Home » The 2024 Toyota Tacoma Has Simple, User-Friendly Features I Wish Every Truck Had

The 2024 Toyota Tacoma Has Simple, User-Friendly Features I Wish Every Truck Had

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Last week, I got to take a look at the all-new 2024 Toyota Tacoma. America’s favorite midsize pickup got an incredible update and it’s sure to retain its sales crown. While many people gushed over the new powertrain and the crazy shock absorber seats, a handful of user-friendly features caught my eye. Toyota’s engineers listened to complaints from owners and built a truck that I think just about anyone can live with every day.

Despite my massive fleet of tiny cars, unreliable German hoopties, and a bus, I do adore the pickup truck. Over the years, the pickup has evolved into the vehicle that can seemingly do it all. Do you need a work vehicle? A truck can do that. Do you need something luxurious that can also tow your huge camper. There are multiple trucks for that. Trucks travel off of the beaten path, pad your bottom line, and help provide your family with memories. Yet, for all that is awesome about the pickup truck, they can be hard to live with if you aren’t that tall.

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When I attended the product launch for the 2024 Toyota Tacoma, I chatted with the company’s representatives and engineers about how this new truck is better for everyday folks than before.

Toyota’s reps told me that a lot of Tacoma owners are women and people of all sizes. The company has been finding out that some people struggle with their Tacomas. Complaints have included the fact that the beds have been too shallow, the hood too heavy, and the manual transmission unforgiving to learners. Toyota listened to its customers and, as a result, the 2024 Toyota Tacoma has improvements for the quality of life for some owners.

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A Simple Solution To Hoods That Open Too Tall

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Something I’ve noticed with a number of modern trucks is that it doesn’t seem like a ton of thought is put into who will be owning the vehicle. Take, for example, a stock Chevy Silverado 1500. This truck would be a nightmare for me to work on. I’m five feet, six inches tall, or just a touch taller than the average American woman. The Silverado’s hood sits about 55 inches off of the ground, depending on trim level. That means the hood comes to about shoulder level on me. Opening the hood requires reaching up, popping the latch, and pushing the hood open. Ok, that’s not too bad.

Well, now comes the fun part, because since the engine bay sits shoulder level, I can’t reach anything in there without a stool. A stool to work on a stock truck! Worse is closing the hood, because my arms cannot reach as high as the hood opens. That means getting clever like jumping or pushing down on the sides of the hood. Or, once again, I have to grab a stool. This is something that I’ve noticed with every 150/1500 truck. And it’s comically bad with anything larger.

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Who is supposed to close this hood, Chevrolet?

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Of course, the tall hood heights also come with additional annoyances. If you’re about my height, you might notice that you have a giant blind spot just forward of the hood. It gets even worse when you move up classes. I feel like a kid when I drive my parents’ 2016 Ford F-350. One solution to this problem is getting a midsize truck. That should get you a more manageable front end with a smaller blindspot and a hood height that isn’t towering.

That’s the kind of truck that the 2024 Toyota Tacoma is. Even in its top dog TRD Pro trim, I can reach into the engine bay without feeling like I need a ladder. Yet, that isn’t what I want to highlight here. I talked with Toyota’s engineers and they told me that a common complaint was that the previous generation Tacoma had a hood that opened up too high. Like my experience with 1500 trucks, Toyota’s shorter customers complained that they couldn’t open or close the hood without some vertical help.

Toyota’s solution to this problem is so simple that I’m amazed it’s not implemented in more trucks in other brands.

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The Tacoma doesn’t use a gas strut, instead opting for the old-school hood prop. When you open the hood, you’ll notice two holes for the hood prop to slot into. Despite how close they are together, they make a measurable difference in how high the hood is. Toyota’s engineers didn’t have any exact numbers for me, but they told me that they designed the hood so that it could be easily opened by someone as short as about four feet, nine inches or so. Further, Toyota’s decision to go with an aluminum hood was in part influenced by complaints that the previous hoods were too heavy.

