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Toyota Tacoma vs. Ford Ranger, Part XII



  • rickc5rickc5 Posts: 378
    Right. I believe all 4x4 Tacomas have this switch. It really is cool to have if you kill the engine on a steep incline. Just push the button (its a one-time switch) and then turn the key. The starter will pull you up the hill until the engine starts. It works best in low range, obviously.

    I recall that this switch was available as far back as 1989, as we had one in our '89 truck and actually used it a couple of times while 4-wheeling. A nice feature.
  • allknowingallknowing Posts: 866
    I was just trying to revive the forum eagle.
    As for the clutch cancel switch, I think that it only came with the TRD in 2000. Rick may be correct that they all have that feature now as I'm not sure. I'll have to check on that.
  • plutoniousplutonious Posts: 799
    the clutch cancel switch was included. I've got it on my '98 TRD but still have yet to use it.
  • issisteelmanissisteelman Posts: 124
    My 2001 Tacoma came with the clutch cancel button (it is a button, not a switch) and I do not have the TRD (I have an I4, SR5). I disagree with how other people have said it is used. Normally you cannot start the engine unless you fully depress the clutch pedal. However, if you push the clutch pedal cancel button the engine will start (if the truck is in neutral) without have to push in the clutch pedal. I've only found it useful when starting the truck in winter (to warm it up) as I can start the truck without actually having to get into it to push in the clutch. Is there more to this button than meets the eye?.

    I'll see you in the woods while riding in the best compact pick up truck (i. e. the Tocoma) in the world...........Steelman.
  • plutoniousplutonious Posts: 799
    "Clutch Start-Cancel Switch: To start a manual-transmission truck, you must first depress the clutch. To start the same truck on a steep, slippery off-road trail, you need three feet -- clutch, brake, gas. With a 4x4 Tacoma, you simply push the clutch start-cancel switch and start in gear. A powerful starter motor pulls the truck forward while starting the engine."

    That came from

    For curiosity's sake, I'm going to try it the next time I get in my truck.

  • kbtoyskbtoys Posts: 62
    The button was in my 98 standard cab 4x4.
  • issisteelmanissisteelman Posts: 124
    I did not know that is what the clutch cancel button was designed for. In fact, the dealership did not explain that to me. I too will try it the next time I'm in the woods.

    Take care..........Steelman.
  • big_tunabig_tuna Posts: 3
    is a great feature. One time I got in a little over my head on a steep slope of loose rocks in my '94 Toy. Indeed, one can use the starter motor to move the truck forward with less torque than the engine thus minimizing wheel-spin. If it hadn't been for this it would have been a long walk for an expensive tow or a long wait for some unfortunate passer-by to help me out. By the way, my starter prematurely failed, which I attribute to its' having bailed me out of that situation - even so, the starter (a new genuine Toyota starter) replacement was a small price to pay, compared to the price of a tow in the Owens Valley backcountry.
  • urkillingmeurkillingme Posts: 22
    With todays fuel injected engines you certainly do not need a "third foot" to start the engine.

    I hate to sound cynical but if one cannot handle the proper engagement of a clutch while offroading, one shouldn't be offroading. Low range has plenty of torque multiplication to not need any throttle while getting under way and slipping the clutch or a higher gear will limit wheel spin.

    I surely hope this was not an expensive option since it has little value and can easily be duplicated by completing a simple circuit.

    I do have a question, however. Based on steelman's version the vehicle has to be in neutral to turn over and in tuna's case the truck could be in gear. Which is it? I would venture to say if the starter motor will launch the truck in gear by someone inadvertently pushing a button this could lead to some lawsuits in our litigious society.
  • eagle63eagle63 Posts: 599
    you CAN have the vehicle in gear, steelman was wrong on this one.

    Tacoma owners, correct me if I'm wrong.... but I think the main purpose of the clutch cancel button is that if you're stalled on a big hill, you can start the vehicle while in gear, so you don't start sliding backwards down the hill while pushing in the clutch, holding the brake with the other foot, then putting it in gear, etc.
  • rickc5rickc5 Posts: 378
    That so MANY Tacoma 4x4 owners (on this board) either don't understand and/or have never used a VERY valuable device that comes STANDARD on their trucks and can really be helpful in certain off-road situations.

