Best All Terrain Tires For Tacoma – 2021 Guide

Shawn
| Last Updated: February 2, 2021

When we drive our vehicles, we normally concern ourselves with how much fuel we have, the check engine light, or the radiator temperature gauge. While all of these are vital to our automobile's health, one of the last things we think about is the only thing that is touching the road, the tires. 

It isn't until bad weather blows in that you might check your tires, and either exhale in relief or instantly start looking online for replacements. 

Our Top Picks for All Terrain Tires For Tacoma

  • Special rubber
  • Tougher sidewall
  • Sidewall traction bars
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  • 245mm width
  • 3900 lb capacity
  • 16 inch diameter
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  • Best for the Money
  • 7 inch rim width
  • Versatile
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Comparison of the Best All-Terrain Tires for Tacoma

If you have a Toyota Tacoma and are looking for all-terrain tires to replace the stock radials you have or need new all-terrains, look no further because we have compiled our top picks here.

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Specially formulated tread rubber
  • Features tougher sidewall rubber
  • Features upper sidewall traction bars
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  • Has a 245mm section width
  • Has a load capacity of 3900 pounds
  • Has a rim diameter of 16 inches
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  • Best for the Money
  • Has a rim width of 7 inches
  • Can be used on all terrains and conditions
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  • Has a section width of 265mm
  • Has a load capacity of 2756 pounds
  • Can be used on various terrains
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  • Suitable for Jeeps, light pickups and SUV's
  • Features coupling joints to reduce tread flex
  • Has staggered shoulder lugs
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What Makes a Great All-Terrain Tire for a Tacoma?

When choosing a great all-terrain tire for your Toyota Tacoma, the main characteristics to look for are tread depth, the grooves' width in the tread, and tightness of tread weave pattern. These attributes will determine how much traction you can expect, the tire's life span, and how noisy they might be on paved roads. 

The deeper the tread, the longer the life, normally.

The wider the grooves in the tread, the better traction you will get, and the tire will expel material from the tread better.

The tighter the weave pattern, the quieter the tire will be on the paved surfaces at the cost of traction on unpaved surfaces.

Photo credit: tiredeets.com

What Size Tires Can You Use on a Tacoma?

The size of all-terrain tires needed for a Toyota Tacoma depends mostly on the year model and the type of Tacoma you have. Here we put in the tire sizes for the different 2020 Toyota Tacoma models:

  • 2020 Toyota Tacoma Limited V6, you'll need P265/60R16

  • 2020 Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport V6, you’ll need P265/65R17 

  • 2020 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro V6, you’ll need P265/70 R16

  • 2020 Toyota Tacoma SR; SR5; SR V6; or SR5 V6, you’ll need P245/75R16

A lot of numbers, as you can see. Look at the sidewall of your current tires and go with that unless you want larger tires. If you want larger tires, it is best to call your local tire shop and ask them what the largest size tire for your make and model is, then go from there. 

Most people make the mistake of not paying attention to the last number in the series; the R#. This number represents the Radial Construct or the size of your rim or wheel. It is imperative to know you can’t go lower than the number that is stock to your Tacoma. The reason is that a smaller rim, or wheel, will not fit over the wheel hub, which is where the rim attaches. You can go larger, but not lower. 

Quick Take - Best All-Terrain Tires For Tacoma

In summary, here are the best all-terrain tires for Tacoma

  1. BF Goodrich Terrain T/A KO2 LT265/70R16 121S
  2. Nitto Ridge Grappler All-Terrain 265/70R16 116T
  3. Falken Wildpeak A/T3W All-Terrain 265/70R16 112T

Review of the Best All-Terrain Tires - 2020 Guide 

Now let us get into the meat of the topic. What are the best all-terrain tires for a Toyota Tacoma? If you were to ask 15 different people, you would get 20 answers. However, four big-name tire companies with a long history of quality tire products will be what we look at today. 

For this article, we will be comparing the tires for a TRD Pro Tacoma; however, this should only affect the tire's price and size, as all the other attributes should be equal.

