Toyota Tacoma Diesel

Why a 2016 Tacoma Diesel makes more sense than a Tacoma Hybrid

Which future engine would make more sense in a small truck for the US market? A Toyota Tacoma Diesel would have decent torque. A Tacoma Hybrid would have tremendous fuel economy advantages. Is there a wrong answer?

In our recent story we applied our knowledge of the Toyota/Lexus family of drivetrains and speculated on what a Toyota Tacoma Hybrid might be like. Readers liked the idea of a 31 MPG Tacoma. However, many have pointed out to us since the story that a Tacoma diesel might make a lot more sense. Does it? Let’s compare the pluses and minuses of both.

Tacoma Diesel
A Toyota Tacoma diesel is difficult to imagine since Toyota has no diesel engines in the US right now. We could speculate on what a Toyota diesel from another market might do in the US, but as Mazda has recently proven, adapting a diesel from other markets does not yield the same results in our EPA testing. If our Toyota fans will allow it, we’d like to instead look to a proven leader in US diesel vehicles, the Volkswagen Passat for our diesel estimates.

ALSO READ: Can the Toyota Tacoma survive the 2015 Chevy Colorado and 2016 Nissan Frontier?

These estimates are already EPA certified, so we can start from a known point. The Passat has 170 horsepower, but its 1.8 liter, 4-cylinder turbo-diesel delivers good torque at 236 pound-feet. That is much more than the Tacoma Hybrid we imagine and that will be a big part of the advantage for the Tacoma Diesel when we get to that part of our discussion.

