26,400MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now
2022 Toyota Tacoma
$27,150MSRP
Overview
Overview
OverviewShop Now

CarGurus highlights

Winning Vehicle Image

According to CarGurus experts, the overall rating for the 2021 Toyota Tacoma is 6.5 out of 10, while the 2022 Toyota Tacoma scores 7.5 out of 10. Given these ratings, the 2022 Tacoma is the better choice for prospective buyers. This model not only retains the core attributes that have made the Tacoma a stalwart choice in the midsize truck segment but also reflects refinements that enhance its overall appeal and user experience.

Overview
MSRP
$26,400
$27,150
Average price
$35,328
$36,446
Listings
Ratings & Reviews
User reviews
4.9
4.2
Expert reviews

6.5 out of 10

Read full review

7.5 out of 10

Read full review
Pros & cons
Pros
  • Manual transmission available
  • Easy-to-use technology
  • Excellent off-road capability
Cons
  • Sluggish performance
  • Poor handling
  • Underwhelming base engine
Pros
  • Impressive off-road abilities
  • Manual transmission available
  • Easy-to-use technology
Cons
  • Underwhelming base engine
  • Cramped back seat
  • Poor ride quality
Summary

Last redesigned for the 2016 model year, The Tacoma once dominated midsize-truck sales. In recent years, though, it’s faced stronger competition from the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon twins, the Ford Ranger, and the Jeep Gladiator. A redesigned Nissan Frontier and heavily-updated Honda Ridgeline are also on the way.

Meanwhile, the Tacoma enters the 2021 model year largely unchanged. The only updates are two new special editions—the Nightshade Edition and Trail Special Edition—and standard dual-zone automatic climate control on all V6 models.

Pickup truck buyers tend to want choices, and Toyota delivers. The Tacoma is available with four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines, Access Cab and four-door Double Cab body styles, rear-wheel drive (RWD) or four-wheel drive (4WD), and six trim levels— SR, SR5, TRD Off Road, TRD Sport, Limited, and TRD Pro—plus the two special editions.

Our test vehicle was a Tacoma TRD Pro Double Cab. The TRD Pro is the most off-road focused of the Tacoma models, so naturally, it gets standard 4WD drive. While Toyota does offer a more comfort-oriented Tacoma Limited model, the TRD Pro is also positioned at the top of the lineup.

Search for a Toyota Tacoma on CarGurus

Other small trucks have come and gone—and come back again—but the Toyota Tacoma has been the cornerstone of the segment for decades now. Though it has grown in size through the years, it has remained one of the best options if you’re in the market for a smaller alternative to full-size pickups. It’s a great option for a commuter who goes on the occasional camping, kayaking, or mountain biking adventure. The bed is good for picking up supplies to tackle a weekend project.

But the midsize Tacoma has increased competition. In the past decade, the Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon, and Ford Ranger have returned. The Nissan Frontier recently received a long-overdue overhaul. And there’s even a new crop of compact pickups, including the Hyundai Santa Cruz and Ford Maverick. So is the Tacoma still the big dog among small trucks?

Video
Popular Features & Specs
Engine
2.7L 159 hp I4
2.7L 159 hp I4
Drive Train
4X2
4X2
Seating Capacity
4
4
Horsepower
159 hp @ 5200 rpm
159 hp @ 5200 rpm
MPG City
20
20
MPG Highway
23
23
Look and feel
2021 Toyota Tacoma
8/10
2022 Toyota Tacoma
7/10
The 2021 Toyota Tacoma retained the rugged, quintessential truck look that distinguished it starkly from the sleeker designs of its competitors. The characteristic boxy fender flares, tall hood, and shield-like grille were designed with bold, straight lines that communicated strength and utility. The interior reflected a similar ruggedness, with durable plastic components that might feel justified more at the base model's price point than at the TRD Pro's higher price. The addition of unique styling elements in the Trail Edition, Nightshade Edition, and TRD Pro in 2021 gave buyers the opportunity to own a Tacoma that stood out more distinctly. In contrast, the 2022 Tacoma, while maintaining the aggressive exterior, began to show its age, especially in the cabin that mixed somewhat dated elements with newer technologies like push-button start. Though it offered a modern enough look that it was competitively aesthetic, the interior featured an abundance of hard plastics. The different trims available, from SR to TRD Pro, added incremental exterior and interior upgrades, enhancing both style and functionality.
Performance
2021 Toyota Tacoma
7/10
2022 Toyota Tacoma
8/10
Performance-wise, the 2021 Toyota Tacoma offered a choice between a base 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine and a more robust 3.5-liter V6. The latter was preferable not only for its significantly higher power output — 278 horsepower compared to the four-cylinder’s 159 horsepower — but also for its improved towing and payload capacities. The TRD Pro's off-road capabilities were highlighted by advanced features such as a locking rear differential and multi-terrain suspension systems, though on-road performance lagged with poorer ride quality and slow acceleration. The 2022 model largely mirrored these characteristics, with identical engine choices and similar tow and payload ratings. In-road drivability continued to be less than stellar due to transmission and gearing issues, though the model excelled off-road, particularly with the TRD Pro’s enhanced suspension and terrain technology.
Form and function
2021 Toyota Tacoma
6/10
2022 Toyota Tacoma
7/10
Interior space allocation in the 2021 Tacoma was less than impressive, particularly in the Double Cab setup, which lagged behind competitors in rear legroom and headroom, creating a cramped feel. In terms of functionality, however, it offered useful storage solutions and a robust bed capable of heavy-duty use. The 2022 Tacoma continued with the same cabin space issues, particularly with the Double Cab. Both models provided adequate in-bed utility, although there were no notable improvements in the newer model year to the bed’s design or functionality outside of supplemental lighting and power outlets added in certain trims.
Technology
2021 Toyota Tacoma
6/10
2022 Toyota Tacoma
8/10
The technology in the 2021 Tacoma was solid with standard features including a responsive 8-inch touchscreen on most models, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. The TRD Pro model featured a Multi-Terrain Monitor that was a standout for off-road driving. For 2022, technology updates were minimal, retaining the same size touchscreens and connectivity features. The user interface of the infotainment system remained familiar and user-friendly, though it did not push any boundaries in terms of innovative tech additions.
Safety
2021 Toyota Tacoma
7/10
2022 Toyota Tacoma
9/10
Safety ratings for the 2021 Tacoma were strong, with good scores from the IIHS and a four-star overall rating from the NHTSA. It included a comprehensive suite of driver-assist technologies as standard. The 2022 model, essentially unchanged in safety features, maintained these standards and prospective buyers could expect similar reassurances from its robust safety suite and adequate institutional ratings.
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