What Is The Best Toyota Tacoma Tonneau Cover Or Tonneau Cover Alternative?
Toyota has been making Tacomas since 1995, and a tonneau cover has been a “go-to” piece of equipment during its entire run. But what makes a good Tacoma tonneau cover, what do we know about the kind of tonneau cover Tacoma owners really want, and what alternatives are out there that can achieve the results a Toyota Tacoma tonneau cover delivers without any of its drawbacks?
We’ll assess the strengths and weaknesses of tonneau covers generally, as well as the pros and cons of several Tacoma tonneau cover models. We’ll also look at several alternatives that do away with tonneau covers altogether, such as the DECKED Tool Box and the DECKED Drawer System.
So, let’s look at a few different brands of Tacoma tonneau cover models.
2021 Toyota Tacoma Tonneau Cover
A good bet for a 2021 Tacoma tonneau cover is the 2005-2021 Toyota Tacoma EZ-FOLD™ Soft Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover. As you may have guessed, it is sized to fit any of the last generation of Tacomas from 2005 on. It is a low-profile design, so it provides a slick, trim look for your truck. It installs without rails, and removes quickly if you need to haul any cargo that is taller than the bed rails.
The locking clamps are sturdily built, and can be released with one hand. The vinyl comes with an attractive leather grain, and resists sun, weather and even mildew much better than natural leather products.
EZ-FOLD™ Soft Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover Prices
This Tacoma tonneau cover is a good buy at around $350 to $380.
Tacoma Bed Rack With Tonneau Cover
KB Voodoo makes a set of Hi Rise Crossbars for use with Toyota Tacoma tonneau covers. They are made of steel and finished in a textured powder coat. This is a great way to mount ski racks, bike racks, cargo pods, or even roof top tents, while keeping your Toyota Tacoma tonneau cover closed. It mounts on any of the last generation Toyota Tacoma models, from 2005 to today. They can be mounted and removed with a pair of knobs, and require no drilling. Each set of 2 bars is rated to 500 pounds of static load.
Tacoma Bed Rack With Tonneau Cover Prices
These are of course available from several manufacturers, and you might pay anywhere from $200 to $250, plus the cost of your Tacoma tonneau cover.
Toyota Tacoma Tonneau Cover OEM
You can buy a Toyota Tacoma factory tonneau cover right from any authorized dealer, of course. You’ll need to ask for the “Tacoma Soft Tonneau Cover - 6.5' - Toyota (PK3B1-35G6S)” if they need an actual part number. This is a tri-fold design with a very low profile. It self-latches, so you can open, close, and remove this Tacoma tonneau cover easily. It mounts inside the bed rails, letting you make full use of their top surface. It also works to channel water out and away from the bed.
This part number fits any Toyota Tacoma with the Access cab from 2016 to 2022. It is also available for the Tacoma Double Cab Long Bed models of the same year.
Toyota Tacoma OEM Tonneau Cover Prices
Prices vary from dealership to dealership, and you might be able to negotiate a discount. Generally speaking, you won’t be able to talk them down much below $500, but you shouldn’t have to pay more than $600. If they ask more than that (before the cost of installation) just look for the piece online.
Toyota Tacoma Tri Fold Tonneau Cover
The Extreme Terrain Tri-Fold Soft Tonneau Cover fits any model of Toyota Tacoma with a 5’ bed, from 2016 to 2022.
This soft panel Toyota Tacoma tri-fold tonneau cover can be installed quickly and easily. Most installations will not require special tools. A tight, still seal keeps water out of your bed, and its low-rise profile looks great. This is the Tri fold tonneau cover Tacoma drivers have been asking for. The panels are made of head-wearing materials, and you won’t even notice the creases when it is closed.
Extreme Terrain Tri-Fold Soft Tonneau Cover Prices
Depending on where you buy, you can expect to pay anywhere from $210 to $250 for a new Extreme Terrain tonneau cover.
Diamondback Tonneau Cover Tacoma
Diamondback has made a name for themselves as providers of rugged, hard wearing truck accessories, and the Diamondback Tonneau Cover Tacoma Edition is no exception. This is a hard-back, solid surface covering that can actually support some weight, in addition to keeping your cargo dry and relatively secure.
Diamondback Tonneau Cover Tacoma Prices
Diamondback tonneau covers aren’t cheap. An HD (heavy duty) model will set you back around $2,300, and even the SE model costs nearly $1,800. However, short of the DECKED Drawer System we’ll look at below, it might be the sturdiest and most secure option available.
Roll Up Tonneau Cover Tacoma
The TruXedo TruXport Soft Roll Up Truck Bed Tonneau Cover fits every model of 2016 to 2021 Toyota Tacoma with 5’ 1” beds except those with Trail Special Edition Storage Boxes. Like most roll-up tonneau cover designs, you can unlatch the system only when the tailgate is down. It installs without drilling, and is covered by a 5 year guarantee.
TruXedo TruXport Soft Roll Up Truck Bed Tonneau Cover Prices
Depending on the year and model of your truck, you can expect to pay anywhere from $250 to $350 for a new TruXedo TruXport Roll Up Tonneau Cover Tacoma.
Soft Tonneau Cover Tacoma
The Gator SFX Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover is an updated version of the original gator Tacoma tonneau cover. Again, this won’t fit Toyota Tacomas with Trail Special Edition Storage Boxes.