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Comments

A diesel Tacoma would be great or just bring over the diesel Toyota HiLux that is available EVERYWHERE but the U.S. People buy 4x4 trucks for torque and the diesel would deliver that. Maybe the soccer mom's would buy the hybrid
Its not either/or. A Tacoma diesel-electric hybrid would be perfect and better than either a diesel OR a gasoline-electric hybrid. I drive a diesel VW and a Toyota Prius C, and while I like both, I wish they were both diesel-hybrids to have the best of each
why not a diesel hybrid
Check out the link in the "related stories" section at the bottom. Quick answer - the added cost of both a diesel and also a hybrid engine compared to a fuel efficient gasoline engine makes the car too expensive to sell in numbers large enough to justify the vehicle. There are one or two in Europe. None in the US. The price penalty for the diesel fuel also hurts as does the higher C02 per mile form diesel fuel. Now, a natural gas hybrid - that is well worth considering if we are thinking outside the box....
Once upon a time Mercedes Benz made a full size 4 door sedan passenger car with a diesel engine that produced an amazing 90 horse power. It actually did work and for years was used in taxi cabs. Too bad that in our big, fat, high performance world or fuel pigs this type of vehicle does not come back. Is it time for a diesel engine to get over 60 miles per gallon as those in Europe now do ? I think so. What do you think ? What is your opinion of bacon ?
The European evaluation for fuel economy is not the same as the US, nor is the British definition of a gallon of liquid the same as the US. The vehicles for sale in Europe are excellent automobiles, but they do not achieve higher fuel economy than those for sale in the US market. Use VW as your example if you like. I am familiar with those Mercedes Benz cars of the past. Slow and dirty.
Comparing the old Mercedes diesels to any new diesel car is truly apples and oranges. I drive a 328d wagon and routinely get 48mpg highway at 70 mph. It is a smooth, quiet ride with very good power. I plan on buying my daughter a new pickup for college graduation and it hopefully will be a Tacoma diesel. It Toyota doesn't provide this I will look at the Colorado.
You need to step into the 20th, then the 21st centuries. Diesels are no longer slow, nor dirty. I have owned VW diesels for over a decade. They are great! Now give me a Toyota Diesel, and I would be a happy man!
Like one commentor already wrote, Why Not A Deisel Hybrid. The first Hybrid recorded was a deisel hybrid in 1900 I think. It was a Submarine.
We currently own a vw diesel jetta wagon and love it! Outstanding mileage and low maintenance costs. Our next vehicle will be a small diesel pickup for our active lifestyle: cycling, skiing and weekend projects. I can't believe the truck makers sell such diesel pickups abroad but not in the states. For us, it"ll be a VW, Toyota or Nissan diesel pickup. game on let's see who comes to market first.
Yes, it is true diesel engines need to be made of steel, not aluminum. As you may know compression causes the fuel to burn and huge amounts of power and heat are produced that steel can control and not warp over time like that aluminum fry pan that no longer lays flat on your stove after being distorted by heat and by the way higher rpm diesel engines wear out faster than low rpm diesel engines that also obtain more mpg. than the higher rpm diesel engines. SO WHAT MAY YOU SAY. Simple, diesel engines have greater torque at lower rpm than gasoline engines at the same rpm and last on average five time longer than gasoline engines. THIS IS WHY ONE HUNDRED PERCENT OF ALL LONG HAUL FREIGHT FOR BOTH TRUCKS AND TRAINS USE DIESEL ENGINES.
Hi Peter, not be argumentative (your points are all correct) but I think that engines blocks for diesels and some gasoline engines, even modern ones, are iron, not steel. They use cylinder liners in some cases. Iron is an excellent material and can be made in a huge variety of grades. - - Your point is valid about the benefits of diesel, but a couple things to consider are that gasoline engines now easily outlive the rest of the vehicle in passenger cars (and light trucks). And that small turbocharged engines like the new one from Lexus/Toyota do in fact match the torque of diesels. For example the new Lexus engine in the NX has 258 lb-ft of torque from just 1,650 RPM. - - Here is a very good reason why I think that Toyota should offer a diesel Tacoma and Tundra - The buyers want it! If interested here is a link to the info on the new gas turbo from Lexus (Toyota is getting it too): http://www.torquenews.com/1083/2015-nx-200t-lexus-2-liter-turbo-engine-companys-most-important-decade Thank you for your comments.
I LOVE my Toyota Vigo! Since 2003 I've lived in Thailand much of the year and in November 2004 bought the new 2005 Toyota Vigo 3.0 D4D 4 door (which is basically a Tacoma) with an insulated air conditioned Carryboy shell on it. It runs great and has plenty of power. Pretty much all pickups and many SUV's in Thailand are diesel and there are no large pickups there like Tundra or F-150 size. If you want a PU with a gas engine it will be a 'Special Order'. I have a fairly heavy foot yet got 28-30 mpg combined average when it was new and still get around 25. I have about 160,000 miles on it and take good care of it using synthetic oil and good quality diesel and still none of the black exhaust you typically see following diesel vehicles. Diesel is subsidized there (which is good :-) for me) since most pickups and trucks are used for work. They will load a PU until the front wheels barely touch the ground yet they seem to last forever. Probably 1/2 of their 'Long Haul' trucks use NG/LPG and it is cheap to convert a gas vehicle to LPG. There are NG/LPG fueling stations all over the place... what a concept. I have no idea why we aren't doing that here in the US. I'm bringing my wife and daughter here and we will soon be spending most of our time here in CA for about 5-7 years and will need to buy a vehicle which is how I found this website in doing my homework looking for a PU. I'm sad Toyota won't have a diesel PU until 2016 and I'm also sad to be selling my PU in Thailand since it has been so good to me yet I can't just let it sit most of the year. For those of you planning on getting a PU and can wait for 2016... it will be worth the wait.
