2011 Toyota Tacoma Review | Edmunds.com

2011 Toyota Tacoma

Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Toyota Tacoma Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.7 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 159 hp @ 5200 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 21/25 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2011 Toyota Tacoma

  • The 2011 Toyota Tacoma is a top choice in the midsize pickup segment thanks to its highly capable nature and wide array of configurations.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Engines offer a good balance of power and fuel efficiency; wide variety of body styles and trims; strong safety scores; impressive build quality; well-appointed interior.

  • Cons

    Low seating position; spongy brake pedal; V6 can get noisy.

  • What's New for 2011

    For 2011, the Toyota Tacoma's four-cylinder engine is a more practical choice now that it's available with an automatic transmission. Air-conditioning is now standard on every Tacoma, while all but Regular Cab 4x4 models get bucket seats. The front grille has been slightly redesigned depending on trim level and a pair of new off-road-oriented packages debut.

Full 2011 Toyota Tacoma Review

What's New for 2011

For 2011, the Toyota Tacoma's four-cylinder engine is a more practical choice now that it's available with an automatic transmission. Air-conditioning is now standard on every Tacoma, while all but Regular Cab 4x4 models get bucket seats. The front grille has been slightly redesigned depending on trim level and a pair of new off-road-oriented packages debut.

Introduction

In the past, you faced a simple choice when the time came to buy a pickup truck. When gas was cheap and good times continued to roll, it was easy to justify getting the biggest thing available. In these leaner economic times, many people are reconsidering their wants versus their needs. You might want a truck with all that payload, power and space, but perhaps a smaller and less expensive truck is all you need. In that case, the 2011 Toyota Tacoma should do nicely.

Since its last redesign in 2005, the Tacoma has been a class-leading choice, due largely to its ability to bridge the gap between small work trucks and full-sizers. Thanks to available four- and six-cylinder engines and a wide range of body styles that start with the simple Regular Cab and go up to the Double Cab long bed, both business operators and families alike should be able to find a Tacoma in a size and style that suits their needs. Toyota offers the Pre-Runner, X Runner and off-road-capable TRD models to further cater to a diverse range of potential buyers.

In addition to its wide-ranging lineup, the 2011 Toyota Tacoma further distinguishes itself with its sturdy construction and reputation for reliability. Another plus is its well-appointed cabin, which greatly outshines the competition. Of the Tacoma's rivals, the strongest picks are the 2011 Nissan Frontier and almost identical Suzuki Equator; the American entries are sadly well past their prime and not really competitive. Still, although both the Frontier and the Equator are capable choices, neither is impressive enough to challenge the Tacoma's dominance in the segment.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2011 Toyota Tacoma is a midsize pickup offered in Regular Cab, Access Cab (an extended cab with small rear-hinged doors) and Double Cab (crew cab with four full-size front-hinged doors) configurations. Both Regular and Access Cabs are joined to a 6-foot bed. The Double Cab has a shortened 5-foot bed in the interest of maneuverability, but a 6-foot bed is available as an option.

All Tacoma body styles are available in either two- or four-wheel-drive form. Rear-wheel-drive PreRunner versions adopt the rugged look and suspension of their off-road-focused stablemates, but without the added weight, fuel appetite and traction of actual 4WD. The rear-drive-only X-Runner version is more oriented to street performance, with a body kit, 18-inch alloy wheels, standard V6, a lowered sport-tuned suspension, a hood scoop, foglamps and an upgraded stereo.

As the base model, the lightly equipped Tacoma Regular Cab is ideal as a work truck; it actually has more standard amenities than other bare-bones pickups. Standard features include 15-inch steel wheels, a limited-slip differential, air-conditioning, a composite bedliner, a bed utility rail system, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a cloth front bench seat and a four-speaker stereo with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack. When equipped with four-wheel drive and an automatic transmission, the Regular Cab gets front bucket seats. The Access Cab gains power locks and windows, upgraded cloth upholstery, front bucket seats, a rear bench (includes under-seat storage) and two more speakers. The Tacoma Double Cab adds 16-inch steel wheels, a front skid plate and driver lumbar adjustment.