Soft Tonneau Cover Tacoma Prices
Depending on the year and model of your truck, you can expect to pay anywhere from $250 to $320 for a new Gator SFX Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover.
Rough Country Tonneau Cover Tacoma
Rough Country’s Hard Low Profile Bed Cover is a great choice for a Toyota Tacoma tonneau cover. It has a tight, sleek look, and offers the strength of aircraft grade aluminum in each of its three panels. This helps to protect against thieves, as well as to keep the weather out of your ruck bed and cargo. Rough Country also sells roll-up and soft tri-fold Tacoma tonneau covers.
Rough Country Tonneau Cover Tacoma Prices
Rough Country is a premium brand, so you can expect to pay a little more just for the name. The hard, low-profile model can cost anywhere from $650 to $750 new.
What Does A Tonneau Cover Actually Do For You?
A tonneau cover is essentially a low profile top for your pickup’s truck bed. Since the bed size has been very consistent with the last generation of Tacomas, that means most of the Tacoma tonneau cover models designed since 2016 still fit the latest trucks. A tonneau cover usually either wraps around the outside of the rails, or attaches just inside them.
A good tonneau cover can achieve three main goals:
1) A good tonneau cover protects your truck bed and any cargo you are carrying from rail, road debris, and other travel hazards. Almost every Tacoma tonneau cover we’ve seen is reasonably weatherproof. They might not hold out against a hurricane, but that isn’t a fair standard. They’ll keep the rain out.
2) A good tonneau cover should give your truck better aerodynamic performance. The open bed of a pickup creates a huge amount of atmospheric drag, and something as simple as closing over the top of the bed improves makes your Tacoma much more aerodynamic. That gives you better gas mileage, especially on the highway. It can also improve your carbon footprint, because you’ll be burning fewer dinosaurs per trip.
3) A good tonneau cover should make your truck look nicer. It should be relatively low in profile, and not floppy, or wrinkly. Then again, that never held me back. A good tonneau cover will make your truck more attractive.
There is a fourth factor – security. However, most Tacoma tonneau covers don’t seem to give security a very high priority. All tonneau covers at least try to make it harder for someone to get into your truck bed and steal your cargo. Some tonneau covers place a much higher value on security than others – the Diamondback and Rough Country models we reviewed are notable examples.
Still, none of them are truly secure, and we’d hesitate to leave expensive tools or gear in them overnight in an unsecured area. Another mark against the tonneau cover generally is that the ones that come closest to being secure are also the hardest to install and the least convenient to use.
Where Can I Buy Toyota Tacoma Tonneau Covers Or Something Like Them?
You can buy Toyota Tacoma tonneau covers just about anywhere that sells truck accessories, or even your local Toyota Tacoma dealership. You can search online as well, if you don’t want to make a trip to the local parts store. However, before you do, we urge you to take a closer look at DECKED. It won’t cost you anything to look at the site, and you might be surprised at what you find.
Tacoma Tonneau Cover Alternatives
There are plenty of alternatives which achieve many or all of the same goals of a tonneau cover without the inherent drawbacks of the system. The fact is that there are better ways of protecting your cargo, increasing your fuel efficiency, and making your Tacoma look better. Many Toyota Tacoma owners find that a hard truck topper provides a great deal more enclosed volume, for example. Others look for more secure gear storage options, like the ones DECKED offers. Let’s take a look at those:
The DECKED Tool Box – Mobile, Secure Tool And Gear Storage For Any Modern Toyota Tacoma
The DECKED Tool Box fits behind the cab of just about every Toyota Tacoma still on the road. Always check the website to find out if it is compatible with your vehicle, but it probably is. The DECKED Tool Box is solid, completely weatherproof, and incredibly secure. It can hold just about anything you might need, and is capable of protecting even the most expensive tools and sporting gear.
Better still, the DECKED Tool Box is a part of the DECKED tool organization ecosystem. It works perfectly well on its own, but it can share internal tool boxes and organizational extras with the DECKED Drawer System (see below). It even ships with accessories like a DECKED D-Box and Snack Tray small parts container at no extra charge. You can buy other organizational extras or accessories, such as a folding ladder mounted inside. This makes accessing even the tallest truck beds a snap.
The DECKED Drawer System –The Perfect Choice For 5’1” And 6’2” Bed Toyota Tacomas
The DECKED Drawer System raises the floor of your bed, granting the same aerodynamic bonuses – fuel efficiency increase, and carbon footprint reduction – as a Tacoma tonneau cover does, but also gives you a huge boost in security and functionality.
The most obvious feature would be the pair of waist-height pull-out drawers. Each of these is rated at 1,000 pounds of gear and equipment storage. They even open smoothly and easily at full load. Above the drawers, though, is an attractive and useful high impact polymer raised bed. Because this raised bed rises above your wheel wells, you can fill the entire width of your bed with cargo more easily.
Best of all, though, there is no way of reaching the drawers from the top without cutting through polymer, steel and aluminum reinforcements, and no way to open the drawers without the keys to both the drawers and the tailgate.
Best of all, the DECKED Drawer System lets you stack up all the cargo you could normally carry right on top of the raised bed. More truck bed area, no loss in carrying capacity, and a massive boost in security. It’s just a better option than any Tacoma tonneau cover on the market today.
We hope you enjoyed this exploration of Toyota Tacoma tonneau covers today, and perhaps even learned about some of the great alternatives to the tonneau cover you could choose. When you need real security in addition to looks and performance, DECKED is the answer.