The Toyota Tacoma is one of the most famous trucks around. With excellent performance and a great driving experience, users have come to love it over the years.
One thing that Toyota did not focus on designing this amazing truck was the horsepower output. Although it is plenty for most people, there have been instances where people complained about insufficient horsepower.
Well, I have some fantastic news for you. A cold air intake may be the answer you are looking for. This article will be focusing on some of the best cold air intakes for Toyota Tacoma.
1. K&N High-Performance Cold Air Intake
Well, if you do not like any compromises, then I have got just the thing for you. K&N is a company that took several of the top spots in my articles. Today is no different.
Arriving in the first place, with almost 600 five-star ratings, is this K&N High-Performance Cold Air Intake from the company, designed for the latest and greatest models of the truck, from 2016 to 2019. Let’s see what makes it so good.
Of course, what makes a product popular is what it offers. But people also consider what it comes with. Well, I think you will love the 10-year/million-mile warranty provided with this truck. Yes, that’s right. The warranty period is so long that one can consider it a lifetime one.
Let’s get down to the performance of this cold air intake. The manufacturer guarantees a 50% improvement over the stock cold air intake. This tells you how restricted the factory one is.
It prevents the engine from reaching its full potential. You won’t have to worry about that anymore. You can expect an improvement in horsepower too.
The pros of this product do not end there. You will get an improved engine sound. The new aggressive sound will surely be loved by anyone who listens to it. I don’t know about you, but the sound of a performance intake is like music to my ears.
Another great thing about this intake is that it requires very little maintenance. It requires a cleaning every 100000 miles. So, you can install it and won’t have to worry about it clogging up for a very long time.
- Up to 50% more airflow
- Filter cleaning is required every 100000 miles
- Ten years/100000-mile warranty
- Improved engine sound
- Increased horsepower
- May cause a drop in performance
- May produce vibrations
There is a high likely hood that the people who complained about this intake received faulty units. I would consider the positive ratings too, which greatly outweigh the negative ones.
2. K&N Cold Air Intake Kit
What is better than a renowned manufacturer taking the top spot in an article? You guessed it, that same company earning the second spot too. K&N has done it yet again with its experience in this category. This K&N Cold Air Intake Kit has been designed for all Tacoma’s that were manufactured from 2005 to 2011.
So, if you loved the first product but your truck was old for it, then this one is perfect for you. This intake has been designed with performance enthusiasts in mind. It promises the same increase in airflow while also boosting horsepower.
With a diameter of 7.5 inches, you can rest assured that the amount of air sucked in by the factory one is incomparable to this new one.
The intake is also great for people who use their Tacoma for towing. As tasks like these require immense power, the drivers would benefit from every horsepower they can get. Well, this is the product you should get. An improvement in horsepower is nothing with again in sound.
Well, I can assure you that this K&N intake promises and guarantees a huge gain in sound too. So, you will feel and hear the power of your engine. Anyone who is near the vehicle will know that you are keeping a beast under the hood.
With so many upgrades in one product, it is normal to expect the installation procedure to be complicated. Well, K&N put in the hours to make sure that this intake will be easy to install. It has a bolt-on installation, so you won’t require any complex tools to get the job done.
- Easy to install
- Guaranteed improvement in horsepower
- Great for towing
- Improved sound
- May receive a defective pipe
Although the chances are there of you receiving a faulty product, they are incredibly slim. I would surely not hold that against the company, especially if it is K&N.
3. Toyota PTR03-35160 Performance Intake System
People have a consensus on one thing, which is that OEM products are the best. At least in the case of air intake systems, the statement does not apply. Regardless, that does not mean that the products are any good. For example, let us take this PTR03-35160 Performance Intake System, which Toyota itself designs.
Before we continue with this product, you may have noticed that the company throttled their vehicle and then offered a solution. This is a common practice in almost any business. Regardless, this Toyota intake promises to boost the performance of your vehicle. I can assure you that it follows that promise.
Some things cannot be found on other cold air intakes. For example, take the custom air box. It has been designed to handle a high volume of air. This means that you won’t have to worry about the engine throttling due to lack of air.
