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2016 Toyota Tacoma Wins Mid-Size Truck of Texas Award

After two days of demanding on and off-road driving at Knibbe Ranch in Spring Branch, Texas, journalists voted the 2016 Toyota Tacoma as the Mid-Size Pickup of Texas. This award, against tough competition, is a big victory for Toyota and could be just the first of many for the best-selling mid-size truck.

2016 Toyota Tacoma Wins Mid-Size Truck of Texas Award

The evaluation course consisted of both an on-road and off-road component like this shallow river crossing.

“As America’s best-selling mid-size pickup for ten years running, the recognition as Mid-size Pickup Truck of Texas confirms our efforts to produce a great truck that will carry Tacoma’s legacy as the toughest, most durable truck in the segment,” said Mike Sweers, Tacoma chief engineer. “Toyota’s commitment to the new Tacoma was focused on meeting the needs of adventure-seekers on a variety of tamed and untamed surfaces.”

The Mid-Size Truck of Texas award comes from the Truck Rodeo event put on by the Texas Auto Writer’s Association. This year nearly 70 journalists selected their favorite pickup trucks, SUVs and CUVs in 17 categories. In total the event brought in 88 vehicles from the world’s top truck manufacturers for off-road and on-road testing. Each journalist rated each vehicle based on key criteria like styling, performance and value.

2016 Toyota Tacoma Wins Mid-Size Truck of Texas Award

The TAWA Board of Directors present this award to Toyota Chief Engineer Mike Sweers (in red).

As one of the jurors for this year’s event, I can honestly say the competition was stiff with Chevy bringing their new baby Duramax powered Colorado pickups. These trucks, one in base and another in a Trail Boss configuration, got a lot of attention from jurors as they tried to pick the best one. It wasn’t certain Toyota would win the award at all from the onset, but the sheer amount of off-road capability, plus the presence of Toyota Chief Engineer Mike Sweers at the event put them over the top.