New Tacoma 2wd: Auto or Manual Tranny?

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Bad Climber

climber
Topic Author's Original Post - May 11, 2014 - 02:14pm PT
Tacos who drive Tacos:

Looking at the Subaru thread got me thinking about our coming Tacoma purchase. Besides occasional trips around town and lightly loaded with a shell, this rig will be used for towing an A-frame, pop-up trailer, dry weight about 1,400 lbs. For max mpg's and such, I was thinking manual 5 spd. so we can use the overdrive on flat stretches. Any thoughts on the 4 spd. auto vs. 5 spd. manual, especially considering our intended use?

Thanks!

BAd
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 11, 2014 - 02:16pm PT
Auto

'06 Tacoma

I tow this:
Credit: nature
grover

climber
Northern Mexico
May 11, 2014 - 02:33pm PT
Thread drift.......

Nature what brand is the camper?

nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 11, 2014 - 02:38pm PT
grover: Four Wheel
Bad Climber

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 11, 2014 - 03:39pm PT
Hey, Nature:

Between the camper and the trailer, that's a fair load. We're gunning for the 2.7L 4 banger. You slingin' 4 or 6? What kind of mpg do you get with that combined rig?

BAd
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 11, 2014 - 04:20pm PT
it's the 4 liter v6. 23 empty, 19 w/ camper, 16-17 w/ camper & trailer

I installed the Firestone air assist kit. The trailer gets pretty heavy with 50-60 gallons of water, battery, and the rest of the sushi kitchen. So I load everything on the tongue and pump up the air assist. I can tell I'm pulling weight but it's generally a smooth ride.
kev

climber
A pile of dirt.
May 11, 2014 - 04:47pm PT
I had an 06 2.7 4x4 5speed manual tacoma - recently sold it with 160k on it.
I will say that the clutches are bullet proof - I was still on my factory clutch and a buddy has 250k on his 05 factory clutch.

I think you might be a somewhat underpowered towing with that set up. I had a shell, with drawers platform for bed, etc and keep it pretty loaded. In this set up it was slightly underpowered any sort of grade.

The bummer about toyota is they don't let you mix and match much. You need to go with a pre runner or 4x4 to even get the 6, and you can only get the 6 speed manual with the 4x4 6cyl (lame)...Anyhow if your getting the 4x4 i'd seriously consider coughing up the coin for the 6cly and going with the 6 speed manual.

Alternatively you could just ditch the trailer and get a van!
crunch

Social climber
CO
May 11, 2014 - 05:32pm PT
Bought a new '14 4x4 Tacoma, automatic, 2.7 4 cylinders, extra cab.

Installed camper shell. A heavy load of camping/climbing gear seems semi-permanent. Put on 11,000 miles in 5 months.

My first automatic. Observations:

Happy with automatic; can drink coffee and other beverages, no spillage, no fumbling gears. There are rare times, going up hills, accelerating into traffic, out of bends, that manual would be better.

Automatic is great off road, allows super-smooth stopping and inch-by-inch easing over huge boulders and steps on steep terrain. I'm sure it'd be great for backing up gently, with a trailer, on a hill.

Though if I expected to be towing anything, I'd consider the 6-cylinder, for a bit more power, torque.

Issues: Headlights way too high. Asked dealer to them to adjust them down, they said there were already adjusted as low as they would go. Weird. I wonder if the suspension is optimized for the much heavier 4-liter engine and the lighter front end brings the lights up. Added a leaf spring in the back, lights are now lined up perfectly and, bonus! I'm not scraping the muffler so often.

Cut couple inches off the mud flaps, they were hanging too low.
Bad Climber

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 11, 2014 - 06:56pm PT
Been reading a lot about towing, and the 2.7L should do the job. Folks are getting 20 mpg on the flats, which is my goal. We'll be a little slow up hill, but we can handle that. These Tacomas seem like the ultimate little truck! Folks beat the hell out of them and they keep takin' it.

BAd
kev

climber
A pile of dirt.
May 11, 2014 - 07:09pm PT
Are you getting a 4x4?
Bad Climber

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 11, 2014 - 07:20pm PT
Nope, 2wd. We'd hardly ever use 4X4, and we're more interested in mpg. 4X4 is cool, but it kills the mpg.

BAd
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 11, 2014 - 07:22pm PT
mine is 2wd. only time i wish i had 4wd is when i'm driving on a powder day.
Bad Climber

climber
Topic Author's Reply - May 11, 2014 - 08:07pm PT
Nice to hear, Nature.

BAd
the Fet

climber
Tu-Tok-A-Nu-La
May 11, 2014 - 08:09pm PT
So I load everything on the tongue and pump up the air assist.

You load everything in the camper or everything in the trailer on the tongue?

I though I had about the recommended 9-15% of gross trailer weight on the tongue of my trailer until I measured it with a bathroom scale. I was way over.

I re-did my trailer to get everything as far back as possible to get it correctly balanced and it handles way better now in turns and in braking.
kev

climber
A pile of dirt.
May 11, 2014 - 08:22pm PT
Toss out my power statement - you may be ok with 2wd. And yes the mileage is much better with 2wd...but 4x4 is fun :)
nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 11, 2014 - 08:30pm PT
I bought the trailer at a trailer yard in Tucson. Locally owned. One of those guys who's a lifer in the biz. He pointed out that with the gas assist all my weight can be in the trailer on the tongue.

makes sense as the vehicle has no weight and the weight is low and forward.
kev

climber
A pile of dirt.
May 11, 2014 - 09:05pm PT
Nature,

We need to go diving this year...just saying...Maybe climb too!

nature

climber
Boulder, CO
May 12, 2014 - 09:36am PT
I'm in kev... would like to join ya on a shark trip.

Raja Ampat for me in Feb :)
locker

Social climber
"Sh#t shack across from the city dump"
May 12, 2014 - 09:38am PT


"Auto or Manual Tranny?"...



TMI!!!...
steelmnkey

climber
Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
May 12, 2014 - 10:02am PT
Crunch: Wondering what kind of mpg's you're getting on that '14 4-cyl?

Edit: curious about city vs. highway as well...
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