Image credits: © Toyota.

MSRP: $16,875-27,855
Invoice: $15,975-25,785

2012 Toyota Tacoma

2012 Toyota Tacoma Debuts Restyled Exterior, Interior and New Entune Multimedia

• Refreshed Front-End Design and Úpdated Interior
• New Audio Systems wîth Bluetooth®, Satellite Radio and ÚSB
• Double Cab V6 Offers New Display Audio System
• New Available Heavy-Duty All-Weather Flooring

The Toyota Tacoma, still the best-selling compact pickup truck in the Ú.S. market by a wide margin, offers a restyled exterior look and a redesigned, upgraded interior in all models for 2012. New changes add comfort, usability and audio/infotainment performance.

Toyota sold more than 106,000 Tacoma models for 2010, outselling its nearest competitor by nearly two-to-one. For 2012, Tacoma shows a fresh face wîth a redesigned hood, grille, headlamps and front bumper, among other changes. Inside, customers will find a new center-instrument panel design wîth a revised gauge cluster, along wîth a new §teering wheel. A redesigned center stack adds new air conditioner/heater controls and power point locations.

The 2012 Tacoma interior also gets a new look wîth a black high-contrast center console, switch plate covers, dash and upper door trim, while the SR5 grade features a new seat fabric design. With owners using their trucks for hard work and hard play, Tacoma offers new heavy-duty all-weather flooring in the 2012 Tacoma Access and Double Cab models, while the more specialized TRD Sport and Off-Road models offer new water-resistant fabric protection seats. The TRD Sport Package adds side mirrors wîth turn-signal lamps for 2012, as well as available chrome-clad 18-inch wheels.

Details that add up to more comfort and function include a larger, higher-resolution display for the available back-up camera (3.3-inch vs. 2.4-inch), a new temperature gauge, available rear-view mirror wîth compass and HomeLink, vanity lamps added to sun visors, an additional overhead storage compartment and, on Access Cab models, a new rear-console storage box. All models now feature two front-deck 'D' rings for added versatility.

Vital Stats
Engine : 2.7 L., 4-cylinder
Power: 159 hp
Torque: 180 ft-lbs

Engine : 4.0 L., 6-cylinder
Power: 236 hp
Torque: 266 ft-lbs

5-speed Manual, 4-speed Automatic, 5-speed Electronically Controlled Continuously Variable
The 2012 Tacoma is available in a wide variety of configurations and models, and this focus on customer choice has been instrumental in the vehicle's continued market leadership. Many models offer a choice between four-cylinder and V6 engines, and 2WD and 4WD drivetrains.


The Toyota Tacoma has been repeatedly recognized for its outstanding value and reliability. Tacoma was named 'Most Dependable Midsize Pickup' in the J.D. Power & Associates 2011 Vehicle Dependability Study, and Intellichoice called it a '2011 Best Overall Value' in the compact pickup §egmènt.

New Audio Choices for 2012
Toyota has upgraded audio options for some 2012 Tacoma models. Access Cab models offer a new available six-speaker system wîth an AM/FM/ Satellite Radio-capable head unit wîth a single-disc CD player. Built-in Bluetooth® allows hands-free phone, and a ÚSB port enables connection of an iPod®, MP3 player or flash drive wîth music files.

The DoubleCab V6 models offer a more advanced display audio system wîth today's most in-demand connectivity features. These include navigation, Toyota Entune™ services, SiriusXM Satellite Radio (with 90-day trial subscription), HD Radio wîth iTunes® tagging and text/e-mail-to-voice. This premium infotainment system plays through a JBL® GreenEdge audio system wîth seven speakers. GreenEdge technology helps reduce fuel consumption by lowering the electric power demand on the vehicle.

The Toyota Entune system is a collection of popular mobile applications and data services, wîth three years of complimentary access. Once a smart phone is connected to the vehicle using Bluetooth wireless technology or a ÚSB cable, Entune's features are operated using the vehicle's controls or, for some services, by voice recognition. Entune includes Bing™ and Pandora®; real-time info including traffic, weather, fuel prices, sports and stocks. Apps available in spring 2012 at no charge include iHeartRadio, MovieTickets.com and OpenTable®. See toyota.com/entune for details.

