We present you a new 2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro. That the U.S. auto market is crazy about capable pickup trucks is no secret; out of this America’s love for trucks, three automakers smile all the way to the bank, one of these automakers is Toyota. The Japanese automaker sells several brands of pickup trucks in the U.S. including the Tacoma. The Tacoma TRD Pro is a version of the standard Tacoma that is dedicated to the off-roads. This model faces rivalry from Chevrolet’s Colorado ZR2 and Ford’s Ranger Raptor. To protect its market share, Toyota has revamped the Tacoma TRD Pro for the 2019 model year.
2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro Exterior
Americans want their favorite off-road automobiles looking as menacing as possible and the Tacoma TRD Pro looks the part. The exterior design remains largely unchanged for 2019. The model features a new TRD Pro grille with a large “TOYOTA” lettering that makes the pickup truck look more intimidating. Toyota has also introduced Rigid Industries-sourced LED fog lights to the model.
The most significant addition is the new TRD Desert Air Intake system which many call a snorkel. The system allows clean air to be channeled from outside the engine bay and higher off the track. This keeps the model’s air filter cleaner longer ensuring the engine breaths effectively. The 2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro also features a new skid plate with a red finish on its TRD logo. The TRD cat-back exhaust system gets a Black Chrome finish on the tip. The pickup truck rides on 16-inch alloy wheels covered in P265/70R16 Goodyear Wrangler Kevlar All-Terrain rubber. That’s just about all about new exterior upgrades.
Similar to the exterior, the interior has not received noteworthy upgrades. The new, third generation of the model was unveiled in 2017 meaning the cabin looks still fresh. In addition, there is usually no urgency in revising the cabin of a pickup truck like the case for cars because, for pickup trucks, the selling point lies in their off-road capability and towing capacity (not many buyers pay attention to the cabin).
Therefore, the truck still features black leather upholstery on the seats and dash. The leather upholstery is contrasted with a red stitching. The gear shifter is also wrapped in black leather. To set it apart from standard Tacoma pickup trucks, Toyota has embroidered TRDF logos on the front seatbacks, on the gear shifter, and on floor mats. The Entune Infotainment system is carried over. Audiophiles will also get the same JBL sound system that was on the outgoing models. Unfortunately, Toyota is yet to introduce Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as part of the infotainment system on this model. The model, however, has a wireless charging pad.
Engine and performance
The Tacoma TRD Pro carries over to 2019 model year with the 3.5 L, V-6. It is good for 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. Power is channeled to the wheels via a 6-speed manual/automatic gearbox. The model features an electronically controlled, 2-speed transfer case that offers part-time AWD, especially on rough terrain. On “carpeted roads”, power is only delivered to the rear axle. Electronically locking rear differential is standard for the 2019 Tacoma TRD Pro.
Fuel economy is fair; models with the manual gearbox are EPA rated at 17mpg and 20 mpg on city and highway drives respectively while automatic models return 18 mpg on city and 22 mpg on highway drives. This rating would have been much worse were it not for its fuel-saving technologies such as variable valve timing and direct and port fuel injection. Switching between Atkinson and Otto combustion cycles is seamless which also improves fuel economy.
The 2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro also features the Multi-Terrain Select system with five drive modes (snow, mud, loose rock, mogul, dirt and rock, and rock). Each mode alters ABS, throttle response, transmission shift patterns and traction settings. There is also a Crawl Control system which doubles up as a cruise control system during low-speed drives. These systems are only available to automatic models.
The 2019 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro features significant suspension upgrades including Fox Racing Shocks with 46mm-thick pistons and 2.5-inch diameter bodies. Front shocks come with 8 bypass zones while the rear shocks feature 11 zones. In addition to their 2.5-inch diameter, the rear shocks also have a 2.0-inch extra fluid reservoir. The reservoir helps to regulate temperatures during long off-road drives.
Price and release date
Pricing details are yet to be released but there will be no major changes in this department. For reference, the 2018 model starts at $41,520 for models with a manual gearbox and $43,520 for those with an automatic gearbox, Crawl Control and Multi-Terrain Select systems. There are no option packages or trim levels to choose from but one can add wheel locks, weather floor mats, bed accessories and side steps from the dealership at an extra cost.