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Sometimes, the best way to really gauge the popularity of a pickup is to review the sales data and metrics. So, when you see all the rage about the Toyota Tacoma and the Honda Ridgeline, it’s the sales data that you simply must see. While critics point to pros and cons, the proof is in the monthly and yearly sales numbers. And the Toyota Tacoma dominates the Honda Ridgeline when it comes to data. If you’re considering a midsize pickup, it may help to know that far more Tacoma trucks go home with new owners than Ridgeline models do.

How the Toyota Tacoma performs in sales

To really see how popular the Toyota Tacoma is and has been over the years, look at the GoodCarBadCar data. The Tacoma’s sales figures continue to increase year after year. In 2015, more than 179,000 of these trucks went home with new owners. One year later, that total was over 191,000 sold. And by 2018, 245,659 Tacoma pickups sold. 

The trajectory appears to continue to point upward. And despite the pandemic conditions of last year, shuttering dealerships, and stalling production, Toyota still managed to sell 238,805 Tacoma pickups. Based on current sales through April this year, the Tacoma already clocked 90,897 sales.

What about the sales figures for the Honda Ridgeline?

White 2020 Toyota Tacoma Trail Special Edition is on display at the 112th Annual Chicago Auto Show
The 2020 Toyota Tacoma | Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

To make the comparison as apples-to-apples as possible, GoodCarBadCar shares the same metrics of monthly and annual sales for the Honda Ridgeline. And the sales data shows only 23,668 Ridgeline models sold in 2016, with jumps to roughly 34,000 in 2017 and 30,000 in 2018.

However, based on metrics through April of this year, the Honda Ridgeline does already have 17,177 sales on the books, which is strong for the Honda pickup. Based on past performance, consumers can expect much of the same trajectory for the remainder of 2021.

What’s so great about these two pickups

Both of these pickups have strengths and weaknesses. But for many consumers, the Toyota Tacoma earns serious points for its rugged capability. Its V6 engine can be married to a six-speed, manual transmission, a feature Edmunds says is pretty significant. And new for 2021, Toyota introduces the Trail and Nightshade special editions, while the TRD Sport and Off-Road trims get audio upgrades.

The Honda Ridgeline, on the other hand, feels massive for this smaller truck class. It offers quick driving dynamics and segment-leading innovative amenities, according to Car and Driver. It’s not a typical midsize truck, and consumers love it for those differentiating features.

Is the Honda Ridgeline or the Toyota Tacoma better for you?

When you’re ready to buy a midsize pickup, keep both of these contenders in mind. The Toyota Tacoma clearly does well in sales for a reason. It’s popular for the working truck owner and off-road adventurer.

Alternatively, the Honda Ridgeline is the refined answer to the pickup capability. It’s a practical addition to the vehicle family if hauling people and comfort touchpoints matter. The 2021 Toyota Tacoma is cheaper, with an MSRP range of $26,400 to $36,595. The 2021 Honda Ridgeline runs upwards of $37,665, demonstrating that you’ll pay for those plushier extras.

Decide what you need your new truck to do most and let that guide your purchasing decision. And you can consider the sales metrics since they point to just how many consumers already have made their decisions. The Toyota Tacoma dominates the Honda Ridgeline in units sold. But only you can decide which of these two popular trucks deserves a parking spot in your garage. 


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