Ok, I just found this site while searching for general information on Tacomas. I have a 5.7 L '96 Chevy 1500 extended cab long bed, and a '93 Dakota 3.9 L V6. Dakota has only had one minor transmission problem since I got it in 1997, but the Chevy is presently in the transmission shop for a rebuild. $750 fuel pump on Chevy in spring, a/c problems, etc. I am done with Chevrolets I think, and my next truck will probably be a Tacoma.
I tow a small boat and a 5,000 lb travel trailer, so need the towing package. I also do not buy new, but now need to drive the money out of the Chevy before I get a Tacoma, hopefully in about two years (I move very slow when spending my $!). I would buy now, but better wait.
Here's what I want:
1. Four door cab
2. V6, manual transmission, towing package
3. Two wheel drive will do (but wouldn't mind 4WD)
4. 2006 and up model - wish I could get leather seats! No option, right?
All you have to do is check out the various truck forums online, and I think you can get a fair idea of a truck's reliability. My Dakota has been incredibly solid, but would not get a newer one. I'm done with Chevy... don't like Ford or Nissan... So, that leaves Toyota, and I think the Tundras are ugly! Plus, Chevys even get better gas mileage, of which I cannot complain with my '96. Fuel economy and comfort are two areas I like about the Chevy. I get over 13 mpg pulling the trailer, and almost 20 mpg on trips. Not bad for a 350 V8 long bed truck.
Anyway, I'll keep checking out this site to see what y'all boys (and gals) are saying problem-wise mainly with your Tacomas... So far, I think I have learned that the '05s have some problems (that on the Edmund's site), and '07s seem to be the most problem free for now... Thanks!