    Here is as good an explanation as I can give. Don't forget, this is from a RANGER owner (but I've owned seven Toyota trucks):

    The clutch cancel switch (it REALLY is a switch, disguised as a "button") provides the driver the ability to re-start on a steep hill WITHOUT having to disengage the clutch. If you are in low-range, and just happen to kill your engine on a VERY steep slope (it's happened to me, and to MANY others I've 4-wheeled with), using the clutch cancel switch can be MUCH easier than restarting and doing the three-foot thing with clutch, brake and gas to get going again. Believe me, Jack, the three-foot thing can be difficult, especially where slipping or sliding backwards or creating wheelspin are NOT options. Using the starter motor to get going in such a situation has been used by 4-wheelers since off-roading became a hobby/sport, and IT'S WHY THE SWITCH IS ON THE DASH! Big tuna used the switch for its intended purpose.

    Steelman found a use for the switch that I hadn't thought of. Leaving the truck in neutral, pushing the switch and then starting the truck with a remote starter (I presume) the next morning. Very clever, steelman.

    Jack, the switch is STANDARD EQUIPMENT on all Toyota 4x4s, and is NOT an extra-cost option. However, nothing is free, is it? To answer your question, a Toyota with a manual transmission CANNOT be started unless the clutch pedal is depressed, OR the clutch cancel switch has been pressed. It doesn't matter what gear the transmission is in.
  • frey44frey44 Posts: 230
    Just to try to help any Ranger owner who may be having the same travail as I did (vibration in seats at various speeds, and "slop" in the driveline) I am posting the TSB for Ford's "fix": replacing the stock steel driveshaft with the new alloy one. This shaft made a DRAMATIC improvement in smoothing out the vehicle and eliminating the "bump from behind" feeling, and driveline lash, when taking off from a stop. The part number for this shaft for MY TRUCK (a 2000 Ford Ranger 4x4 XLT, 4.0, 5 speed auto) is: 1 L5Z 4602-M
    Driveline - Thump/Clunk Noise
    Article No.



    1998-2001 RANGER

    This article is being republished in its entirety to update the model year applications for the service
    parts required.


    Some 4X4 Super Cab vehicles may exhibit a low frequency "thump" type noise/vibration on light
    acceleration from a stop, and/or when coming to a stop with light to moderate braking. This may be
    caused by axle wind up during acceleration or deceleration and creating a stick/slip condition at the
    rear driveshaft slip-joint splines causing the "thump"/"clunk" sensation.


    Replace 3.5" steel driveshaft with 4.0 "aluminum rear driveshaft. This requires installation of a revised
    fuel tank skid plate. for vehicles built before 1/15/2001 equipped with the 4X4 Off-Road package.
    Refer to the following Service Procedure for details.


    Reference yellow balance mark on existing steel driveshaft. Using chalk, paint-pen or equivalent,
    index a mark on the rear axle flange in-line with yellow mark on driveshaft. This will enable the
    new driveshaft to be reinstalled in an original balanced state.
    Remove existing steel driveshaft from vehicle.
    Using the previous reference mark on the axle, align the applicable revised aluminum driveshaft
    yellow mark to the axle flange mark. This will assure correct orientation of the new service
    Install new service driveshaft and t6rque all eight (8) fasteners to 88-119 Nm (65-87 lb-ft).
    Remove fuel tank skid plate for vehicles built before 1/15/2001 equipped with the 4X4 Off-Road
    Replace with new service Skid Plate (1L5Z-9A147-AA).
    Torque fuel tank skid plate fasteners to 34-46 Nm (25-34 lb-ft).
    Verify condition has been corrected by accelerating from a stop, and/or with light to moderate
    braking when coming to a stop.

    Parts Block

    SUPERSEDES: 01-9-6
    WARRANTY STATUS: Eligible Under the Provisions Of Bumper To Bumper Warranty Coverage.



