No automaker best understands the phrase “if it is not broke, do not fix it” as Toyota does. Repeatedly Toyota has surprised us by making minor changes on its models and passing them as new; the 2020 Toyota Tacoma enters this growing list. The current generation Tacoma was launched in 2016 meaning its due for a mid-cycle refresh. In Toyota’s world, a mid-cycle refresh is a slight facelift, addition of a few techs in the cabin and definitely no engine changes. Anyway, Toyota sees no need to make significant changes for a model that has been at the very top of the segment in terms of sales for a whopping 14 years in a row. The Tacoma is usually sold in 6 trim levels (TRD Pro, Limited, TRD Off-Road, TRD Sport, SR5, and SR).
2020 Toyota Tacoma Exterior
The new changes have made the Tacoma look fresher and ready to handle its adversaries such as the Colorado and Ranger, which are getting better by the day.
The entry-level SR, as well as the SR5 trim levels, feature no changes up front. They still feature the same gigantic grille that takes up most of the fascia’s space. The grille is still flanked by some chrome elements. However, all other higher trims have a new grille that features a new design but retains the same dimensions; revised headlights that extend backward to the fenders surround it. The Limited trim features LED lights while the TRD Sport adds LED fog lights. On the other hand, the top-ranging TRD Pro gets sequential headlights and DRLs.
On the flanks, the Tacoma looks formidable. Not much has changed except that flared wheel arches in some trims have been painted. The other change worth mentioning is the sudden raise towards the end of the rear windowsill.
The rear fascia for all models has been revised. Lower trims feature darker taillight housings that accentuate the Tacoma’s overall rugged stance. The TRD Sport trim adds an LED bed lamp and chrome taillight inserts while the TRD Pro features black inserts in its taillights. The top-ranking TRD Pro rides on lighter 16-inch wheels and can be had in an exclusive Army Green shade, which joins the current shades including Magnetic Grey Metallic, Midnight Black Metallic, and Super White.
The 2020 Toyota Tacoma pickup truck is available in both crew-cab and extended cab outlines whereby crew cabs feature either a 5-foot bed or a longer, 6-foot bed. Extended cabs only feature a 6-foot-7 bed.
Changes inside are also minimal but enough to sway some buyers. For the first time ever on the Tacoma, Toyota has decided to offer a 10-way power adjusted driver seat. The most exciting news is that this feature is standard for SR5 and higher trims. Most would-be buyers of the truck were previously turned off by its poorly adjustable seats, which made it difficult to find an ideal sitting position.
Toyota also seems to realize the increasing role of connectivity in everyday life, a reason why it has hooked up the Tacoma with a larger touchscreen (8.0-inch) infotainment system with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionalities. The model also features Amazon Alexa.
Other chic features on the Tacoma include keyless ignition and an LED bed lamp for better loading and unloading at night. Top trims (TRD Sport, Limited, and TRD Pro) feature a surround-view camera network while the TRD Off-Road, as well as the TRD Pro, add a camera that is pointed to the floor to help monitor off-road obstacles; pretty cool, right?
All Tacoma models feature the Safety Sense P system; it bundles together Automatic High-Beams, Lane Departure Warning, Pre-Collision Warning, and Pedestrian Detection.
Engine and performance
There are no notable changes under the 2020 Toyota Tacoma’s hood. Entry-level models are still motivated by the naturally aspirated 2.7 L, 4-cylinder mill that’s good for 159 hp and 180 lb-ft of torque. The more powerful version still uses the 3.5 L, V-6 that’s good for 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque. This development is a letdown for Tacoma fans bearing in mind Chevrolet and Ford have hiked power output on their Colorado and Ranger trucks respectively. Both of the Tacoma’s engines mate to a 6-speed automatic gearbox; however, there is an option for a manual gearbox for buyers who go for the models powered by the V-6 mill. Most models are offered in RWD with part-time AWD. However, the TRD Sport trim is available in RWD exclusively while the TRD Pro features an exclusive AWD system.
When fully equipped, both engines can tow up to 6,800 lbs. V-6 equipped models also feature a tow kit with a hitch as standard, power steering cooler, engine oil cooler, automatic transmission fluid cooler as well as a 130-amp alternator.
Price and release date
At this time, we do not know anything about the 2020 Toyota Tacoma’s price or release date. However, sales will start most likely in the summer or the latest in the fall. The 2019 models had an MSRP of $25,500, which could go higher albeit slightly due to the new changes.
As said earlier, the 2020 Toyota Tacoma will sweat it out with the likes of Chevrolet Colorado, Ford Ranger, as well as the Jeep Gladiator.