2020 Toyota Tacoma vs. 2020 Jeep Wrangler

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 2019/10/18

The Tacoma has standard head airbag curtains for front and rear seats, which act as a forgiving barrier between the driver and outboard passenger's upper bodies and the window and pillars. Combined with high-strength steel door beams and lower side airbags this system increases head protection in broadside collisions. The Wrangler doesn't offer side airbag protection for the head and are only available for the front seats.

The Tacoma has standard Active Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Wrangler doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The Tacoma has standard Pre-Collision System, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Wrangler offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The Tacoma’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Wrangler doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Tacoma (except SR/SR5/TRD Sport) offers an optional Panoramic View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Wrangler only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

The Tacoma’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Wrangler doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Tacoma and the Wrangler have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available four-wheel drive, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Tacoma for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Jeep doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Wrangler.

Reliability

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A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Tacoma’s reliability 20 points higher than the Wrangler.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Tacoma third among midsize pickups in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Wrangler isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are better in initial quality than Jeep vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Jeep is ranked 17th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Jeep vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 59 more problems per 100 vehicles, Jeep is ranked 24th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Jeep vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Jeep is ranked 22nd.

Engine

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The Tacoma’s optional 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 5 lbs.-ft. more torque (265 vs. 260) than the Wrangler’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Toyota Tacoma V6 is faster than the Jeep Wrangler turbo 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

Tacoma

Wrangler

Zero to 60 MPH

6.8 sec

8.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.2 sec

16.3 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

91.6 MPH

82.6 MPH

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 2019/10/18

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Toyota Tacoma uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Wrangler with the 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. engine requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Tacoma has 2.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Wrangler 2-door’s standard fuel tank (21.1 vs. 18.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

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The Toyota Tacoma comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Wrangler.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Tacoma stops much shorter than the Wrangler:

Tacoma

Wrangler

70 to 0 MPH

185 feet

194 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

132 feet

150 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

158 feet

163 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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The Tacoma Short Bed Limited Double Cab’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Wrangler Sahara’s 70 series tires.

The Toyota Tacoma’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Jeep Wrangler only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling

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The Toyota Tacoma’s independent front suspension is much lighter than the Jeep Wrangler’s solid front axle, which allows the Tacoma’s wheels to react more quickly and accurately to the road’s surface, improving both ride and handling.

For much better steering response and tighter handling the Tacoma has rack and pinion steering, like Formula race cars, instead of the recirculating-ball type steering of the Wrangler.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Tacoma Access Cab’s wheelbase is 30.6 inches longer than on the Wrangler 2-door (127.4 inches vs. 96.8 inches). The Tacoma Long Bed Double Cab’s wheelbase is 22.2 inches longer than on the Wrangler 4-door (140.6 feet vs. 118.4 inches).

The Tacoma Short Bed SR5 Double Cab handles at .71 G’s, while the Wrangler Sahara 4-door pulls only .68 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Tacoma Short Bed TRD Off-Road Double Cab 4x4 handles at .71 G’s, while the Wrangler Rubicon 2-door pulls only .63 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Tacoma Short Bed SR5 Double Cab executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Wrangler Rubicon 4-door (29.4 seconds @ .57 average G’s vs. 29.9 seconds @ .56 average G’s).

The Tacoma Short Bed TRD Off-Road Double Cab 4x4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.7 seconds quicker than the Wrangler Rubicon 2-door (28.6 seconds @ .58 average G’s vs. 31.3 seconds @ .48 average G’s).

Chassis

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For excellent aerodynamics, the Tacoma has standard flush composite headlights. The Wrangler has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

Passenger Space

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The Tacoma Access Cab has 1.7 inches more front legroom, 3.3 inches more front hip room, 2.6 inches more front shoulder room and 6.7 inches more rear hip room than the Wrangler 2-door.

The Tacoma Double Cab has 1.7 inches more front legroom, 3.3 inches more front hip room, 2.6 inches more front shoulder room and 3.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Wrangler 4-door.

Cargo Capacity

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The Tacoma Double Cab has a much larger cargo volume than the Wrangler with its rear seat up (34.8 vs. 31.7 cubic feet).

The Tacoma Access Cab has a much larger cargo volume than the Wrangler with its rear seat up (42.6 vs. 31.7 cubic feet).

The Tacoma’s cargo area is larger than the Wrangler’s in almost every dimension:

Tacoma Access Cab

Tacoma Double Cab

Wrangler

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

73.7”

60.5”/73.7”

37”/65.8”

Max Width

56.7”

56.7”

42”

Min Width

41.5”

41.5”

39.5”

The Toyota Tacoma has a standard tailgate assist feature, which prevents the heavy tailgate from falling with a crash and causing injury. It allows adults and children to easily open and close the tailgate with one hand to better facilitate loading and unloading. The Jeep Wrangler doesn’t offer a tailgate assist.

Payload and Towing

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The Tacoma’s minimum standard towing capacity is much higher than the Wrangler’s (3500 vs. 2000 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Jeep Wrangler 4-door is only 3500 pounds. The Tacoma Access Cab offers up to a 6800 lbs. towing capacity.

The Tacoma has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the Wrangler (1685 vs. 1351 lbs.).

Ergonomics

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The Tacoma’s standard power windows allow the driver or passenger to lower and raise the windows without leaning over or being distracted. Power windows are only available on the Wrangler Sport S/Sahara/Rubicon.

The Tacoma TRD/Limited’s front power windows both open or close with one touch of the switches. The Wrangler ’s power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

The Tacoma’s standard power window controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Wrangler’s available power window controls are spread out on the center console where they can’t be seen without the driver completely removing his eyes from the road.

The Tacoma’s standard power locks allow the driver or passenger to lock or unlock all the doors at a touch without leaning over. Power locks are only available on the Wrangler Sport S/Sahara/Rubicon.

The Tacoma has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The Wrangler has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the Sport S/Sahara/Rubicon.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Tacoma detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Wrangler doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

The Tacoma has standard power remote mirrors. The Wrangler Sport doesn’t offer either a remote driver side or passenger side mirror. The driver will have to roll down the windows and reach across the car to adjust the mirrors.

The Tacoma’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Jeep only offers heated mirrors on the Wrangler Sport S/Sahara/Rubicon.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Tacoma TRD/Limited has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Wrangler doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Model Availability

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The Tacoma is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Wrangler doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Tacoma is less expensive to operate than the Wrangler because typical repairs cost less on the Tacoma than the Wrangler, including $51 less for front brake pads and $38 less for front struts.

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 2019/10/18

The TRD Off-Road was selected by Petersen's 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine as their 2016 4x4 of the Year. The Wrangler was 4x4 of the Year in 2012.

The Toyota Tacoma outsold the Jeep Wrangler by 11% during the 2019 model year.

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