Right on, In NZ nothing but Toyota diesel's and i love them and get around 30 mpg. Lots of grunt when packing a load. In 93 when in Guatemala I saw lots of Toyota P.U.'s with 4 doors, why i thought don't we have those in the U.S.A., I even spoke to Toyota dealers telling them a 4 dr. pick-up would sell great here. well what did it take before we finally got them. And i say this now, if Toyota would start introducing diesel p.u.'s and cars here the would be a best seller.
"If torque is your primary goal, a diesel cannot be beaten." ^ Huh??? Realize that both gasoline engines and diesel engines must continue rotating to operate. Diesels do generally produce more torque at low RPM's compared to gasoline engines. Electric motors on the other hand can produce nearly all of there available torque off of 0 RPM...something the mighty diesel cannot do.
Right, but in real life (not in theory) most turbo engines, gas or diesel, now make their maximum torque pretty much at idle, so it is a moot point. That said, I think electric trucks have a future - http://www.torquenews.com/1083/tesla-pickup-truck-talk-starting-make-more-and-more-sense
I think everyone is forgetting the market. When you account for the cost of Diesel, with additives in some places to remain compliant, the upfront cost and time value of money over the loan, a hybrid auto makes more sense for the Tacoma. Why? Broader market. Like all manufacturers, Toyota is not in business to fulfill dreams. They are in business to make money. For every Tacoma, or any pickup for that matter, that is "worked", I'll show you two that are washed weekly and are basically an car in disguise. Most never carry more than 100lbs of anything...ever.....there is simply a bigger demand for a Tacoma, at 31mpg hybrid auto, than there is for a 4 cylinder Diesel. Is there a market? You bet. But, in the US, we don't typically drive on dirt main roads, do we? We zig and zag through traffic going to and from work with nothing in the beds of most pickups. Make a Tacoma getting anywhere near 30mpg and I'll show you people lined up at the door to buy one. Toyota has THE best hybrid system, period. It's reliable, smooooooooth, and most of all, works. The truck can carry more than enough batteries (Finally, a payload...) to offset the weight....use the standard Tacoma engine or that 156 HP one (circa 2006???) with a Hybrid setup to keep production and manufacturing costs down and I'll show you one great hybrid PU that 3 out of 4 Tacoma buyers would drool over. A fun truck, with GREAT mpg, that is reliable and most of all, desirable. Like all Toyotas. Make that, produce that, manufacturer that and I'll watch the ever piss poor American made compact trucks disappear in two years....sure, they will make hail mary rescue attempts and it will show in their typical goofy manufacturing and details....they are fine for larger trucks (Somewhat) but, for compacts? Please..... Make a Toyota 6-7 speed automatic (not that dreadful CVT) Tacoma Hybrid and watch them fly off the lots...target price? Around 25K (Remember, they will be using components already tested and true...namely the 156-170 HP 4cylinder with their synergy drive...god knows, the truck can haul the batteries....modify the bed to put them just underneath the front for lower center of gravity).... Make that and it's game over.
A diesel Tacoma that gets 26MPG? Sounds great, should start at about $39,000 if not more. It'll be like the Limited package but tack on another 3 grand for the diesel. The Tacoma is already the most amount of money for the least amount of truck on the market, I don't think market research is going to conclude that this is a good idea.
I really like the idea of a 4 cylinder turbo diesel in a small truck. I have a tacoma and really like it. The problem with all Tacomas is lack of power. The diesel could be the ticket to actually using the truck to pull a trailer. With that said, we have a problem with the price of diesel in the US. The fuel is cheaper to make but costs significantly more. Why? The only thing I've heard is that the refineries make less diesel so it costs more. I would hope this could change because the increased mpg's would really be nice.
Well, that's an interesting comparison but it left out an important consideration. What is a truck used for? Based on the hybrid info provided it would make a completely useless truck. The diesel even sounds marginally though for that matter. If you want top notch fuel economy don't get a truck. It's pretty simple. If you can survive with the poor performance of the hybrid you don't need one anyway.
Probably the most prolific small pickup on the planet, the Toyota Hilux would look really sharp in my driveway. Diesel of course! Unfortunately as others have stated, we don't get that model in the U.S. Why?
I'd like to see Toyota offer a turbo diesel for the USA market. Diesel may not be for everyone, but I would think that those who need a diesel would buy one, or even want a diesel would buy one.

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