Toyota has many wings of vehicles, and pickup truck is one of them. The pickup trucks Toyota makes are named Tacoma. This pickup truck again has some sub-models. Prerunner and Base models are two of the popular sub-models of Toyota Tacoma.
If you are going to buy a new Tacoma for the first time, you will get confused about Toyota Tacoma Prerunner and Base model because both of the models will look almost the same. But in reality, there are some differences between the models that I am going to share here.
Check out the details about the models in this post and decide whether you want to buy Base or Prerunner.
What Is Toyota Tacoma Prerunner?
Toyota Tacoma Prerunner is one of the popular versions of the pickup truck. Because of the balance between advanced features and compact size, truck lovers often pick this particular version of Tacoma. The first Prerunner was introduced in 1998. The name Prerunner came from the concept of pre-running on the track. It means one can ride the truck on the track before the main event.
Is a Prerunner Worth It?
What Is Toyota Tacoma Base?
As the name suggests, the base model is a compact package of Toyota Tacoma. While the modern version of the pickup truck comes with a wide range of variations for the engine, the base model used to offer a small engine. All the base models of Toyota Tacoma are from the second generation. It means the base models are manufactured between 2005 to 2015.
Tacoma Prerunner vs. Base Comparison
While you compare the Prerunner and the base model of Toyota Tacoma, you will find some similarities and dissimilarities.
The base model comes with all the basic features. That’s why it is called Base. Tacoma Base used to come with a two-wheel drive powertrain. The small engine of Toyota Tacoma Base features a 2.7-liter power plant. The engine might seem very small and compact, but it can produce enough power to ride on different terrains.
The engine’s full power can produce an immodest 159 HP. The vehicle also produces 180 lbs. per foot of torque. This power range is enough if you consider driving the vehicle on the road for city driving. You can also conveniently ride the truck on highways with a good mileage per gallon.
Tacoma Base can give you a good experience, whether you are driving on a rough surface or a flat surface.
Now, if you consider Toyota Tacoma Prerunner, you will surprisingly find the engine is more powerful than the base version. Toyota Prerunner used to come with a two-wheel drive system, and it looks iconic. It has been used by racers from the beginning.
While the based model mostly has the V4 engine, you will find both V4 and V6 engines for Prerunner. The standard engine versions for Prerunner are 2.4-liter I4, 2.7-liter I4, and 3.4-liter V6. Depending on the engine’s model, it can provide great power for the track. The very basic one could produce 160 ft/lbs. of torque with 142 horsepower.
The 2.7-liter engine of Prerunner produces 180 ft/lbs. of torque with 159 horsepower, and the 3.4-liter V6 engine produces 220 ft/lbs. of torque with 190 horsepower. If you are seeking more power in the truck, the Prerunner is the best option. Because of the variation in models, you can always find the perfect one for you.
The majority of the Tacoma owners choose Tacoma over 4runner because of its bed. This bed allows you to tow things without any issues. Whether it is a short bed Tacoma or a long bed Tacoma, there will be enough space in the bed.
Between Prerunner and Base of Tacoma, Prerunner can tow more. The towing capacity of Toyota Tacoma Base model is only 3,500 lbs. Within this range, you won’t be able to carry such things. Especially if you are going for an off-road ride, the towing capacity is not good enough.
A Toyota Tacoma Prerunner, on the other hand, has a towing capacity of 3,500-6,400 lbs. It depends on which package and trims you buy. This higher towing capacity gives the freedom to carry tons of stuff while going on an adventurous journey.
Let’s say you are going fishing with Toyota Tacoma. Then the Prerunner will be a feasible solution for carrying everything without losing the vehicle’s balance.
Toyota Tacoma Base vs. Prerunner: Which One is Better?
The biggest question that arises after reading the comparison is: which one should I buy?
The answer is completely up to you!
If you are looking for a pickup truck that you will drive in cities and highways, Base model is enough.
If you want to get the most out of your pickup truck and you have a plan for off-road driving, Prerunner would be the best choice. Prerunner is also great for towing heavy things.
Frequently Asked Questions
Read the following questions and answers related to Prerunner and Base sub-models of Toyota Tacoma.
You will get the best experience for off-road riding with Toyota Tacoma TRD off-road version. You can, however, choose any other Prerunner as well for simple to moderate off-road riding.
Technically, yes. A Toyota Tacoma vehicle is called a Prerunner only if it comes with the 4×4 drive system.
Mostly, Base model is cheaper than Prerunner. The base is cheaper because it comes with a less powerful engine and less towing capacity. Despite being a bit expensive, Tacoma Prerunner worth it.
Yes, you can. Some of the common modifications for Toyota Tacoma are lifting the truck, trimming the fender and adding new wheels, upgrading the fuel tank, etc.
After reading this Toyota Tacoma Prerunner vs. Base comparison, you might have already understood what to choose for you. Whichever Toyota Tacoma version or sub-model you buy, I bet you are not going to regret it. The mid-sized pickup truck can give you all the experience you can enjoy with a full-sized truck.
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