As a result, the 2024 Tacoma’s hood is one of the easier hoods I’ve opened in recent memory. Sure, it doesn’t have struts, but it’s so light that I don’t think you need them. It’s such a simple solution, too. The variable hood opening height was so simple, in fact, that many of the other journalists I talked to didn’t notice it until I pointed it out.

I know for many, this isn’t a big deal, but for someone who struggles with vehicles that sit high, I appreciate a little thing like this. I could have sworn I’ve seen this with some cars and I still wonder why it’s not more common.

A More Usable Bed

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Next on the list of changes is a bed that Toyota’s engineers say is more usable. Bedside height on the new 2024 Tacoma ranges from just under my shoulder with the Limited to just over my shoulder with the TRD Pro. Sadly, I didn’t bring measuring tape so I cannot give exact numbers there. The Limited’s bedside height is about at the very top range of what I’d be comfortable with. I do wish bedside heights were lower than this because lifting up to my shoulder is a bit much.

Getaloadofthis

That said, Toyota has given the bed a couple of tricks. The bed gains a seven percent increase in volume. The engineers tell me that this was accomplished by making the bed deeper. When we drive this truck later this year, we’ll have to see if the “deeper” bed is why the bedsides are so high. If you wonder why the bed got ever so slightly larger, this was done after customer complaints about the previous Taco’s inability to hold Yeti coolers while still being able to be closed up with a tonneau cover. By deepening the bed, Toyota’s engineers say that you should now be able to fit your camping gear and secure it under a cover.

The second notable change to the bed is the tailgate. Toyota has gone with an aluminum tailgate for the 2024 Toyota Tacoma. I’m told that not only does this new tailgate reduce weight (Toyota has not revealed by how much) but it’s now easier to close than before.

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I’m not sure what was meant there, as at least in my experience, Taco tailgates haven’t been hard to close. But perhaps that was the case for some customers. Optional for this tailgate is a power open and close feature. Toyota says this is a rarity in the midsize truck segment and, so far as I can tell, the company is right. The power tailgates were finicky on the prototypes brought to Hawai’i, but they showed great potential. As Toyota sees it, if your hands are full with something, you can just let the tailgate open itself. Toyota’s reps tell me that all of these tricks are developments created after customer feedback.

A Forgiving Manual Transmission

Another change with the 2024 Toyota Tacoma is its six-speed manual transmission. Out of the gate, the awesome thing here is that Toyota is even offering a manual when so many others are not. Even better is that the Tacoma’s manual has gotten some upgrades. It’s running the second iteration of Toyota’s Intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT2). This transmission comes with a few neat trick features.

One program that is carried over from previous Toyotas is an anti-stall system. If you’re working hard on a technical trail and let your revs get too low, the truck will attempt to prevent a stall by boosting the revs a little. Tacoma Chief Engineer Sheldon Brown tells me that this feature will be great for off-roaders and people just learning to drive manual. I’ve seen so many people stall manual trucks off-road. Brown is right when he tells me that stalling is embarrassing. More than that, stalling means losing the momentum you might have had, so the 2024 Tacoma will help you try to keep it. And if you’re just learning to drive manual, the truck will try to keep you from stalling out from your learning footwork.

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New to the Tacoma’s manual transmission is automatic rev-matching. Brown tells me that some Tacoma owners have been looking for this for a while. Indeed, forums show people trying to hack their own version together. Well, in the new 2024 Tacoma, the truck will match the revs for you. Brown gave me an example of a person who worked a long and hard day at work. They’re tired, so getting perfect shifts isn’t on their mind. Well, the truck can pick up the slack and rev-match for you so that your engine’s flywheel is already at a speed similar to that of the clutch (which rides on the transmission input shaft driven by the wheels).

We’re still not done with the transmission’s perks yet. Another carryover feature is Clutch Start Cancel.

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Many (most?) manual cars require you to push the clutch pedal to start the engine. This may be somewhat annoying if you’re wrenching and need to start and stop the engine frequently. With the push of a button, you can start your manual transmission 2024 Toyota Tacoma without pushing the clutch pedal. For Brown, the benefit of this is getting out of a sticky situation off-road or out of a tight parking space on a hill. Specifically, he’s talking about a parking job where rolling back means a fender bender with a tree or a parked car.

