While a pickup truck may be an inanimate object, there is no denying the emotional human-like connection that can develop between owner and vehicle. And that’s exactly the case with Eric’s 2001 adventure-ready Toyota Tacoma. I remember the first time we talked about it on the phone, and despite his understanding that it was time to find a bigger more appropriate vehicle for his family, there was still reluctance and hesitation to let go of this old friend (it was tangible through the earpiece).
Eric’s Tacoma is a higher-mileage vehicle at this point in its life, but he maintained it as if he was going to keep it forever, and he has detailed maintenance records (listed in his original Expedition Portal forum post). Eric has also put a lot of sweat equity into this Taco, adding aftermarket parts himself or having them professionally installed. Here are a few highlights:
- 2.5-inch Old Man Emu lift installed by Slee Offroad
- Re-built rear axel by Slee Offroad
- Two sets of wheels included: Vision M2 Overland 16” x 8” with Goodyear Ultraterrain AT 265/75/16 tires and OEM 2nd gen wheels with Sumitomo Ice Edge 265/70/16 tires
- KC Hilites 6” Slimlight LED flood lights (7,260 lumens) with removable stone guards installed on custom brackets
- Front Runner Slimline II roof rack
- Custom-made waxed canvas window covers for privacy
- Tall topper
But as with most vehicles that have had a lot of time and love invested in them, there’s no better person to tell you about this rig than Eric himself.
If this truck could tell you about all of the adventures it’s been on and the purpose it’s served for me over the past 12 years, there would be no shortage of amazing stories to share. But it can’t, so I’ll tell you its story in as much detail as I can. First and foremost, I can confidently say that I would not be selling this truck unless I absolutely had to. However, a recent addition to our family has shifted our needs, so a bigger rig is in order for family adventures. I’ve maintained and kept it up as though I’d one day be able to kick around on backroads with my son for nostalgia’s sake, but that idea quickly became unrealistic as I began looking for a newer truck. So, if you’re in the market for a clean and well-kept first-generation Tacoma that’s been cared for by a devoutly proud owner, you’ve come to the right place.
Rewinding the clock to 2009, I bought this truck from a schoolteacher who was the second owner (just learned this by running a CarFax). She never took the truck off-road and had a short commute to get to school, stacking up all of 23,676 miles over the course of a few years of her ownership. When I bought the truck, it had 41,844 miles on it. During the time I’ve had this truck, it has mostly remained stock and evolved slowly over time to suit my changing lifestyle.
Each and every modification was performed in order to make the vehicle more functional for exploring around the mountains of Colorado and to serve as a base camp for off-grid adventures. With additions such as an easily removable custom sleeper setup in the bed with ample storage potential, a 2.5” lift installed by one of the most regarded Toyota outfitters in the industry, a raised topper with bespoke waxed canvas window covers, some super bright KC LED flood lights, a set of aftermarket wheels with capable tires, and an expedition style rack from Front Runner Outfitters to round things out, the theme has always been to keep the truck aesthetically tasteful, yet highly functional and reliable. I like to refer to this rig as an OEM-plus build.
As I mentioned before, this truck has seen a lot of great adventures. And while it’s not flawless, it’s been cared for exceptionally and will be an incredible setup for someone that’s looking to load up their gear and go. Check out the details below for a comprehensive look at this rig’s history and build features. As you can tell, I love this truck and have zero worries about its reliability or history, it’s just not suitable for our growing family any longer.
Eric’s 2001 Tacoma is currently located in Carbondale, Colorado, and is listed for $17,995. Contact Eric with questions or offers via his original Expedition Portal forum post. You can also view more images of this vehicle in Eric’s gallery.
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