2020 GMC Canyon vs. 2019 Toyota Tacoma

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/17

Both the Canyon Crew Cab and Tacoma have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Canyon has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Tacoma’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Canyon are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

Full-time four-wheel drive is optional on the Canyon. Full-time four-wheel drive gives added traction for safety in all conditions, not just off-road, like the only system available on the Tacoma.

The Canyon (except SL) offers optional OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions, remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Canyon and the Tacoma have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available collision warning systems, lane departure warning systems and rear parking sensors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Canyon the rating of “Top Pick” for 2016, a rating granted to only 164 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Tacoma has not been fully tested, yet.

Warranty

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The Canyon’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Tacoma’s (6 vs. 5 years).

There are over 38 percent more GMC dealers than there are Toyota dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Canyon’s warranty.

Engine

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The Canyon’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 41 more horsepower (200 vs. 159) and 11 lbs.-ft. more torque (191 vs. 180) than the Tacoma’s standard 2.7 DOHC 4 cyl. The Canyon’s optional 3.6 DOHC V6 produces 30 more horsepower (308 vs. 278) and 10 lbs.-ft. more torque (275 vs. 265) than the Tacoma’s optional 3.5 DOHC V6.

The Canyon’s 2.8 turbo diesel produces 22 more horsepower (181 vs. 159) and 189 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 180) than the Tacoma’s standard 2.7 DOHC 4 cyl. The Canyon’s 2.8 turbo diesel produces 104 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 265) than the Tacoma’s optional 3.5 DOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/17

On the EPA test cycle the Canyon gets better fuel mileage than the Tacoma:

MPG

Canyon

RWD

Auto

2.8 turbo 4-cyl. Diesel

20 city/30 hwy

2.5 DOHC 4-cyl.

20 city/26 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

18 city/25 hwy

AWD

Auto

2.8 turbo 4-cyl. Diesel

19 city/28 hwy

2.5 DOHC 4-cyl.

19 city/24 hwy

3.6 DOHC V6

17 city/24 hwy

Tacoma

RWD

Auto

2.7 DOHC 4-cyl.

20 city/23 hwy

3.5 DOHC V6

19 city/24 hwy

AWD

Manual

3.5 DOHC V6

17 city/20 hwy

Auto

2.7 DOHC 4-cyl.

19 city/22 hwy

3.5 DOHC V6

18 city/22 hwy

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Canyon V6’s fuel efficiency. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

The Canyon has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

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An eight-speed automatic is standard on the GMC Canyon V6, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Tacoma.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the Canyon’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the Tacoma:

Canyon

Tacoma

Front Rotors

12.2 inches

10.75 inches

Rear Rotors

12.75 inches

10” drums

The GMC Canyon has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Only rear drums come on the Tacoma. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.

The Canyon stops much shorter than the Tacoma:

Canyon

Tacoma

60 to 0 MPH

123 feet

133 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Canyon has larger standard tires than the Tacoma (255/65R17 vs. 245/75R16).

The Canyon’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 70 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Tacoma’s standard 75 series tires. The Canyon Short Box Denali Crew Cab’s tires have a lower 55 series profile than the Tacoma Short Bed Limited Double Cab’s 60 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Canyon Short Box Denali Crew Cab has standard 20-inch wheels. The Tacoma’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

The Canyon has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Tacoma doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Canyon’s wheelbase is longer than on the Tacoma:

Canyon

Tacoma

Extended Cab Standard Bed

128.3 inches

127.4 inches

Crew Cab Short Bed

128.3 inches

127.4 inches

The Canyon Short Box SLT Crew Cab 4x4 handles at .79 G’s, while the Tacoma Short Bed TRD Off-Road Double Cab 4x4 pulls only .71 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

Chassis

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The front grille of the Canyon uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Tacoma doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

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The Canyon Extended Cab has 1.7 inches more front headroom, 2.1 inches more front legroom, 1.8 inches more rear headroom, 4 inches more rear legroom, .5 inches more rear hip room and .8 inches more rear shoulder room than the Tacoma Access Cab.