With Clutch Start Cancel, you can put the truck into gear and start the engine. The starter motor will move the truck forward as it starts up the engine. Thus, there’s no rolling back as you try to work the clutch on a hill. It’s a feature that has been around for some time and makes a continuation here, adding to the list of smart programs.

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Help With Towing Trailers

Alright, so you’ve checked your oil with the snazzy lightweight hood and got up that steep driveway with the Clutch Start Cancel, what else does Toyota have in store? The 2024 Toyota Tacoma has added towing assistance software. Now, towing assists are quite common nowadays and there’s almost a war between the Big Three on who can automate towing the most. No, the Tacoma won’t back up to your trailer for you and there isn’t a camera to make your trailer appear transparen. Instead, you’re getting technology trickled down from the 2022 Tundra.

The headlining trailer assist, I think, is the Trailer Backup Guidance system with Straight Path Assist. With Trailer Backup Guidance, your Tacoma will guide you in reverse by displaying arrows on your infotainment display to tell you which way your trailer is turning. You can then use this information to adjust your steering accordingly. Toyota says that this is the default mode when you’re backing up with a trailer.

The real Tacoma towing tech upgrade comes from the Straight Path Assist feature. So, say with the Backup Guidance system you still can’t get your trailer to reverse straight. Well, next you could toggle Straight Path Assist. In this mode, the truck’s systems will control the steering to ensure your trailer reverses in a straight line, regardless of the angle of your truck. Of course, this isn’t as smart as some of the trailer towing tech we’ve seen, but it’s a huge upgrade for the Tacoma. Here’s how it works with a Tundra:

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In addition to this, you also get an integrated brake controller, a 360-degree top-down camera that can work with trailers, and the truck’s blind spot monitor is also compatible with some trailers.

All of this tech combines with a suite of safety programs like a radar-based cruise control system and a pre-collision warning system capable of detecting pedestrians and cyclists. If you were to have a medical emergency behind the wheel of your Tacoma, the truck is capable of bringing itself to a safe stop.

A Truck For Almost Everyone

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Of course, some might be quick to say that they would never need half of the stuff I mentioned today. Heck, there are probably some of you who wouldn’t use a single thing mentioned here. I know how to back up a trailer so I wouldn’t use the towing assists. Not being able to use a tonneau cover also doesn’t bother me, so I’d take shorter bedsides.

Yet, I’m glad all of that stuff is there. There are truck buyers who I’m certain would love these upgrades. My dad is definitely at the point in his driving career where reversing a trailer is no longer his skillset, just ask our family RV.

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My favorite change out of all of these is that hood prop setup. As I said before, people missed this during the event, but I didn’t. Because I’m not that tall, opening and closing tall hoods can be a task, so I quickly noticed the change. Really, I’d love to see something like this on more trucks. Maybe not specifically hoods with multiple holes for the props (especially because a lot of trucks use hood struts), but maybe hoods with different height settings. Either way, I love when automakers listen to their customers, so kudos to Toyota for making the Tacoma what appears to be a killer truck.

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Plesiomorphus primitivus
Plesiomorphus primitivus
1 year ago

So much electronics. I would love to know how many chips trucks these days require..

Timothy Swanson
Timothy Swanson
1 year ago

I greatly appreciate the perspective of a fellow “fun size” human – I’m 5’7″. Also, let me say you are rocking the blue hair and don’t F with me look in that photo. Rock on.

Thomas Metcalf
Thomas Metcalf
1 year ago

I am on the large side of normal but grew up in a family of Hobbits. My dad was the tall one in his family at about 5’8″. His brother is about 5’5″ and their sisters are shorter. My mom’s side of the family is equally tiny. My brother any I are both around 6 feet (me a little over, him a little under) and 200+ lbs.
This has led to some funny car scenarios. Once, I had to move my aunt’s X5 and forgot about the seats moving up to the driver’s selected seating position. It looked like the trash compactor scene in Star wars as I frantically tried to stop the seat from squishing me.