Performance
The 2012 Tacoma line offers two engines: a 2.7-liter Dual Overhead Cam (DOHC) four-cylinder that produces 159 horsepower and 180 lb-ft. of torque, and a 4.0-liter DOHC V6 that provides 236 horsepower wîth 266 lb-ft. of torque. In both engines, variable valve timing wîth intelligence (VVT-i) provides strong low-end and mid-range torque.

An Electronic Throttle Control System wîth intelligence helps optimize performance and fuel economy. The V6 can be teamed wîth either a six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic transmission. (posted on conceptcarz.com) Four-cylinder models offer a choice between a five-speed manual and a four-speed automatic transmission. (posted on conceptcarz.com) When equipped wîth a V6 Tow Package, Access Cab models boast a maximum tow capacity of up to 6,500 pounds.

X-Runner: A Únique Sport Truck
The Tacoma X-Runner performance truck, unique in the entire compact truck category, returns for 2012 and features the 4.0-liter V6 engine wîth a specially tuned chassis. Featuring a six-speed manual transmission, the X-Runner can accelerate from 0-to-60 mph in less than seven seconds. Just as impressive, the Tacoma X-Runner can achieve lateral acceleration in excess of 0.9-g – comparable to many performance cars. The X-Runner's Access Cab design incorporates a full body kit, a hood scoop and integrated fog lamps. The color-keyed monochromatic exterior comes in three colors – Barcelona Red, Black Sand Pearl and Nautica Blue Metallic, which is new for 2012.

To take performance even higher, TRD offers a 4.0-liter V6 supercharger kit capable of generating 304 horsepower and 334 lbs.-ft. of torque also available for other Tacoma V6 models). The design uses Eaton Roots-type rotating components in a one-piece supercharger plenum/manifold casting. The supercharger is fully warranted for up to five years or 60,000 miles or the remainder of the powertrain warranty at the time of installation when installed by a Toyota dealer.

T|X Packages for the Hardcore Pickup Fan
The T|X and T|X Pro Packages, available in conjunction wîth the TRD Off-Road Package, add a concept-truck look to the Tacoma V6 Access Cab or V6 Double Cab PreRunner and 4x4 models. The T|X Package gives the Tacoma a menacing look and additional sportiness wîth TRD 16-inch black alloy bead-lock wheels and 265/70R16 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail tires. Black tube-side steps, a stainless steel exhaust tip and unique exterior graphics give the T|X the aesthetics of a custom truck.

The T|X Pro is the performance-oriented package by also including a TRD cat-back performance exhaust system that gives the V6 a throatier sound and a bit more power. The T|X and T|X Pro Packages offer a strong value compared to offering the contents as separate accessories, especially considering that they are covered under Toyota's standard three year/36,000-mile comprehensive vehicle limited warranty and can be financed.

The TRD Off-Road Package underlying both T|X editions provides a carefully tuned balance of off-road performance and on-road handling. Chassis modifications include an electronic locking rear differential, progressive-rate front springs, specially tuned Bilstein shock absorbers, a 28-mm front stabilizer bar and BFGoodrich Rugged Trail tires. Fog lamps top off the package for a tough, sporty appearance. Both the TRD Off-Road Package and TRD Sport Package have a 400W/115V powerpoint in the bed; sport seats wîth adjustable lumbar support and unique fabric, and an overhead console wîth a compass and outside temperature display. Double Cab and Access Cab models also offer a back-up monitor system.

Safety
Standard on all Tacoma models is the Toyota Star Safety System™, which includes Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), and Smart Stop brake override technology. Every Tacoma has standard three-point seatbelts for all seating positions, front seat-mounted side airbags, roll-sensing side curtain airbags (including a cutoff switch), and a front advanced dual-stage airbag system. A front passenger cutoff switch is standard on Access Cab models.

All Access Cab and Double Cab models feature standard active headrests for the front seats, which move up and forward almost instantly in the event of certain rear-end collisions to help reduce the distance between the occupant's head and the headrest.

Capability, Handling and Ride
The TRD Off-Road Package available for 4x4 V6 automatic models includes Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) and Downhill Assist Control (DAC). HAC operates by independently controlling the brakes at each wheel as needed to help prevent the vehicle from rolling backward or slipping sideways during a transition from a stopped position to climbing a grade. An Automatic Limited-slip Differential (Auto-LSD), which uses brake intervention to help reduce tire slippage at the rear wheels, is standard on all Tacoma models.

