Taco Time!

Found: 2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner with 12K miles.

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner front qtr sm

Why is there a Japanese vehicle on this mostly American Hot Rod site?

  1. World War II is over.
  2. Because fast or fun cars are made worldwide.
  3. I am the Editor so I do whatever I want.

As an old car guy (yes, that means old guy that like old cars) I have no interest in owning a new car. For work and commuting I have been driving a 2003 Ford Ranger that I bought used and it has served me very well.

2003 Ford Ranger EDGE

With the odometer approaching 140K miles on the Ranger it was time to look around for a suitable replacement truck. I think the current Ford, Dodge and Chevrolet trucks today are just so boring…and common. Non of them offers a sport truck unless you want to shell out 40K for a Dodge 1500 R/T Hemi. I pegged the Toyota Tacoma to be the best choice as it offers the right size and as we all know, they are quality rigs.

Small caveat appeared in the midst of looking for trucks!

However…big however…A quick glance at the calendar made me realize that it is time for a mid life crisis car!! You know, something flashy red with a roaring engine, stick shift and posi-traction. Yeah, I know Posi Traction is a registered trademark of Generous Motors but it sounds so much better than “limited slip”!! Slip what?? Slip on a banana peel??

There are plenty mid-life-crises vehicles to choose from these days but after some reseach a few cars rose to the surface. The Nissan 370Z and it’s sister car, Infiniti Q35/Q37 would be excellent mid life crises vehicles. They offer a powerful and great sounding V6 engines, they can be had with manual transmission and that damn limited slip that I apparently have to have.

I was flipping thru the virtual pages on the great big interweb and I found both nice Tacoma trucks and suitable coupes. By the way, one benefit with virtual pages is that you do not have to spit on your finger in order to move to the next page.

Among some of the Tacoma trucks the X-Runner made it self present. The X-Runner model was a limited production factory hot rod released in 2005 replacing the s-runner. It has a powerful V6, six speed manual transmission AND limited slip!!

There is however an inherent risk in buying a used X-Runner: the kid factor. Most of these were bought by testosterone laden young men that always wanted to explore the extreme limits of everything including the syncros, rev limiter and of course…the limited slip. A bit of a generalization perhaps but those boys also tend to modify factory these rigs and many times not for the better.

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner qtr rear sm

Eventually this 2006 X-Runner popped up on the interweb and I contacted the seller immediately. That was a good thing!

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner wheels miles

One local adult owner since new, non smoker and under 13K miles. It has never seen rain. The black undercarriage and wheel wells are still…black. Not a scratch…anywhere!
It is truly NEW.

This owner changed oil change every year. Yup, that is about every 1000 miles. Yeah, I was thinking the same: give me your old oil!

It killed me to pull it out in the rain but like someone said: it’s just water. So true.

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner interior sm

The original owner even had a floor mat to protect the floor mat!


2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner wheels sm

The Bridgestone Potenza 255/45/18 tyres are partially responsible for the 0.90 G rating on the skid pad. When WOT is enjoyed these rubber donuts are screaming for traction but at least the effort is evenly distributed with the help from the limited slip.

The truck also came with much sought after and very collectible TRD hat, TRD watch, car cover…well, truck cover, all paperwork including window sticker, invoice and service record.

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner exhaust sm

Initially I thought to upgrade the exhaust with something with more of a rumble but it turns out that the stock exhaust offers plenty of rumble so I will leave it alone and rumble on. The size of the exhaust pipe is directly related to manliness. This pipe is BIG!

2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner emblem elec outlet

The bed is equipped with a 110 volt power outlet and I can’t wait to go camping and hook up a toaster oven and make myself a grilled cheese sandwich!


2006 Toyota Tacoma X-Runner engine sm

The 4.0 liter engine with the purdy plastic engine cover is rated 240 hp and 270 foot pounds of torque. To keep that power to the ground the frame is braced with an X-frame, stiffer and shorter TRD springs, Bilstein shocks and anti roll bars in both ends..

Toyota claims that this 4000 lbs truck can haul from 0-60 mph in 7 seconds. I will be sure to test this.

So there it is: A perfect mid life crises vehicle…with a bed! Haul stuff and haul ass!

2006-Toyota-Tacoma-X-Runner avatar

The “Rolf Coupe” still going strong

1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod

1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod in Germany

I sold this coupe back in 2010 locally but a year or two later it found itself in Germany where it lives an active life in the hands of Marco and Silvia Wenzel. They are in to American cars of all shapes. I get regular up-dates from Marco and I felt it was time to share.


1931 Ford Model A Crusing

It is used the best way possible: By driving it!…a lot.

1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod Germany

The hot rod is a frequent guest at many events in Germany with likeminded guys and gals.

Ford Model A Hot Rod

Staging in at the drags.

1931 Ford Model A Drag RacingHere is Marco ready to abuse it in a drag race. Yes, of course he won!
1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod

The car was sporting black walls when it left the States but now it is back to wide white walls and I think it looks much better.


1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod Finland truck

The hot rod was invited to a Finish Hot Rod show and Marco was quick to oblige, It was tucked in a trailer and off to Finland it went.


1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod Finland

Marco’s hot rod was listed in the show programme the Guest from Germany. That is what “Saksan vieras” means. “PAKKO NÄHDÄ” means don’t miss! So don’t miss the Guest from Germany!


1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod Finland show

1931 Ford Model A Hot Rod Finland visitor

One of the show visitors was Mika Kari. Mika lived in Washington state for a year and I met him several times. He did a feature of the car for the Finish magazine Primer at the time. Mika stopped by and visited with Marco. Mika on the left and Marco on the…you get it.

Thanks for sharing your adventures with us, Marco.

Photo: Marco Wenzel

Pacific Northwest Historics Vintage Car Race Day

The best part of this annual historic race event is all the great classic cars that shows up. They had a car corral for several brands and clubs to display their beautiful cars.

Here is a sampling of some that caught your Editor’s eye.

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Jaguar XK-120, 3.4 litre


1953 Jaguar XKC-041, 3.4 litre, 4 speed

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So you think Panhard only made bars? Here is a car.

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1964 Datsun pickup

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Sleeper of the day. MGB with small block Ford.

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We like the fact that the owner resisted conventional dual exhaust. Classy!


SNORTHY is a 1956 MGA

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Volvo 444

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Volvo 122S

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Some folks know how to pit: Huge Kenworth with monster trailer, Cadillac Biarritz convertible for pit car, matching scooter and six white table cloth tables for your crew and friends to dine at. It’s a rough life.

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