S13 Sedan
S13 Sedan
1 year ago

These changes all sound good but increasing bed height specifically because the owners were complaining that they couldn’t fit a Yeti cooler with a bed cover on is possibly the most Tacoma owner thing I’ve ever heard. I imagine the venn diagram of newer Tacoma owners and Yeti cooler owners is pretty close to a plain circle.

Sarah Bell
Sarah Bell
1 year ago
Reply to  S13 Sedan

Along with the powered aluminum tailgate, it really caters to the “buying a pickup truck even though a car is a better fit for my needs” state of the market.

Freelivin2713
Freelivin2713
1 year ago

Awesome about the stick shift…it looks a little tall and close to controls…wonder if your arm would get tired? Looked more comfortable in my 84 Jetta (lower and console not high)

Ana Osato
Ana Osato
1 year ago

Is there a diesel option?

Grey alien in a beige sedan
Grey alien in a beige sedan
1 year ago
Reply to  Ana Osato

If there is, it won’t be sold in the USA… It’s been a long while since the big T has put the D in its vehicles here.

FloridaNative
FloridaNative
1 year ago

My 1986 Subaru had two slots for propping the hood open. One for normal use and one for “servicing”.

W124
W124
1 year ago
Reply to  FloridaNative

Older Benzes (might be newer too, don’t know) have also a service position, where hood opens full 90 degrees.

MrLM002
MrLM002
1 year ago

Apparently this new Tacoma is 4″ wider than the previous gen Tacoma, and considering how large the previous gen Tacoma was I can’t see myself getting one of these.

Sure there are lots of nice things with it, but there’s a 0% chance of me buying a new car that has a worse turning circle and that takes up more space than my 94 Toyota pickup.

Jason Smith
Jason Smith
1 year ago
Reply to  MrLM002

This is a big reason I’ll be holding on to my first gen Tacoma until it dies (or I do, whichever comes first).

Thomas Metcalf
Thomas Metcalf
1 year ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

Most likely that you will die before the Taco.

Drew
Drew
1 year ago

I’m over 6′, and I would love to see shorter sides (or side gates, at least) and a lower load floor. And a lower hood and better visibility.

Doctor Nine
Doctor Nine
1 year ago

So this ‘mid-sized’ truck is now about the same dimensions as an F250 from 1974?

V10omous
V10omous
1 year ago
Reply to  Doctor Nine

No

Drew
Drew
1 year ago
Reply to  Doctor Nine

Depends on the dimensions.

Height, maybe, which is the focus here. The base F250 was 6′ tall, and the Tacoma seems to be a little taller in at least some configurations. The F250 Highboy was about 6″ taller, and I’m not sure that even the TRD Pro gets up to 6’6″. 1978 F250 didn’t have such a tall 4×4, so that would be a pretty direct comparison. Can’t find good info on the hood height or load height, which would be nice to have, as I suspect the load height on the Highboy would be higher than the Tacoma, but the 2WD would be lower, but I would need good numbers to be sure.

Width? I have yet to see a definite spec, but the Tacoma is most likely slightly narrower. The ’23 is about 5-6″ narrower. If the rumor of 4″ width increase is true, we’re pretty close, though

Length is a little murky: a single cab 1974 F250 was 211″, so the shortest Tacoma is an inch longer than that, but the Tacoma is only available in access cab or crew cab. A crew cab F250 would be significantly longer at 233.6″.

Chronometric
Chronometric
1 year ago

So Toyota has invented clever solutions to problems that shouldn’t exist. JUST STOP MAKING THE TRUCKS SO DAMN TALL. I bet Mercedes could access the hood and bed in my 2003 Tundra (you know the “big” truck) without a step stool.

And I know of no one that asked for the truck bed sides to be higher. What are they carrying, a cubic yard of pillows?

Ben
Ben
1 year ago
Reply to  Chronometric

And I know of no one that asked for the truck bed sides to be higher. What are they carrying, a cubic yard of pillows?

As stated in the article: Yeti coolers.

