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2024 Toyota Tacoma Revealed: This Taco Packs a Spicy Hybrid

The PreRunner returns!

2024 Toyota Tacoma kicking up dirt
  • It's the first all-new Tacoma in years.
  • It's powered by a new turbocharged four-cylinder, with the option for a hybrid.
  • The interior is significantly improved.
  • New trim levels include top-dog Trailhunter and the return of the TRD PreRunner.

This is undoubtedly the year of the midsize pickup, with new versions of the Ford Ranger, GMC Canyon and Chevrolet Colorado all debuting in 2023. Add the 2024 Toyota Tacoma to that list, which will arrive at dealer showrooms by year's end.

Unlike the current Tacoma — which was redesigned in 2016 but shares mechanical bits with its 2005-2015 predecessor — the 2024 Tacoma is completely new. It rides on the TNGA-K global truck platform that also underpins the Tundra and Sequoia, and like those full-size behemoths, offers a bevy of changes underhood.

But we get ahead of ourselves. For now, just know that the new Tacoma has a beefy, Tundra-inspired exterior design and a modern interior with lots of standard tech features, and it introduces a number of different trim levels, including the return of the PreRunner. Whether your primary use case is for rock-crawling, mall-crawling or overlanding, there's a Tacoma to fit your needs. Especially if you want one with a vigorous hybrid powertrain.

Gah! Getting ahead of ourselves again. But it's hard not to get excited — the new Tacoma looks (TRD) pro.

What's under the Tacoma's hood?

Gone are the anemic naturally aspirated inline-four and industrial V6. Instead, most Tacomas will be powered by a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder borrowed from a number of newer Toyota and Lexus products. In the wallet-friendly SR base trim, the engine is paired to an eight-speed automatic and makes a modest 228 horsepower and 243 lb-ft of torque. This engine tune won't set a dragstrip on fire, but there's a lot more juice under the hood than the old four-cylinder's 159 hp and 180 lb-ft.

2024 Toyota Tacoma driving through water

Other trim levels benefit from a significant power boost. Models equipped with the available six-speed manual transmission will generate 270 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque, while opting for the eight-speed auto bumps output to 278 hp and 317 lb-ft. The automatic has the same amount of power as the old V6, but torque increases from 265 lb-ft.

The turbo-four is a welcome change from the old-school engines that drove the last Tacoma. Hopefully downsizing the number of cylinders leads to improved fuel economy versus the V6, too.

If you really want the best fuel economy possible — or even the speediest Taco available — there's good news! The new i-Force Max powertrain offers both. It pairs the turbocharged engine with a 1.87-kWh nickel metal hydride battery pack and an electric motor integrated with the eight-speed transmission. That's right — for the first time in its history, the Tacoma is going hybrid. The extra electric motor increases output to a lofty 326 hp and 465 lb-ft, which will make this the most potent powertrain in the midsize truck class. While Toyota hasn't announced any fuel economy targets just yet, the Lexus RX offers both powertrains, and the RX hybrid's city rating is about 29% higher than its non-hybrid counterpart.

2024 Toyota Tacoma profile

Of course, trucks just aren't about the grunt underhood — they have to deal with the challenges of daily living, too. One of the biggest upgrades to the 2024 Tacoma is the new multilink rear suspension. While the SR, SR5 and TRD PreRunner (more on that in a minute) still make do with the leaf springs of the previous Tacoma, all others get more sophisticated coils, which should pay dividends when it comes to road comfort. Dampers and tuning are also highly differentiated across the board. The TRD Off-Road, for instance, equips the Tacoma with monotube Bilstein shocks with remote reservoirs, while the TRD Pro is outfitted with Fox QS3 three-way adjustable internal bypass shocks. The Trailhunter utilizes an Old Man Emu suspension by ARB, while the Limited rides on adaptive dampers.

The Tacoma now gets disc brakes all around, with TRD, Limited and Trailhunter models specifically getting larger front brakes. Selecting the hybrid powertrain adds bigger rear brakes as well.

2024 Toyota Tacoma interior

How's the Tacoma's interior? 

The Tacoma's cabin looks like a scaled-down version of the Tundra's interior. The primary focal point is the touchscreen perched atop the center stack. It measures 8 inches on most models, with the primo Limited, TRD Pro and Trailhunter variants getting an eye-catching 14-inch screen (which will likely be an optional upgrade on lower trims). Below that is the climate control array — it's nice to see that Toyota has retained physical knobs and toggles, bucking the current trend of these controls hidden in touchscreen menus. A big, chunky shifter and vehicle system buttons form the base of the center stack, and all are large enough that they should be easy to press and twist if you're wearing work gloves. The steering wheel looks like it's lifted straight from the Tundra, with TRD models sporting a spiffy red line at the 12 o'clock position so you know, at a glance, where the wheels are pointed. 

