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If you want to save a little money on getting a Toyota Tacoma, buying a used one is a great idea. Toyota trucks are known for holding their value and being reliable. However, not every Tacoma year has been a good one. There are some used Toyota Tacoma models that should be considered more carefully than others. 

Updated on 06/23/2023 for freshness.

The worst used Toyota Tacoma years 

The 202 Toyota Tacoma parke din the desert
2020 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

Overall, a used Toyota Tacoma is an excellent truck to consider. These trucks are durable and reliable. The 2023 model has an above-average reliability ranking and should make it between 300,000 to 400,000 miles on the road.

However, while the Tacoma is one of the longest-lasting trucks you can buy, not every model is perfect. Some model years from previous generations don’t hold up as well. Check out which used Tacoma options need to be taken with a grain of salt.

The 2016 Toyota Tacoma 

The 2016 model year Toyota Tacoma might as well be called a lemon instead of a truck because drivers found a lot of frustrating issues to deal with.

This model year was known for having annoying transmission problems. The transmission feels slow to switch gears and even slips after the truck has been taking in the reflash of the ECM. 

Some drivers ran into erratic shifting issues too. Their truck would fail under a hard throttle from a complete stop. The RPMs would skyrocket then fall back down to around 800 before their truck would accelerate. 

The 2016 Tacoma also has several engine issues. The engine sits on cheap rubber mounts that don’t absorb impact. 

Therefore many drivers struggled with a loud engine that vibrates through the floor of the cab. It also causes the steering wheel to shake. 

The 2017 Toyota Tacoma 

In 2017 the Toyota Tacoma was listed as the ‘Worst Buy.’ This was partly due to the fact of its low-reliability score.

The 2017 model year only received three out of five stars in reviews after the 2015 model, and earlier model years had five-star ratings for customer satisfaction and reliability ratings. 

This was due to more transmission issues. The truck seemed to annoy drivers by not shifting correctly or by getting stuck in one gear too long. 

The issues for these drivers continued after they took their Tacoma’s back to the dealership for software updates that were promised to fix the problems. 

Because of these transmission problems, some people couldn’t get their truck to accelerate until they floored it, causing the truck to burn extra gas. 

On top of these issues, the transmission was loud and clunky. It will heave when slowing down, too, causing jerky movements to stay on top of. 

The 2009 Toyota Tacoma 

Even though you can probably score a pretty good deal on a used Toyota Tacoma from 2009, you shouldn’t. This model year has tons of issues. 

In the 2009 Toyota Tacoma, there are several interior issues. For example, the radio seems to have bad wiring. 

A majority of drivers have struggled with their radio randomly turning on or off. The volume would randomly go up and down, and the screen would turn on and off as well. 

The 2009 model had engine problems as well. The engine is noted as being very loud and clunky, with a rattling noise. Some drivers noticed a delay in cold weather and found it difficult for their Tacoma to start up. 

In some cases, drivers wouldn’t be able to get their truck to accelerate or would have to deal with it stalling or failing to accelerate beyond 55 mph.