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If you’re wondering how much you’ll have to pay to insure your Toyota Tacoma, the answer will depend on you. When companies determine your car insurance rates, they look not just at the insurance risk of the vehicle you’re driving, but also at the insurance risk of the driver. Your insurance risk is determined by demographic factors like your age and gender, as well as personal factors like your driving history and credit score.
Even if your insurance company gives you high rates because you’re considered a high insurance risk, you can lower your rates by taking advantage of discounts for having multiple policies with the same company. By purchasing all of your auto and homeowner’s or renter’s policies from one insurer, you can rack up substantial savings. You can get car insurance rate quotes from several companies by entering your zip code in the box on this web page, but first, read this article to learn how the Toyota Tacoma compares to the competition.
Toyota Tacoma History
Toyota first introduced the Tacoma in 1995 to replace the more rugged Hilux. Toyota recognized that the American pickup truck market was moving away from bare-bones trucks designed for agricultural and off-road use, and that the American consumer was increasingly using the pickup truck for everyday commuting. The first generation Toyota Tacoma reflected this observation by incorporating improved interior comfort and ride quality.
The second generation Toyota Tacoma hit the market in 2005, and it took home Motor Trend’s “Truck of the Year” award for that model year. It maintained its previous emphasis on ride quality and comfort, but it also expanded the number of available configurations to 18. Buyers could now choose from two different bed lengths, three different cabs, two engines and four transmission types.
The Toyota Tacoma has consistently gained popularity since its introduction, and it has averaged sales of around 150,000 units per model year. Reflecting the Japanese automakers’ growing clout in the American pickup truck market, U.S. News and World Report ranked the 2011 Toyota Tacoma first in the compact pickup truck class. It beat out seven other entrants, including the Dodge Dakota (#3), the Chevrolet Colorado (#5) and the Ford Ranger (#7).
Toyota Tacoma Performance
Automotive critics like Edmunds say that the Tacoma’s base 2.7 liter 4-cylinder engine is fine for drivers who don’t plan to haul a lot of heavy payloads. It can tow up to 3,500 pounds and carry a payload of up to 1,350 pounds. Consumer Guide also notes that the automatic transmission offers very smooth shifting. Starting at $16,365, this is also the most affordable compact truck rated by U.S. News.
Drivers who need more power will find it with the Toyota Tacoma’s 4.0 liter V6 engine option. Although you’ll sacrifice some gas mileage with this engine, this sacrifice gets you much greater utility. If you select the Toyota Tacoma Double Cab PreRunner with a V6 engine and a 5-speed automatic transmission, you’ll get a maximum towing capacity of 6,400 pounds and a payload capacity of 1,430 pounds.
Compact pickup trucks are not known for their smooth rides, and the Toyota Tacoma is no exception. U.S. News says that if you’re not used to driving a truck, you’ll definitely notice the stiffer suspension. Reviewers generally find that Tacomas fitted with off-road suspensions are much less comfortable, but Car and Driver notes that the Tacoma’s ride is “surprisingly smooth” for a truck.
When it comes to fuel efficiency, the Toyota Tacoma is very competitive in its class, especially in the city. It gets 21 mpg in city driving, which is trumped only by the Ford Ranger’s 22 city mpg. The Ranger is also the only affordable compact pickup truck that can compete with the Toyota Tacoma in highway fuel efficiency, getting 27 mpg to the Tacoma’s 25 mpg. Most other trucks in this class get about 23 highway mpg and 19 mpg in the city.
Toyota Tacoma Interior
Although compact pickup trucks are not known for blazing paths in cabin design, reviewers say that the Toyota Tacoma’s interior is adequate for commuting. Edmunds says the cabin is “well built,” and PickupTrucks.com praises the vehicle’s “effective layout.” Although the backseats in some Toyota Tacoma models are cramped, the bed offers best-in-class capacity, and reviewers say that cabin cargo capacity is average. Although the base model Toyota Tacoma is fairly stripped-down, available options include the following:
- Cruise control
- Adjustable driver’s seat
- Keyless entry
- Leather steering wheel and shifter
- Six-disc CD changer with MP3 connectivity
- XM Satellite Radio
Toyota Tacoma Safety
Safety features for the Toyota Tacoma include an optional backup camera and daytime running lights. Vehicle stability control, antilock brakes, traction control and brake assist are standard in all Toyota Tacomas, as are electronic brakeforce distribution and side curtain airbags. The Toyota Tacoma also features Smart Stop Technology, which reduces power to the engine when the brake and accelerator pedals are pressed simultaneously.
The 2010 Toyota Tacoma aced front and side impact crash tests administered by both the federal government and the insurance industry. The government gave it four out of five stars for rollovers, but the insurance industry rated its roof strength “Marginal,” which means it has a limited ability to protect occupants in a rollover.
Toyota Tacoma Car Insurance Quotes
Car insurance for the Toyota Tacoma costs the typical driver $7,277 for five years, according to Edmunds. This works out to $1,455 per year and $121 per month. Due to your personal characteristics, though, you could end up paying much higher or lower rates to insure your Toyota Tacoma. The best way to get individualized car insurance rates is to enter your zip code into the box.