Speaking of the TRD models … while most Tacoma variants play it safe with traditional black or gray tones — a notable exception being the TRD Sport, which has body-colored interior trim panels — the TRD Pro's cabin is unhinged in the best way. Up front you have red trim aplenty, from the stitching to the door panels and glovebox, and even red leather upholstery. Nothing too wild at first glance, just some sporty accents to separate the Pro from the amateurs. 

That is, until you get into the back, and you realize that you have absolute knee crushers in front of you. That's because Toyota is equipping the TRD Pro with so-called IsoDynamic Performance Seats, which feature shock absorbers mounted behind the seat to counteract the violent forces at work during extreme off-roading. Toyota says the seats "[allow] for vertical and lateral seat movement simultaneously to dampen body movement and stabilize the head and neck to keep alignment with the spine." We say they look wildly overengineered and we can't wait to try them out on the trail.

2024 Toyota Tacoma seatback

From a size perspective, the new Tacoma doesn't feel much larger than its predecessor. While the Honda Ridgeline and Jeep Gladiator are quite roomy in comparison, you can still fit a set of 6-footers in the Tacoma's cabin — if they're the agreeable sort, and provided they aren't traveling in the TRD Pro. You can technically slot your knees in the space between the shocks and frame, but we wouldn't recommend it. Even a slight jostle will end up with your legs bashing something hard and probably expensive. 

2024 Toyota Tacoma touchscreen

How's the Tacoma's tech? 

Even though Toyota is leaning into the pickup's off-road performance with this generation, the reality is that this truck has to remain usable day to day. And that means the new Tacoma is loaded with plenty of tech and safety features. The aforementioned touchscreen is loaded with the same user interface that debuted on the Tundra, which we think is far more intuitive than the current Tacoma's system. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, with a wireless Qi charging pad available on upper trims. Also on the options list are ventilated seats, a head-up display and a 10-speaker JBL audio system (with a removable and portable center speaker).

All Tacomas will come with the Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 suite of advanced driving aids. That means everything from the base SR up will have adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning with emergency automatic braking, road sign recognition, lane departure alert and lane centering assistance. New to TSS is Proactive Driving Assist, which lowers the adaptive cruise control speed to slow for upcoming curves. Enhancements to TSS include motorcyclist detection for the forward collision system and a steering assist system when lane departure warning detects you drifting into another lane or off the road.

How's the Tacoma's towing and hauling? 

The 2024 Tacoma's maximum towing capacity is 6,500 pounds — marginally less than the current Tacoma's 6,800-pound limit — based on the SR5 and TRD PreRunner trims with the two-seat configuration. The hybrid is rated to tow up to 6,000 pounds. 

But as Toyota taketh, it also giveth. The 2024 Tacoma's max payload increases from 1,685 pounds to a current maximum of 1,709 pounds. That might not seem like much on paper, but the former figure is based on the current four-cylinder extended cab, while the latter is based on the new hybrid powertrain (the only payload figure that Toyota has disclosed so far). Put another way, the old Tacoma's best payload figure is based on the most utilitarian configuration possible, while the new Tacoma's higher figure is based on a heavier and more loaded configuration. We expect that more attainable versions of the new Tacoma could have even higher payload ratings. 

The 2024 Tacoma is available in the following configurations: single cab/6-foot bed, crew cab/5-foot bed and crew cab/6-foot bed. The automaker claims a 7% increase in bed volume due to taller bed sides. One neat feature worth noting is the aluminum tailgate's power open and close function. You can even trigger the tailgate closing by gently lifting it an inch or so; the power portion brings it up the rest of the way. 

2024 Toyota Tacoma detail

What are the Tacoma's trim levels?

The 2024 Toyota Tacoma is available with many different trim levels, bed sizes, cab layouts, powertrain options, transmissions and more. To help you make sense of everything that's available, our separate article details all of the Tacoma's configurations.

However, there are a few grades worth pointing out. The PreRunner name returns for the new Tacoma and serves as the new entry point to the TRD lineup. The TRD PreRunner is only available in the XtraCab (single cab) body style and the rear-wheel-drive powertrain with an electronically locking rear differential. It's also equipped with all-terrain tires for light off-roading action.

At the tip-top of the Tacoma range is the new overlanding-focused Trailhunter. As with most upper-spec Tacomas, it's only available in the Double Cab (crew cab) configuration, and it starts with the hybrid powertrain and 4WD. It rides on ARB's Old Man Emu forged monotube shocks with remote reservoirs and features 33-inch Goodyear Territory R/T tires. From there, the Trailhunter adds pretty much every accessory known to man, with highlights including a steel rear bumper, tow hooks, snorkel air intake and bronze wheels. There's even an onboard compressor for quickly airing up the tires after a long day of rock crawling.

2024 Toyota Tacoma action

Edmunds says

The new 2024 Toyota Tacoma aims to completely upend the midsize truck market. With an available hybrid powertrain, the return of a two-seat configuration and tons of new trim levels, the Tacoma is almost daring you to consider anything else.