Great truck for light hauling, fishing off the beach and traveling off road. Excellent ride on street travel. Five speed transmission is smooth and useful with its 4x4 gear box. Except for routine maintenance, no repairs had to be made. Jump seat in extra-cab with storage, rear window slider and rear side windows that push out on an angle.
I bought the truck used back in the day with less than 80K on it. It now has over 156k and only replaced the brake pads. I have overloaded this truck many times and even pulled trailers with a F250 on the back. This little truck does it all. I have the TRD package and it goes where ever you want it to go.
Its the most flexible, useful and maintenance free vehicle I ever owned, I bought it with about 55k miles in 2008, it now has over 125k and purrs. Replaced timing belt at 100k, The way its running i think I could get another 100K. It was well worth the money.
I purchased this truck when I was looking for a 4x4 and ended up being happy even though it is a 2wd. Other than general maintenance I have yet to repair anything ( in fact most mechanics I've talked to have yet to make repairs on this model). I love my taco and I never had any problems with the interior but I think they had an access of clocks cause they used the same one in my 87 4runner.
This is a well built and good looking truck. I am a bit of a neat freak but i do still get comments 7 years later on how good this truck looks. The paint, body and style has held up really well. 2 minor recalls, it has never failed. I have the TRD off road, its a bit bumpy but that's what you pay for!
I love my Toyota Tacoma, first new car to ACT like a new car. It handles really well but certain things are frustrating nuisances: The seats (Camry seats in a truck) sit very uncomfortable- already replaced fabric twice (that's NOT normal wear/tear) the foam breaks down inside. The head lights (replaced 10 times each) since 2003 10X a bit extreme isn't it! The paint (clear coat) chipping off in random places: I had an after market sunroof put in. While some paint chipping is near the sunroof, other areas are not which exclude the paint chipping blame game. I would seriously consider Toyota product: 2.4 liter turbo diesel HILUX if sold in the USA without adjusting down the MPG iow: EPA/USA.
2.4L automatic, extended cab 2WD SR5. So far, I'm getting 25 mpg. The smallest engine available, but has perfectly adequate power. This is the first year for standard ABS, which was a hard to find option. I searched forever for these features in a used truck, really glad I found it. I hear the '05 and newer Tacomas don't have as good build quality, they're larger and don't offer the 2.4L. If you're looking for great reliability and mileage, I'd get an '03 or '04.
I have owned this vehicle for over two years. I bought it for myself, but it has now become my daughter's primary vehicle. I feel good knowing that she is in a safe vehicle that is unlikely to cause problems for her. Whenever I take it in for routine service the techs comment on how good of shape it is in mechanically.
Just purchased a 2003 Tacoma Prerunner 4x2 SR5, 2.47L. I was pleasantly surprised that on a trip from Boise, Idaho to Lompoc, CA I averaged 23.5 mpg using the cruise control as much as possible and the Power ECT on long uphill grades.