Consumer Reports Gives the 2021 Jeep Gladiator the Edge Over the Toyota Tacoma

I know what you’re thinking. The 2021 Jeep Gladiator outranked the 2021 Toyota Tacoma? How could that be?! With its rock-solid reputation and iconic status, the Tacoma has been a favorite among its segment for a long time. But this year? That rock-solid reputation is being challenged by the likes of the 2021 Jeep Gladiator.

A red 2021 Jeep Gladiator sits atop of rocks.
New 2021 Jeep Gladiator EcoDiesel | FCA

The 2021 Jeep Gladiator scored better reliability ratings from Consumer Reports

You want your next pickup to be reliable. At least that’s my guess. I mean, who wants to buy a new pickup that isn’t reliable? You’re going to be paying a pretty penny for it, so why not choose the most reliable pickup that’s out there?

That being said, according to Consumer Reports, the 2021 Jeep Gladiator scored much better predicted reliability ratings than the 2021 Toyota Tacoma. While the Tacoma earned itself a three out of five predicted reliability rating from Consumer Reports, the Jeep Gladiator earned itself a five out of five predicted reliability rating.

Consumer Reports predicts that owners won’t be happy with the Toyota Tacoma

The 2021 Toyota Tacoma didn’t just score some pretty low predicted reliability ratings from Consumer Reports. It also earned itself a three out of five predicted owner satisfaction rating. Unfortunately, though, that shouldn’t be much of a surprise. According to Consumer Reports’ data, owner satisfaction has been a struggle for the Toyota Tacoma for quite some time. 

While the Toyota Tacoma received pretty subpar predicted owner satisfaction ratings from Consumer Reports, the Jeep Gladiator was able to fare much better. According to Consumer Reports, this year’s model scored a five out of five predicted owner satisfaction rating. Consumer Reports says that 83% of the current Gladiator owners that it surveyed would be up for buying the Jeep Gladiator again too. 

The 2021 Jeep Gladiator is a better ride than the Toyota Tacoma

The Jeep Gladiator didn’t just outrank the Toyota Tacoma when it comes to predicted reliability ratings and owner satisfaction ratings. According to Consumer Reports, the Gladiator also has the edge when it comes to road tests. Unlike the Tacoma, this year’s Gladiator rides on a rear suspension that’s been derived from the Ram 1500. According to Consumer Reports, that rear suspension makes the Jeep Gladiator a much better ride than that of the Toyota Tacoma. 

As for how the Toyota Tacoma did during road tests? Consumer Reports says it “drives like a primitive, agricultural-era relic.” Its handling is “ponderous,” and its steering is “numb.” That’s not all either. According to Consumer Reports, you can expect the 2021 Toyota Tacoma’s jiggling chassis to deliver “a Metallica snare-drum beat to your spine.” Having listened to Metallica once or twice, that’s definitely not a glowing recommendation for the Tacoma.


3 Reasons to Avoid the 2021 Toyota Tacoma

Does this mean that you should choose the 2021 Jeep Gladiator over the Toyota Tacoma?

Not necessarily. While the 2021 Jeep Gladiator did outrank the Toyota Tacoma, it still makes for a decent pick among its segment. So, if you’re having trouble deciding between these two pickups, we suggest taking each of them out for a spin.