Many People have always been fans of the Toyota Tacoma because of its rugged durability and capabilities. Toyota has introduced an all new Tacoma for the 2018 year to take on the rising competition from brands like Nissan and GMC.
Starting at just $25,400 for the base 2WD SR trim, the 2018 Tacoma Access Cab comes in 4 Trims and is available in 2WD and 4WD iteration in all of them. The Top end TRD Off-Road trim with the 3.5L V6 motor tops out at over $36,000 and gets a whole list of features.
6.1/10 Fuel Economy
Toyota Tacoma is a mid-size pick up which wants to garner the same reputation as the Tundra. It has the potential to take the Road less taken and come out of it without any difficulties and breakdowns. It does the job really well and fits the bill of those perfectly with its reputation and near bullet proof dependability.
It takes on the GMC Canyon, Nissan Frontier and the Chevrolet Colorado. We have left out the Colorado for this review as it is the same car as the GMC Canyon but in a different “dress”.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Features
The Toyota Tacoma Access Cab is offered in a total of 4 Trims, the SR, SR5, TRD (Toyota Racing Development) Sport and TRD Off-Road. Customers also have an option to upgrade from the standard 2.7L Motor to a more powerful 3.5L V6 that generates more power and torque.
TRD Off Road
Toyota Safety Sense
Adds/Upgrades these from SR
Adds/Upgrades these from SR5
Adds/Upgrades these from TRD Sport
Integrated Backup Camera
Keyless Entry with Engine Immobilizer
App Suite with Entune Audio System
Multi Terrain Select
Entune Audio System
4.2” TFT Multi Information Display
LED Daytime Running Lamps
Fabric Trimmed Seats
Navigation System with Audio
Smart Key with Push Button Start
Electronically Locking Rear Differential
The TRD Trims come with the 3.5L Engine as standard that delivers 378HP and 265lb-ft of Torque as compared to the 2.7L motor that belts out 159HP and 180lbs-ft of Torque.
We Recommend :
We would highly recommend the TRD Sport trim as it comes with a powerful 3.5L motor as standard and a host of Comfort Creatures that will keep you entertained during your journeys or after a long day of work.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Engine
“The 2018 Toyota Tacoma’s optional V-6 engine provides decent performance and towing muscle, but the base four-cylinder is weak-kneed and best avoided. We also advise steering clear of the persnickety six-speed automatic transmission with either powerplant; stick with the six-speed manual and the V-6.” – Car and Driver.com
Engine and Transmission
2018 Toyota Tacoma offers two engine choices to the buyer. The SR and SR5 models come with a 2.7 Liter Inline-4 engine. There is an option to upgrade to a V6 engine, which is highly recommended as the 159hp generating 4-cylinder engine feels too weak and inferior for a vehicle this size.
Toyota didn’t do anything new with Tacoma’s engines for 2018. The transmissions, however, saw some changes. The 5-speed manual transmission which was available for inline 4 engine is discontinued. The six-speed automatic transmission is standard on all trims. But for the old school guys who still prefer a manual gearbox, the TRD Sport and TRD Off-Road get a 6 speed manual as an option.
Nissan Frontier King Cab 2WD Automatic
Toyota Tacoma Access Cab 2WD Automatic
GMC Canyon Extended Cab 2WD Automatic
2.5-liter DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine
2.7L I4 DOHC
16-valve 4-cylinder engine
2.5L I4 DI DOHC engine
152hp @ 5,200 rpm
159hp @ 5200 rpm
200hp @ 6300 rpm
171lb-ft @ 4400 rpm
180lb-ft 3800 rpm
191lb-ft @ 4400 rpm
The Toyota Tacoma offers 2 engines. The standard 2.7L motor does a decent job as it provides good amount of Torque at a lower RPM than the other rivals here. The 3.5L on offer in the Tacoma however steps up the power and torque game by a considerable margin and is for people, who want some more Byte from there Truck.
