Protect Your Toyota Tacoma: Armor Guide

Originally published on Sep 1, 2023 | Updated on Sep 11, 2023

Are you planning to take your Tacoma wheeling? Before you hit the trail, consider installing some armor to keep your body panels clean and damage-free! At RealTruck, we offer a wide selection of body protection, including bumpers, sliders, fender flares, and more, to guard your Tacoma’s body against impacts and abrasions that would otherwise cause unsightly dents and dings.  

Unsure which products are best for your ride? Don’t worry; the experts at RealTruck are here to help. We’re compiling a list of the top body armor for the Toyota Tacoma, ensuring your pickup can handle anything thrown its way! 

Should You Install Body Armor?

Before getting into our top products, let’s first discuss who actually benefits from body armor. 

Body armor is vital for hardcore wheelers, significantly bolstering impact and abrasion resistance to keep your Tacoma’s body panels straight and true, even after absorbing a hit or scraping a rocker. These heavy-duty alloy accessories, like front and rear bumpers, sliders, and skid plates, help your Tacoma to glide over obstacles like sizable rocks and felled trees without damaging the thin sheet metal of the body. But what if you’re not taking your Tacoma over any hardcore trails? 

Even as a weekend warrior, your Tacoma can benefit from body armor. The same bumpers and sliders that protect your pickup’s body and the trail also guard against mild collisions on the street, allowing your Tacoma to live to see another day! Additionally, most body armor serves benefits outside of body protection; for example, bumpers often feature accessory mounts for off-road lights and recovery shackles. Additionally, most sliders double as side steps to ease entry into the cab! 

So ultimately, the question isn’t whether you should install body armor, but why wouldn’t you? 

Body Armor Types

There are several types of body armor, ranging from heavy-duty bumpers to fender flares. Let’s dig into each type to determine which is best for your Tacoma build.


Bumpers are a crucial component of your Tacoma, taking the brunt of the impact in a collision, whether with a rock or another vehicle, to protect the frame, body, and passengers. At RealTruck, we offer several premium bumpers for the Tacoma, including various styles, materials, finishes, and configurations.

Expert’s Choice: Westin Pro-Series Front Bumper

Toughen up your Tacoma’s front end with the Westin Pro-Series Front Bumper, featuring durable 10-gauge steel construction, an integrated winch mount, and a dual-stage powder coat finish. This bumper provides maximum front-end protection on the trail or street. 

Whether you’re looking to add accessory mounts, styling, or impact protection, the Westin Pro-Series Front Bumper does it all! Each bumper features a 4-gauge steel winch plate to mount a 12,000-pound winch, dual D-Ring shackle mounts, and provisions for a 20-inch LED light bar and dual LED pods. 


  • Front winch bumper replacement for mid and full-size trucks

  • Durable 10-gauge steel construction with 4-gauge steel winch plate

  • E-coated base coat with protective textured black powder-coat finish

  • Accommodates most winches rated up to 12,000 LB (winch sold separately)

  • Includes mount for most single or double row 20" LED light bars (lighting sold separately)

  • Most models can house up to two pairs of square LED lights (lighting sold separately)

  • Features cutouts for forward parking sensors

  • Comes complete with a mount kit and installation instructions

  • 3-year warranty

Expert’s Choice: Road Armor Stealth Rear Bumper

The Road Armor Stealth Rear Bumper is a premium, heavy-duty plate steel rear bumper. This product features a beefy 3/16-inch steel construction and ¼-inch mounts, providing maximum impact and abrasion resistance. While durable, the Road Armor Stealth isn’t bulky; its low-profile design tucks tightly against your Tacoma’s body, making for a sleek and stylish addition. 

The Road Armor Stealth Rear Bumper features an optional integrated winch plate, dual D-Ring shackle mounts, and recessed light cutouts for auxiliary reverse or work lights. 

Road Armor bumpers are proudly made in the USA and are backed by a limited lifetime warranty.  


  • 3/16" steel outer shell

  • Winch bumpers handle up to a 9,000lb winch (unless specified otherwise)

  • 1/4" mount brackets & gussets

  • Integrated D-Ring shackle mounts

  • Recessed light cutouts

  • Lighting sold separately

  • Lifetime guarantee against breakage

  • Combat tested during the Iraq War

  • Road Armor supports The American Valor Foundation

  • USA-made

  • Limited lifetime warranty

Fender Flares

Are you tired of peppering your Tacoma’s rocker panels with rock chips? Perhaps you don’t want another ticket for lack of tire coverage? In either case, consider investing in a set of premium fender flares from RealTruck! 

Fender flares are a stylish and practical addition to any pickup, especially those running aggressive, oversized tires and wide/low offset wheels. These products provide additional tire coverage, ensuring your Tacoma meets local regulations and guarding against rock chips and tire slings.

Expert’s Choice: Bushwacker Extend A Fender Flares

Maximize tire coverage without sacrificing your Tacoma’s sleek body lines with a set of Bushwacker Extend A Fender Flares! These fender flares provide maximum tire coverage, guarding your Tacoma’s paint against rock chips and kicked-up debris on the road trail. However, unlike most oversized fender flares that feature busy styles with recessed faux bolts, the Extend A Fender Flares feature a smooth and seamless design, perfectly bending with your Tacoma’s body. 

