Let us start with the good things, initially. For example, Toyota sees the all-new 2024 Tacoma as the "ultimate adventure machine" because of a few key aspects. First, there are now two flagship grades instead of one. The known TRD Pro packs a "segment-first" IsoDynamic Performance Seat that will be great on and off the beaten path, allowing "enhanced off-road driving control and comfort." Secondly, the newly introduced Trailhunter rocks an overlanding attitude from the factory and a bunch of neatly integrated third-party off-road equipment and accessories from experts like ARB or Rigid.
Of course, the Japanese carmaker knows very well that Tacoma is also a workhorse, not just an adventurer. As such, it offers eight (!) grades: SR, SR5, TRD PreRunner, TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, Limited, TRD Pro, and Trailhunter. Additionally, it appears the four-seat Access Cab will get replaced with a new two-door XtraCab body style featuring "clever storage features, a functional rear cabin storage area, and a 6-foot bed" on the SR, SR5, and TRD PreRunner trims. No worries, the functionality remains top-notch, as the four-door Double Cab now has the option of either a 5- or 6-foot (152.4 or 182.88 cm) bed size.
The powertrain options, meanwhile, are limited to a couple of 2.4-liter turbo inline-four-cylinder mills with a standard output of 278 hp and 317 lb-ft (430 Nm) of torque or an optional i-Force Max hybrid with 326 hp and 465 lb-ft (630 Nm). The latter presents the first moment of caution, as Toyota seems willing to undermine the 2024 Tacoma with an electrified mill that is akin to the Sequoia and Tundra nameplates but far off from their 3.4-liter twin-turbo V6 capabilities of 437 ponies. Additionally, even the 2024 Grand Highlander's Hybrid Max option is more powerful at 362 hp, despite both sharing the same T24A-FTS engine code!
Well, at least the 2024 Tacoma is well appointed with a standard Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 suite, electronic parking brake, up to 2400W AC inverter outlets, 8- or 14-inch touchscreen displays for Toyota's new Audio Multimedia system plus 7- or 12.3-inch digital gauge clusters for the driver, depending on the grades. There is also a Smart Key System, an optional Digital Key or Smart Card key, a premium ten-speaker JBL with subwoofer, and a JBL Flex portable speaker that can even "be submerged in up to three feet (91 cm) of water."
Naturally, given the multitude of trims, selecting the proper rivals from the bunch may take a lot of work. As such, we went to the top of the pyramid, the 2024 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro i-Force Max, and quickly found some company – the 2024 Ford Ranger Raptor, 2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2, GMC Canyon AT4X, and Nissan Frontier Pro-4X. First of all, since Toyota hasn't revealed the potential damage to the bank account when choosing their 2024 Tacoma, we will refrain from judging the MSRPs of the others, too. On the other hand, other facts and figures are up for grabs. So, we start with the powertrains, of course.
The 2024 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro i-Force Max has the only hybrid of the bunch, a 2.4-liter turbo inline-four. The rivals oppose the 310-hp Chevy Colorado ZR2 also with a 2.4-liter turbo four-pot, the 2024 Ford Ranger Raptor with significantly more power (405 hp) from a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6, the GMC Canyon AT4X with the same characteristics as its GM sibling, and the 310-hp Nissan Frontier Pro-4X rocking a classic 3.8-liter V6. Interestingly, Tacoma still comes out on top because of its 465-lb-ft (630 Nm) rating for torque, whereas the Colorado, Ranger, and Canyon all have 430 lb-ft (583 Nm). The last one is Nissan's Frontier, with just 281 lb-ft or 381 Nm.
Moving on to capabilities, the 2024 Toyota Tacoma has a mixed foundation. The max towing capacity stands at 6,500 lbs. (2,948 kg), which is marginally higher only compared to the Nissan Frontier (6,270 lbs. or 2,844 kg) – and bear in mind that it applies to the SR5 i-Force and TRD PreRunner XtraCab grades. Meanwhile, the new Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon brothers have the lead with 7,700 pounds or 3,493 kg! As for the maximum payload capacity, Toyota says it has surged to 1,709 lbs. (775 kg) on the TRD Off-Road version. And that is enough to soundly beat the competition save for the outgoing 2023 Ford Ranger that sports a higher 1,860-pound (844 kg) rating.
So, which one is your new favorite, the long-named 326-hp 2024 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro i-Force Max, the fresh yet traditional Nissan Frontier Pro-4X with a high-displacement V6, the passionate Chevy Colorado ZR2 and GMC Canyon AT4X twins, or the new 2024 Ford Ranger Raptor EcoBoost V6 kid on the block with its best rating of 405 horsepower?