in Compact Pickup Trucks

MSRP: $18,125 - $28,385
Invoice: $17,162 - $26,297
MPG: 21 City / 25 Hwy
Find the best local price: submit
How the Best Price Program works »

Toyota Tacoma Review

The 2014 Toyota Tacoma ranks 1 out of 3 Compact Pickup Trucks. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the Toyota Tacoma, as well as reliability and safety data.

Test drivers praise the 2014 Toyota Tacoma for its straightforward cabin design, spacious Double Cab seating and tidy dimensions, which make it more maneuverable than a full-size truck. Because it has the best combination of positive reviews, price and long-term ownership costs in its class, we named the 2014 Toyota Tacoma the Best Compact Pickup Truck for the Money.

The 2014 Tacoma comes standard with a four-cylinder engine that automotive critics say makes adequate power for tooling around town. However, most say that the optional V6's added power is a welcome addition if you plan to do regular towing or hauling. With either engine, a manual or an automatic transmission are available, which are praised for their smooth power delivery. Fuel economy is up to an EPA-estimated 21/25 mpg city/highway, which is good for the class. Test drivers say the 2014 Tacoma doesn't have the greatest handling, especially if you’re considering taller four-wheel drive models, but reviewers appreciate that the Tacoma is a bit easier to maneuver than most full-size pickups due to its smaller size. Still, some say that the optional off-road package makes the ride harsh and bouncy on paved roads. Reviewers note that the Tacoma’s soft brake pedal doesn’t inspire much confidence when stopping.

Test drivers say the Toyota Tacoma's cabin is solidly constructed and features a fair amount of hard plastics. Few seem to mind, though, noting that the quality of the materials is quite good for the class and in keeping with the truck's utilitarian nature. Test drivers say the front seats offer adequate comfort, support and space. Most say the two jump seats in back of the Access Cab are very cramped, though many praise the Double Cab for its spacious rear accommodations. Reviewers like the Tacoma's straightforward climate and audio controls and legible gauges. Standard equipment includes Entune audio with a 6.1-inch touch screen, a USB port, an auxiliary input and Bluetooth. Optional features include power windows, door locks and mirrors, a backup camera, Entune Plus (which adds HD Radio and satellite radio), the Entune App Suite (which integrates smartphone apps like Pandora and iHeartRadio), navigation, a seven-speaker stereo system, keyless entry and cruise control.

  • "Why should you consider a 2014 Toyota Tacoma? Maybe because you don't need an enormous truck that could tow your residence off its foundation, that's why. Sure, those big trucks get all the press with their incredible capabilities, but they also require sacrifices. If you want to squeeze into a tight parking space at the mall, for example, best of luck in the massive Tundra. If you want your truck to feel maneuverable and nimble on the road, the F-150 will probably leave you cold. In truth, these full-size beasts aren't designed for the cut-and-slice of congested daily driving. Fortunately, the Tacoma is." -- AutoTrader
  • "While many midsize pickups have been discontinued and most of the remaining models are facing drooping sales, the Toyota Tacoma is still in demand. There's a reason for that: the Taco is durable, adept at towing and hauling, and available in numerous powertrain, cab style and bed length combinations. It's a strong choice for those willing to trade a bit of the capability of a full-size pickup for something that's more wieldy and fuel-efficient." -- Left Lane News
  • "Overall, the Tacoma can easily be called the best midsize truck on the market." -- Automobile Magazine (2013)
  • "If you're looking for a proven pickup that is as capable as it is stylish, the 2013 Toyota Tacoma deserves your attention. Nearly as capable as a full-size pickup but without the extra bulk and fuel consumption, the Tacoma fits a lot of needs." -- Kelley Blue Book (2013)

Other Trucks to Consider

Reviewers say the crew cab-only Honda Ridgeline is a good choice for casual truck users who could use the utility of a pickup bed but don't want to lose the ride comfort of a car. Reviewers like the Ridgeline’s innovative lockable in-bed trunk and dual-hinged tailgate, which opens down or can swing open to the side.

Reviewers say that the Nissan Frontier has great handling for a small pickup, and they like its comfortable front seats and simple cabin design. The Frontier can tow as much as the Tacoma and it’s available with a more powerful V6 engine.

Compare the Tacoma, Frontier and Ridgeline »

Details: 2014 Toyota Tacoma

The 2014 Toyota Tacoma comes in three cab configurations: Regular Cab, which seats three; Access Cab, which seats four; and Double Cab, which seats five. Rear-wheel drive is standard and four-wheel drive is optional. A 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine is standard, which can be paired with either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. A 4.0-liter V6 is optional and available with either a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission. The Tacoma is offered with packages that add to the Tacoma's performance, interior and technology features. The Tacoma was last fully redesigned for the 2005 model year, and aside from minor changes, is largely unchanged since. As a result, this overview uses applicable research and reviews from 2014 and prior model years.

See full 2014 Toyota Tacoma specs »

Review Last Updated: 5/16/14

Next Steps: Toyota Tacoma