Earlier this month El Niño rains drenched the typically sunny Arizona desert; strong storms and uncharacteristic rainfall punctuated my week with the 2016 Toyota Tacoma (and helped form a few epic puddles for weekend off-roading..)
My task: test out the redesigned 2016 Tacoma Limited and share my thoughts.
This redesign was an overdue overhaul of the compact pickup favorite and Toyota sweetheart. Coming from truck country in Montana, Tacoma has also long been a personal favorite of mine. I suspected I would enjoy my week with the keys, but after turning them back to the kind folks at Toyota I had fallen in love for reasons I didn’t expect..
The thing I love most about this truck is its simple live-ability.
More than just live-able, it’s modern, filled with tech features, and a real joy to drive. Here are four marvelous features that contribute to the comfort and luxury of the ‘16 redesign:
1) Blind Spot Monitoring
This feature in the Tacoma is awesome, and completely crucial to my week with the keys. The truck drives so beautifully you may forget how friggin’ big you are on the road, especially if you’re used to occupying less space in a car or small SUV. Blind spot monitoring works with you to gracefully light up when someone appears in your blind spot and was truly an absolute necessity for me on the freeway. There are quite a few tech features, like blind spot monitoring and parking sensors, Toyota has incorporated into other models that help Tacoma become a STANDOUT, and move it from a utility truck to an actual enjoyable every day driver.
2) Interior Finish
Taking a break from tech, one thing that has remained with me after driving the 2016 Tacoma Limited is that it’s simply nice to be in. I imagine that Toyota poured hours into the interior finish details, stitched leather on the dash and tastefully metallic touches, and IT’S STELLAR! The details and class incorporated into the interior of this truck make everything else, including the car I got back into after a week with the Tacoma, incredibly, tragically dull. The utility of Toyota’s Tacoma is proven. It has outstanding resale value, some of the fiercest reliability in the automotive realm, and incredible owner loyalty. Combining this rugged durability and strong reputation with the luxurious finishes of the ‘16 Tacoma Limited, it becomes obvious that Toyota has hit this redesign out of the park.
3) Dual Climate Control
This one small feature may be more overdue than the redesign itself. I spent years selling Toyotas and deflecting the car-lot question of:
“Does this truck come with dual climate control?”
Salespeople rejoice, the answer is finally yes.
Which alludes to a bigger solution–many couples have, for years, wanted the creature comforts that make long road trips and frequent driving a delight. It’s as if Toyota engineers heard these requests and have now delivered in this, and so many other feature realms. The Limited trim gives Tacoma buyers features and equipment previously unavailable in this truck: a sunroof, heated leather seats, Entune, JBL audio, navigation, dual-zone climate controls, a push button start; it all adds up to a really incredible and live-able vehicle.
Does it even need to be said? I’m not your classic sucker for sunroofs but I believe you’ll agree it’s glorious that Toyota finally wriggled some daylight into the roof of the Tacoma.
Lastly, a non-honorable feature mention: wireless charging.
It can’t be all sunshine and rainbows. While I love so many of the features in the Tacoma, I was really disappointed by the wireless charging feature which apparently requires an extra component to be compatible with my iPhone. It made me angry every time I glanced in that direction.. Although it’s only fair to acknowledge this could be more related to Apple’s tech than Toyota’s, I’m bummed.
STAY TUNED for more glorious Tacoma Limited photos by the talented Alex Reynes and additional reviews and videos of the 2016 Tacoma, beyond just the features of this trim.