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Old 11-17-2012, 08:06 PM   #1
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Prerunner "locking" confusion

I've been doing some preliminary research on first Taco purchase and I am leaning towards the access cab, 4 cyl, AT, prerunner. My interest in the pre runner is based on the higher stance and thus easier for me to enter and exit the cab. Here is where the confusion comes in. I've also gotten the impression that the prerunner has some capability of locking the rear differential but I don't see anything to this effect on the Toyota "build" website.
Is this locking feature inherent with the prerunner or is this something that requires after purchase modification later on?

Thanks for your comments.

Rick
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:41 PM   #2
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The only model that has a locking rear is the Off-Road. You can get the off-road in 4wd or 2wd(prerunner). There is no 4cyl Off-road model.

What model do you want? SR5, Sport, Off-road?
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:43 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jasmine View Post
The only model that has a locking rear is the Off-Road. You can get the off-road in 4wd or 2wd(prerunner). There is no 4cyl Off-road model.

What model do you want? SR5, Sport, Off-road?
This ^ and what do you want to do with your truck in the long run?
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:45 PM   #4
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The mechanical locking diff is part of the TRD Off Road package. As far as I know, the TRD packages are still only offered on Access Cab V6 models.

I think that even the base models have the electronic traction control that can be put into Limited Slip Differential mode. My work truck has that on it, seems to work pretty well, but I'm not going wheeling with it, so don't know how well it would do in a true low traction situation.
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:48 PM   #5
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To clarify further, I was looking to add the SR5 package. This truck would not likely be used off road very much if at all. Yes, we get the occasional snow here in the northwest but again, this is an infrequent occurrence.

It's been really difficult to narrow down the choices in the Tacoma line and feel like one is making the right decision.

Rick
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcrna View Post
To clarify further, I was looking to add the SR5 package. This truck would not likely be used off road very much if at all. Yes, we get the occasional snow here in the northwest but again, this is an infrequent occurrence.

It's been really difficult to narrow down the choices in the Tacoma line and feel like one is making the right decision.

Rick
If you are not going to OR. Just get a V6 Sr5 4x4. No need for the extra goodies. Unless you want the seats.
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcrna View Post
To clarify further, I was looking to add the SR5 package. This truck would not likely be used off road very much if at all. Yes, we get the occasional snow here in the northwest but again, this is an infrequent occurrence.

It's been really difficult to narrow down the choices in the Tacoma line and feel like one is making the right decision.

Rick
If you get the SR5 package, it won't come with a locked diff. So your getting the SR5 prerunner, 4cyl, 4-speed automatic? You can always buy an aftermarket locker.
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:57 PM   #8
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Why do you think you'll need a locker? If you are getting a base model, you will probably have no need for one.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:08 PM   #9
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Thanks for the feedback so far. So, looks like I am narrowing this down further to be a 4 cyl, AT, Access Cab, SR5 model. As I mentioned initially, I was only looking at the PreRunner for its added height to making entering and exiting the cab easier.

Since I don't plan on towing much and would like to optimize my fuel economy, the 4 cylinder is probably the way to go.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:16 PM   #10
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I'm not sure there is a difference in height at all. I think the SR5, whether you get 4x2, 4x2 prerunner or 4x4, should all be relatively the same height-wise.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:33 PM   #11
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According to the toyota website ground clearance for a 4x2 access cab is 8.1 inches and for PreRunners and 4x4 models is 9.3 inches. That is what caught my attention as far as height and ease of getting into and out of the cab.

Ultimately, I'll have to try them both out and see what best fits the ol' body.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcrna View Post
According to the toyota website ground clearance for a 4x2 access cab is 8.1 inches and for PreRunners and 4x4 models is 9.3 inches. That is what caught my attention as far as height and ease of getting into and out of the cab.

Ultimately, I'll have to try them both out and see what best fits the ol' body.
Oh ok! I figured if anything it wouldn't be much.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:41 PM   #13
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the ground clearance is roughly the same, but you're right -- the prerunner will have the higher stance of the 4x4 model, making it much easier to get in/out.

as far as options go, if you're not going for the 4x4, i wouldn't worry about the locker. the locker is generally not a good idea in snow as it can cause very uncontrollable handling. the locker is more for getting unstuck from a low-traction situation rather than long-term driving.

with a good set of tires, some weight in the bed, and the careful application of the skinny pedal, the prerunner can do alright in the snow, especially as infrequently we in the PNW see it.

welcome from everett, wa, by the way (i grew up in vancouver -- my parents still live there)!
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:51 PM   #14
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i have the trd prerunner 99 and i do, although rarely, take it off road. nothing extreme tho, i've never had to use (or even used, for that matter) my rear diff e-locker before, any time i got stuck i just dropped it into low gear (automatic trans) and was fine. except once i did bite off way more than i could chew and had to get pulled out of quite the puddle lol, but that was when i was a teenager... i always assumed the locking diff was intended for low speed off road purposes, but i've been wondering: is it ok to have on for city or highway driving?
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:53 PM   #15
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nope. locker is for getting unstuck from sticky situations. not for use on roads/highways (and especially turning) where you have plenty of traction unless you like wearing out tires super fast and possibly ruining your diff.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluePearlShark99 View Post
i have the trd prerunner 99 and i do, although rarely, take it off road. nothing extreme tho, i've never had to use (or even used, for that matter) my rear diff e-locker before, any time i got stuck i just dropped it into low gear (automatic trans) and was fine. except once i did bite off way more than i could chew and had to get pulled out of quite the puddle lol, but that was when i was a teenager... i always assumed the locking diff was intended for low speed off road purposes, but i've been wondering: is it ok to have on for city or highway driving?
No, you shouldn't be using it on road.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:58 PM   #17
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good to know, thanx for fast replies!
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:10 PM   #18
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4x4>>>>>>>2wd locker
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:41 PM   #19
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Thanks to all for the fast responses to my initial inquiry. This forum has an amazing amount of fantastic information from some great folks.

Rick
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Old 11-29-2012, 03:50 PM   #20
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If it's a "locker", there'll be a button on the dashboard. I bought a 2003 Tacoma, pre-runner, SR5 with a painted matching camper shell in August - 2.7 with 4-speed (yuk) automatic.....I LOVE IT!!!!! I go out once a week here in Southern Oregon and drive logging roads (don't need 4WD)....have never had any problems, tons of road clearance and I get 20+ mpg........paid $13,500 with 89,000 miles...
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