5 Things to Know About 2020 Toyota Tacoma

February 13, 2019 by Ryan ZumMallen, @Zoomy575M

Toyota Motor Corp. is bringing an upgraded version of its popular Tacoma pickup to the U.S. market.

The 2020 Tacoma returns mostly unchanged from the current truck. It is powered by the same 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine or 3.5-liter V6 engine with a standard six-speed automatic transmission.

But the new Tacoma features a series of small improvements that will make the truck more comfortable and livable on a daily basis. Toyota has long dominated sales in the midsize pickup segment and is facing challenges from new entrants into the market this year, including the Ford Ranger and Jeep Gladiator. It also faces stiff competition from the Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon and Nissan Frontier, all midsize trucks that grew sales in 2018.

New plant coming online

The Tacoma has a dedicated customer base, and Toyota plans to increase production with a new truck plant coming online in Mexico. But to fend off its new competition, the 2020 Tacoma needed more modern convenience without losing its rugged appeal.

After a look inside the 2020 Tacoma at the Chicago Auto Show, here are five things to know about the new pickup:

2020 Toyota Tacoma

The 2020 Toyota Tacoma comes with a redesigned grille. (Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)


Toyota designers turned to the front grille to set the 2020 Tacoma apart from its predecessor. Nearly every trim receives a new grille. The Tacoma TRD Off-Road on display in Chicago wore a horizontal weave pattern as opposed to the vertical one in previous years. Any design change to the top-selling midsize pickup is noteworthy. Still, it may take a keen eye to spot the 2020 Tacoma based on its grille alone.

LED bed lamps, fog lamps, headlamps and daytime running lights are available on various trims of the 2020 Toyota Tacoma. (Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)


A more obvious update on the 2020 Tacoma is the addition of LED lighting. Across various trims the 2020 Tacoma is available with LED bed lamps, fog lamps, headlamps and daytime running lights. Up front, the lights are positioned at an aggressive angle. The Tacoma TRD Pro even adds sequential lights. The scowling look brings a modernized feel to the 2020 Tacoma day or night.

2020 Toyota Tacoma

The 2020 Toyota Tacoma’s seats are 10-way power adjustable. (Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)


Tacoma owners do not have many complaints about their trucks. But a common refrain, from overlanders to daily commuters, is that the driver’s seat sits in an awkward position. Worse, current Tacoma seats are only four-way manually adjustable. The 2020 Tacoma driver’s seat is still mounted low to the floor but is now available with 10-way power adjusting. The upgrade could make it easier to stay comfortable on long drives.

Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro trim

The TRD Pro trim comes with updated tuning on the standard Fox shocks. (Photo: Toyota)


At the top of the Tacoma lineup is the TRD Pro trim. For the 2020 truck the Toyota Racing Development division updated tuning on the standard Fox shocks. They are 2.5-inch internal bypass shocks that improve ride comfort and off-road performance. Any change to the tuning could make a big difference to an already athletic truck.

Toyota Tacoma 2020

All trims of the 2020 Toyota Tacoma except the base SR come with an 8-inch touch screen. (Photo: Brian Williams/Trucks.com)


Almost every trim of the 2020 Tacoma will come standard with a new 8-inch touchscreen. It includes a new multimedia system that is compatible with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Amazon Alexa. The screen is notably larger with more hard buttons instead of the virtual controls found in the previous truck. Only the base Tacoma SR trim receives an upgraded 7-inch screen instead of the larger 8-inch.

Read Next: Spy Shots: 2020 Toyota Tundra Pickup to Get Major Upgrade

40 Responses

  1. Dave

    A 10 way power seat won’t help when the seating positon is like sitting on the floor with your legs out in front of you. They really need to redesign this feature. It’s all that is keeping me from going back to Tacoma. I had an 04,which was a great truck but unbearably uncomfortable on trips longer than an hour.

    • Karen McNew

      Due to arthritis in my hands I’ve been waiting forever for a new Toyota with heated steering wheel & mirrors, heated leather power seats, and maybe cooled seats.. my husbands 2016 Ram is loaded out with these but it’s a big truck, I’ve always wanted a Toyota with all these options. My old Toyota was a two door with nothing on it except 3 or 4 hundred thousand miles. Now it’s my deer hunting rig.

  2. Fred

    Few things you should know about Tacoma whoever designed the tacoma has no idea what people wanted, is it midsize truck or a wanna be large truck, Toyota got such a big head and lazy they decided to use dodge ram style, Toyota still uses drum brakes. Best Tacomas were 1999to2001 awsome trucks. Ford Ranger is going to kick Toyotas ass.

    • sucra

      between US and canada they sold 260k tacos last year and, despite the market being down this year so far, taco has had its best jan and feb all time, despite rangers being on the lots. most ranger sales will come out of F-150 sales. have a great day, though.

    • Trd Pro man

      There is no way the ranger will ever compete with the Tacoma time will tell but i would bet after 250000 miles the Tacoma is still running and the Ranger is ready for the scrap yard.

