Trucks & SUVs

Taco Tuesday: This 2021 Toyota Tacoma Safety Feature Mysteriously Costs Extra

The 2021 Toyota Tacoma is the most popular compact pickup truck. In fact, they aren’t always easy to find, and used models don’t save much money unless you go several models years back. But, interestingly enough, the 2021 Toyota Tacoma doesn’t offer this safety feature unless you pay extra for it. This week for Taco Tuesday, we’ll look a little deeper into an option that doesn’t come standard on any trim.

2021 Toyota Tacoma trd pro in the snow
2021 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro | Toyota

I remember that when I had the 2021 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro for review I couldn’t lock the tailgate using the handheld remote keylock. This struck me as quite odd but I kind of overlooked it. Then, I recently saw on Toyota’s website that in order to have a power locking tailgate buyers have to pay an extra $289.

Does the Toyota Tacoma have a power tailgate lock?

Not one model of the 2021 Toyota Tacoma offers a standard power locking tailgate. Not even the two highest trim levels offer is as a standard feature. Yeah, that right. Even if you buy a Limited or TRD Pro model you have to pay $289 for a power locking tailgate. These models start at $38,905 and $44,075 respectively.

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Using your remote device to lock and unlock your tailgate has many advantages. Primarily, it’s a security device. Not only does a power locking liftgate behind your truck help keep items in the bed more secure, but it also keeps the tailgate itself from being subject to theft.

Most of the time you see a truck driving down the road with a tailgate that’s a mismatched color, there’s a good chance it’s because the original was stolen. So why doesn’t the 2021 Toyota Tacoma offer this as a standard feature? It certainly seems strange that this basic safety feature costs extra. At the very least, this only-optional feature gives us some good food for thought on Taco Tuesday.

Do any compact pickup trucks have a standard remote locking liftgate?

Play around with the configurator for the 2021 Chevrolet Colorado. You’ll quickly see that a remote locking liftgate is standard on every trim except for the entry-level WT Colorado. In addition, the 2021 Ford Ranger offers a power locking tailgate standard on every trim above its entry-level XT Ranger. In this piece by fellow MotorBiscuit contributor Desiree Homer, we see that the Jeep Gladiator also offers this as standard equipment on trims just above the base Sport trim.

A silver 2021 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 kicks up some dust on a dirt road
2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 | Chevrolet

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So, while the 2021 Toyota Tacoma offers awesome off-road packages and various trim levels, a power locking tailgate isn’t standard equipment on any new Taco. For $289, you can add it to your Taco build on Toyota’s configurator. It would be nice if it was included in any of the packages. But unfortunately, it’s a separate add-on for every trim.

The 2021 Toyota Tacoma compact pickup truck

While the fact that the Toyota Tacoma doesn’t offer a locking tailgate standard on any of its models is a little weird, this is still a good truck. And at least it’s offered––although paying an extra $289 for this safety feature isn’t exactly the greatest. Critics aren’t totally sold as far as its cabin materials and ride quality. However, for what this compact pickup is meant to be it’s nearly perfect.

2021 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro in the snow
2021 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

It’s one of the most durable and capable little trucks around. Plus, the units have a distinctive style that draws in consumers. The 2021 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro has an awesome new color, too, called Lunar Rock. Check back next week for another Taco Tuesday with MotorBiscuit!