DAC uses engine braking to regulate downhill speed and independently control the brakes at each wheel to help improve directional control. DAC automatically de-activates if the driver depresses the brake or accelerator pedals, presses the DAC button, or shifts into neutral. TRD Off-Road Packages feature a locking rear differential that can be activated by a switch in the cab. An electronic rear differential is available on 4x4 models and the PreRunner.

Comfort and Convenience
The well-equipped 4x2 Regular Cab model features standard air conditioning; a full-size spare tire; AM/FM CD four-speaker sound system; tachometer; digital clock; two instrument panel powerpoints wîth a lighter; dome lamp; and rear mudguards. Regular Cab 4x4 models wîth the automatic transmission feature standard bucket seats. Tacoma Access Cab and Double Cab models add more standard features, including power windows and door locks, bucket seats and a center console. In Double Cab models, power mirrors and driver seat adjustable lumbar support are also standard.

Options
For both Access and Double Cab models, the available option combinations are built on five core packages. The SR5 Package bundles styling and comfort features, including color-keyed overfenders and front bumper, chrome grille surround and chrome rear bumper, intermittent wipers and upgraded interior features and trim, including a leather-wrapped §teering wheel and automatic transmission shift lever.

The TRD Sport Package is road-focused and features its own specific suspension tuning and lower-profile 265/65 R17 tires on 17-inch alloy wheels. This package also gives Tacoma a sporty look wîth fog lamps, hood scoop, TRD graphics and color-keyed rear bumper, mirrors, grille surround and door handles.

The available dealer-installed TRD Big Brake system was developed by Toyota Technical Center and TRD engineers. Engineered to provide effective braking performance under sustained heavy use, the Big Brake system dramatically improves pedal feel. The system uses 13 x 1.25-inch semi-floating vented rotors wîth directional internal fins, forged aluminum four-piston fixed calipers, larger pads wîth high coefficient-of-friction material and braided steel lines.

Exterior Design
The 2012 Tacoma has a new look from the A-pillar forward, wîth new front grilles on all grades. In addition to a new hood, Tacoma also receives new headlamps, new upper and lower bumper areas, including an updated fog lamp housing.

Tacoma configurations are based on three cab types: Regular Cab, Access Cab, and the four-door Double Cab. The rear doors on Access Cab models open to 80 degrees to give passengers easy ingress and egress. Bold overfenders distinguish PreRunner and 4x4 models. PreRunner models combine the 4x2 drivetrain wîth the 4x4's raised riding stance and styling. Double Cab models offer a roof rack system wîth crossbars that deploy from the roof rails.

Tacoma Regular Cab models are built on a 109.6-inch wheelbase; 4x2 Access Cab models (including PreRunner and 4x4) ride on a 127.4-inch wheelbase. The Tacoma Double Cab wîth the standard five-foot bed shares the 127.4-inch wheelbase, while the Double Cab long-bed models use a 140.6-inch wheelbase.

The Tacoma Regular Cab and Access Cab models feature a 73.5-inch-long bed. The Double Cab is available wîth a choice of a 60.3-inch bed or the 73.5-inch bed. The Tacoma's composite inner bed is made from a sheet-molded composite (SMC) deck and tough and durable walls that are 10 percent lighter than steel. The bed deck features two-tier loading and an integrated deck-rail utility wîth four standard adjustable tie-down cleats. The rails are compatible wîth Genuine Toyota Accessories, including cargo bed cross bars, a fork-mount bike rack, and diamond-plate storage boxes. An available 115V/400W powerpoint further extends the bed's utility.

Interior Design
A redesigned instrument gauge panel lends a sporty look in all models for 2012. The center console (standard on Access Cab and Double Cab models) flows into the instrument panel for a unified appearance. The console integrates three cupholders, two of which can accommodate extra-large containers.

Tacoma's interior provides durability and comfort wîth high-grade fabric and generous standard equipment. Sound absorption material in the headliner and behind the rear seats, along wîth insulating carpeting, help to provide a quiet cabin. All Tacoma models provide dual bottle holders in driver's- and passenger's-side doors. Audio controls are mounted high for easy access.

Higher-grade models feature fabric-covered sun visors and an overhead console wîth map lights, as well as compartments for sunglasses and a garage door opener. Interior storage is maximized in Access Cab models wîth fold up rear seats and underseat storage. Double Cab models feature 60/40 split rear seats wîth adjustable headrests and under-seat storage.

