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Two of the most popular pickup trucks over the past year have been the midsize Toyota Tacoma and the compact Ford Maverick. While both trucks have multiple strengths, the 2023 Toyota Tacoma tops the 2023 Ford Maverick in one big way. It is much better for off-road use. 

2023 Toyota Tacoma is a more capable off-road truck than the 2023 Ford Maverick

Front angle view of orange 2023 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro midsize pickup truck
2023 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro | Toyota

Automakers are increasingly offering pickup trucks that are capable of going off-road. However, a longtime favorite of off-road enthusiasts is the Tacoma. It’s tough as nails and is highly durable. When driving out in the wilderness, it takes a beating but keeps on going. 

There are a number of reasons why the 2023 Toyota Tacoma is a more capable off-road truck than the 2023 Ford Maverick. This includes an advanced four-wheel drive system compared to the basic all-wheel drive setup for the Maverick. The four-wheel drive system provides enhanced traction that enables the Tacoma to confidently traverse rough terrain. Also, the all-wheel drive system is not available for the standard hybrid version of the Maverick. It’s only available for the fully gas-powered model.

Additionally, the Tacoma has higher ground clearance — with up to 9.4 inches, compared to 8.6 inches for the Maverick. The higher ground clearance enables the Tacoma to more safely and effectively drive over uneven terrain, such as rocks. 

Unlike the 2023 Maverick, the 2023 Tacoma has off-road models

Front angle view of orange 2023 Ford Maverick compact pickup truck
2023 Ford Maverick | Ford

Furthermore, unlike the 2023 Ford Maverick, the Toyota Tacoma has off-road models. While the Maverick offers off-road packages, such as the new Tremor Package, it doesn’t have an off-road trim. Conversely, the Tacoma offers a range of off-road trims, such as the TRD Pro, TRD Off-Road, and Trail Edition.

The pinnacle of off-road prowess for the Tacoma is the TRD Pro trim. Along with its standard four-wheel drive system, the Tacoma TRD Pro has many off-road features. This includes TRD Pro skid plates, TRD-tuned FOX internal bypass shocks, TRD Pro wheels, and Goodyear all-terrain tires. 

Also, the TRD Pro features a unique suspension with a 1.5-inch front lift and 0.5-inch rear lift to enable the pickup truck to easily clear rough terrain. Plus, it has some of the best approach, departure, and breakover angles for the small and midsize pickup truck segments. 

Other benefits of the Toyota Tacoma over the Ford Maverick


How Much Does a Fully Loaded 2023 Toyota Tacoma Cost?

In addition to its off-road prowess, the 2023 Tacoma has some other benefits over the 2023 Maverick. This includes a higher maximum towing capacity (6,000 vs. 4,000 pounds) and payload capacity (1,685 vs. 1,564 pounds).

Also, the Tacoma offers convenience features that you can’t get for the Maverick. Examples include a 360-degree camera, tailgate assist, electronic trailer sway control, a driver alert monitoring system, and real-time GPS navigation system updates. 

Furthermore, the Tacoma has a complimentary maintenance plan, but the Maverick doesn’t offer one. The complimentary maintenance plan, which is good for two years or 25,000 miles, covers multi-point inspections, tire rotations, oil changes, and topping off the fluids.

However, the biggest standout way that the 2023 Toyota Tacoma tops the 2023 Ford Maverick is its off-road capabilities. If you want a pickup truck that can head off-road, then the Tacoma is likely the better option for you.