      • Chuck

        This is really not an upgrade! It’s more of a tweak!

      • Pelee

        I’m just hoping my Toyota frame doesn’t crack in half – inspite of the recall servicing they provided.

  3. Michael

    Nobody cares about a touchscreen, new audio system, powered seat, or a “grille”. Those are all accessories that can be customized to your liking at any time. As for Toyota Tacoma trucks being made in Mexico, we shall see if there is a change in manufacture quality. I would prefer to read articles that report about upgraded engine, transmission, and overall longevity rather than upgraded superficial accessories.

  4. G Kirschbaum

    I have a 2016 Tacoma Limited and have been thinking of going to the Ranger. The biggest complaints I have are:
    1). No electric folding exterior mirrors
    2). No rain sensing windshield wipers
    3). Drivers door is the only door to unlock for keyless entry
    4). No electric sliding back window. It is impossible to open or close the window while driving

    In my opinion, until a Toyota provides the above on Tacoma, it is not a match for the Ranger

    • macgyver

      I have a ’19 and it has a power rear sliding window.
      I think it might also have the automatic wipers too but I’m not 100% certain about that because most of that stuff I disabled because it just doesn’t work that good and besides I use rainX and seldom need to use the wipers anyway.

      I just noticed there’s only one lock a couple weeks ago and that concerns me but on the other hand, if car breakins are a problem where you live, it makes it easier to keep an eye on the lock and guard that door.

    • Tacoma18OffRoad

      You can customize the drivers door lock in the settings on the entune system. It allows for either only driver side door unlock, or all door unlock.

  5. Charlie

    Any upgrades to the transmission? I’m still waiting on a specialist in the southeastern region to contact me. I’ve been waiting nearly 4 months now. My 2017 TRd off-road 4×4 is always hunting the correct gear and feels sluggish while cruising at reg speeds.

    • sucra

      there have been TSB’s but it’s just the factory tuning you’re complaining about. you can OV tune it to run the way you want it to.

  6. John soveken

    Poor excuse for a 4×4 knob to go too 4 wheel sucks motor slows down with wheel spin ot good will goto rust free area and buy an old real yoga not the silk panty models you currently make

    • That Guy You Know Him

      Great comments I especially like that you don’t waste valuable screen space on unnecessary punctuation I’ve been having trouble deciding whether to buy this truck so thanks you have cleared up some important issues again I appreciate you sharing your thoughts it’s not every day when we are graced with such well thought out and expressed opinions

      • Joe

        Man, I thought I was the only one trying to figure out the prior comment. I’m sure he writes in all caps too. May be true but hell, break it down.

      • Karen Lynn

        that comment was done by voice to text cell phone, so he spoke it, posted it and was done with it. LOL
        1) poor excuse for a 4×4 knob to go to 4 wheel “sucks”
        2) motor slows down with wheel spin
        3) not good in the rust free areas ? I think ? lol
        4 is the conclusion; so buy an OLD real (yoga = Toyota) NOT the new = silky pant models that are currently being made. = )

  7. Casey MORACE

    Really this is the best they can come up with? I’ve driven a yota since 1995 and upgraded my 98Tacoma in 2017 with TRDoffroad.
    Same Trany, Same Look, and now Mexico…..Mexico? It need several improvements on being an 8 Speed Auto trany and the best they can do is an electric seat and some LED lights.

    I’ll keep my fingers crossed they’re holding out to finish up some R&D for the 2021 units.

    Regards, Casey

  8. Don

    I’m currently driving my third Tacoma sport model, I love it buddy Regan about the 2020 Tacoma is a long time coming. Mod comfortable interior more features are needed along with rear air conditioning like your competitors which is also needed also wish it had more options like the limited such as leather seats and last better sound system,keep up the good work Toyota love your trucks

  9. armando

    I like the 2020 takoma as soon it comes out i’ll buy it. That’s what i’m waiting for.

  10. Tom Buntrock

    we have purchased over 10 tacoma since the big change around 2005 they are overall a pretty good truck buy far the least expensive to own.Toyota is leaving a lot of sales behind by 1 all my long bed trucks it seems to me could be engineerd to have 48″ between the bed wheel wells which would make the truck a game changer. 2 the wheels are very poorly designed just look at GM and Ford tacoma inferior.3 It is very difficult to get a 4 door long bed my dealer tells me that they are hard to get.4Its too bad you can’t buy a long bed limited.5 The mufflers on the 2016 models are way too loud why ?also I can not see why lexus most popular model big money maker didn’t face lift something on the RX350 for 2019.Toyota is starting to get too fat and happy it happened to all the american auto companies I hope not Toyota.

  11. Joe Rakowski

    Toyota advertises these trucks as being tough. Who puts rugs in a trucks??????? If I’m out in the woods with my dog and we get muddy, I don’t want to spend the rest of my life cleaning the interior. Water proof seats would be nice!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • sucra

      they have husky and weathertech floor liners and weatherproof seat covers. this is the easiest complaint to take care of yourself. the answer to your question is, every truck maker puts carpets in trucks.