    OASIS CODES: 597997, 702000, 702200, 702300, 703000, 703200, 703400

    Copyright © 2002 ALLDATA LLC
  • frey44frey44 Posts: 230
    I have narrowed down some shocks (for the 2000 Ranger 4x4 mentioned in the previous post ) to either EDELBROCKS or BILSTEIN premium shocks. I am looking for a better ride (i.e. better DAMPING in normal highway driving...I never go offroad). Any ideas ?? Also, what do you guys recommend for replacement tires ? I want to stick with the stock recommended sizes: either 235-75-15, or 245-70-15. I have Michelins LTX's, but cannot seem to get them to balance (I suspect they suffer from a lot of LATERAL runout. The Hunter says they balance, but 2 of these appear to be about 1/4 inch out of lateral trueness.)
    Could I switch to an "automotive" all season tire for a better , smoother ride ?
    I mainly use my Ranger to haul my jazz drumkit around.
  • tbundertbunder Posts: 580
    should upgrade to 265/70/16. that's getting to be the universal 16" truck size tire. it is exactly the same height as the stock 245's, but just 1.2 inches wider. it also is exactly the same height as a 31" tall tire for a 15" wheel. it is .2 inches wider though.
    i didn't experience any mileage change and it looks a lot better than the skinny 245's.
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    and edelbrocks on my truck. Prefer the bilsteins as the edelbrocks were a little to stiff. Good for highway driving at extreme speeds, but the bilsteins give better all around ride and handling
  • saddaddysaddaddy Posts: 566
    Is the clunk thing you were talking about just axle wrap? I have felt that on nearly every truck I have ever driven. It seems to be worse on small trucks, but there are some really easy fixes other than replacing the driveshaft.
  • frey44frey44 Posts: 230
    Sadaddy, this clunk [in MY case at least] Ford admits is due to badly machined splines on the original steel driveshaft i.e. the slip splines on the extension yoke (from the tranny) do not always mate properly (with the correct tolerances) with the inside [female] insert of the driveshaft itself [on some trucks....mine was an example of this]. This apparently allows the shaft to "waggle" and vibrate in the vertical plane up and down, as well as oscillate and vibrate as it spins. Also, there was just a lot of "slop" [excessive for a new truck] in the drivetrain when taking off from a dead stop. They corrected this by reducing the MASS of the shaft (to make it smoother) and tightened up the tolerances of the slip joint area. Also, the mechanic told me he has had Rangers come in with only a few thousand miles on them with very little grease in the slip joint area [factory goof up ?????]. This new alloy shaft [mostly aluminum, it appears] has virtually eliminated ALL of the slop and the clunk and most of the vibration. Amazing, really. FWIW, I am not on here to criticize the Ranger (I own one), but only to try to give back some info to help others as they have helped me. The moral is: on extended cab trucks, that driveshaft is a potential source of irritating buzz or vibes, especially in the seat-floorboard and roof pillars area. Have a nice weekend.
  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,124
    has got to get with it in the tire category.. I changed my tires on my Ranger to an LT265 70/16 and it made a world of difference when up on the trails or in the dry dirt areas. This will also make your Ranger stand taller and give it a more aggressive stance. Toyota figured this one out years ago.. this is why some feel the Toyota looks better... I am however noticing more Rangers with larger tires.. Thank goodness....
  • saddaddysaddaddy Posts: 566
    scape---> You are right. That is the main reason that I have always felt that Tacos were the best looking small truck. They have a stance that is unrivaled. Even the FX4s with 31" tires, although I admit they look good, just don't have the right stance for my taste. I still haven't totally grown to liking the newer body style Tacomas, but IMHO they look tougher than the competition. Let the criticism begin...