Jerry Thomas
Jerry Thomas
1 year ago

My take away from all this, is that Toyota has an engineer who shares a name with the late great Raleigh bicycle mechanic Sheldon Brown. Might have to blow dust off my old Sprite.

MH7
MH7
1 year ago

I do have to say stuff like this makes me happy-I’ll take basic but thoughtfully engineered over a ton of gimmick and novelty electronics.

Can confirm that roll up tonneau covers are the best thing to happen to trucks in decades-keeps stuff dry and away from opportunistic thieves, get rolls up completely out of the way in 15 seconds. I would have preferred they kept the belt line and overall stance a touch lower though-overpriced coolers be damned. Every time I see a stock GMT800 z71 I get jealous since they actually have reasonable bed sides and hood heights (not to mention drive much nicer than my current ford).

Steve P
Steve P
1 year ago

I suppose we’re at the point where power hoods will become a thing, or have flip-out front bumpers and grilles to serve as a step. That, and front mounted cameras/parking sensors for the blind-spots.

S13 Sedan
S13 Sedan
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve P

Super Duties have had a molded step area on the front bumper for a while now. That’s the only way someone short like me could ever dream of reaching anything in the middle/back of the engine bay.

V10omous
V10omous
1 year ago

The aluminum tailgate is very nice when you’re holding something and can close it easily with one hand/arm.

Noticeable quality of life improvement on my aluminum Ford.

BolognaBurrito
BolognaBurrito
11 months ago
Reply to  V10omous

Which is a bummer when you add the tailgate step, since the tailgate step is awesome, but it makes the tailgate heavy.

2cv8
2cv8
1 year ago

Combining a deeper bed with ever rising bedside heights just means you will have an even harder time using the bed from the sides. Which means more climbing into the bed to get stuff that once upon a time you could simply reach in and grab. No thanks.

Steve P
Steve P
1 year ago
Reply to  2cv8
Eggsalad
Eggsalad
1 year ago

I want to talk about wheel size. Even the most basic trucks come with 17’s, and it’s quite common to see trucks with 20 inch wheels and more. I can see the reasoning behind big wheels and low-profile tires on a passenger car, but big wheels on a truck… I can’t see any reason besides making the truck taller. My first trucks all had 15 inch wheels, which automatically made the tailgate a few inches lower and more accessible. And that’s good.

And don’t tell me 15 inch tires for trucks are getting hard to find. If OEMs sold trucks with 15 inch wheels, there would be plenty of choices available from the aftermarket.

2cv8
2cv8
1 year ago
Reply to  Eggsalad

I completely agree. This is all about posing, not usability. I get that poseur trucks sell, but why is there no room in the market for a simple low-to-the-ground work truck?

V10omous
V10omous
1 year ago
Reply to  Eggsalad

The actual reason is larger brakes.

Yes, the 20″+ wheels are for style on higher trims, but the reason base wheels are 17s rather than 15s is brake diameters are larger.

Taco Shackleford
Taco Shackleford
1 year ago
Reply to  Eggsalad

Wheel size is determined a lot by brake size now. There is no chance a new mid size truck could have 15 inch wheels with brakes that could stop it in a reasonable distance. While I prefer smaller wheels, and have gone from 18 to 17 on my vehicle in the name of more sidewall, 17 is about as small as any 4 door-cargo hauling vehicle can do with now.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
1 year ago
Reply to  Eggsalad

v10omous is right. Its impossible to fit 15 inch rims on a 2003 Tahoe, and that is now 20 years old. The brakes were already too big up front to fit in a 15. So 17s it is. And it doesn’t make the truck taller or shorter. that is all tire diameter. I can run a 31s, 33s, or 35s, all on the same diameter rims (and their metric equivalents), and once you have a good sidewall, more sidewall isn’t improving ride characteristics anymore.

Unimaginative Username
Unimaginative Username
1 year ago
Reply to  Eggsalad

Let me tell you how much fun I had recently trying to get some 14″ tires for my 94 Ranger…

Another Engineer
Another Engineer
1 year ago

“A Truck For Almost Everyone” …Please no!
You casually mention how poor front visibility is and how the hood is a chest height which are huge safety concerns prevalent with the latest trucks. Not to mention how difficult it would be to load anything if you have to lift it over your head to get into the bed or even just climb into the thing. These trucks are only for people to feel cool driving it, to the detriment of everyone around them.