The intake tubing is also custom-designed for the best efficiency. It will allow more air to pass through at one time, allowing fuel to burn in a fuller manner.
As this is an OEM product, the intake is a perfect fit for Toyota engines. You won’t have to worry about compatibility issues or issues with the placement of the MAF sensor. Many intakes, nowadays, don’t drill the correct hold of the airflow sensor. This makes this installation process impossible.
Well, this is something that should not concern you. The engine sound will also be magnified, thanks to the included resonance chamber in this intake.
- OEM design
- Custom airbox and intake tubing
- Resonance chamber for a more throaty sound
- No installation issues
- May be sent the wrong product
Out of the 65 people who rated this intake, a very small number complained about this issue. So, I would take this small risk if I were you and order this excellent product. You have an option to return it, so the risk factor is very little.
4. Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit
You 2005 to 2011 Tacoma owners are in for a treat with this Spectre Performance Air Intake Kit. With just over 40 ratings, it is definitely not the most popular option out there, but the people who bought it made sure to leave a positive rating.
Spectre Performance is a company that takes a spot on my articles every now and then. Unlike K&N, which is in almost every single article, Spectre steps into the ring sometimes.
Regardless, whenever I have come across the company’s intakes, they have never seized to impress me. It looks like that is not changing any time soon.
This intake is considerably cheaper than the Toyota one. You are getting it at basically half the cost, with very similar performance. So, buying it is definitely a bargain.
The intake has been designed to boost the horsepower and torque greatly. This is perfect for people who use their trucks for heavy-duty work such as towing.
Combine the gain in power with an aggressive sound, and I can guarantee you that you will fall in love with this intake.
With all that improvement, the manufacturer still managed to push the maintenance distance to 100000 miles. So, you can install this intake and forget about any maintenance for 100000 miles. This makes owning this product extremely convenient.
The installation of this intake is quite easy. Thanks to the hard work of the people behind the company, you won’t have to worry about any cutting or complicated installation procedure. The installation is a bolt-on, so you will be good to go within a matter of a few hours.
- Bolt-on installation
- Relatively cheap
- Great improvement in horsepower
- Requires very little maintenance
- Small chance of receiving a used product
As I said, Spectre Performance is a brand that creates outstanding intakes. This one is a real-life example of that. It will provide you with an excellent experience.
5. High Performance Cold Air Intake Piping Kit
If you are looking for an intake from a brand that is under the radar, then I have got the perfect thing for you. MOOSUN is a brand that is not known by many. This could be owed to the lack of marketing from the company. It makes pretty decent intake systems.
I am not asking you to take me at my word. You should check out this intake’s offerings and see for yourself. The High Performance Cold Air Intake Piping Kit, by MOOSUN, has been designed for all Tacoma’s which were manufactured for 2016 to 2019.
It has been designed for the latest and greatest variations of the infamous truck. The company guarantees an 8 to 10% horsepower improvement with the install of this cold air intake. Even the torque will be increased by up to an impressive 10%.
The greater airflow will allow the fuel to burn fully, which not only allows you to gain the aforementioned horsepower but also improves fuel economy.
So, you are getting an improvement from all sides. The higher intake volume also means that you will be getting a louder and more aggressive sound from the engine.
The sound is loved by all who hear it. Some users don’t like the sound, as it is too noisy for them. This varies from person to person, but the general consensus is that users will love this intake.
Most manufacturers don’t talk about the durability of their products. Well, MOOSUN has made sure to set itself apart. The company guarantees that the intake will easily withstand the intense heat of the engine and the pressure of the air.
This is possible thanks to the use of reinforced silicon that has been triple coated. The same silicon also reduces the vibrations quite a lot, so the intake won’t be affected by them.
- Up to 10% improve in HP
- Up to 10% improvement in torque
- Extremely durable
- May receive incomplete parts
- Unknown customer service
If you want to buy from a brand like MOOSUN, you should be aware of the risks. The company is not bad, but its practices are unreliable. You should be ready for anything if you choose to buy from the company.