BFGoodrich All Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Car Tire for Light Trucks, SUVs, and Crossovers, LT265/70R16/E 121/118S

PROS

  • Less road noise 
  • Good sidewall protection
  • More firm rubber to further tire life
  • Tire designed to throw rocks stuck in the tread
  • Good tread design for paved roads and light off-roading

CONS

  • Not great for thick mud, like clay
  • Tighter tread weave causes mud to get stuck in the tread

What Recent Buyers Report

Most people who use these all-terrain tires like how quiet they are while on a paved surface; they run smooth and quiet for being an all-terrain tire while still offering the driver some light off-road capabilities. If you are a construction worker who has to venture into the mud sometimes or an outdoors type person who occasionally needs to get off the beaten path, these might be the best all-terrain tires for your Tacoma.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The BFGoodrich Terrain T/A KO2 is the best pick for the person who spends more time on paved roads but sometimes has to get out where there aren't any roads at all. The BFGoodrich Terrain T/A offers the driver tread that's a little tighter woven like a radial tire but with deeper tread. 

These characteristics make the tire quieter on hardtop roads but still give it more traction while off-road. The tread on this model tire reaches a fair way down the sidewall as well. This protects the sidewall from punctures while also adding more grip if in deeper ruts.

These tires make our list because they are the best multipurpose tire. It offers better tire longevity, less road noise, and has more traction than the average street tire. If you need tires when the weather gets bad or a monthly camping trip, these might be the best off-road tire for your Toyota Tacoma.

Bottom Line

We recommend the BFGoodrich Terrain T/A KO2 for the driver who spends most of their time in the city on the hard pavement but sometimes requires a little more traction than a street radial offers. We don't suggest using these tires if you expect severe off-road conditions, but these will get the job done for the rougher dirt roads.

Nitto RIDGE GRAPPLER All- Terrain Radial Tire-265/70-16 116T

PROS

  • Tough looking 
  • Wide grooves in tread
  • Softer rubber aids in grip
  • Better for throwing mud from treads
  • Thick sidewall for protection from puncture

CONS

  • Shorter life span
  • More road noise on paved roads

What Recent Buyers Report

The individuals who purchased these tires were overall pleased with the product. Of course, they bought them because the design lends itself to a driver who is often in a thicker mud environment. Because it has wider grooves and softer rubber, there is more road noise.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Nitto Ridge Grappler all-terrain tire has a wider tread design than the previous tire mentioned. This feature gives the tire better traction in thicker mud and allows the mud to be expelled from the tread more easily. This attribute is important because if the tread gets gummed up with mud, you lose traction and thus get stuck.

This tire stands out because its wide tread pattern makes it better suited for those particularly muddy environments. If you often find yourself in boggy backlands, this might be the best off-road tire for your Tacoma.

Bottom Line

The Nitto Ridge Grappler All Terrain is a good tire, best suited for muddy conditions. It does have a trade-off with road-noise, but if life tosses you into wet and muddy conditions, you might look into applying these all-terrain tires to your Toyota Tacoma.

Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all_ Terrain Radial Tire-265/70R16 112T

PROS

  • Less road noise
  • Designed for snow
  • Good sidewall protection
  • Deepest tread in its category
  • Qualified by Rubber Manufacturers Association for Three Peak Mountain Snowflake Symbol

CONS

  • Not great in mud
  • Specific application

What Recent Buyers Report

Some of the people that bought the Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all-terrain tire have enjoyed what the tire offers. They were searching for a tire that works well in wet, snowy conditions, and this tire is designed specifically for that application. It's quiet on paved roads, and its design leads to a good life span.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all-terrain tire boasts the deepest treads of its category. This adds longevity to the tire's life. It has an aggressive design but doesn't have an excessive amount of road noise. Designed explicitly for snow, if you live in the northern part of the United States, this might be the best all-terrain tire for your Tacoma.

This tire brand and model made our list because it's designed for snowy conditions. A large part of the world experiences severe snowstorms in the winter months, so we felt it necessary to add a tire for that specific environment. The need for all-terrain tires isn't limited to dirt or mud conditions, and some of the most challenging terrains are found in the mountains, and if you're high enough, then chances are you experience snow.

