The 2012 Toyota Tacoma offers a restyled exterior look and redesigned, upgraded interior in all models. The new Tacoma shows a fresh face with a redesigned hood, grille, headlamps and front bumper, among other changes.
The 2012 Toyota Tacoma line offers two engines: a 2.7-liter Dual Overhead Cam (DOHC) four-cylinder that produces 159 horsepower and 180 lb-ft. of torque, and a 4.0-liter DOHC V6 that provides 236 horsepower with 266 lb-ft. of torque. In both engines, variable valve timing with intelligence (VVT-i) provides strong low-end and mid-range torque.
An Electronic Throttle Control System with intelligence helps optimize performance and fuel economy. The V6 can be teamed with either a six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic transmission. Four-cylinder models offer a choice between a five-speed manual and a four-speed automatic transmission. When equipped with a V6 Tow Package, Access Cab models boast a maximum tow capacity of up to 6,500 pounds.
The Toyota Tacoma X-Runner performance truck, unique in the entire compact truck category, returns for 2012 and features the 4.0-liter V6 engine with a specially tuned chassis. Featuring a six-speed manual transmission, the X-Runner can accelerate from 0-to-60 mph in less than seven seconds. Just as impressive, the Toyota Tacoma X-Runner can achieve lateral acceleration in excess of 0.9-g – comparable to many performance cars. The X-Runner’s Access Cab design incorporates a full body kit, a hood scoop and integrated fog lamps. The color-keyed monochromatic exterior comes in three colors – Barcelona Red, Black Sand Pearl and Nautica Blue Metallic, which is new for 2012.
To take performance even higher, TRD offers a 4.0-liter V6 supercharger kit capable of generating 304 horsepower and 334 lbs.-ft. of torque also available for other Tacoma V6 models). The design uses Eaton Roots-type rotating components in a one-piece supercharger plenum/manifold casting.
Tacoma T|X Packages
The Toyota Tacoma T|X and T|X Pro Packages, available in conjunction with the TRD Off-Road Package, add a concept-truck look to the Tacoma V6 Access Cab or V6 Double Cab PreRunner and 4×4 models. The T|X Package gives the Toyota Tacoma a menacing look and additional sportiness with TRD 16-inch black alloy bead-lock wheels and 265/70R16 BFGoodrich Rugged Trail tires. Black tube-side steps, a stainless steel exhaust tip and unique exterior graphics give the T|X the aesthetics of a custom truck.
The T|X Pro is the performance-oriented package by also including a TRD cat-back performance exhaust system that gives the V6 a throatier sound and a bit more power. The T|X and T|X Pro Packages offer a strong value compared to offering the contents as separate accessories, especially considering that they are covered under Toyota’s standard three year/36,000-mile comprehensive vehicle limited warranty and can be financed.
The TRD Off-Road Package underlying both T|X editions provides a carefully tuned balance of off-road performance and on-road handling. Chassis modifications include an electronic locking rear differential, progressive-rate front springs, specially tuned Bilstein shock absorbers, a 28-mm front stabilizer bar and BFGoodrich Rugged Trail tires. Fog lamps top off the package for a tough, sporty appearance. Both the TRD Off-Road Package and TRD Sport Package have a 400W/115V powerpoint in the bed; sport seats with adjustable lumbar support and unique fabric, and an overhead console with a compass and outside temperature display. Double Cab and Access Cab models also offer a back-up monitor system.
The TRD Off-Road Package available for 4×4 V6 automatic models includes Hill-start Assist Control (HAC) and Downhill Assist Control (DAC). HAC operates by independently controlling the brakes at each wheel as needed to help prevent the vehicle from rolling backward or slipping sideways during a transition from a stopped position to climbing a grade. An Automatic Limited-slip Differential (Auto-LSD), which uses brake intervention to help reduce tire slippage at the rear wheels, is standard on all Tacoma models.
DAC uses engine braking to regulate downhill speed and independently control the brakes at each wheel to help improve directional control. DAC automatically de-activates if the driver depresses the brake or accelerator pedals, presses the DAC button, or shifts into neutral. TRD Off-Road Packages feature a locking rear differential that can be activated by a switch in the cab. An electronic rear differential is available on 4×4 models and the PreRunner.
The 2012 Toyota Tacoma has a new look from the A-pillar forward, with new front grilles on all grades. In addition to a new hood, Tacoma also receives new headlamps, new upper and lower bumper areas, including an updated fog lamp housing.
Toyota Tacoma configurations are based on three cab types: Regular Cab, Access Cab, and the four-door Double Cab. The rear doors on Access Cab models open to 80 degrees to give passengers easy ingress and egress. Bold overfenders distinguish PreRunner and 4×4 models. PreRunner models combine the 4×2 drivetrain with the 4×4′s raised riding stance and styling. Double Cab models offer a roof rack system with crossbars that deploy from the roof rails.
Toyota Tacoma Regular Cab models are built on a 109.6-inch wheelbase; 4×2 Access Cab models (including PreRunner and 4×4) ride on a 127.4-inch wheelbase. The Toyota Tacoma Double Cab with the standard five-foot bed shares the 127.4-inch wheelbase, while the Double Cab long-bed models use a 140.6-inch wheelbase.