Used Toyota Tacoma: Which Model Years Should You Avoid?

Searching for a used Toyota Tacoma should be easy, right? It might not be quite as simple as you think it should be. While this truck has historically been one of the most reliable and dependable trucks in the market, there are some model years to avoid. If you’re looking for the right Toyota Tacoma for sale, you need to know which versions to leave at the dealership lot.

Which model years of used Toyota Tacoma trucks are unreliable?

White Used 2006 Toyota Tacoma SR5 TRD Sport
2006 Toyota Tacoma SR5 TRD Sport | Wiki Commons

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Consumer Reports, and other experts, tell us the model years of the Tacoma to avoid are:

  • 2006-2009
  • 2011-2012
  • 2016-2017

This isn’t a large group of these trucks, but when you’re searching for the right Toyota Tacoma for sale, you want to know which models won’t give you the reliability and dependability you deserve.

Why avoid the 2006-2009 model years of this midsize Toyota truck?

Blue 2009 Toyota Tacoma parked on a street
2009 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

The 2006-2008 models all have issues with paint chipping and peeling. This might not be too big a deal to you, but they also have problems with transmission and engine failures.

The 2006 model year can be especially problematic. These Toyota Tacoma models have a frame that tends to rust or break at the 100,000-mile mark, which could cost more than $3,500 to repair.

The 2007 model year doesn’t fare much better than the 2006 version. Tacoma trucks from 2007 tend to have sticky accelerators, which can cause severe problems for drivers.

this Toyota truck’s 2008-2009 models have had early problems including sudden unanticipated acceleration and a slipping clutch.

What are the problems with used Tacoma trucks from 2011-2012?

Red 2012 Toyota Tacoma in the woods
2012 Toyota Tacoma | Getty Images

The 2011 version of the Tacoma suffered from headlight issues, including flickering and cracked covers. Many owners of the 2011 model also reported a repetitive clicking sound coming from the truck.

The 2012 versions come with several engine defects and heavy vibrations occurring while driving.

For both of these model years, the problems appear around 30,000 miles. You might be out of the woods when looking at a used Toyota for sale with more than 30,000 miles from these two model years, but you might not want to take that chance.

 Safety problems appear in the 2016-2017 models of Toyota Tacoma trucks

Red used 2016 Toyota Tacoma climbing on rocks
2016 Toyota Tacoma | Toyota

Worse than the previous issues reported, the 2016 and 2017 models year gave us some serious safety problems. Both of these model years have reported dozens of transmission flaws, and the 2016 version has a faulty engine.

Which used Tacoma models are the worst of the worst?

Steer clear of all of the model years mentioned, but especially avoid used Toyota Tacoma trucks for sale from 2007, 2016, and 2017. These trucks are generally unsafe and full of headaches that can give you trouble in the future

On the flip side: what are the best used Tacoma model years to buy?

Red used 2004 Toyota Tacoma pickup truck
2004 Tacoma | Toyota

Even though it takes you back more than 20 years to find the Tacoma versions with the fewest problems, the most reliable versions of this Toyota truck are found in the 1995-2004 model years. These trucks are highly reliable and have very few reported complaints.

Next, learn about the best-selling trucks during the first half of 2022, or watch the video about the worst Tacoma model years below:

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