Small Truck, Big Adventure In 2015 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road Access Cab

A Girls Guide To Cars | Small Truck, Big Adventure In 2015 Toyota Tacoma Trd Off-Road Access Cab - 2015 Toyota Tacoma

Designed for adventure, the 2015 Toyota Tacoma.

When I was a kid, my dad had a really old small Toyota truck. This was way back before these were called Tacomas. Way before then. It had been repaired so many times it was about 4 different colors. But he used it every weekend to haul firewood which he cut and sold.

Today this small, strong and durable truck is known as a Toyota Tacoma.

2015 Toyota Tacoma

The small but mighty 2015 Toyota Tacoma. Credit: Erica Mueller for AGirlsGuidetoCars

Not feeling the love – at first

I’m going to be blunt for a moment. Even though I knew the Tacoma had a great reputation and I’d just seen the unveiling of the 2016 TRD Pro at the Dallas Auto Show, I wasn’t excited about this review. I needed it for a well-rounded series on trucks, but I didn’t expect to like it much. After all, it was just way too small for our family (the access cab means it is extended cab, with a second row of seats, but it’s not quite a full sized four-door) and I was sure my 6′ 2″ husband wouldn’t fit comfortably in it.

I was wrong. We used this little truck every day! My husband drove it every chance he got. He took the boys, and my brothers, camping. He used it to haul large amounts of gravel for our greenhouse floor. I ran errands and went shopping in it… when I could get it away from my husband. My sisters and I even took it off-roading a little, down at the lake.

Turns out, there are many reasons people love the 2015 Toyota Tacoma.

What We Loved

  • 4-wheel drive
  • Roomy front seats
  • Strong and durable
  • Great suspension for off-roading
  • Front and rear mudguards
  • Fold-up rear seats with center/under-seat storage

What You Need to Know

  • 236 Horsepower
  • 5-speed automatic
  • 115V/400W deck-mounted AC outlet
  • 16/21 mpg
  • Takes regular gas
  • Base price: $20,965; model we tested: $34,840

Engineered for adventure

The Toyota Tacoma was built with the outdoorsman (or woman!) in mind. It can climb hills, navigate mud, and haul gear. The 4×4 option paired with the TRD Off-Road package complements the already durable base to give you a truck that’s ready to leave the highway and get a little dirty. Think of it as a big step up from your 4-wheeler… all the fun, plus climate control and protection from the elements!

Do you like to canoe or kayak? How about camp? My guys took this truck camping at the lake and it fit all their gear, food, and firewood in the back. With the built-in D-ring tie downs and the Deck Rail System, it’s easy to tie everything down so you don’t lose your gear on the way to the campsite. The 115V/400W deck-mounted AC power outlet allows you to plug in lights, an electric cooler, or a radio. Hey, you could even use a hot-plate to cook supper.

In addition to its agility and stability for off-roading, the Tacoma we drove came with a nice tow package. I didn’t have anything to pull this time around, but I can tell you, it can handle heavy loads. My husband proved this when he moved two loads of gravel!

Practical comfort

Keep in mind, the TRD Off-Road edition (offering more stablity/shock/towing options than a standard Tacoma) is designed for adventure, not luxury. This means the interior is comfortable, but very basic. Everything you need is there, and the extra gadgets you don’t need? Well, you can get those with the TRD Pro edition. The truck I drove lacked nothing essential. I’m a simple girl and I actually prefer straightforward instrument panels, climate controls, and entertainment/navigation systems. If I don’t have to refer to the owner’s manual in the week I drive a car, I consider it a win. The Tacoma passed the test.

Built to last

The Toyota Tacoma has one of the best resale value retentions of any vehicle on the market. I know people who’ve put in well over 300,000 miles on their Tacomas and said they still love their trucks. Tacoma owners tend to be loyal to the brand and model, replacing their old models with a newer Tacoma. I think this says a lot about the durability of the Tacoma.

Would we buy it?

If we didn’t have kids? Probably so. But, our boys are growing fast and the Tacoma just wouldn’t fit all of us for very long.

Ready to xxplore?

If you had the Toyota Tacoma for a week, where would you take it?


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A web developer, digital marketing consultant, auto journalist, truck expert, photographer and lover of gadgets, Erica is a textbook... More about Erica Mueller