Trucks & SUVs

The 2021 Toyota Tacoma Has the Same Old Issues

A lot of critics have been calling the 2021 Toyota Tacoma old. But maybe that’s not a bad thing. The Toyota Tacoma is still one of the most popular models you can find. Also, older used Toyota Tacoma models are going like hotcakes. So, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? Unless it’s time for some updates so it can stay on top. 

What’s new for the 2021 Toyota Tacoma? 

Not much! The 2021 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro received a new special color, which is Lunar Rock. This shade replaces last year’s shade of Army Green. Also, the new Trail Edition arrived that’s based on the SR5 trim. It includes extra equipment for those who got outdoors to camp or fish. 

2021 Toyota Tacoma climbing rocks in remote and mountainous terrain.
2021 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota USA

According to Auto Blog, there is a new special model called the NightShade edition. This is a luxurious variant with a fully blacked-out exterior trim that includes extra interior goodies. That covers the updates. Now we can dive into what makes this Taco truck feel old. 

1. The Toyota Tacoma needs an interior refresh 

We can’t believe that Auto Blog said the large buttons on the steering wheel of the Toyota Tacoma felt like an off-brand video game controller. As one of the longest-lasting trucks you can buy, it’s supposed to be on-brand. 

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The interior is described as chunky, blocky, and simple, which can be what truck drivers prefer. Some people are sick of all the new tech vehicles have to offer. But the materials are a little dull. Edmunds noted that the power seat and steering wheel have limiting adjustments. 

Toyota introduced a new infotainment screen in 2020, but it still could use updated graphics. Thank goodness Toyota finally added Apple CarPlay and Android Auto last year too. The system provides a meh feeling, but it’s functional. 

2. The Tacoma has a bumpy ride 

This complaint is a little subjective. The 2021 Toyota Tacoma has a bumpy ride because it’s built for off-roading. It excels at rock crawling, fording through streams, and more. It can go anywhere! 

2021 Toyota Tacoma parked on the trails
2021 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

But this can be a drawback for daily drivers as the truck bounces and jostles over bumps. Wind and road noise is also noticeable in the cabin. It’s still a comfortable truck to drive with smooth handling, despite grabby brakes. 

Edmunds noted that the 3.5-liter V6 engine with 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque could have a little more pep, but the transmission shifts smoothly to deliver the most power possible. For off-roading, the throttle and brakes are extremely precise and controllable. 

3. The Toyota Tacoma is small 

This isn’t a surprise, but the 2021 Toyota Tacoma lacks space. Auto Blog noted that the Access Cab model doesn’t have enough room in the backseat for adults to sit comfortably.

The Double Cab adds 8-inches of legroom, but space is still limited compared to the Ford Ranger, Jeep Gladiator, and more. But if you want a smaller truck, that could be a bonus. 

Edmunds shared that interior storage for small items is adequate. Folding the rear seats into their cargo-carrying position can be a struggle, though. Installing child safety seats may take up some front passenger room. 

But if you can get past the dated look, limited tech, and tight quarters, the Toyota Tacoma is still a Tacoma. It has a great reliability rating. It’s easy to use, it can go anywhere, and more. Heck, the V6 engine can even be paired with a manual transmission.