GMC Canyon vs Toyota Tacoma

When it comes to midsize pickup trucks, the GMC Canyon and Toyota Tacoma are two of the most popular and capable options on the market. Both offer a blend of utility, off-road prowess, and modern features that appeal to truck buyers. But which one is the better choice? Let’s dive into the key differences between these two rivals.

FeatureGMC CanyonToyota Tacoma
Engine Options2.5L 4-cyl, 3.6L V6 (308 hp/275 lb-ft), 2.8L Duramax Turbo-Diesel2.7L 4-cyl, 3.5L V6 (278 hp/265 lb-ft)
Max Towing Capacity7,700 lbs6,800 lbs
Max Payload Capacity1,605 lbs1,155 lbs
InfotainmentAvailable 8-inch touchscreen, wireless Android Auto/Apple CarPlay, WiFi hotspotRugged interior design, available wireless charging
Off-Road TrimAll-Terrain X packageTRD Pro with Fox shocks, skid plates, all-terrain tires
Base MSRP for 2023$27,095$27,750
Higher Trim PricingDenali over $45kTRD Pro over $45k
Resale ValueLikely stronger for Tacoma
GMC Canyon vs Toyota Tacoma

Powertrain Options

  • The Canyon offers three engine choices:
    • 2.5L 4-cylinder
    • 3.6L V6 (308 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque)
    • 2.8L Duramax Turbo-Diesel
  • The Tacoma has two options:
    • 2.7L 4-cylinder
    • 3.5L V6 (278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque)
GMC Canyon

The Canyon offers three engine choices – a 2.5L 4-cylinder, a 3.6L V6, and a 2.8L Duramax Turbo-Diesel. The Tacoma has two options – a 2.7L 4-cylinder and a 3.5L V6. The Canyon’s V6 makes 308 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque, outmuscling the Tacoma’s 278 hp and 265 lb-ft. However, the Tacoma’s available TRD Pro trim gives it exceptional off-road capability.

Towing and Payload

  • GMC Canyon:
    • Max Towing: 7,700 lbs
    • Max Payload: 1,605 lbs
  • Toyota Tacoma:
    • Max Towing: 6,800 lbs
    • Max Payload: 1,155 lbs

When properly equipped, the GMC Canyon can tow up to 7,700 lbs and has a max payload of 1,605 lbs. The Toyota Tacoma tops out at 6,800 lbs of towing and 1,155 lbs of payload capacity. So the Canyon has a slight edge for buyers who need to tow larger trailers or haul more gear.

Toyota Tacoma

Interior and Technology

  • GMC Canyon:
    • Available 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system
    • Wireless Android Auto/Apple CarPlay
    • Built-in WiFi hotspot
  • Toyota Tacoma:
    • Rugged interior styling
    • Available Qi wireless charging pad

Both trucks offer spacious double cab configurations with plenty of rear legroom. The Canyon has an edge with its available 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, wireless Android Auto/Apple CarPlay, and built-in WiFi hotspot. The Tacoma counters with its rugged interior styling and available Qi wireless charging pad.

Off-Road Ability

  • GMC Canyon: Offers an off-road-oriented All-Terrain X package
  • Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro:
    • More capable rock crawler right out of the box
    • Special Fox shocks, skid plates, all-terrain tires, and other upgrades for rough terrain
    • Heritage and reputation give it an edge for serious off-roaders

While the Canyon offers an off-road-oriented All-Terrain X package, the Tacoma TRD Pro is the more capable rock crawler right out of the box. It gets special Fox shocks, skid plates, all-terrain tires, and other upgrades to better handle rough terrain. The TRD Pro’s heritage and reputation give it an edge for serious off-roaders.


  • 2023 GMC Canyon base MSRP: $27,095
  • 2023 Toyota Tacoma base MSRP: $27,750
  • Higher trims like the Canyon Denali or Tacoma TRD Pro push prices over $45,000
  • Tacoma likely has stronger resale value down the road

For 2023 models, the Canyon has a base MSRP of $27,095, while the Tacoma starts at $27,750. However, climbing to higher trims like the Denali for the Canyon or TRD Pro for the Tacoma pushes prices over $45,000. But the Tacoma will likely have stronger resale value down the road.

The Verdict

  • GMC Canyon:
    • More powerful engine options
    • Higher tow ratings
    • Some nice tech features
  • Toyota Tacoma:
    • Choice for hardcore off-road enthusiasts
    • Valued for its capability and reliability over the road less traveled

In the end, both the GMC Canyon and Toyota Tacoma have their strong suits. The Canyon offers more powerful engine options, higher tow ratings, and some nice tech features. But the Tacoma remains the choice for hardcore off-road enthusiasts who value its reputation for capability and reliability over the road less traveled. Buyers will have to prioritize their needs to pick the midsize truck that is the better fit.

GMC Canyon: 8/10


  • More powerful engine options including a V6 (308 hp) and diesel
  • Higher max towing (7,700 lbs) and payload (1,605 lbs) capacity
  • Available with modern tech features like an 8-inch touchscreen, wireless smartphone integration, and wifi hotspot
  • Offers an off-road focused All-Terrain X trim


  • Not quite as capable as the Tacoma’s TRD Pro model for serious off-roading

Toyota Tacoma: 9/10


  • Exceptional off-road capability with the TRD Pro model and its upgrades
  • Reputation for reliability and strong resale value
  • Rugged and proven design focused on off-road performance


  • Slightly less powerful engine options compared to Canyon
  • Lower towing (6,800 lbs max) and payload (1,155 lbs max) ratings
  • Tech features lag behind Canyon’s available systems

Overall, both are very capable midsize trucks. The Tacoma gets a slight edge for its class-leading off-road prowess and reputation, while the Canyon rates very high thanks to its stronger towing/hauling numbers and more modern tech availability. But they seem well-matched for most truck buyers’ needs.

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