I swear the guy in the off road short bed Ford next to me at Lowe’s last night gave me a jealous side eye as I loaded 25 8-foot boards in to my minivan and closed the hatch…without even taking out a seat.

Sensual Bugling Elk
Sensual Bugling Elk
1 year ago

This is the kind of cognitive dissonance in automotive journalism that gives me an eye twitch.

When an automaker doesn’t excel in occupant safety tests, we hear about it. When the most popular class of vehicles in the country is essentially designed to mow pedestrians down, all while being virtually unusable for its design brief by anyone under 6′ tall, the closest we get it “boy it sure sucks that the hood opens too high to easily close.”

MrLM002
MrLM002
1 year ago

Yep. Poor driver visibility seems to be the norm for new cars in one way or another. The massive front ends and general massive size are stupid on modern Trucks in the US. Blame the Chicken Tax and the Footprint rule.

Jim Zavist
Jim Zavist
1 year ago
Reply to  MrLM002

Blame marketing and/or buyer “tastes”. Apparently, more “trucky” sells with pickups while actual aerodynamics, fuel economy, and better visibility sell with “real” semi-trucks.

MrLM002
MrLM002
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Zavist

If I could have a new Truck built to my tastes by a major automaker I would buy 5 of them. Sadly I cannot, nor can anyone else.

It’s about proportionality. By making the Truck wider and longer in order to lower the MPG requirements you have to make the height higher all around to make it look proportional, or you’d have something that looks like a pancake on wheels with a bed.

Get rid of the footprint rule and the chicken tax and you’ll see the massive skyscraper high hood and bedside having Trucks rust away on dealer lots while smaller and more practical foreign made Trucks flood the market.

Hell even the new “compact” Ford Maverick Pickup is 5.9 inches wider and 6.6 inches longer than my 94 Toyota Pickup which also seats 5 (legally) yet my Toyota has a 75 inch long bed and the Maverick only has a 54 inch short bed. I don’t like buying foreign made stuff most of the time but if we want better domestically made stuff we need foreign competition for that.

Defenestrator
Defenestrator
1 year ago

The hood height is absolutely ridiculous. I’m over 6′ and the hood on a Silverado 1500 makes for a massive blind spot. The worst part is, there’s tons of room between the engine and the hood, so it’s not even necessary. Purely for aesthetics, as far as I can tell.

Dsa Lkjh
Dsa Lkjh
1 year ago

I’m confused by the clutchless start thing. If you stop on a slope you have the parking brake on, right? Truck can’t roll back. You depress the clutch, start engine, start to engage clutch, pop the handbrake off and drive up hill with no rolling back.

In the UK you have to do this to pass your driving test.

On cars with electric parking brakes don’t let you roll back anyway, and hill start assist has been a thing for ages too.

Starting the car in gear and have it drive off seems like a good way of accidentally crashing in to things, while saving you from doing the most trivial of clutch operations.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

Yeah, i wasn’t sure how this feature was going to help me while I wrenching on the truck. I don’t want the damn thing driving off!

Scoutdude
Scoutdude
1 year ago
Reply to  Lockleaf

You need to hold down the switch for it to work, it doesn’t toggle on and off.

Berck
Berck
1 year ago
Reply to  Scoutdude

False. At least, in the 3rd generation Tacoma, you do not, and I can’t imagine they changed it here. That’s why the button has a light–to let you know that it’s engaged. In fact it’s just the opposite–once it’s on, it stays on until you move the ignition switch to “off”.

Scoutdude
Scoutdude
1 year ago
Reply to  Berck

Oops.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

Right? I was on my way to comment the same thing. Paking brake has been doing that job perfectly, I don’t quite see why that needed a redesign.