6. aFe Power Momentum Air Intake System
So, you finally decided not to venture into the unknown with a brand like MOOSUN. I must say that this is a sensible decision. As an alternative, you should definitely check out aFe Power, a company which has made on to my articles several times. So, let’s see what this aFe Power Momentum Air Intake System can do.
I don’t know about you, but I love it when a manufacturer talks numbers. The product description of this intake starts with a comparison with the factory intake system. The company claims that this intake outperforms and outflows the stock one by 39%. That is definitely impressive.
Although it is not as good as the K&N filter, there is a reason this one is in the seventh place, and K&N has taken the first spot. The intake does not come in parts.
It has been designed to be one single piece of high-quality housing. This makes handling and installing it very easy and simple. After all, aFe really knows how to set itself apart from the competition.
The roto molded intake tubing allows you the intake to take in as much air as possible. As seen by the 39% improvement I mentioned above, the tubing is a big help in that.
You can expect better horsepower and overall fuel efficiency. In layman terms, you won’t have to worry about the engine underperforming ever again.
- Easy to install
- 39% intake improvement
- Roto molded intake tubing
- Not CARB exempt in the state of California
- Maybe too loud
If you don’t live in the state of California, then you have nothing to worry about. Other than that, the loud sound may or may not be liked by you. The only way to find that out is by installing and using the intake system.
7. Auto Dynasty Aluminum Air Intake System
We have finally arrived at the final product of this article. One could expect this final intake to be inferior to all other offerings on the internet.
Well, I can assure you the case is the opposite. This Auto Dynasty Aluminum Air Intake System has been awarded the last place, but it was chosen from dozens of other options.
So, in my eyes, it is a contender. The intake is made up of T-6061 aluminum. For those who don’t know, this class of aluminum is not only lightweight but is highly durable.
This means that the installation process of the intake will be easy and may not even require a helping hand. As you may know, colder air contains more oxygen.
This intake aims to take in cold air, which allows fuel to burn in a better fashion. This enables the engine to produce up to 10 more HP along with 6 to 8 % better torque. You can expect not only better performance but improved throttle response too. The intake guarantees 95% filtration efficiency.
No other manufacturer in this article has mentioned this number. This means that you won’t have to worry about dust, debris, or any other air particulates entering the engine.
These particulates are known to reduce the engine life and performance noticeably. The stock intake system is known to let them pass through. Well, that won’t be a cause of concern for you anymore.
- Up to 10 HP improvement
- Up to 8% better torque
- Outstanding 95% filtration efficiency
- Incompatible parts sent
I have never seen company ships completely wrong parts for the intake system. This makes buying this product a risk. Regardless, it is better than many other options on the market.
How Much HP Improvement Can I Expect From A Cold Air Intake?
You can expect an HP upgrade anywhere from 5 HP to 15 HP. This solely depends on which intake you choose. It is better to look for products from known brands as they tell you the expected HP gains.
Is An Intake Worth The money?
I think it absolutely is. It is one of the cheapest options that allows users to not only improve the sound of the engine but also increase efficiency and performance. It really is an all-in-one package.
Are There Any Drawbacks Of A Cold Air Intake?
There is only one drawback. The installation procedure of a cold air intake can be quite difficult. This is due to the complex routing. Although an intake does not cost a lot, the labor costs may be a lot, depending on where you get the job done.
Will My Tacoma’s Engine Life Be Shortened With An Intake?
No, it will not. An intake will not affect the longevity of the engine at all. The better performance and efficiency will not take a toll on any other parts of the engine. So, you should rest assured if you were worried about this issue.
So, there you have it, avid readers, my take on the best cold air intake for Toyota Tacoma. You may be confused about which one to get as all of these seven options are great. But if you want my recommendation, I would advise you to go for the K&N intake.
The first one has been designed for the latest models of the truck, while the second one has been made specifically for the older ones. K&N is a trustworthy brand, and the intake will surprise you. What I can guarantee is that a K&N intake will definitely exceed your expectations.