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SAFETY | 8 out of 10
Five stars, frontal impact
“Good,” frontal offset; "marginal," rear impact
built to passenger-car safety standards
With top five-star results in frontal and side tests from the federal government and top "good" ratings from the IIHS, the 2010 Tacoma gets very respectable ratings—with a "marginal" rating from the IIHS in the rear-impact test being the only blemish.
Anti-lock brakes, brake assist, and electronic stability control are now included across the model line, as are active front headrests, front seat-mounted side airbags, and curtain side airbags, along with an Automatic Limited-slip Differential (Auto-LSD); TRD Off-Road packages are equipped with a separate locking rear differential.
Automobile Magazine notes, “ABS with brake assist is standard. You can add stability control with traction control, as well as hill-start assist to prevent rolling back from an uphill stop.” Regarding the effectiveness of the standard brake assist feature, which incorporates a valve that increases vacuum assist when the brake pedal is enthusiastically applied—as in a panic situation—Car and Driver finds that their test Tacoma “conduct[s] four rapid stops from 70 mph in less than 190 feet, fleet performance for any pickup.”
Toyota focuses more intensely on safety with the 2010 Tacoma compared to most other compact or mid-size truck makers.