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    Resources — lift kit

    The Ultimate Toyota Tacoma Lift Kit Guide

    The Ultimate Toyota Tacoma Lift Kit Guide

    Trucks are best customized, if you own one, you know what I’m talking about. When customizing, there are so many options from appearance to function. While Tacoma’s are a killer truck straight from the factory, let's be real: we like our Tacos with a little height!

    In my last post, we covered different grille options. In today’s post, we’re talking lifts. Regardless if you're lifting your Tacoma for looks or function, you’ve got options, but there are some things you might need to know before you start shopping around. Let's dive into some technical terms, and then some lift options so you can decide what's best for you and your truck.

    Technical Info and Terminology

    Coilover: A coilover is the front coil spring and shock assembly. The parts are one unit. A typical spring and shock suspension are two separate parts.

    Shock: A shock is an oil or gas filled piston that's designed to compress and expand with suspension travel. They are designed to absorb impacts to give you a smoother or stiffer ride, depending on the type you choose. You can see these inside your springs.

    Upper Control Arms: UCA are at the front of your independent front suspension (IFS). They are mainly responsible for the vertical alignment of the front spindles. They generally are not load-bearing.

    Lower Control Arms: LCA are also part of the front IFS. These work together with your UCA, but these see most of the load-bearing.

    Leaf Springs: These are one of the oldest suspension designs. Leaf springs are made of a number of strips of metal curved slightly upward and clamped together one above the other.

    Add-A-Leaf: AALs are additional springs that are excessively arched to provide additional lift or support to the rear of some trucks.

    Leaf Pack: these are a replacement set of leaf springs. They are generally designed to have a better spring rate. Leaf packs may also add lift or additional load capacity.


    Now that we've covered the parts of the suspension, let's go over the aspects of alignment.  It's important to make sure your alignment is correct. If it's not, you could have uneven and quick wear and tear on your tires and other components. ALWAYS make sure that you have your truck aligned after doing any suspension work, especially when adding a lift.

    Caster: This is the angle that your front tires are tilted in relation to the steering axis.

    Camber: The angle that your tires are in relation to the vertical axis when viewed from the front of the vehicle.

    Toe: The angle at which your front tires turns in or out in relationship to each other.

    Types of Lift Kits (Front)

    We've got the suspension components covered, so let's get to the lift options for our trucks, what they are, and what they consist of. There are a few to consider for the front and rear. For the front, we have spacer lift kits, coil lift kits, and coilover lift kits. I’m also going to give you some of examples of popular brands for each type that are being used by other Taco drivers out there.

    Spacer Lift Kits

    Spacers (also known as leveling kits, leveling spacers, or spring blocks) are the most inexpensive method to give you a fixed amount of lift in your truck.  They don't require any new suspension components or modification. They simply add “space” between your suspension and the body of the vehicle effectively giving you typically one to three inches of lift. 

    Rough Country

    For an inexpensive option, Rough Country offers a two inch kit for the front suspension for only $70. They also give you the option to choose if you want your finish to be anodized red or bare aluminum. 

    Toytec Spacer Kit

    Toytec makes multiple suspension components for our trucks to cover the spectrum of almost anything you could need. This is their two and a half inch spacer kit. At $140, they are relatively inexpensive, and they are designed to work with stock shocks.

    Extreme Terrain/Supreme Suspensions

    If you want to go all the way to the max with a three inch leveling kit, Supreme Suspensions offers a kit that you can find on Extreme Terrain for just around $100. To make Henry Ford happy, they come in any color you want, as long as it’s black.

    Coil and Coilover Lift Kits

    The kits operate the same way, but keep in mind the differences we stated before.  Coils are separate pistons and springs, and coilovers are one unit. Now, while spacers add space to the existing units, coils and coilovers replace the stock suspension entirely.  You can get them in all different sizes and stiffnesses. It all depends on what you're looking for.

    Coilovers are basically plug and play: remove the old, put in the new.  Coilover lift kits are a bit more popular for the serious lifter. While they may cost more, they are already assembled and good to go.  Some are also adjustable, depending on your needs.

