Trucks & SUVs

Consumer Reports Recommends Avoiding the 2020 Toyota Tacoma

Say what? Consumer Reports recommends avoiding the 2020 Toyota Tacoma? But that’s the most popular midsize selling truck! How can this be? Well, they actually lay out the facts as to why you might be better off with buying another truck instead of the Toyota Tacoma. 

Why Consumer Reports suggests avoiding the 2020 Toyota Tacoma 

According to Consumer Reports, the 2020 Toyota Tacoma is the most popular midsize truck, but it’s also an option that should be avoided. They even presented two options that would make better choices. 

Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro off-roading in dirt
Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro | Toyota

One of the reasons CR recommends avoiding the 2020 Toyota Tacoma is due to its low-reliability rating. It scored a 3 out of 5 for predicted reliability and a 3 out of 5 for predicted owner satisfaction. 

These ratings are based on user feedback and testing from previous models. For example, the 2018 Toyota Tacoma has reports of transmission problems. Based on owner satisfaction, the Toyota Tacoma didn’t score very well in comfort, value, and driving experience. 

Two 2020 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road trucks parked in a field
2020 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road | Toyota

When tested by Consumer Reports, they noted that the 2020 Toyota Tacoma is great for off-roading, has a good fuel economy, and it holds its resale value well. However, they also mentioned that the cabin is noisy, and the acceleration is lacking. 

Consumer Reports recommends buying the 2020 Ford Ranger instead 

Consumer Reports found that the Ford Ranger has a higher reliability rating of 4 out of 5, predicted owner satisfaction is rated at a 4 out of 5. The 2020 Ford Ranger ranked higher in areas of comfort, value, and driving experience than the Toyota Tacoma, showing that owners are happier with this choice. 

Red 2020 Ford Ranger with Ford Performance Level 2 Package in the desert in front of a mountain range
2020 Ford Ranger with Ford Performance Level 2 Package | Ford

RELATED: 3 Big Reasons the Ford Ranger Is Better Than the Toyota Tacoma

The 2020 Ford Ranger ranks as the second-place option in the CR list of best compact trucks while the Toyota Tacoma is ranked third. It also has a faster acceleration with the ability to reach 60 mph in 7.2 seconds compared to 8.2 seconds with the Toyota Tacoma. 

CR recommends the 2020 Ford Ranger because it’s relatively fuel-efficient and has an easy to maneuver size. They also enjoyed the easy to use Sync 3 infotainment system. But they recommend passing on the Ford Ranger because it has a stiff ride, the controls aside from the infotainment center are complicated, and the high step-in to get inside. 

Consumer Reports recommends getting the 2020 Honda Ridgeline instead 

Wow, Consumer Reports also suggests getting the Honda Ridgeline over the Toyota Tacoma. But it only has a 3 out of 5 predicted reliability rating. It looks like the 2017 Honda Ridgeline has issues reported about the electrical system. 

2019 Honda Ridgeline driving down road
2019 Honda Ridgeline | Honda

However, the Honda Ridgeline has a 4 out of 5 for the predicted user satisfaction rating and comes first on the CR report of the best compact pickup trucks. It can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds, making it faster than the Tacoma. 

But the Honda Ridgeline has a slightly unfair advantage. It’s not an off-roader like the Toyota Tacoma. It has a unibody frame and only offers all-wheel-drive. This creates a more comfortable and quiet ride but takes out some of the truck functionality. 

Consumer Reports praised the Honda Ridgeline for having a comfortable and quiet ride, truck bed storage, a good fuel economy, and a multi-functional tailgate. But they recommend avoiding it for the complex radio, low towing capacity, shallow truck bed, and tight rear cabin access.