Last Updated: 02.09.2021

Have you seen the new Toyota Tacoma 2021 towing a boat or RV on the road? Such a sight is awesome, and people looking forward to buying the car always ask one question, “What is the maximum towing capacity? This can be confusing because Toyota Tacoma is available in different versions. 

Toyota Tacoma was first unveiled in 1995, and over the years, it has become bigger and better. Indeed, it is one of the biggest mid-size trucks, and its large towing capacity is one of the main selling points. In this post, we explore Toyota Tacoma’s abilities by answering related common questions, including, “How much can a Toyota Tacoma tow?” Keep reading to learn everything about Toyota Tacoma towing capacity, and then make an informed decision on whether it is the best truck for you. 

How Much Can a Toyota Tacoma Tow?

parked toyota tacoma pick up truck

The maximum towing capacity of the Tacoma is between 3,500 pounds and 6,800 pounds, depending on the version you are using. The maximum capacity is only achieved when using the latest Toyota Tacoma TRD versions. Toyota Tacoma gets top marks for its excellent design and unrivalled abilities. But not all models are the same. So, how do these models fare when it comes to towing capacity? 

Which Toyota Tacoma Version Has the Highest Towing Capacity?

Toyota Tacoma is available in six main trims: the TRD Pro, Limited, TRD Off-Road, TRD Sport, SR5, and SR. The vehicle also comes in two cab versions, the Double Cab design which seats five passengers and Access Cab which is designed for four passengers.

The standard models of Toyota Tacoma come with the normal four-cylinder engine and can tow up to 3,500 pounds. Other versions, including the 4-wheel drive type designed with a V6 engine, pull a bigger punch of 6,400 pounds in towing capacity. However, the rear-wheel drive is the real deal, towing up to 6,800 pounds. 

Can You Tow an RV Trailer With a Toyota Tacoma? 

toyota tacoma pulling an rv trailer


You can comfortably tow the trailer with your Toyota Tacoma. Here, the question shifts to how big the trailer is. The best way to establish if a trailer can be towed with Toyota Tacoma is to look at its dry weight. Then, add all the weights of items on the RV, such as refrigerator and supplies, and compare with the recommended towing limit for the Tacoma. For example, if you have the TRD Pro with a towing capacity of 6,400 pounds, the total weight of the RV should not exceed that. 

Whether you love going out camping outdoors in summer or have a project out in winter, one of the requirements might be a recreational vehicle (RV). For most people, it can be tempting to get any trailer on the Toyota Tacoma, but overdoing it can result in safety issues. 

The common types of RVs you can tow with Toyota Tacoma include: 

  • Pop-Up Campers: These trailers are not very heavy because their sides are designed with very light materials, such as canvas. You might also love their compact design, and their weight rarely gets beyond 3500 pounds. 
  • Teardrop Trailers: These trailers are pretty small, often weighing less than a ton, and the Tacoma will tow them pretty easily both on-road and off-road.

The bottom line is that if you have a trailer that is about 3,500 pounds, your Tacoma can tow it. However, anything going beyond 7,000 pounds will be too much, even for the top-rated Tacoma. 

Can I Increase the Towing Capacity of My Toyota Tacoma?

regearing the toyota tacoma

Yes, it is possible to increase the towing capacity of the Tacoma. To do this, you will need to upgrade the differential and axle to get a better gear ratio, which is needed for higher-capacity towing. There are two ways of achieving this, and it is a good idea to work with a professional. You can replace the axle with another one that has a higher rating or change some parts to heavier duty types. These modifications can help to increase the towing capacity up to 2,000 pounds.

Instead of modifying your car, which can be pretty expensive, it will be a good idea to go for a Toyota Tacoma with a larger towing capacity.

A different truck, such as the Tundra or the Ford F-150, might also be a good idea. Find out how much a Ford F150 can tow. You might also want to compare this to how much a Ram 1500 can tow

What Gives the 2021 Toyota Tacoma Excellent Towing Ability?

There is no doubt that Toyota Tacoma is excellent when it comes to towing, but you might also want to know, “What makes it this outstanding?” The most important thing is the car’s engine. In the Toyota Tacoma, the standard engine is the 2.7L DOHC 16-Valve 4-Cylinder with VVT-I generating an output of 159 hp @ 5200 rpm; 180 lb-ft @ 3,800 rpm. You might want to take a closer look at the different Toyota Tacoma models to understand the different tow abilities and pick the best option for your jobs.

Is Toyota Tacoma Really Good for Towing?

Toyota Tacoma is revolutionary because every version comes with better features that make it the go-to car for many people. When it comes to towing, Toyota did an excellent job with the Tacoma by offering it in different versions with varying towing capabilities.

So, if you only need to tow a light trailer of fewer than 3,000 pounds, the standard Toyota Tacoma model will do. But the TRD version will be the best pick if you need it for heavier towing.

Other towing features that make Tacoma a good pick for towing include: 

  • Trailer-Sway Control (TSC)
  • Towing receiver hitch
  • TOW/HAUL Mode button
  • Heavy-duty battery
  • Supplemental transmission cooler
  • Supplemental engine oil cooler
  • Alternator and connector
  • Integrated Trailer Brake Controller (ITBC)

Is Toyota Tacoma a Half-Ton Truck?

When most people think of Toyota Tacoma, what comes to mind is a small truck and they often compare it with other larger models.

Sure, the Tacoma is smaller when compared to other common ½-ton trucks, but we must say it punches more than you can imagine. It is not a pushover. 

The design of the Tacoma, especially the different versions, is aimed at catering to the towing demands of more people. Anyone who wants to go out with their entire family and needs to tow an entire 5,500 pound RV will be able to do it with the TRD Pro. However, you do not need all this power to tow 1,000 pounds. A standard version such as the SR5 would be ok. 

What Toyota Tacoma Towing Technology Helps Increase Its Towing Capacity?

When looking at the Toyota Tacoma’s towing capacity, it is easy to generalize everything, but there is one technology that you need to appreciate—the trailer-sway control. Researchers at Toyota knew that being able to tow maximum load requires two more things, controllability and safety. This is why they added trailer-sway control into the tow package. The trailer-sway control is used to enhance the stability of the trailer when towing. 

It is an angular hitch a driver uses to control swaying that happens through camshaft rotation or friction variation. If the sway sensors notice your Toyota Tacoma is swaying, especially when carrying maximum load, the brakes are automatically activated. It also helps to reduce engine power, when necessary, to help restore the car back to stability. As you can see, it is an important towing and safety feature.