    Falcon Shocks

    Falcon shocks... our favorite lift option for a Tacoma. While I may be skipping ahead a bit since these guys cover the rear as well, Falcon Shocks are your best bet if you already have the springs that you want. They offer different kits depending on your needs such as if you are going to be towing and hauling, or tackling the great outdoors.

    Toytec Front Lift Coils

    Coils are generally inexpensive as well like these taller springs from Toytec for $169.99.  These springs alone will give you 2.5 inches of lift, but add the top plate spacers, and you can get a full 3 inches! Always be mindful when buying coils to make sure the shocks you have work with them.

    Eibach Pro-Lift Springs

    These guys are known for suspensions components for all makes and models, so they know a thing or two about springs. These springs give you 2.5 inches of lift, but they say they must be used with their shocks. Regardless, you can pick them up for about $180. 

    Ironman 4X4 Performance Load Coils

    Lifting your ride means you get to see a little more of the stuff under your truck. Why not show it off? Ironman 4x4 not only gives you a three inch lift, but the neon green color of these coils really stands out! These are about $225 for the set. 


    Fox Racing Coil-Overs

    Fox Racing has bee in the business for a while, and for just over $1000, you can get their Fox 2.0 Performance Coil-Over. As mentioned, coilovers do cost more, but they are plug and play for easy installation and readiness. These are adjustable from factory height to two inches.

    Eibach Pro-Truck Coilovers

    Bring Eibach to the table again, but this time with their coilover kits. This specific one is for 2005-2015 models, but they have everything to fit whatever model you have, and with a lifetime warranty. Prices range from around $760 to $1000.

    Types of Lift Kits (Rear)

    For the rear of our trucks, we'll be talking about lift blocks, add-a-leafs, and leaf packs.  Since we've talked about these in some way, shape, or form earlier in this post, we don't need to go into too much detail.

    Lift Blocks 

    The principle of these are the same as spacers for the front.  These are blocks that are placed under your rear leaf packs, on top of your axles.  Kits generally include the lift blocks and longer U-bolts.

    Tuff Country Block Kit

    Blocks are cheap, but effective for up to three inches.  These blocks from Tuff Country can be found for about $60.  A quick search online will lead you to many offerings for around the same price. 

    Liftcraft Aluminum Blocks

    If you want something a little lighter, Liftcraft makes aluminum blocks in 1, 1.5, 2, and 3 inch heights. Prices range from $40 to $60 depending on the amount of lift, but all blocks come with a lifetime warranty!

    Bilstein Readylift Block Kit

    If you want to spend a little extra to get a little extra, Bilstein offer their 2 inch Readylift block kit for just over $140. It comes with everything you need for a complete installation so you can lift your mind at ease! That’s how that saying goes, right?


    As mentioned, this type of lift consists of an additional leaf spring that has an increased arc. They add lift by increasing the curve of your rear stock spring pack. They also allow added load capacity for hauling.

    Pro Comp Add-A-Leaf

    There are a multitude of popular brands for add-a-leafs including the very popular Toytec, but I picked this one to show you just how inexpensive this option can be as well. 4 Wheel Parts is selling this pair for about $35.

    Toytec Add-A-Leaf

    Back at it again is ToyTech with their add-a-leaf which will get you 1.5 to 2 inches of lift at the rear of your Taco. You can grab these for about $90. These guys even got feature on MotorTrend for this specific product, so you know it has to be good. 

    ICON Vehicle Dynamics

    Another popular, yet more expensive brand, is ICON with their 1.5 inch kit. While more expensive, it does come with everything that you need, including u-bolts, which other brands leave out to cut down on the cost to you. At just around $225, make sure it’s what you want!

    Leaf Packs

    Similar to replacing your coilovers up at the front, this is a replacement for your leaf springs in the back.  Depending on what you get, these could increase your ride height, increase or decrease suspension travel, hauling capacity, and so on.

    All-Pro Leaf Pack

    A full on leaf spring swap with leaf packs is going to be your most expensive route.  This kit from All-Pro Off-Road goes for about $550. Sometimes it may be best to consider an option such as this to avoid mixing new parts with stock parts.  This would be a completely new unit that gives you 3 inches of lift.

    Ironman 4x4

    If you want 2 inches of lift and better hauling, Ironman has you covered, and gives you a little extra flair with some green accents. Hey... Colors are cool! The price is a bit higher at just over $600, but that can be expected with a full on replacement.