Limited Warranty
Toyota's 36-month/36,000 mile basic new-vehicle warranty applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60,000 miles and corrosion wîth no mileage limitation. The Tacoma will also come standard wîth Toyota Care, a complimentary plan covering normal factory-scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Source - Toyota
Since 1995, the Toyota Tacoma is a compact pickup truck both manufactured and produced by the Toyota Motor Corporation. For 2005 the second generation Tacoma was named Motor Trend Magazine's Truck of the Year. The Tacoma received its name after the City of Tacoma, Washington, USA. The Tacoma name originated from the worldwide Hilux, and prior to this the Hilux was marketed in the US, under the name Toyota Pickup. Three engines were available for the Toyota Tacoma; the 2.4 L four cylinder which was rated at 142 hp and 160 lb/ft of torque, the 2.7 L four cylinder which was rated at 150 hp and 177lb/ft of torque and finally the 3.4 L V6 rated at 190 hp and 22 lb/ft of torque. The 2.4L offered the highest MPG at 29, the 2.7L gave 26 miles per US gallon, and the 3.4L gave only 22 miles per US gallon.

5-stud wheel lug patterns were found on Two-wheel drive Tacoma's, while the 2.4 L and 3.4 L engines were available depending on options. Both automatic and manual transmissions were available. Four-wheel drive Tacoma's came with six-stud wheel lug patterns, which had been used early on pre-Tacoma trucks. The frame of the Tacoma is fully boxed until promptly transitioning into a c-frame section after the front leaf spring mount bracket. The automatic transmission was an A340F while the 3.4 V's manual transmission was an R150F. Single cab Tacoma's came with the option of a manual transmission with the 3.4 V6 engine from 1995 until 1997. Following 1998 the single cabs only received a 2.7 or a 2.4 4-cyl from factory. Also in this year TRD packages began.

Pre-runner models also began in this year and they shared the same front and rear suspensions parts and geometry, styling, frame and engine options as 4X4 Tacoma's of this year range. These models also had the options of the TRD Off-Road package which received a rear differential locker if it was a V6 model. The main downside was there wasn't an option of a 5-speed transmission.

The Toyota Tacoma sold quite well in the first few years of production, appealing to many young buyers. During the first generation the Tacoma underwent two cosmetic facelifts, the first in 1998 and the second in 2001. The revisions involved new headlights and new grilles. Mechanically the changes included a switch to distributor-less ignitions in 1997 and in 1998 longer rear leaf springs. Also in 1998 a passenger-side airbag was added to the Tacoma, while the driver's side air bag was 'depowered'. Following the 2000 model year all 4X4 models came with Toyota's Automatic Differential Disconnect system.

In 2001 the main revision for the Tacoma was a new crew cab (four door) model being added to the lineup. The crew cab came with four doors, while the Tacoma extended cab continued to open with two doors. A 6 foot bed came with the extended cab while the crew cab came with a 5 foot 5-inch bed. Unfortunately many customers were not happy with small crew cab beds, but there wasn't much of a market for larger truck beds with competitors. Toyota rolled out their new S-Runner trim package in 2001 which came with a 3.4 liter V6 engine, 16-inch alloy wheels and a 5 speed manual transmission with Tokico gas shocks. Only 200 units were produced from 2001 until 2004. The Toyota Tacoma went up 16.5 percent in sales from its earlier years and it continued to only rise in popularity. The Tacoma was ahead of the Nissan Frontier and the Dodge Dakota in 2004, only 2.2 percent behind in sales to the Ford Ranger.

The second generation of the Tacoma was unveiled at the 2004 Chicago Auto show. This generation was assembled in Tijuana, Mexico and Fremont, California, while the plastic/composite beds were all constructed in Mexico. This continued until August of 2009 when Toyota announced that it would relocate Tacoma production from Fremont to San Antonio, Texas, therefore consolidating with it's Toyota Tundra production line and having all American made Toyota pickups manufactured at one facility.

This new Tacoma was a bigger, meatier, more powerful Tacoma for 2005 available in eighteen various configurations that included three cab configurations, four transmissions, two engines, and two different bed lengths. The 4.0-liter 1GR-FE V6 replaced the original 3.4-liter V. The new Tacoma V6 had many enhancements that included a new 6500 pound tow rating and a payload capacity of 1650 pounds. It produced 236 horsepower and 266 foot-pounds of torque. The brand new smaller 2.7-liter 2TR-FE 4-cylinder alternative in cheaper models was rated at 159 hp and 180 lb/ft of torque.