The Toyota Tacoma Access Cab does offer good acceleration from Stand Still and beats the rest of the Competition in terms of Quarter Mile Speeds. The Nissan frontier is the best when it comes to 0-60MPH runs but the Toyota closely follows it, lagging behind by just 0.2 seconds.
16.5 sec @ 90 mph
14.7 sec @ 91 mph
17.1 sec @ 82.4 mph
Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year
In terms of Emissions, the Frugal and Potent Engine of the GMC Canyon outshines the rest of the competition but the Toyota, with its good performance doesn’t disappoint on the emission front as well.
The Tacoma has a decent set of Brakes that allows it to come down to a halt from 70mph pretty easily. From the perspective of the Driver however, the brake pedal feels a bit touchy and the byte from the brakes may be a bit ambivalent for most people. These aren’t however Unsettling while riding in the City doing City Speeds.
Brake pads Rear(in)
60-0 MPH (ft.)
The Low Weight of the Tacoma adds to its braking effectiveness and helps it, stop in the least distance as compared to the competition.
Ride and Handling
It’s pretty harsh to expect the Handling of a Car from a pick up truck. But with the increasing standards of ride quality and comfort, people often tend to higher their expectations. The Tacoma has been built to perform on harsh and tough terrains and hence, the handling feels in the same way. In terms of Pick Up truck standards, the Tacoma offers a pretty decent experience overall.
At slower speeds, the steering feels a little sloppy but firms up once you hit higher speeds. The 2018 Toyota Tacoma has made substantial progress in the brakes department as the new 2018 Toyota Tacoma’s brakes modulate easily.
Once you go off-road, the Tacoma easily tackles slow technical sections, sometimes even without the aid of driver assistance tools like crawl control or the locking gear differential
The Tacoma offers a Towing capacity of 6400lbs which is very much comparable to the segment. The V6 motor effortlessly tows up Loads without the engine failing strained in any time be it at Motorways or in cities.
The Tacoma, however has the least towing capacity in the segment which is dominated by the powerful GMC. The margin isn’t much but still, people looking for stats will favor the GMC.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Fuel Economy
The 2.7L Motor of the Toyota is one of the most frugal motors in the segment. It delivers more power than some of its competitors but without compromising on the mileage front as well.
Mpg city mpg
Mpg highway mpg
Mpg combine mpg
The GMC Canyon is the most fuel efficient motor in the segment but the Toyota closely follows the GMC in overall Fuel Efficiency Figures.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Interior
The Tacoma’s high floor produces a legs-out driving posture that is more carlike than you might expect. Taller drivers tend to notice this because the telescoping steering wheel doesn’t have enough adjustment range, forcing them to scoot closer with knees bent more than they would otherwise” – Edmunds
Seating and Comfort
The fixed style front seats of 2018 Toyota Tacoma are only good for short to medium height drivers. But the taller drivers would constantly brush the headliner.
But what the seats lack in customizability, they makeup in shape and feel. Most trims offer adjustable lumbar support.
Avoid inviting more than two adults to sit in the rear seats, because the leg room, just like the telescopic travel, meets the minimum requirements in the Access Cab.
The Tacoma still plays home to its previous year’s system, which means newer necessities like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto have not yet made their way in.
Tacoma has only one USB port and a 12-volt outlet in the cabin, where other competitors offer at least two. Some other standard and optional infotainment related features include:
Real-Time Traffic (Optional)
Real-Time Weather (Optional)
Toyota did not feel like fiddling with the Interiors of the 2018 Tacoma and has carried forward with a design, similar to what was seen in the 2017 model. There have been some subtle changes done in the Interior Features though.
There is a convenient cell phone spot which can be upgraded to act as a wireless charging pad. A sliding sun visor, an optional driver information center with digital speedometer, and a sunglass compartment have been added in the overall features list.
One Unique feature in the Tacoma has to be the GoPro mount on the windshield that allows GoPro Cameras to be mounted on them and capture your off road endeavors.
The Top trims get premium features like heated leather seats, a powered moon roof, wireless charging, a premium audio system from JBL (which we highly recommend) and a passive entry with push-button start.