    ARB Old Man Emu Leaf Springs

    ARB comes in at just around $315, but they are sold individually, so don’t make the mistake of just getting one! They are made for heavy loads, and they will give you 2 to 2.75 inches of lift, depending on the year of your Tacoma. They do come with a five year warranty.

    Types of Lift Kits (Body Lift)

    The last type of lift I’d like to discuss needs its own section: a body lift. This lifts your truck exactly the way it sounds by lifting the body. Spacers are added to the mounting points where the body of your truck meets the frame.

    While these are generally inexpensive, there is a lot more to all of this. You may want to get new bumper brackets to avoid such a gap between your bumper and body. You may also need things like steering and fuel line extensions. They are also not the most durable option. 


    This kit from Toytec will give you a 1 inch lift all around, and only for about $160. What’s even better is that you pair these with their 3 inch suspension kits for maximum lift! They let you know right off the bat though that you will have a gap between your rear bumper the rest of the vehicle.

    Suspension Connection

    This kit for around $322 will come with what you need to get 2 inches of lift without modifying the suspension. It includes all the hardware you needed, which has been treated for rust resistance. Like other kits of this type, it does take a bit of work to install!


    Lifting your truck is a common practice. It looks good, and gives you more clearance. There are many options, and it all depends on what you want to do.  If you just need to look good, a body lift, block, or spacer kit will do just fine. If you are serious about off-roading, then a full coilover and leaf pack kit are the best options.

    Keep in mind that any time you alter one component on your truck, it will affect something else. Factory trucks are technically meant to be left stock. If you modify them, it’s best to know what you’re doing. It’s always best to get an alignment after changing out suspension parts. If you lift your truck, remember that non-lift parts such as upper and lower control arms may need to be changed as well.

    Be safe, have fun, and lift ‘em up!


    Spacers/Leveling - Courtesy of Rough Country

    Coils - Courtesy of Toytec

    Coilovers - Courtesy of the Fox Racing Amazon store

    Lift Blocks - Courtesy of the Liftcraft Amazon Store

    Add-A-Leaf - Courtesy of the ICON Amazon Store

    Leaf Pack - Courtesy of All-Pro Off-Road

    Body Lift - Courtesy of Suspension Connection


    * Please note that some of these links are affiliate links and we make a small commission if you purchase the product.

    The Ultimate Toyota Tacoma Tire & Wheel Guide

    The Ultimate Toyota Tacoma Tire & Wheel Guide

    Wheels and tires are probably the most common Tacoma mod and the best way to customize any vehicle, and our Tacomas are no exception. Whether you intend to do some serious off-roading or just cruise down the highway, there are options for you. There are some things to know before diving in.

    Stock Tacoma Tire Sizes

    Between 1995 and 2018, Toyota did have varying sizes of the wheels and tires for the Tacomas. Even one model year may have different sizes depending on the model you get: base model, PreRunner, etc. If you’ve got stock wheels, it’s best to check your manual to see what the factory tires are supposed to be. That doesn’t mean different sized tires can’t fit, and it doesn’t mean you can’t change your wheels. That’s where customization comes in.

    Tacoma Lug Patterns

    Your lug pattern is also something to consider if you plan on changing the wheels. You are most likely going to have a five or six lug pattern. Which one you have depends on the model, but you can also always take a glance at yours or check your manual. In most cases, a 4x4 or PreRunner is going to have a six lug pattern (5.5 inch or 137.7mm medium offset), and the rest will have the five-lug pattern (4.5 inch or 114.3 high positive offset).

    Regardless if you want traction or looks, a bigger tire on our trucks is a good way to go. From the factory, we have room for a larger tire, but how big can we go? There are a few things to keep in mind when selecting your big tires.

    Speedometer Calibration

    Your speedometer and odometer will be affected. Both are calibrated by the factory to work with factory wheel and tire sized. Your speed is calculated by the number of rotations your wheels are making. If you pick bigger tires, you are increasing the circumference around the tire, so the distance around it is longer.

