2009 Toyota Tacoma vs. Its Competition

2009 Toyota Tacoma image

Both the Colorado and Ranger feel inferior and outdated compared to the Tacoma, with subpar interior appointments and a lack of safety features, but the Ranger makes a strong case as one of the only true compact pickup designs left—and it's very fuel-efficient in basic four-cylinder form.

Then there’s the Dodge Dakota, which is a little closer to full-size than the Tacoma and has available V-8 power for towing.

The 2009 Toyota Tacoma rides harder than the comparable Nissan Frontier models but doesn’t handle quite as well.

The Nissan has a better-looking interior, with more comfortable seats and appointments, as well as sprightlier performance from its 4.0-liter V-6.

But the Tacoma has a more enviable reputation for reliability.

2009 Toyota Tacoma image2009 Toyota Tacoma
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2009 Chevrolet Colorado image2009 Chevrolet Colorado
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2008 Dodge Dakota image2008 Dodge Dakota
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2008 Ford Ranger image2008 Ford Ranger
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2008 Nissan Frontier image2008 Nissan Frontier
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Quick Specs
The affordable 2009 Toyota Tacoma is a bargain compared to its full-size competitors.
The new available V-8 engine is a long time coming and helps position the Colorado as a worthy rival to the most capable compacts and an alternative to full-size trucks.
Especially with the improved V-8, the 2008 Dodge Dakota can do most of what a full-size truck can while consuming fewer resources in the process.
The 2008 Ford Ranger’s best, highest use is as an inexpensive work truck or off-road play toy. Anything else exposes the flaws in its seating, its fuel economy, its available features and in its performance.
For those of us who don't live on a ranch, the 2008 Nissan Frontier is large enough to haul real people and cargo, but sized for the urban-congestion reality.
MSRP From    
Gas Mileage    
14 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 24 MPG Hwy14 MPG City / 20 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy14 MPG City / 23 MPG Hwy
Gas I4Gas 4-CylGas V6Gas I4Gas 4-cyl
EPA Class    
Style Name    
2WD Reg I4 MT (GS)2WD Reg Cab 111.2" Work Truck2WD Ext Cab ST2WD Reg Cab 112" XL2WD King Cab I4 Manual XE
Rear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity    
Passenger Doors    
Body Style    
Regular CabRegular CabExtended Cab 6'7" BedReg Cab 6' StylesideKing Cab
Manual w/ODManual w/ODManual w/ODManualManual
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2009 Toyota Tacoma vs. 2009 Chevrolet Colorado2009 Toyota Tacoma vs. 2008 Dodge Dakota2009 Toyota Tacoma vs. 2008 Ford Ranger2009 Toyota Tacoma vs. 2008 Nissan Frontier