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This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Sun, Jan 17, 2010

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

IMMORTAL BELOVED By Harold Osmer Toyota has been building quality trucks since, what, forever. Their Tacoma model has been around for ten years and is going strong. This solid, mid-sized pickup is well suited for a multitude of tasks over the long haul. Our Tacoma was loaded with four-wheel drive, 4.0L V6, automatic transmission, and double cab. We also had Toyota's SR5 Extra Value Package including JBL satellite/audio system, Bluetooth, keyless entry, and a host of interior and exterior trim goodies. At $3,030, the SR5 option provides good value. A V6 Tow Package ($650.) was the only other option on the well-equipped standard truck. Base price is $27,075. As tested we reached $30,605. The Tacoma has a very familiar look to it. Tried and true styling results in a solid, reliable vehicle thus there a lot of them on the road. Our best guess says that you'd have to work pretty hard for pretty long to kill this truck.

Tacoma Double Cab 4X4 This truck is suited to a rugged environment. Street manners are acceptable, but the low first gear, narrow track, and stiff suspension might wear you out on city streets. EPA estimates are very truck-like at 16/20. As we said, bring this Tacoma to a rugged environment and all those knocks become huge plusses. Tacoma's Double Cab provides room enough for three friendly people behind the driver. Fold down the rear seats and you gain an additional 55 cubic feet of inside storage. The long bed version comes standard with four adjustable tie-down cleats (a handy feature too often overlooked). I found the Tacoma too small for my liking. At 6'2", I am above average in size, but hardly the largest guy around. Fair enough, but Tacoma's mid-sized heritage relegates buyers my size to full-sized trucks. After our lengthy test session, the narrow seats and tight interior produced a claustrophobic feeling. Despite the solidness, Toyota reliability record, and overall ruggedness of the 2010 Tacoma, its size squeezed me out. At $30,605, there are many options for today's truck buyer. Toyota Tundra (double cab starting at $25,495) comes first to mind. Take the Tacoma features and put them in larger truck and I'm in. - Harold O.

Tacoma Access Cab THE TRUCK THAT WOULD NOT DIE LA CarOlov has owned many vehicles throughout his life, including an S-Class Mercedes, a 7-Series BMW, an XJ8 Jaguar, and several Cadillacs. But the best vehicle he's ever owned is a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck, says he. "No matter what I do to it, it won't die." Evidently, he's done things with the truck that go far beyond what's recommended, and like the proverbial Timex watch, it takes a licking and keeps on ticking. This seems to be consistent with the small Toyota pickup's reputation on the other side of the Atlantic. Our colleagues on the BBC television program, Top Gear, bought a used Toyota pickup, immersed it into the sea, hit it with a wrecking ball, drove it through a building, set it on fire, and finally dropped it from an imploding high rise. In all instances, they were able to get the truck started and rolling. Of course, your results may vary, but it bodes well for the truck's reputation for durability. For those of you who may be interested in a truck as a fashion statement, be forewarned: This vehicle may last a lot longer than you want it to. No more may you justify the purchase of another vehicle because the truck is on its last leg. This vehicle has the legs of a centipede. - Roy Nakano

SUMMARY JUDGMENT The Timex watch of motor vehicles. To view "Killing a Toyota, Part 1" click here. To view "Killing a Toyota, Part 2", click here. To view "Killing a Toyota, Part 3", click here. For more information about Toyota products, go to

SPECIFICATIONS Name of vehicle: 2010 Toyota Tacoma Double Cab 4x4 V6 Long Bed Pickup Price: Base $27,075, as tested: $30,605 options include: SR5 Extra Value Package ($3030), V6 Tow Package ($650) EPA miles per gallon estimates (city/highway): 16/20 Engine type: 4.0L V6, DOHC, 24V VVT-i Horsepower: 236 @ 5200 rpm Torque: 266 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm Curb Weight: 4190 pounds Drive configuration: 4W Demand: part-time 4-wheel-drive system with 2-speed electronically controlled transfer case Transmission type: 5-speed electronically controlled automatic w/overdrive Suspension: Front: Coil-spring double wishbone Rear: Leaf spring with staggered outboard-mounted gas shocks Wheels and tires: 16-inch Steel wheels P245/75R16 Brakes: 4-wheel ABS Front Ventilated Disc 12.6-inch, Rear Drum 10.0-inch Overall length/wheelbase: 221 inches/140.6 inches Overall width: 74.6 inches Overall height: 70.1 inches Off Highway: Approach/Departure angle 35/25 degrees Ramp Breakover angle 20 degrees Minimum Ground Clearance 9.3 Warranty: 3yr/36,000 miles Basic; 6yr/60,000 miles Powertrain

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