  12. John James

    Tacomas are tough and that is the bottom line. Our special forces troops use them in some really nasty places around the world and they ( tacomas ) work hard and are trustworthy.

    Anything built in Mexica will never be a quality vehicle, just look around at the junk coming out of that country. Bad move for Toyota, but there again it’s all about the $$$$$$’s. I’m a Toyota fan and have been for 30+ years but that could change if they shift production there.

    Toyota, for the price you are charging for the TRD PRO it should come standard with a front locker, bells and whistles just don’t cut it these days to most of us.

    Good luck and for all of you who complain about heated steering wheels, power seats, electric mirrors etc, don’t be such pussies. You are a sad bunch if that is your issues.

    • Joseph D'Angeli

      THANKS JJ for your info as I too would prefer a good meat and potatoes truck vs a fancy yacht club truck. Good to hear about the toughness as I’m about to buy my very first Taco in a few weeks. Joe

  13. Billy Underwood

    I have a silver 2006 Tacoma with light gray interior.

    Won’t buy a 2019 because it’s only offered in a cement gray or black interior. Both are too dark and both have black carpet.

    I want the 10 way power driver’s seat offered in 2020 and am hoping for lighter colored interior options! Light gray/silver or tan would be perfect.

    I’ll pay extra, just give me what I want in a new truck.

  14. SB

    Heated steering wheels? Automatic wipers? Why when I was a kid we had to pour gasoline on our hands and light it to stay warm! We had to get tied to the roof of Grandpa’s truck and wipe the windows with our hand-me down underwear for him in the rain! Suspension? HA! That would’ve been nice! We had to sit on cats to keep our butts from breaking in the old days! Hey you punk kids, git off my lawn! It’s a guldurned truck! Buy an Audi if’n ye wants a massage! Seriously, I have a 2019 SR5, live in the wooded hills of Vermont, and this truck kicks serious butt for my needs. I test drove the Colorado, but it never would’ve held up to the rigors of my lifestyle and property.

  15. Edward Nelson

    Moving production of the Tacoma to Mexico is a very very bad idea. Time will show that. I have a 14 Tacoma and its stock just like I bought it but it’s a beast. Thought of getting new one just because but won’t if it’s made south of the border. The TRD PRO is waaaaaay over priced. Last awesome Toyota is the 4Runner, built in Japan at HINO. Pure beast of a vehicle. I’ve owned two so I know what I’m talking about. Good luck Toyota with this Mexican plant. Loyal taco owners will look elsewhere once the word gets out that the once proven truck we all love becomes a second class rig.

  16. Matt

    Price keeps inflating without any real improvements/upgrades to a dated truck.

  17. Dave

    I would love to see a 2.8L Tacoma diesel come to market soon, I am in the market to buy a new truck. Not liking the current 3.5L combo, I have the 4.0L/5spd auto now in an Offroad model, do lots of offroad travel in summer months, I am sure there would be a large following of a Tacoma Diesel truck. Contrary to polls supposedly taken by Toyota. Build it we will buy it!!

  18. Peter Romero

    I have a 2020 Tacoma TRD off-road and I have many issues with it. Water leaking into the cab, fog lights working intermittently, the engine hood vibrates at highway speeds, the center display has a view of snow from time to time and a bad vibration at 70MPH. All but the vibration was fixed with new glue for the hood, new wire connector for the lights, new rubber bushing for the roof rack that was letting in the water and a computer upgrade for the screen. The truck has 1,500 miles and I’m in a rental now for the second week. never had an issue with my 2016 Tacoma TRD off-road. very frustrating !.

  19. Bobby

    Purchased a 2020 TacomaSR5/4WD 02/10/2020 . Could not believe how it’s jerks/ misfire trying to decide which gear to choose, also no low mid-range power. Dealer tells me defect in transmission switching from one gear to next., nothing they could do about it until Toyota came up with software to fix the problem.Called Toyota they said “No software or recall on this problem” just one of the characteristics of the truck, referred me back to dealership. Very dissatisfied with this truck.

  20. Robiul Hassan

    Thank you Ryan ZumMallen, to wrote a nice content about toyota tacoma i have a tacoma i thing toyota tacoma is best compact pickup trucks, some days ago i wrote a review content compact pickup trucks between ford ranger and nissan frotier than i can understand toyota tacoma is best in my experience.

  21. Moy

    Like several posters here, I will admit I’m biased in favor of a vehicle made in Japan, ie, if I’m going to buy a Corolla, I’ll stay away from US built junk. Mexican workers are hardworking and reliable so only time will tell but I’ll buy a 2020 Toyota-my first ever!

  22. Moy

    I’m looking at buying a 2020 Toyota Tacoma. Based on carcomplaints.com stats, the Mexican built 2020 Tacoma is a great truck! I’m buying the SR 4×4 Access Cab!


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