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You don’t need to spend a lot on the top Toyota Tacoma trim if you want a cool truck. In fact, one of the best models is pretty affordable. See which 2023 Toyota Tacoma trim checks off tons of boxes without breaking the bank. 

The coolest 2023 Toyota Tacoma trim for under $30,000 

The 2023 Toyota Tacoma at a camp site
2023 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

The 2023 Toyota Tacoma can be a budget-friendly truck that covers all the basics if you know what you want. While the 2023 Tacoma is a well-rounded choice with an excellent reliability rating, you can skip some of the bells and whistles to save. 

Kelley Blue Book points out that the entry-level Toyota Tacoma SR trim with rear-wheel drive and the standard 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine is one of the coolest cars for under $30,000. The only other truck on this list is the Ford Maverick. 

The 2023 Tacoma is also KBB’s Midsize Truck Best Buy Award winner. The truck ranks highly because it’s practical and fun. It has most of the same capabilities as a full-size truck but in a smaller, more agile package. It provides more nimbleness on and off the road

But I can’t help feeling the need to point out a few compromises with this setup. For example, while the standard engine is extremely reliable, it doesn’t have the most muscle, with only 159 hp and 180 lb-ft of torque. Also, without 4×4 how much off-roading can be accomplished? 

Adding 4×4 costs about $3,075. You can upgrade to the 3.5-liter V6 engine with 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque for roughly $2,260. Going for the V6 engine and 4×4 adds $5,725 to the price, bringing the MSRP up to $35,600. 

What comes standard with the 2023 Tacoma? 

The standard 2023 Toyota Tacoma SR model starts with the Access Cab, which is a bit smaller without four full doors. It can also only seat up to four passengers. You can upgrade to the larger Double Cab with seating for up to five passengers for $540. 

If you need the extra space, then it’s worth the upgrade! The Access Cab is paired with a six-foot bed, while the Double Cab features a five-foot bed.

 Both options come with a tough sheet molded composite bed, so you don’t need a liner. Movable cleats are included. 

The entry-level Tacoma rides on 16-inch steel wheels, has a manual sliding rear window, cloth seats, and power-adjustable/heated side mirrors. 

Tech includes a 7.0-inch infotainment screen, a six-speaker audio system, satellite radio, three USB ports, and a Wifi hotspot. Upgrading to the V6 engine adds dual-zone climate control. 

Standard safety features include forward collision mitigation, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control. 

2023 Tacoma: What’s new? 

The 2023 toyota Tacoma dominating a dirt trail
2023 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

The 2023 Toyota Tacoma is primarily a carryover model. It’s part of the sixth generation that kicked off in 2016. There are two new appearance packages for the SR5 model. One is a black appearance package, and the other adds chrome accents. 

It might be the last chance to get a Tacoma model for under $30,000. The 2024 Toyota Tacoma was just redesigned with an available hybrid engine and the new Trailhunter trim for overlanding. 

The 2024 Tacoma still has an affordable work truck trim. However, pricing for the 2024 line hasn’t been released. Until the new trucks come out, you could save with the basic entry-level 2023 Tacoma. 

It’s still by far the most popular midsize truck available. Stay tuned for updates on pricing and performance.