    Here’s an example. Your 2017 TRD Pro has stock tires that are 265/70R16, but you put 265/60R18s on instead. Your speedometer will read 50 MPH, but you’re actually going 49.86 MPH. That’s not a big difference, but if you drive it frequently and plan to keep it for a while, your odometer will show a false reading. You can reprogram your truck for new wheel sizes to avoid this issue.


    A more noticeable issue with larger tires is a loss of power. When you increase the diameter of your wheel, you effectively decrease your rear axle ratio. This will cause a reduction of torque upon acceleration.

    Lift Kits & Spacers

    Keep in mind that you can only increase your tire and wheel size by so much until you need to lift your truck, get new wheels, or start trimming. Just remember the “3% Rule”. Basically you can increase your tire height or width by 3% before having to change your ride height or wheels. In numbers, this is about 1 inch of height and about .3 inches of width.

    If you lift your Tacoma, you can get away with bigger tires. A good way to remember how big of a tire you can have is to think one inch: one inch of lift can allow one inch more height in your tires. This does not apply to the width of the tires. Width depends on the backspacing of your wheels.

    Legal Note: If your wheels and tires are wide enough to where they extend beyond the body of your truck, you may have to buy fender flares or mud flaps to cover the excess protrusion. Some states in the US require wheels to be covered. Check with your state laws to be on the safe side.

    *There are not many viable options for stock wheels with a three-inch lift. A common width for tires on a Tacoma with a three in lift is 285mm, so the tires sizes are based around that. We are going to skip the 15” wheels for obvious reasons.

    When it comes to buying tires and rims, there are plenty of options to choose from. It all depends on your budget, where you are planning on driving, and personal taste. What looks good to you may not look good to someone else. To help you out, however, let’s take a look at some popular options. I will focus more on the size of wheel and tire, and not so much on the style of the wheels themselves. Again, that comes down to personal preference.

    Popular Tacoma Tires

    BFGoodrich KO2's

    For people with 16” wheels, a common choice on the forums are the 265/75 R16 KO2s by BFGoodrich. You can generally get them for around $150 to $180 each. Reviews on TireRack rate them at around nine out of ten. Tacoma users say they have some great snow traction and they have a long life to them. For the biggest sized tire you can get with no lift on a 16” wheel and best all-terrain performance, it looks like it’s hard to beat.

    You can check them out and purchase them on TireRack or Amazon.

    General Grabber AT2's

    For about $150 each, Taco drivers on 17” wheels tend to like General Grabber AT2 265/70 R17. They are aggressive-looking, and seem to perform well on and off-road, and have a long life. If you’re looking for the max tire size on a 17” wheel without lifting your truck, this could be the choice for you.

    You can check them out and purchase them on TireRack or Amazon.

    Cooper Discoverers

    At the same size as the Grabbers, Cooper’s Discoverer is a common option as well. Though not as rushed after as the other, it still gets decent reviews, and at less than $150 each, they are a pretty good deal. For day to day driving, it's an all-around good tire.

    You can check them out and purchase them on TireRack or Amazon.

    Nitto Terra Grappler G2's

    A final option, while closer to the $200 mark, is the Nitto Terra Grappler G2 (there's are what I have). They are an aggressive-looking all-terrain with good reviews. The Nittos are popular on a number of off-roading sites, which should give you confidence in them being able to conquer most terrains.

    You can check them out and purchase them on Amazon.

    Now that we've gotten through some of the more popular tires Tacoma owners lean toward, let's dive into wheels by starting with discussing offset.

    Goodyear Wrangler TrailRunner AT

    If you’re looking for a decent all around tire, don’t want to spend a lot per tire, but also don’t want to go too cheap, the Wrangler TrailRunner AT by Goodyear may be a good option for you. At about $175 per tire with a 6 year/55,000 mile warranty, you’re getting a pretty good deal. The chip and tear-resistant tread is aggressive enough for moderate off-road conditions, and quiet on the streets. While they don’t claim to be able to handle severe mud or snow, all of your average (and slightly above average) needs should be met with these tires!

    Goodyear Assurance CS Fuel Max

    There are plenty of tires that “do it all,” but Goodyear came out swinging with the Assurance CS Fuel Max. It can “do it all” and more. While this tire is best for the streets, it can also tackle some off-roading as well. However, the tread design and compound is what makes this tire unique. It is designed to have a low rolling resistance, which means longer wear, a quiet ride, and better fuel economy for you.