Bottom Line

While the Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all-terrain does have a specific use, it offers some of the best-rated qualities for cold weather applications. So, if you live or work in a place that experiences nasty winter weather, the Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all-terrain tires might be the best all-terrain tire for your Toyota Tacoma.

Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac All-Season Radial Tire - 265/70R16 112S

PROS

  • Good load capacity 
  • Firm rubber for longer tire life
  • Aggressive tread for all-terrain tire
  • Tread designed to throw mud from treads
  • Good sidewall tread for protection against puncture and added traction

CONS

  • A little noisy
  • Heavier than other tires

What Recent Buyers Report

Most of the comments about the Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac All-Season tires are good. This is because a majority of the people who purchase these tires buy them for work trucks. Also, Goodyear is a trusted brand for tires and stands behind their product.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac All-Season tire has the most to offer in an all-terrain tire. It provides a better load range, which makes it suitable for work trucks, and has a good tread design for muddy and snowy environments. It is one of the most used tires for construction vehicles. Goodyear also has an excellent reputation for providing good products to its clients and has built a trusted name in all-terrain tires.

The Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac All-Season tire stands out because it is made for the workers whose job description takes them to where roads aren't always built yet. They're often the ones doing the road building, so they need a tire made for carrying weight while traversing slightly sloppy terrain. This tire is designed especially for these requirements. 

Bottom Line

If you are a construction worker, surveyor, or someone along those lines, and need a tire for your Toyota that can handle a load while holding its own when the road ends, then this might be the all-terrain tire for you. It does well in most bad weather and can take a beating. Overall the Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac All-Season is the Editor's Pick because it ticks just about all the blocks for the best all-terrain tire for your Tacoma.

What Are All-Terrain Tires?

As the name suggests, all-terrain tires are designed to maintain good traction in several different terrain types. Whether it is rain, snow, mud, or a dirt road incline, all-terrain tires have deeper tread and wider channels in the tread than stock radials to defend against tire slippage. Notice we didn't mention ice. There isn't a tire that is practical for everyday use and designed for ice. Tire chains are your best bet if this is a situation you often find yourself in.

When is it Time to Replace the Tires on My Tacoma?

When is it time to replace your tires is a question many people ask that has a few different answers depending on what types of tires you have? Regardless, the answer is in your pocket. Or it might be if you have a U.S. quarter-cent piece in your pocket. 

If you have radial tires, place the quarter headfirst into your tire tread grooves, start at the groove closest to the outside sidewall, and repeat in each groove until you reach the other side of the tire. If the tread doesn't reach the top of George Washington's head, you need new tires.

The process is the same with all-terrain tires, except that the tread should reach the middle of old George's forehead. With mud-tires, it should reach his nose. 

Photo credit: offroadxtreme.com

Benefits for Going Up or Down Tire Sizes for a Tacoma

The only benefit to going down in tire size in a Tacoma is it will slightly save you money in fuel costs. The reason for this is two-fold.

One, the tire's weight is reduced; therefore, requiring less energy to rotate the tire, reducing fuel consumption. Secondly, small tire sizes mean a lower rolling resistance; therefore, requiring less effort to get them rolling, again reducing fuel consumption. 

Not sure how the math breaks down as far as how much is saved, but it's doubtful to be much because decreasing the tire size is limited to the size of the rim. Also, the weight of the tire is minimal in comparison to the overall weight of the vehicle.

The benefits of increasing tire size, especially for an all-terrain tire, are:

  • Clearance between the ground and the axle
  • Clearance between the ground and the vehicle's frame
  • Greater tire depth for deep ruts

If you are purchasing all-terrain tires, chances are all of these factors will come into play eventually; how much they come into play depends solely on your lifestyle. 

Photo credit: fourwheeler.com

265/70R16 vs 265/75R16 for Tacoma Comparison

TL;DR: You gain an inch in total tire height.

