Tacoma Long Bed Vs Short Bed | Differences and Similarities [2024]

The Toyota Tacoma is a versatile and reliable midsize pickup truck manufactured by Toyota. Tacoma comes in many body types, cab combinations, and bed lengths.

You should analyze your needs and preferences before choosing a long or short-bed Tacoma. Depending on how long your Tacoma bed is, you can use it for different purposes.

You may need extra cargo space, towing capacity, turning radius, or off-road capability. Knowing the pros and cons of each bed length will assist you in picking the right bed for your Tacoma.

I have elaborately discussed the must-know differences between these two bed types to help you choose the suitable one for you.

Basic Comparison Table Between Tacoma Long and Short Bed

long bed vs short bed tacoma

There are many differences between the long bed and short bed in Tacoma. Let’s take a look at the basic comparison table and compare them in detail.

Features

Tacoma Long Bed

Tacoma Short Bed

Length

6 feet

(73.7 inches)

5 feet

(60.5 inches)

Width 3.5 feet

(41.5 inches)

3.5 feet

(41.5 inches)

Height

1.6 feet

(19.1 inches)

1.6 feet

(19.1 inches)

Truck Length

212.3–225.5 inches 208.1–212.3 inches
Cab Choices Double cab, Access cab

Double cab

Payload Capacity

1615-1625 lbs 1500-1510 lbs
Transmission Auto

Auto, Manual

Maintenance

Difficult Easy
Fuel Economy Low

High

Cost

$35,450–$38,550

$31,250–$38,050

Tacoma Long Bed Vs Short Bed [11 Differences & Similarities]

Let’s compare the long bed and short bed Tacoma in terms of bed dimension, wheelbase, payload capacity, transmission, parking space, handling, fuel economy, cost, etc.

1. Bed Dimension

 toyota tacoma bed dimensions

A Tacoma long bed is 72 to 74 inches or 6 feet long. So, Tacoma’s long bed can take a cargo load up to 6 feet long.

On the other hand, the Tacoma short bed is 60 to 61 inches long or 5 feet, making it suitable for cargo no taller than 5 feet.

The width and height of both beds are within the same range. The width of both beds is 41-42 inches. The height of them is 19-20 inches.

The difference between the short and long bed is 1 foot or roughly 12–13 inches long.

However, there is a slight difference in the width of the long bed. It is wider in the middle compared to the two ends.

2. Cab Choices

There are 3 choices in the second generation Tacomas: standard cab, access cab, and double cab.

But only 2 cab types are available in the third-generation Tacoma: access cab and double cab.

Toyota phased out the standard cab option after 2015.

The access cab configuration includes a long bed as a standard feature.

The double cab comes with a short bed as a standard feature. However, you can choose between long and short beds and get a long bed in a double cab in Tacoma.

With a comparable vehicle body and bed length, the long bed is a slightly better choice because the short bed seems too short.

3. Wheelbase

Second-generation double cabs with long beds have a wheelbase of 140.9 inches.

On the third generation, it becomes 140.6 inches. However, the wheelbase of the third-generation short-bed model is 127.4 inches.

The third-generation access cab with a long bed has a wheelbase of 127.4 inches.

So, the long bed provides a longer wheelbase and better riding experience.

4. Payload Capacity

tacoma payload capacity

The payload capacity of a Toyota Tacoma with a 6-foot or long bed is 1615–1625 pounds.

However, a Tacoma with a five-foot or short bed may tow up to 1500–1510 pounds.

The longer chassis size of the long bed allows for greater towing capacity.

There is also a standard cooled transmission for better performance.

Additionally, they are more stable when hauling larger loads because of the greater distance between the front and rear wheels.

5. Cargo Space

The long bed variant of the Toyota Tacoma is 1 foot longer than the short bed.

It can transport large items such as a washing machine, dryer, couches, equipment, and a surfboard.

On the other hand, you will have to make several trips to transport the same items with a short bed.

Increasing the length of a vehicle also increases its volume, making it capable of transporting more cargo.

6. Transmission

An automatic transmission system is included with the long-bed Tacoma.

On the contrary, the Tacoma short-bed model offers a choice between manual and automatic transmissions.

The short bed Tacoma has the advantage that you can select between the two based on your needs.

Improved fuel efficiency is one of the advantages of the automatic transmission.

Additionally, the manual transmission provides excellent handling and cargo capacities in rough or snowy terrain.

7. Parking Space

how much space tacoma take to park

You will need a garage or parking area the same length as the truck for truck parking.

The long bed Tacoma is 1 foot longer than the short bed Tacoma.

So, a long-bed Tacoma requires more storage space in a garage or parking area.

You can easily manage the storage solution in your home.

But you cannot manage extra parking space in a public parking lot, and it might be hard to find the right spot.

8. Handling

When it comes to handling, the short-bed Tacoma has the advantage over long-bed Tacomas.

Short-bed Tacoma is smaller, and you can easily drive and park them in small areas.

Moreover, you can enter crowded and packed areas easily.

They can easily navigate narrow roads and steep hills with a smaller turning circle.

Driving a Toyota Tacoma with a 6-foot bed is problematic in crowded areas due to the vehicle’s overall length.

9. Application

Since most families don’t need to haul trailers or carry much luggage, a short-bed Tacoma is ideal for family use.

It’s also very easy to maneuver, so you can quickly take tight curves.

Because of its enhanced off-road capabilities, you may take it on camping trips or other family activities.

However, Tacoma, with a long bed, is preferred for professional circumstances.

Also, the long bed has more room and is better suited for hauling lumber and construction tools.

10. Fuel Economy

toyota tacoma fuel economy

There are not many significant changes in fuel economy in both long-bed and short-bed Tacomas.

Since short-bed trucks weigh less, they get somewhat better gas mileage.

However, the extra storage space makes up for long-bed Tacomas by allowing for more efficient load distribution.

The fuel economy varies by 1-2 mpg in different transmission types, as automatic transmissions are more fuel efficient.

Without any load, the mileage of a Tacoma is 33-35 miles.

11. Cost

There is an increase in price between the short and long-bed Tacoma.

The long bed has a higher capacity and requires more resources due to its length.

Price is also affected by the variety of cabs available.

For instance, you may expect to pay between $35,450 and $38,550 for the 2023 Toyota Tacoma SR5 double cab long bed model.

You may purchase the same model with a short bed for $31,250 to $38,050.

The extended bed access cab version of the same vehicle costs between $30,370 and $37,170.

Final Thoughts

Whether you go for a long or short bed, Tacoma will not disappoint you.

If you plan to use your Tacoma as a daily driver around the house, a 5-foot or short bed would be more practical.

It’s easier to maneuver, more portable, and more capable off-road than most other vehicles.

Professionals, meanwhile, need a Tacoma with a long bed.

Simply put, it can carry more, has more towing power, and is more pleasant to drive.

So, depending on your needs, you must choose between a long and short bed.

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