    The two tread zones give you the best of both worlds: handling and safety. The outer tread is crafted to give you better handling with a sportier feel, while the inner tread will make sure that during wet conditions, your Tacoma stays planted. At about $215 per tire, you get a lot of bang for your buck.

    Kumho Road Venture AT51

    While the Road Venture AT51 by Kumho is supposed to be an all-terrain tire, it excels at moderate off-road conditions. The aggressive tread pattern will tackle gravel, sand, snow, and mud with ease. However, if things get too deep, you might find some trouble. There is a trade off though. While the tread pattern will be no problem off-road, it can get a little noisy at highway speeds. At just over $140 per tire, you’ll get a good tire that can handle a lot!

    Michelin LTX A/T2

    If budget isn’t much of an issue, the Michelin LTX A/T2 tires are one of more expensive on the list at just over $300 each. However, remember that you get what you pay for. While the six year/60,000 mile warranty is average, the tire is not. Some impressive research and development has gone into these tires. The advanced rubber compound not only gives you some of the best grip that an all-terrain tire can, but it delivers it with low noise, better fuel mileage, and even wear.

    Owners love the amount of miles they get from these tires. With the tread designed to last mile after mile, long highway haulers have been putting that to the test and getting well over 100,000 miles off these. While these are more expensive per tire, if they are lasting double or more over cheaper ones, what’s not to love?

    Hankook Dynapro MT

    If you need a tire that can handle mud, the Dynapro MT by Hankook is it. While it is technically an all-season tire, the wide and aggressive tread design will make mud issues a thing of the past. The tires are designed to assist with steering, and prevent damage from sharp objects. While these will make mud your best friend, you can of course drive these on the road, sand, and snow as well. Tacoma owners agree that these are some great options if you need need some mud tires.

    Wheel Offset

    One of the more common questions people have when they start looking at wheels is "what on earth is offset"? The offset of a wheel is the distance from its hub mounting surface to the centerline of the wheel.

    Offset can only be one of three types, zero offset, positive offset, and negative offset. These are all measured in millimeters.

    Zero Offset: The mounting surface is even with the centerline of the wheel.

    Positive Offset: The mounting surface is located in the front half of the wheel closer to the wheel face. Positive offset wheels are typically found on front-wheel-drive cars and newer rear-wheel-drive cars. You will typically never find these on a Tacoma.

    Negative Offset: The mounting surface is located in the back half of the wheel closer to the back lip flange. This moves the wheel out away from the vehicle brakes and suspension. The wheels you see on many lifted Tacomas are typically going to have a negative offset.

    Here's a great image that shows the difference between the three.

    Popular Tacoma Wheels

    Fuel Off-Road Assault Wheels

    Fuel Off-Road Assault Wheels are probably one of the most aggressive looking aftermarket wheels you can buy for your Tacoma. These wheels feature a one-piece cast construction to ensure maximum stiffness while keeping the weight of the wheel low. They are extremely durable and make your truck look like a million bucks. They typically run around $150 - $250 per wheel.

    You can check them out and purchase them here.

    HELO HE878 Wheels

    The HELO HE878 wheels provide more of a rugged look for your Toyota Tacoma. These wheels were crafted from heavy-duty materials using avant-garde technologies and industry-leading equipment while providing extreme attention to detail to give you the look and style you are looking for. They typically run around $160 - $260 per wheel.

    You can check them out and purchase them here.

    KMC XD301 Wheels

    The KMC XD3001 wheels are built for Tacoma owners looking for an extremely lightweight, strong, and yes... race-tested wheel. These wheels are road-tough and provide a perfect balance of performance and reliability. Just because they are lightweight and race-tested, don't think for a minute they won't hold up to off-roading, because they will and Tacoma owners love them. They typically run about $140 to $200 per wheel.

    You can check them out and purchase them here.

    Method MR306 Mesh Wheels

    The Method MR306 Mesh wheel is crafted from a single piece of strong, lightweight aluminum alloy. It features a split, six-spoke design that gives it a timeless, yet aggressive look. This wheel is one of the only wheels on the market that is built with a mesh design with a simulated beadlock on the lip. these wheels are a perfect addition to any Toyota Tacoma. They typically run about $140 to $200 per wheel.