The Canyon Crew Cab has 1.7 inches more front headroom, 2.1 inches more front legroom and 3.2 inches more rear legroom than the Tacoma Double Cab.

Cargo Capacity

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/17

The Canyon Extended Cab has a much larger cargo box than the Tacoma Access Cab (49.9 vs. 42.6 cubic feet).

The Canyon Crew Cab Short Box has a much larger cargo box than the Tacoma Double Cab Short Bed (41.3 vs. 34.8 cubic feet). The Canyon Crew Cab Long Box has a much larger cargo box than the Tacoma Double Cab Long Bed (49.9 vs. 42.6 cubic feet).

The Canyon’s cargo box is larger than the Tacoma’s in every dimension:

Canyon Extended Cab

Canyon Crew Cab

Tacoma Access Cab

Tacoma Double Cab

Length (short/long)

74”

61.7”/74”

73.7”

60.5”/73.7”

Max Width

57.8”

57.8”

56.7”

56.7”

Min Width

44.4”

44.4”

41.5”

41.5”

Height

20.9”

20.9”

19.1”

19.1”

The GMC Canyon has a standard CornerStep, which allows for much easier access to the cargo area. The Toyota Tacoma doesn’t offer a rear cargo step.

Both the Canyon and Tacoma have bed indentations that accommodate 2x4’s for two-tiered loading, but the Canyon also has indentations to separate the cargo box into three different sections length-wise.

The Canyon has stake post holes, to allow the containment of tall, light loads. The Tacoma doesn’t offer stake post holes.

Payload and Towing

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Maximum trailer towing in the Toyota Tacoma is limited to 6800 pounds. The Canyon Crew Cab offers up to a 7700 lbs. towing capacity.

The Canyon has a higher standard payload capacity than the Tacoma:

Canyon

Tacoma

Extended Cab 4x4

1432 lbs.

1380 lbs.

Crew Cab 4x4

1531 lbs.

1175 lbs.

The Canyon has higher optional payload capacities than the Tacoma:

Canyon

Tacoma

Crew Cab

1609 lbs.

1505 lbs.

Extended Cab 4x4

1562 lbs.

1380 lbs.

Crew Cab 4x4

1531 lbs.

1370 lbs.

Servicing Ease

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The Canyon uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Tacoma uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The Canyon offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Canyon’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Tacoma does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The power windows standard on both the Canyon and the Tacoma have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Canyon is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Tacoma prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Canyon’s driver’s power window opens or closes fully with one touch of the switch, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Tacoma’s standard driver’s power window switch has to be held the entire time to open or close it. The Tacoma TRD/Limited’s rear windows don’t close automatically.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Canyon’s available exterior PIN entry system (not available on Canyon SL). The Tacoma doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Canyon’s available exterior PIN entry system (not available on Canyon SL). The Tacoma doesn’t offer an exterior PIN entry system.

The Canyon’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Tacoma’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The Canyon’s variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The Tacoma SR’s standard wipers have no intermittent settings at all, so the driver will have to constantly turn them on and off.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Canyon Denali keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Tacoma doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Canyon’s optional (except Base/SL) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Canyon Crew Cab has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The Tacoma doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Canyon owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Canyon will cost $280 less than the Tacoma over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Canyon is less expensive to operate than the Tacoma because typical repairs cost much less on the Canyon than the Tacoma, including $84 less for a water pump, $167 less for a muffler, $145 less for a starter, $154 less for fuel injection, $180 less for a fuel pump and $956 less for a timing belt/chain.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/17

Truck Trend performed a comparison test in its May 2017 issue and they ranked the GMC Canyon Short Box Denali Crew Cab 4x4 two places higher than the Toyota Tacoma Short Bed TRD Pro Double Cab 4x4.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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