Mine is the basic model with the standard cab, rubber floorboards, and manual transmission - and it is awesome. What a novel thing these days to have something that is so well built. It's old school, so it has a firm ride and no frills. But it always works. The beauty is in it's simplicity. That said, it's difficult to shift smoothly (I'd get the automatic), the gas mileage is poor, and it's pretty big for maneuvering around town. Along with the firm ride, those characteristics make it a bit rough as a daily driver. It's more of a perfect second or spare vehicle.
The 6-cylinder's acceleration is adequate (with the manual transmission anyway), but I'd get the V-8, as there doesn't seem to be much of a trade off. At 94K, mine has needed an oxygen sensor replacement (pricey), and a timing belt service, though the latter is part of routine maintenance. If you read up on these trucks you can pretty much drive them until the wheels fall off, and the values hold up very well.
UPDATE 11/29/16: Dead-on reliable. Storing things behind the seat is a bit annoying, as items like clothing can easily get caught on the lever you use to tilt the seat forward. A little loud and uncomfortable on trips longer than an hour or two. Still love the truck, but if I had it to do over again I'd get the V8 and the automatic transmission. Shifting in this gets old pretty quickly.
Outstanding truck. Decent gas milage
for a six cylinder. Drives more like a
car than a truck. Comfortable and for
the most part gauges are well laid out
except the clock, which is below the
radio in the radio. Tis truck is quiet
and is quite capable for towing and
general hauling. The six banger is a
little slow on the accleation but goes
nicely once your up to speed. A/C is
cold. Highly reccomended.
Sliding rear window. great sound system.
Clock needs to be placed in an area
where driver can see it without taking
eyes off of the road.
I have a 2001; it's done everything I
asked, including pulling a travel
trailer over the highest passes in
Colorado. But the engine performance
is still marginal, and gas mileage is
hard to tolerate (16-18mpg).
All in all, though, I'll most likely
look at a new Tundra when the time
comes for another truck. I don't
believe the American manufacturers can
match the overall quality and
reliability of Toyota.
Solid, quiet, reliable.
More engine performance, and much
higher gas mileage!