Most options (which can vary by region) are grouped into packages with varying availability depending on body styles and drivetrain choices. The Convenience package adds power mirrors, keyless entry, cruise control, a sliding rear window and steering-wheel audio controls. Several variations of the SR-5 package typically combine exterior and interior enhancements that include a chrome grille and rear bumper, variable-speed wipers, foglamps, upgraded seats, a rearview camera, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and a JBL upgraded six-speaker stereo with Bluetooth and satellite radio. Some of these items are available separately.

The TRD Off-Road package includes 16-inch alloy wheels, fender flares, a heavy-duty suspension, a locking rear differential, skid plates and sport seats. Both the TX and TX Pro packages add black alloy wheels, all-terrain tires and unique badging; the TX also adds tube side steps, while the TX Pro adds a cat-back exhaust. The on-road-oriented TRD Sport package includes 17-inch alloy wheels, a hood scoop, a sport suspension and sport seats.

Powertrains and Performance

The 2011 Toyota Tacoma is available with rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. All drivetrain and cab configurations other than the 4x4 Double Cab come standard with a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 159 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed manual transmission is standard on the Regular and Access Cabs, while a four-speed automatic is optional on those cabs and standard with the Double Cab. Fuel economy for a 4x2 with the automatic is 19 mpg city/25 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined, while the 4x4 with automatic gets 18/21/19.

Optional on the Access Cab and 4x2 Double Cab but standard on the 4x4 Double Cab is a 4.0-liter V6 that ups output to 236 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual is standard and a five-speed automatic is optional. In testing, a Tacoma Double Cab V6 turned in a 0-60-mph time of 7.8 seconds, which is suitably quick for a midsize truck. An automatic-equipped 4x2 with the V6 achieves an EPA-estimated 17/21/18, while the 4x4 gets 16/20/18. When properly equipped, the Tacoma can tow 6,500 pounds.

Safety

Standard safety equipment on all 2011 Tacomas includes stability and traction control, antilock brakes (disc front, drum rear) with brake assist, front-seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and front active headrests. Hill-start assist control (HAC) and downhill assist control (DAC) are available on 4WD models equipped with the automatic transmission.

In government crash testing, the 2011 Toyota Tacoma received a top five-star rating for its protection of occupants in frontal and side-impact crashes. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Tacoma its top rating of "Good" in its frontal-offset and side crash tests. The Tacoma is the only compact/midsize to receive high marks in both tests, earning it the distinction of being an IIHS Top Safety Pick.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Tacoma doesn't break any new ground in terms of interior design, but it is well built with quality materials and offers plenty of practicality. The attractive metallic interior trim found in higher trim levels adds a bit more refinement, especially when compared to its more industrial rivals. Furthermore, the gimmick-free cockpit benefits from easy-to-read gauges and intuitive controls.

Adult passengers will find the Double Cab's rear seats roomy and comfortable, while only smaller folk are likely to find the Access Cab's rear accommodations passable. Some of our editors have expressed displeasure with the Tacoma's low-slung front seats, noting that pickups are best served by seats that are higher from the floor. Behind the cab, a substantial composite inner cargo bed does a good job of defending the surface from dents and rust, and an optional bed-mounted 115-volt/400-watt electrical outlet should be a big hit with campers and tailgaters alike.

Driving Impressions

Drivers who don't plan on heavy hauling, towing or aggressive accelerating will likely find their needs met by the four-cylinder engine. The beefier V6 is a much more capable choice for more serious work and play, with plenty of low-range pull that continues into the higher revs. The only downside is that it can get a bit noisy at higher rpm.

For better or worse, the 2011 Toyota Tacoma drives like a proper pickup truck. It delivers a reasonably comfortable ride on the streets and, properly equipped, tackles off-road terrain without drama. The Tacoma can, however, feel rather twitchy if the bed's empty and the truck's fitted with one of the stiffer suspensions. It's also worth noting that while the brakes ably bring things to a halt, the soft pedal doesn't inspire confidence.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews



Right for me

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma V6 4dr Access Cab 4WD 6.1 ft. SB (4.0L 6cyl 5A)

Bought my 2011 sr5 about a month ago. Did lots of previous research prior to buying it, fuel, reliability, pricing, etc. Month later, can't say enough of the Tacoma. Great mid size truck that stands up to all others with good gas mpg. Would highly recommend the Tacoma if your looking for a dependable mid size truck that delivers good fuel and pulling power for weekenders.




