Can A Tacoma Pull A Camper?

The Toyota Tacoma is a commonly owned smaller pickup truck. It can drive on dirt roads and its engines don’t break down easily. Many Tacoma owners want to know if their truck can pull a camping trailer for weekends or longer trips. This article will show what Tacomas can pull trailers and what makes some trucks better at it.

Many families like to go camping on the weekends. They pack up their camping gear and camper on Friday after school. Then they get in the truck to drive to the camping spot. They hope to see the bright stars at night. Their Toyota Tacoma truck pulls the camper. But is it the right truck for the job? Or should they get a bigger truck? Keep reading to find out if their Tacoma can do the work.

Pulling a camping trailer behind your Toyota Tacoma truck can be a fun way to spend time outside. But you must make sure your particular Tacoma can do the work. In this article we will learn how much different Tacoma trucks can pull. We will also give tips to pull a camper safely with your Tacoma.

Tacoma Model Towing Specs

Tacoma Model Towing Specs

Tacoma trucks from 2005 to 2015 could pull 3,500 pounds if they have two wheels to drive (called 4×2). If they have four wheels that can drive (called 4×4), they could pull 5,000 pounds. The trucks with bigger V6 engines could pull a little more weight.

Newer Tacoma trucks from 2016 to now can pull much more weight. 4×2 models can now pull 6,500 pounds. And 4×4 models can pull 6,400 pounds. This is a big upgrade and means they can handle heavier trailers. Toyota, the company that makes Tacomas, says the trucks can pull up to these weights if the engines, axles and transmissions are set up for it properly. Going over these weights may cause problems.

Key Factors For Towing A Tacoma

The engine is very important. The smaller standard 4-cylinder engines found in most Tacomas are fine for lighter trailers. But the bigger optional V6 engines make it easier to start and stop with extra weight behind. Having four driven wheels (4×4) makes it easier to grip the road, but those trucks weigh more empty and can pull a tiny bit less weight. Automatic transmissions are better for towing than manual stick-shift transmissions.

The trailer weight also matters a lot. Lighter trailers are easier to pull than heavy ones. You need to find out your trailer’s weight without anything inside, called the dry weight. And know the full weight with everything and people in it. Trailers that are wider or catch more wind can blow around, so you need to drive slower sometimes.

Matching Campers To Tacomas

Matching Campers To Tacomas

Now that we understand how much different Tacomas can pull, we can figure out what size campers they could safely handle:

  • Really big motorhome trailers are too heavy even for new Tacomas.
  • Fifth wheel campers that are up against the truck bed are also often too heavy for Tacomas.
  • Mid-size fifth wheel or bumper pull trailers under 6,000 pounds could work for newer Tacomas with V6 engines and 4×4.
  • Smaller bumper pull trailers or pop-up campers under 4,500 pounds should be no problem for most Tacomas.

Staying under the Tacoma’s weight limit will help it tow better and last longer.

Towing Tips For A Tacoma

Here’s some advice to tow safely:

  • Know the limits of your Tacoma year from the owner’s manual.
  • Get trailer brakes that match your truck’s brakes.
  • Use weight distributing hitches to help with braking and handling.
  • Check fluids before long trips with extra weight behind.
  • Practice backing up with an empty trailer first before camping trips.
  • Tow slower in strong winds or steep mountain roads.
  • Consider getting a newer or larger truck if your camper is over 15% of the Tacoma’s weight rating.

By preparing your Tacoma and matching it to the right camper size, you can enjoy safe and fun camping weekends for many years to come. Let me know if you have any other towing questions.

Which Tacoma Model Is Best For Towing?

Which Tacoma Model Is Best For Towing?

Some people want to know which Tacoma truck is strongest for pulling a trailer. The newest 2023 Tacoma SR, SR5, and TRD Sport trucks can pull the most weight safely. These models have stronger engines and parts that allow them to pull up to 6,800 pounds behind them, as long as other parts like hitches and brakes also match this weight limit.

Other older or base model Tacomas have lower towing limits. So if you really want to tow a heavy camper, consider getting one of these top SR, SR5 or TRD Sport trucks from the latest year to get their best towing power. Just be sure everything is set up properly for 6,800 pounds of trailers.


Can a Tacoma really tow 6500 lbs?

Tacomas that use gas in their engines can pull 6,500 pounds behind them. But the Tacomas with a special hybrid turbo engine can only pull 6,000 pounds. That’s still good for a smaller truck like the Tacoma! The hybrid engines aren’t as strong for pulling. But 6,000 pounds is enough to bring a camping trailer and have fun weekends away.

How much can a Tacoma comfortably tow?

Basic Tacoma trucks can pull 3,500 pounds. But Tacomas with a special towing option can pull much more. The towing package gives the Tacoma a better battery, strong hitch and engine cooling. This lets Tacomas pull very heavy trailers of up to 6,800 pounds without issues.

What is the 80 20 rule for towing?

Many people who tow trailers follow a good rule. The rule says don’t pull a trailer that weighs more than 80% of what your vehicle can pull. This means if your car can pull 6,000 pounds, only pull trailers under 4,800 pounds (which is 80% of 6,000). Following this rule helps make sure your vehicle is not trying to pull too much weight. It keeps you and your trailer safer when driving.

Are Tacomas good at towing?

Basic Tacomas with four cylinders can pull 3,500 pounds. But Tacomas with a bigger V6 engine can pull more at 6,400 pounds if it has TRD parts. Driving on rough land is easier too with the feature to control trailer shaking. This helps steady the trailer no matter how bumpy the road is.

Final Thoughts

Can A Tacoma Pull A Camper? Tacoma trucks can for sure pull small campers if done right. Just choose a camper size your Tacoma can handle. Follow the tips for safe towing too. Then relax and have fun camping! The newest Tacomas can pull the most weight. But older ones may still work if you stay under limits.

Always prepare well so everyone gets home safe. And if all else fails, a simple pop-up tent may work better than a big trailer. The important thing is enjoying time with family and friends outside. No matter what you tow, your Tacoma will get you there as long as you take care of it.

Leave a Comment