Scoutdude
Scoutdude
1 year ago
Reply to  LuzifersLicht

This isn’t for everyday use, it is for off-road in low traction and/or highly technical situations. It has been on Toyota 4x4s for ages.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Scoutdude

Specifically, he’s talking about a parking job where rolling back means a fender bender with a tree or a parked car.” To quote the article and by extension Mr Brown of Toyota fame.

Jim Stock
Jim Stock
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

The thing is that back when we would do this there was often several problems with the had brake idea. 1 we called them emergency brakes and the were petals with handle releasees that released all at once. 2. they were often rusted beyond use. 3. Lack of a 3rd hand as one hand is on the wheel, one was turning the key. I started in gear on many a muddy hill in old jeeps.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Stock

3rd hand? I’m confused. The way I do a hill start in a manual is: Left hand stays on the steering wheel. Depress clutch, put gear lever into first, right hand turns key to start engine. Right hand moves to parking brake, right foot softly starts pushing on the gas as the left foot slowly releases the clutch. When I feel that the vehicle wants to move, right hand releases the parking brake and moves back to the gear lever for the shift into 2nd or moves to the steering wheel if I have to do a tight turn to get out of the parking spot..
Edit: also if the commenter above is right and you have to hold down the button for it to work, then that doesn’t improve the hand situation at all anyways.

Last edited 1 year ago by LuzifersLicht
Cerberus
Cerberus
1 year ago
Reply to  LuzifersLicht

Here’s my operation: clutch in with left foot, left ball of right foot on brake, start car, shift into 1st, right ball of right foot adds throttle, release clutch with left foot while transitioning right foot off brake and fully to throttle. Doesn’t rely on a handbrake that might have problems (a lot of places in the US don’t have inspection and the owners don’t maintain) or might be a foot pedal (though not common). I’ve used the method in San Francisco, so it works anywhere.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Cerberus

Fair enough, parking brake isn’t really necessary in most cases anyhow, but I have driven overloaded, underpowered cars on steep hills before and then you’re going to have a bit of a sweaty time with pedal management alone.

Cerberus
Cerberus
1 year ago
Reply to  LuzifersLicht

Nod of respect if they were more underpowered than an ’83 Subaru GL.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Cerberus

I can offer a ’93 FIAT Punto. Less HP but admittedly a lot lighter, too.

Jim Stock
Jim Stock
1 year ago
Reply to  LuzifersLicht

I don’t want the starter to fight the parking brake. the hand release for the foot pressed parking brake is all or nothing and older starters will not keep working unless you hold the key in the start position allowing the jeep to start up the hill with the starter alone.

LuzifersLicht
LuzifersLicht
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Stock

Ok I have gathered by now that people are using the starter motor to actually drive the weels, intentionally. As somebody who doesn’t offroad that’s a completely new concept for me. On-road, though, my method works fine, even in a “rolling back means a fender bender” situation.

Berck
Berck
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Stock

There are no cars that have “petal” operated parking brakes. While some automatic transmission vehicles have pedal-operated parking brakes, I’ve never seen a manual transmission car that does. I doubt one exists. Can you find one?

Chris Roberts
Chris Roberts
1 year ago
Reply to  Berck

I drove a late 60’s/early 70’s GMC pickup at my summer job back in the 90’s. It was a beater that was too old for the town fire department so we used it at public works. Manual transmission, and I’m almost certain there was no hand-operated parking brake. Also don’t remember for sure if it had the pedal all the way to the left under the dash instead, but it had to have something, right? I mean we didn’t just let it sit in the yard in neutral or in gear. Edit: found a picture of a similar one. I’m not out to say I told you so, but as soon as I started thinking about it, it bothered me that I couldn’t remember. Four pedals: https://barnfinds.com/daily-driver-survivor-1970-chevrolet-c10-pickup/1970-chevrolet-c-10-interior/

Last edited 1 year ago by Chris Roberts
Berck
Berck
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris Roberts

Nice. Okay, does exist! My 1962 F100 has a hand operated lever for the parking brake on the left side, right about where the release for that one is. I’m guessing that as long as it has a pull-release, you can still use it for hill starts on. As opposed to the push-again-to-release version.