Cargo storage is the make or break point for any pickup and the Tacoma takes this seriously. With two cargo-box lengths and two cab styles, buyers have an option of building their Tacoma to tailor to their needs.
If you flip up the rear seats, there are many open and covered compartments to store stuff that would otherwise want hidden. The seat backs can be pulled down to get a completely flat load floor.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Exterior
The Tacoma has been around for a long time, so it’s no surprise that its exterior styling is instantly identifiable and the most trucklike in its class. Its brawny, squared-off design boasts a hexagonal grille, narrow headlights, and bulging fenders –Caranddriver.com
Dimensions and Design
The Tacoma was first introduced to the US market in 1995, that’s 22 years ago. It is, therefore, no surprise that Tacoma’s looks are sturdy and remind the viewer of the classic truck style. Despite minor changes here and there, Tacoma has mostly kept its old school look.
The front of the Tacoma looks burly and capable. Its square design is neatly complemented by a hexagonal grille. Tacoma also has narrow headlights and puffed out fenders, which give it a meaner look.
There are minor upgrades to 2018 Toyota Tacoma’s appearance, which differ in different trims. The SR and SR5 grille is slightly remodeled. The TRD Sport and TRD Off-Road get a darker mesh, to further add to its bold and mean front fascia.
Tacoma offers two-bed sizes, a 60-inch short bed, and a 73-inch long bed. The step-in height is a bit uncomfortable as compared to competitors like Colorado, which offer a step for easy climbing.
The Access Cab uses a 60” Bed which is useful for keeping quite a lot of stuff in the bed of the cab.
The bed at the back of 2018 Toyota Tacoma has some cool features. These include
120V AC power outlet
LED box lighting
Adjustable tie-down cleats
A fully integrated bed liner.
Even the base trim is packed with some interesting features, such as a sliding rear window, a composite bed liner, and projector beam headlights, which add to a clearer view during the night.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Safety
The Tacoma has been given a couple of Important Safety features as part of the 2018 Model year. The most important feature being the addition of the Toyota Safety Sense package as standard on all the Trims. Other features include
Nissan Advanced Air Bag System with dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt and occupant-classification sensors
Driver and front-passenger seat-mounted side-impact supplemental air bags
Roof-mounted curtain supplemental air bags for side-impact with rollover sensor
Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) with Traction Control System
Active Brake Limited Slip (ABLS)
3-point ALR/ELR passenger seat belt (ELR for driver)
Front-seat Active Head Restraints
Front seat belts with pre-tensioners and load limiters
LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children)
Zone Body construction with front and rear crumple zones
Hood buckling creases and energy-absorbing steering column
Pipe-style steel side-door guard beams
Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Competition
Toyota Tacoma vs Nissan Frontier
The Toyota Tacoma outshines the Frontier in a variety of Areas be it in overall performance or efficiency figures. The Tacoma also offers superb durability and with the added safety features, the Tacoma does have an edge over the Frontier. We do however miss the addition of some Modern Features like Android Auto and Apple Car Play which is offered by the Nissan.
Toyota Tacoma vs GMC Canyon
The GMC Canyon is the General Motor twin of the Colorado and is almost identical to it. The GMC offers class leading Performance and better Towing and Payload Capacity than the Toyota. The Toyota however offers rugged Durability and a better resale value. We do feel that 10 years down the line, the Toyota will be the Truck which will have most of its Parts in place unlike the GMC which has a less durable feel to it.
2018 Toyota Tacoma Access Cab Final Verdict
The Nissan’s plus point is its towing capacity and the cheap price point. The penny pinching is sure felt on the interior and safety features and the trend continues along the whole series of the Frontier. If you can save and spend a little more then there are definitely better options available.
2 Engine Options Available
Good Towing Capacity
Decent Gas Mileage
Cramped Rear Seating
Android Auto and Apple Car Play still omitted from Features list
Omission of Manual Transmission for 2018
Exterior Styling Tweaks
Toyota Safety Connect coming in Standard in all Variants
Silver Sky Metallic
Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.