(2015 Tacoma 4X4 Limited Edition – test vehicle – BEFORE heading off-road into the mountains)
Fresh air, clean water and nature’s wondrous beauty all at your doorstep in Quebec’s Majestic Laurentian Mountains.
I consider myself fortunate to be a country boy; fortunate to have an upbringing which brought me deep into God’s country and back, on more outdoor adventures than you can shake a stick at.
Hunting, fishing and exploring nature were always a huge part of my life and pursuing wily mountain whitetail deer was at the top of that list!
This fall, thanks to Toyota Canada, I had the pleasure of taking the 2015 Toyota Tacoma 4X4 Limited edition double cab on two separate trips, off the beaten path high into the fabled Laurentian mountains of Quebec.
The 2015 Tacoma, as I discovered, is not unlike the Tacoma of days-gone-by, nor is it remarkably different from the 2000 Tacoma 4X4 sitting in my own driveway at home. (I am already a Tacoma owner)
Ok, so there are a few subtle differences between the 2015 and my 15 year old (yet still solid as a rock) pick-up truck. First off, the overall footprint has changed considerably compared to days of old, and this full double cab version I tested offers more than ample room in this small but scrappy Mid-size truck category.
The already slim mid-size truck market grew even narrower when the Big 3 all but pulled-out. Tacoma sales now account for nearly 70% of this market competing mostly with Nissan, GM’s re-entry with the Colorado & Canyon, and to some extent the Honda Ridgeline; although with the Ridgeline’s unibody construction I would place it more in the crossover category. Tacoma’s have maintained a traditonal pick-up truck ladder frame construction.
But that certainly doesn’t mean Toyota should rest on their laurels and a reputation of producing perhaps the best small truck ever made.
Or does it?
So what has Toyota offered the mid-sized truck buyer for 2015?
Despite a few changes such as regular cab being discontinued, and the introduction of Toyota’s popular(albeit somewhat pricey) TRD Off-road package, this solid pick-up has remained pretty much status quo in recent years.
In my opinion, there was really little that needed changing. The Tacoma remains one of the most sought-after used vehicles on the market with an unprecedented residual value. (I was shocked by market value of my 2000 Tacoma)
The 2015 Tacoma 4X4, I tested, came equipped with the 4.0 litre V6 which kicked-out a more than ample 236 horses and 266 ft-lb of torque.
With a towing capacity of 6500 pounds and a 1500 pound payload, this truck is about the most conveniently-sized pickup you can ask for, and an ideal choice for an hunting trip into the historic hills of southern Quebec.
This truck is not the big powerhouse and workhorse of a full-sized Tundra, but by virtue of its more modest proportions serves as a nice compromise when maneuvering into parking spaces in town.
My deer hunting excursion was certainly off on the right foot once the truck was packed and loaded on a 5-day adventure to my family hunt camp near Mont Tremblant, followed closely by another voyage to Kenauk Nature in Montebello, an hour or so away.
While on the road, I found time to enjoy the entertainment options the new Tacoma had to offer which included an awesome Entune™ Premium JBL Audio system with Navigation and satellite radio!
The interior layout and comfort level was something to behold. Bright and roomy and I actually felt a bit guilty for getting the truck dirty.
The Limited Edition model boasts a lot of great amenities including full grain leather, Sirius satellite radio, backup camera, a generous number of drink holders and comfortable SofTex-trimmed seats, heated front sport seats with 4-way adjustable driver’s seat and lumbar adjustment support. (My lower back didnt complain)
Controls were upfront and clean and as far as seating and storage space, the Tacoma came with a folding rear bench seat that tucks neatly away against the back wall.
The Limited Edition also boasts such standard features such as these 18-in. chrome-clad alloy beauties, with P265/60R18 tires, chrome grille surround and rear bumper, color-keyed front bumper and overfenders, chrome fog light housing, chrome door handles, chrome power outside mirrors with turn signal indicators.
You might say chrome is running amok in this truck, and I had no complaints about that.
Another feature of the 2015 Tacoma I enjoyed was the convenient 110V outlet located along the back wall of truck bed near the tailboard. A smart idea for plugging-in an extension light while working around outside.
Once we arrived at our lakeside paradise in Montebello, the Tacoma fit right into the surroundings with its rugged outdoor appeal. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of style and class when you’re roughing it in the wilderness.
Kenauk’s Chalet Hidden was our home for the second half of the deer season.
The mood certainly was melancholy as we checked-out of our hunting retreat for another year!
All in all, the 2015 Toyota Tacoma 4X4 Limited turned out to be a more than worthy hunting companion and a head-turner to boot! The truck performed flawlessly, got decent gas mileage and held up like a charm to the punishment of many hours on some tough mountain roads!
The new Tacoma was a huge part of this year’s hunting season and from I’ve seen, would be perfectly suited for any hunting or fishing trip you can think of. (And I can think of a lot)
After having tested and reviewed several trucks over the years, by different manufacturers, in my opinion the new Tacoma is the pick of the litter!
The Outdoors Guy
For more information on trout fishing in La Belle Province, please contact Tourism Quebec: 1 (888) 883-8801 or online at: www.tourisme.gouv.qc.ca