Scoutdude
Scoutdude
1 year ago
Reply to  Berck

Ok so they aren’t technically cars, but my 06 F-250 has a foot operated brake and a manual transmission as does my Scout IIs.

Berck
Berck
1 year ago
Reply to  Scoutdude

Still counts. I stand corrected.

GreatFallsGreen
GreatFallsGreen
1 year ago
Reply to  Berck

For some car examples, usually it’s U.S. automakers that kept the pedal-operated parking brake across the model line. Expected on cheap cars like the original K-cars, but then some fancier/sportier models too – Ford Taurus SHO, Cadillac CTS as a couple.

For one that had both – on the 4th gen Altima (2007), sedans with the auto (i.e. most of them) had a foot-pedal brake, while sedans with the manual had a different console with a handbrake. Coupes got the handbrake regardless of manual or auto.

06dak
06dak
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

This is a big feature off road – the torque and control you get by using the starter motor is much greater than anything else you can do with brakes, parking brakes, and slipping the clutch. it’s been on Wranglers for years, but rather than a switch they have a fuse you can pull to make it work. Honestly the switch, if you have to hold it, seems hokey.

JumboG
JumboG
1 year ago
Reply to  06dak

I just put a jumper wire on the clutch switch so I could operate the starter whenever I wanted to.

Berck
Berck
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

I think that using the clutchless start feature on a hill to prevent rolling backwards is not at all its intended purpose, and I wouldn’t suggest using it that way. The Tacoma (like all modern manuals) features a hill start assist function that prevents the truck from rolling backwards, so it’d be pointless in this situation. Even if you couldn’t use the handbrake as described above.

The real benefit of the clutchless start button is that if you’ve got a disabled vehicle, you can move it clear of the road (or onto a trailer) with the starter motor.

The next useful benefit is that starting a car with the clutch pedal on the floor introduces unnecessary wear on cold/dry thrust bearings. Why car manufacturers don’t just install a neutral switch for this instead, I don’t know, but I wish they would.

Plesiomorphus primitivus
Plesiomorphus primitivus
1 year ago
Reply to  Dsa Lkjh

This is where mastery of the handbrake comes in . . .

10001010
10001010
1 year ago

I never drove the last generation Taco in manual but were they that hard to drive? My 2003 Taco with the base 2.4L was one of the most forgiving manuals I’d ever driven. I used it all the time to teach people precisely because it was so forgiving.

AdamVIP
AdamVIP
1 year ago

Why does Toyota hate people being able to easily step into the bed. Just like the Tundra they seem to have omitted any kind of bumper step.

Pupmeow
Pupmeow
1 year ago

Straight Path Assist is going to have a seriously negative impact on my ability to laugh at truck drivers trying (and failing) to get their boats in the water at the marina near me.
Seriously though, I suck at parallel parking, parking a trailer, parking a car in a tight spot, etc. All of these new features save me so much embarrassment!

Ed Friese
Ed Friese
1 year ago

That dual-position hood prop isn’t anything new – it’s on my ’11 Honda Pilot, and I’ve seen/used it on other vehicles as well

Andrew Wyman
Andrew Wyman
1 year ago
Reply to  Ed Friese

Not new at all, but most of the trucks as noted do not use it. Nor do they have the aluminum hoods.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
1 year ago
Reply to  Ed Friese

Honda has been doing that for years. My 91 CRX had that feature.

Cerberus
Cerberus
1 year ago
Reply to  Ed Friese

Subaru has used a similar thing for decades, though for different purpose: the base of the prop had a second mounting hole on the strut tower so that it could hold the hood open about 90*. I don’t recall if my early ‘80s GLs had it, but my ‘90 Legacy did.

JumboG
JumboG
1 year ago
Reply to  Cerberus

I had a Mercedes Benz and it had to pins you pushed in and that allowed the hood to go vertical. BMW you remove the hood struts and when you raise the hood to vertical there are two holes that align and you slip a bolt or metal rod/pin through them and it hold the hood vertical.

Jason Smith
Jason Smith
1 year ago
Reply to  Cerberus

Yes! The Subaru hood service position hole. Discovering that was a revelation.

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