To understand the difference between these two sizes, it's best to understand what the numbers themselves represent. This way, from this point forward, when you see a tire size in this format, you will be able to whip out a calculator and know exactly what you are getting.

The first number in this series represents the tread's width on a tire, measured in millimeters, from outer sidewall to inner sidewall when mounted on a wheel; this is known as the section width. So, in this case, the section width is 265 mm. For all our American readers out there, to convert this to inches, take the number shown and divide by 25.4; the number of millimeters in an inch. So, 265/25.4=10.43.

Next is the two-digit number after the section width; this number is known as the sidewall aspect ratio or series. The series is probably the most misunderstood number in all tire sizes. Many think it is a number that tells the tire's height as an actual measurement in millimeters or inches; alas, this isn't the case. In this case, 70 or 75 represents 70mm or 75mm; this is completely wrong. It's the sidewall's size from rim to top of the tread represented as a percentage of the section width. 

Photo credit: railtacoma.com

Therefore, in 265/70, the height of the sidewall is 70% of 265mm. 265 * 0.70 = 185.5. Again for the Americans, 185.5/25.4=7.3. But keep in mind this is only the sidewall height from the rim to the tread's top. To determine the tire's overall height, you must multiply the ratio by 2, then add the diameter of the rim. 

How do we know the diameter of the rim? The rim's diameter is represented by the third number following the letter "R." The R is for Radial Construct, in layman's terms, the hole in the center of the tire. The number is 16; therefore, this tire's rim size will be a 16-inch rim.

So the sidewall height for a 265/70R16 would be 265 * 0.70= 185.5mm. Convert 185.5 into inches by dividing by 25.4, and you get 7.3 inches. Now, 7.3 * 2= 14.6. 14.6 + 16 = 30.6. So your overall tire height is 30.6 inches.

Since the only number that changes between a 265/70R16 and a 265/75R16 is the sidewall aspect ratio, we know with our newfound math skills that the overall tire height of a 265/75R16 is 31.6 inches. You gain an inch. 

Conclusion

Now that your head is ready to explode from all the math it just did, let's wrap this up with an overview. You now know what all-terrain tires are and what makes them different from the stock radial tires on pick-up trucks. You know what size tires come on the different models of Tacomas and to look on the sidewall for the tire size information. 

You know our picks for the best all-terrain tires for a Toyota Tacoma and how to decode the numbers in the tire size format. We hope you feel comfortable choosing your next set of all-terrain tires for your Toyota Tacoma with all this new knowledge.

Photo credit: customtacos.com

People Also Ask

Still not enough information? The following are some of the most frequently asked follow-up questions we receive. So much so, we felt it important to include them in this article. 

What is the Biggest Tire for a Stock Tacoma?

The largest tire for a stock Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro is a 285/75R16. Because the height of a tire is directly related to the tire's width, this is the largest tire that can be applied without the tire rubbing the wheel wells of the body or the frame. 285 is about 11 inches wide, and the tire's overall height will be about 33 inches.

What Tires Come Stock With the Tacoma TRD Pro?

The stock tire size for a Toyota TRD Pro is 265/70R16 Nitto Terra Grapplers.

What Tires Come With the 2018 Tacoma TRD Off-Road?

Two types of tires come with the 2018 Tacoma TRD Off-Road: the Goodyear DuraTrac and the Goodyear Wrangler Adventures with Kevlar

How Often Should You Rotate the Tires on Your Toyota Tacoma?

In general, regardless of the make and model of a vehicle, it is wise to rotate tires every 3,000-5,000 miles. Many vehicle owners choose to have their tires rotated every time they have their oil changed, and some mechanic shops will offer the tire rotation as a free service with an oil change.

Shawn

An ex-salesman of industrial equipment, Shawn used to drive nearly 60K miles a year just commuting to clients. He also has a little project Miata build going on the side. Safe to say, Shawn has slain a few tires in his days. He knows all about horrid road-noise, hydroplaning risks, and how much damage a bad alignment can do to your wallet. He enjoys helping us out and Chris always values his opinion when designing something new for the website.