2 year review

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma V6 4dr Double Cab 4WD 6.1 ft. SB (4.0L 6cyl 5A)

I have driven this vehicle for 2 years now and I'm very happy with it's style, performance and quality. I replaced a 2003 Tacoma extended cab with this 2011 double cab. The 6 foot bed is the only way to go. I have to back it into my garage because of the extra length but this is one option you should get if you are going to haul anything. Gas mileage is OK, not great but about 19 combined. Handling is good with great acceleration. Brakes are the worst part of this vehicle. I wish they would have changes to 4 wheel disk. The only other issues I have are: A clunk when I slow down and stop, and play in steering while going over bumps off road.



2 of 6 people found this review helpful

Absolute garbage!

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma 4dr Access Cab 6.1 ft. SB (2.7L 4cyl 5M)

I have now owned 4 Toyotas. Excluding a late 80s base model Tacoma, this is the worst vehicle I have ever owned. I will be slow to purchase a Toyota again. Cheap materials, cramped and awkward interior, an endless supply of mechanical failures. I am happy to say goodbye. I spent hours haggling over the Cruise Control failing at 70. Toyota made every excuse yet blamed me & the terrain (small incline). 1 engine out of 12 takes synthetic. Of course my dealership filled it with standard and replaced it so the engine could sound like a VW bug for a while. Two...yes TWO rear bearings, a differential and a front strut later and this has been in the shop more than my last 3 cars combined!



4 of 4 people found this review helpful

4 cylinder, 4x4 tacoma with

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma 2dr Regular Cab 6.1 ft. SB (2.7L 4cyl 4A)

Overall the truck has been pretty good. The acceleration of the 4 cylinder in this model with the 4 wheel drive and 4 speed automatic transmission is poor, and fourth gear is way too high for this engine's modest power and torque level and the shift points are all wrong, in my opinion. It always starts and runs well for me, but the blower fan has been replaced twice under warranty.



3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Surprised by quality issues

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma V6 4dr Double Cab 4WD 5.0 ft. SB (4.0L 6cyl 5A)

My husband has a special place in his heart for the Toyota Tacoma, always has. We bought him his 2nd one, brand new only not long ago and now it has 7,000 mi. on it. It just started making an odd sound. We took in into the shop and were told that since the computer wasn't showing a code, they couldn't do anything. So, my husband looked at it at home and found that the fan shroud was rubbing. We it back up there & they decided this time they would actually look at it. They took it apart and found that the fan shroud was being affected by the radiator that was warped! Next, they found that all that was caused by a broken motor mount bolt. Week in the shop! We are not hard on vehicles.



6 of 11 people found this review helpful

Suv with a bed

by on
Vehicle: 2011 Toyota Tacoma V6 4dr Double Cab 4WD 5.0 ft. SB (4.0L 6cyl 5A)

The Tacoma has its limitations, but going to a Tacoma from a full size Ford F-250 will take something to get used to. I purchaced it cause I was sick and tired of getting 11 mpg with my Ford. When picking out a new Tacoma the test ride in the automatic was totally unacceptable the way the transmission would constantly shift up and down everytime I touched the gas pedal so I was ready to walk away but the salesman said he had a 6 speed manual shift 4 door, but I said NO! no manual for me, so he insulted me saying I couldn't drive a manual, but when I took the manual for a ride I LOVED it and took it home.



Talk About The 2011 Tacoma

2011 Toyota Tacoma Discussions See all Started By

Edmunds.com
Edmunds.com
10-06-2014
2005-'11 Toyota Tacoma Recalled To Fix Rear Suspension System | Edmunds.com Toyota is recalling approximately 690,000 2005-'11 Toyota Tacoma pickup trucks in the U.S. to fix a problem with the rear su...


chazas
chazas
02-01-2011

bfilkins
bfilkins
01-20-2011
2011 Tacoma with JBL audio system. How do I transfer my contacts from my iphone to the phone book....



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Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 21
  • cty
/
  • 25
  • highway
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