    You can check them out and purchase them here.

    TRD Pro Matte Black Wheels

    The TRD Pro wheels are definitely my favorite, that's why I have them on my Toyota Tacoma. These 17 inch wheels are matte black and have the red TRD logo in the center. They are machined out of light weight aluminum and are perfect for giving you a custom look, while retaining Toyota branding. These are a little on the expensive side, running around $190 to $220 per wheel.

    You can check them out and purchase them here.

    Fuel Beast

    If you want a basic design that has been taken to the next step, the Beast by Fuel could be the option for you. The iconic six spoke design is sleek with no frills from excessive angles. The clean bends in the metal offset by the black and dark tinted machined colors really give a subtle edge of impressive looks to this wheel. Fuel makes some very popular wheels for the Tacoma, and wheels like this are why!

    FN Konig Six Shooter

    If you want a subtle sporty look on your Taocma, the Konig Six Shooter by FN Wheels might be what you want to consider. The six spoke design is rounded and smooth. No harsh angles allow for a flowing design. You can choose between matte black and gunmetallic for a more conservative “truck” look, or be bold and choose the matte bronze for a sporty appearance.

    Ultra Motorsports Maverick

    When you can’t decide between a mean or flashy looks, the Maverick by Ultra Motorsports lets you have both. The sharp angles usher in a feeling of aggressive style, while chrome accents show the flashy side. However, if you want to go full flashy, you can opt for just chrome! These unique wheels are cast out of aluminum, and are sure to turn some heads.

    Pro Comp 7069

    Nothing beats the look of an old school racing wheel sometimes, and that is exactly what Pro Comp did when they designed their 69 Series 7069 wheels. While they may be more inexpensive at only around $150 per wheels, they give an expensive look. Racing wheels add a touch of sporty and aggressive looks to your Tacoma. You get one color option: black. However, would you need anything else with a wheel like this?

    Mickey Thompson Sidebiter II

    Did you think they only made tires? The satin black finish on these Sidebiter II’s by Mickey Thompson add a touch of aggressive class to your Tacoma. The seven spoke design is made up of some classy cuts and angles that make this different from others on the market. The center cap is a pop-top style that gives easy access to the wheel hubs. These wheels are even backed by a lifetime warranty.

    In closing, there are tons of options for both wheels and tires for your Tacoma. At the end of the day, it all depends on budget and taste. If you can lift your truck, you have more options. If you can get new wheels, you have more options. As long as you keep in mind the speedometer and odometer changes, as well as potential rubbing issues if you go too big, then you'll be fine. People love to add mods to their Tacoma trucks, so make your truck yours!

    Image Credits:

    BFGoodrich KO2 – User Mauiboi84 on Tacoma World

    General Grabber AT2 – User Mtbkrguy on Tacoma World

    Cooper Discoverer – User Maticuno on Tacoma World

    Nitto Terra Grappler G2 – User texastaco11 on Tacoma World

    Fuel Assualt - User Gone Country on Tacoma World

    Helo - User Chestytaco on Tacoma World

    KMC XD - User Taco_lv on Tacoma World

    Method MR306 - User Kmorris45 on Tacoma World

    Goodyear Wrangler TrailRunner AT - Courtesy of Amazon

    Goodyear Assurance - Courtesy of Amazon

    Michelin LTX - Courtesy of Amazon

    Kumho Road Venture - Courtesy of Amazon

    Hankook Dynapro MT - Courtesy of Amazon

    Fuel Beast - Courtesy of TacomaWorld.com user Kuneff

    FN Six Shooter - Courtesy of TacomaWorld.com user Gingerbeard Man

    Ultra Motorsports Maverick - Courtesy of TacomaWorld.com user Beagler282

    Pro Comp 7069 - Courtesy of TacomaWorld.com user solarservant

    Mickey Thompson Sidebiter II - Courtesy of TacomaWorld.com user beaz78


    Wheel Offset - Lesschwab.com

    * Please note that some of these links are affiliate links and we make a small commission if you purchase the product.