In the past ten years I've owned a Chevy Avalanche, FJ Cruiser, and Jeep Wrangler Unlimited all in 4 wheel drive. My choice this time; Toyota Tacoma, 4x4, short bed TRD Off Road pkg. This Tacoma is by far the best of them all. I realize this is subjective and each of the vehicles has their redeeming qualities but this, in my opinion is the best of the best. Over a 6 month period I'm averaging just over 17 mpg in town and 20 on the highway with regular unleaded. The tranny is super smooth, shifts effortlessly. Steering is solid and quick to respond. The ride is a little stiff for in town driving but the TRD Off Road package isn't made for in town driving so I didn't expect a car like ride. The stereo is the JBL premium with single disc CD, mp3 and sub woofer (you can plug in your iPod). You get great sound from the iPod when plugged in but only good sound from the radio including satellite. The steering wheel has both audio controls as well as phone controls. The blue tooth phone setup is to die for, especially in this level of truck line. A very nice hands free system for a truck! Hunting season is just around the corner so my off roading thus far has been mostly forest service roads. The switch to 4 wheel drive on the fly works quickly and smoothly. Putting the tranny in 4 low worked just as well from a stop. The 4 full size doors beat the heck out of the suicide doors on my FJ and offer just as easy access as the Avalanche did! Very roomy interior; I always have three pre-teens in the back, a load of softball equipment, and my gf riding in the front passenger seat. There is always ample room and no complaints. The bed liner that comes standard on the truck is great for protecting the bed, but everything you put in the bed slides around to the point of irritation. I am investing in some indoor/outdoor carpet to keep the sliding to a minimum. Maneuvering in and out of traffic is a breeze; your view of the road to the rear is very good with the rear view and side mirrors. The standard rear tailgate camera is a real blessing and works fantastic. No more worrying about backing over bikes or little children being out of view while backing. That about sums it up for me, a good solid choice in the mid size compact market.Read more reviews at Cars.com
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