    frey---> I see what you are saying now, the looseness in the drivetrain like that will make for some jerky driving. I gotcha.
  • tbundertbunder Posts: 580
    the ZR2 is by far the toughest looking truck out today. no question about it.
    but the ford FX4 just begs you to take it up against one, although that ZR2 pkg. can really wheel and take major abuse.
    the tacoma looks kinda wimpy imo. maybe its just it's reputation as being a tin can with no power or torque. i know i know, it is a good truck, but it just isn't very intimidating.
    also just fyi, the 245's that come stock on off-road rangers and now all rangers with 16" wheels, are exactly the same height as 31" tires and 265/70/16 tires. its just that they aren't as wide. also, toyota has only been putting this size on since '01. so "for years" really isn't valid, as before they just put on 31" tires on 15" wheels like GM started with the s10 and sonoma in '94 with the intro of the ZR2.
  • frey44frey44 Posts: 230
    I asked about tires because I am trying to get the vibration out of my truck. Bigger tires are not necessarily better for some drivers (me). First of all, I'd have to buy new wheels ($ 400 for decent ones), then the larger tires (at least 600 bucks). Also, larger tires are more difficult to balance, and have more rotating mass, just what I am trying to avoid. Looks ?? The Ranger is a little truck; big tires don't make it look "bad"...only like a little truck with big tires (some Rangers and Tacos jacked up are actually emabarrassing sights !! Hilarious ! They look like Tonka trucks !). If you want to look bad, you drive an F 150 or a Ram jacked up, with huge tires, (and suffer the 11 mpg on the highway). ;-) So, if anyone knows of a tire that will run smoothe, let me know.
  • saddaddysaddaddy Posts: 566
    but if you're lookin at a "off road" ranger in your rear view mirror, all you can tell about the tires is the width.

    I couldn't give a flying flip about wheel size anyway. You know as well as I do that the more rubber the better. Bigger rims are for looks and IMO Yota made a mistake by putting 16s on the 01s. When I said "years" I meant 31x10.5 size, and did not even think about wheel size. Of course, that is something that sticks out to folks like you, and I should have realized that. You always say that Ford offers 16s standard, but never get a response -- that is why, its pretty unimportant to real truck owners. What's next big 20s like the new rams so you can replace a set of tires at $800 a pop, gotta love that. I'll keep my 15s as long as I can.

    The reason I didn't include the ZR2 in the tough looking trucks is because they have 4 inches of frame sticking out from under the body. Gotta love that - really tough. Now whether or not it is b/c of a stock body lift, that's exactly what it looks like. You have given your thoughts on body lifts, tbunder. Plus, they have, bar none, the ugliest fender flares in the entire truck world, except for nissan. Not to mention the fact that the design has been unchanged for what seems like 20 years. They looked good when they were new, but were surpassed by ford and toyota long ago. Who gets to see many of em to brag about when they spend half their 80k mile lifespan in the shop anyways? However, I did base my "tough looking truck" opinions on just how high they sit (that is what matters to me), and really, in that arena only the ZR2 sits higher than the taco. Maybe the ZR2 should be "higher" on my list than the Ranger. Rangers just don't sit up high enough for me.
  • tbundertbunder Posts: 580
    i see the truth is clouding your opinion on this one too. to say the ZR2 has a body lift is totally ludicrous and incriminating-to you.

    "when you're looking at an off-road ranger in your rear-view mirror, all you can tell is the width of the tires". IN YOUR 4X2? lmao

    the ZR2 puts the taco on the trailer in its off-road components speciality. no other truck can brag about having totally SPECIFIC exclusive to this one model off-road hardware like the ZR2. i invite you to educate yourself and learn just what ZR2 means and what it consists of. trust me, its not just a locked diff. and some bilstein shocks like your TRD.

    can you say totally different frame and chassis from a regular S10? totally different heat treated cv axles and a silverado sized rear axle? of course, these are just a FEW enhancements made to the Z. of course, they come stock with 4-wheel disc brakes too. axle track bar across the rear-end of the truck.....need i go on? nah, im sure you could care less and your brand loyalty and blind consumerism personality will no doubt brush all this under the rug, so i wont waste my time. more torque and power than your tacoma.....ok, ill stop.

    jd power award for best quality in a compact....ok

    one more thing about the ZR2's frame you call "sticking out, all four inches". this sticks out because it actually HAS a frame under it, a good sized one. you're used to your little dinky frame that barely shows itself simply because there is hardly anything there. the ZR2 is beefed way up from the factory, and this includes frame.
    also, the ranger may not sit up as high stock, but nothing can touch it as far as articulation and wheel travel.