An X-Runner trim was also introduced this year which replaced the slow selling S-Runner trim from the earlier generation. This model features the 1GR-FE was mated to a six speed manual transmission, 18 in alloy wheels which were lowered two inches from the factory and included an X-Brace suspension package. Also included on the X-Runner trim was a Down-Hill Assist Control (DAC) and Hill-Start Assist Control (HAC) on models that were outfitted with the optional Toyota Racing Development (TRD) Off-Road package. HAC prevents the car from rolling backwards on hills while DAC automatically applies braking during downhill descents. Optional features included limited-slip differential or a rear locking differential. All Tacoma's were manufactured with a composite inner bed that included a deck rail system with four tie-down cleats, storage boxes, hook-pins, and a power outlet. The tie-down cleats were rated to hold up to 220lbs.

The 2006 Tacoma rolled out with a bit more flair than the previous year. This year featured some options standard. For 2007 the Tacoma added 2 all-new interior colors. Not much changed aesthetically for the 2008 model year. For 2008 Toyota announced a 15 year, unlimited mileage corrosion warrant for 1995-2000 models because of insufficient rust-proofing and frame corrosion issues that affected a small amount of Tacoma's. Toyota offered to either repair the frame or buy back the truck for 1.5 times its KBB retail value.

Safety features were implemented for 2009 and the Tacoma no longer offered a mechanical limited slip different instead of an open differential which uses individual wheel braking to simulate a mechanical LSD or 'Auto-LSD'. Off-road TRD models continue to arrive equipped with a locking rear differential. For this year a slightly improved grill was added on some models, along with LED taillamps. The X-Runner, TRD Sport and TRD Offroad models included smoked headlamp trim. Now standard were auxiliary audio input. Four new exterior colors were added to the Tacoma and the Access/Double Cab trucks received two new ceiling mounted speakers and available backup monitor.

Following GM's bankruptcy, GM abandoned the NUMMI venture. Toyota killed all Corolla and Tacoma production. For 2010 all Tacoma production was relocated to Toyota's Texas plant in San Antonio. The Tacoma was build alongside the Tundra, and by doing this, Toyota now has all of its NA truck production in one plant. In 2012 the Tacoma is expected to be redesigned and re-engineered, two years following the release of the new 4Runner.

The Tacoma arrived standard with brake assist, anti-lock brakes, and electronic brakeforce distribution. A rollover sensor was added in 2008 which deployed the side curtain airbags in the event of a rollover in Tacoma's equipped with the optional side airbags. Starting in 2009, all Tacoma's featured Toyota's Star Safety System which added traction control and Vehicle Stability Control. Also standard were front row side torso airbags and side curtain airbags for both rows, along with active head restraints. With active head restraints, in 2009 the Tacoma was given the IIHS's Top Safety Pick award. The Tacoma Access Cab received standard power windows and door locks along with redesigned rear seats for passenger comfort and convenience. Higher trim levels offered optional Bluetooth enabled Premium JBL 6-CD audio systems with integrated XL satellite radio.

A limited production trim, the Toyota X-Runner was only available in three colors each year and only four colors today. The X-Runner was available in Speedway Blue, Black San Pearl and Radiant Red from 2005 until 2008.The Radiant Red was discontinued in 2009 and replaced with Barcelona Red Metallic. The main difference between the X-Runner and other packages were the updates to the suspension, a 3.15 Final Drive ratio and ground effects. To stiffen up the back end, the Toyota added a rear mounted X-Brace. The chassis was also stiffened more by adding two additional support braces to the frame. One could purchase an optional big brake kit by TRD available on the X-Runner which consisted of a 332 mm slotted rotor and 4 piston caliper. This big brake kit was designed by StopTech.

The 2010 Tacoma appealed to drivers who needed a mid-size car or compact pickup loaded with latest media amenities and top of the line safety features in addition to fuel efficiency and hauling capabilities. The outside remained basically unchanged from the previous year. The '10 trucks came in three cab styles; the Tacoma Regular Cab, Double Cab with four side doors and extended Access Cab with hinged rear doors. The 2010 Tacoma was equipped with the most advanced DynamicControl technology and Electronic Throttle Control System with intelligence. The Tacoma is a popular seller in the mid-size pickup truck category.

By Jessica Donaldson

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