    frey....i just did tell you a tire that you're looking for. the BFG 265/70/16 is the perfect choice. a tire that will still get you 330 miles a tank with a couple gals. left over, very smooth ride and very quiet, long lasting (at least 70K when rotated) and good in most terrain. i had them, and am speaking from experience. you pick what you want though.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,076
    A major national publication is looking for a consumer who is buying or just bought a vehicle and has considered a Ford, but is worried about their recent quality lapses. If you are have a story to share, please send your phone number and some basic information about your experience no later than Wednesday, May 29 to [email protected] or [email protected]


    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • plutoniousplutonious Posts: 799
    So why didn't you just buy an S-10? We all know the routine by now. Your favorite truck this week happens to be the S-10, and we'll have to put on our waders to read through your BS until Saturday.

    I'm not going to even bother researching what the ZR2 REALLY offers then correct you. Too time consuming and besides, you've destroyed your credibility on your own.

    "i invite you to educate yourself and learn just what ZR2 means and what it consists of. trust me, its not just a locked diff. and some bilstein shocks like your TRD"

    Let me try to educate you, since you won't do it on your own. The TRD isn't just Bilsteins and a locker. It differs from the regular Tacoma with its progressive front coil springs, modified rear leaf springs, off-road shock absorbers, larger sway bar, locker and better tires.
  • Open Mindness vs. Closed

    It would appear to me that tbunder just has a more open mind to different vehicles, instead of always, single-mindedly picking the same brand time after time.

    You must realize other people will have different opinions on every subject, and you must accept that. You must also accept that opinions can change, as people's wants and needs change.

    The S-10 is not that bad of a truck, as it is still around, and looks to be the same base of the blazer and sonoma. It ca not be that bad of a truck if it has(had) at least two other vehicles that share the same basic platform. I can not say much for the ZR2, simply due to my lack of knowledge on that subject. However a friend of mine has a late 90's base s-10, and it was a fun, economical truck to ride around in. Of course I am not looking for the ultimate in stock off-roading features.

    I do know that the solution to negative bickering is empathy, tact, and having an open mind. There may be alternatives to your previously perceived truths.

    So when it comes time to go car or truck shopping, it will always pay to know the alternatives. There may be a special deal, rare gem out, or something you never though you wanted/needed out there. It may also reinforce what you previously though before. Either way, an informed argument is much more plausible than one based on brand bias.
  • plutoniousplutonious Posts: 799
    What you just wrote would describe tbundy to a "tee." I think you're confused. If it's not too late, you can go back and address that post to tbundy.
  • issisteelmanissisteelman Posts: 124
    I think Stang should address his last post to TBunder. By the way, this is a Tacoma vs. Ranger forum not a Tacoma vs. Chevy S-10 with a ZR2 package forum. Perhaps Tbunder has finally realized that the Tacoma vs. Ranger debate has ended with Tacoma being the clear winner. Hence, he's moved on to other, more interesting topics.

    Take care and I'll see you in the Mountains where the moose, deer and bear (as well as other creatures) play.............Steelman.
  • Maybe for the ultimate but still stock and warrantied off-road compact truck crowd. I guess that does not explain the Tacoma's decrease in 4x4 sales.

    However in the compact truck most wanted and fitting the needs of the on-road crowd, hands down the Ranger is a winner. The votes have been cast for January through April and it is 74,162 vs 48,816 in favor of the Ranger. (Are we up to 16 years straight yet?)

    It is interesting to note that the only compact pickup YTD sales to increase is the S-10.

    P.S. By pure definition, if you think my previous statement does not describe yourself, then it is all the more directed towards you.
  • obiwankenobi1obiwankenobi1 Posts: 290
    Great truck.

    Too bad they are never on any Chevy lots and usually have to be ordered. I wanted one bad back in 99, but could not find one and didn't want to wait 6-8 weeks for an order.

    They just don't make enough of them AND they are overpriced.

This discussion has been closed.