These flares don’t just look the part, but they’re also highly durable thanks to their Dura-Flex 2000 ABS construction. These flares come in a smooth, UV-resistant matte finish; however, they’re fully paintable to blend into your Tacoma’s body even further! 

Bushwacker Extend A Fender Flares are manufactured in the USA and backed by the confidence of a limited lifetime warranty. 


  • Constructed from Dura-Flex 2000 ABS material

  • Paintable OEM matte black smooth finish

  • Smooth, contoured look 

  • Provides maximum tire coverage 

  • Designed to complement oversized tires

  • UV resistant to prevent fading, cracking, or chalking

  • Sold in 2-piece or 4-piece sets, depending on the vehicle

  • USA-made

  • Limited lifetime warranty

Expert’s Choice: Stampede RuffRidrz Fender Flares

Introducing the RuffRidrz Fender Flares from Stampede: a tough, aggressively-styled fender flare with faux stainless steel hardware and recessed pockets for a military-inspired, bolt-on appearance without requiring drilling. These flares offer exceptional tire coverage for wide, aggressive tire setups, keeping debris and dirt off of your Tacoma's paint. 

Durability isn’t a concern with the Stampede RuffRidrz. These flares are constructed from a heavy-duty tri-blend ABS composite, ensuring crack and abrasion-free service. These flares are available in smooth satin or textured finishes, though both are paintable to match your Tacoma’s body panels. 

The Stampede RuffRidrz Fender Flares are made in the USA and backed by a limited lifetime warranty. 


  • Durable tri-blend ABS construction

  • Available in satin or textured black finishes

  • No drilling is required on most applications

  • Adds up to 2.5” of tire coverage depending on your vehicle

  • Complete with all installation hardware

  • Adds protection and enhances styling

  • Aggressive, bolt-on look

  • Available in 2 or 4-piece sets

  • USA-made

  • Backed by a limited lifetime warranty

Rock Sliders

Next on the list are rock sliders, offering exceptional rocker protection on the trail. Your Tacoma’s rocker panels are an essential body panel, adding strength and structure to the cab. It only takes one hard hit to mangle the factory rockers, significantly hampering aesthetics and potentially causing fitment issues with the doors! To prevent unnecessary rocker damage, consider a set of high-quality rock sliders from RealTruck before you hit the trail.

Expert’s Choice: Havoc HST Black Running Boards

Havoc HST Black Running Boards are the ultimate blend of style and functionality, featuring a rugged tubular steel construction for maximum impact resistance. But they aren’t just protective; they also feature an extra-wide 7-inch step surface, making climbing into your lifted Tacoma’s cab a breeze! 

Havoc HST Black Running Boards are fully corrosion-resistant, featuring a durable black powder coat finish to guard against rust. Powder coating is also resistant to UV fading, oil, chemicals, chips, and abrasions, ensuring a long-lasting finish. 

Havoc HST Running Boards are backed by the confidence of a 5-year warranty against manufacturing and workmanship defects. 


  • Durable steel construction

  • Nearly 7" wide stepping surface

  • Textured black powder coat finish w/ zinc-plated hardware

  • Rust and corrosion-resistant

  • High and tight design

  • Cab-length

  • Vehicle-specific mounting brackets

  • Limited 5-year warranty

Expert’s Choice: N-Fab Rock Rails

Check out N-Fab’s RKR Rock Rails, offering exceptional rocker protection, sleek styling, and a solid step-up into your Tacoma’s cab. These sliders are manufactured from durable 1.75-inch, .120-wall steel tubing for maximum strength. Each slider is fully welded, eliminating the shear points of bolts. For added corrosion resistance, these sliders are coated in a heavy-duty textured black powder coating, guarding against rock chips, abrasions, oil, chemicals, and UV exposure. 

N-Fab RKR Rock Rails feature a simple bolt-on installation; all mounting hardware, vehicle-specific brackets, and instructions are included. N-Fab proudly produces the RKR Rock Rails in the USA and backs them with a limited lifetime structural warranty. 


  • Cab length N-Fab RKR Rails rest close to the cab for a clean look

  • Built from durable 1.7" tubular steel

  • Finished with a corrosion-resistant textured black powder-coating

  • Optional RKR bolt-on steps are also available 

  • Mounts to the rocker panel

  • Installation instructions and mounting kit are included

  • Sold in pairs

  • USA-made

  • 5-year finish / limited lifetime structural warranty

Grille Guards

If you aren’t looking to replace your Tacoma’s entire front bumper, then consider bolstering impact resistance with a premium grille guard from RealTruck! Heavy-duty grille guards are installed alongside your Tacoma’s factory bumper, adding a layer of protection to the front end. Additionally, most grille guards feature tabs for auxiliary light mounting.

Expert’s Choice: Steelcraft HD Grille Guard

The Steelcraft HD Grille Guard offers premium protection and styling, featuring a heavy-duty, fully-welded steel construction coated in a corrosion-resistant black powder coat. Tubular wings provide wrap-around protection, guarding the headlights in a mild impact or collision. 

Unlike some lesser-quality grille guards, the Steelcraft HD features a unique punch plate inner grille, protecting your Tacoma’s radiator, A/C condenser, fluid coolers, and other sensitive mechanical components against punctures and impacts. 

The Steelcraft HD Grille Guard is backed by a 1-year warranty against manufacturing defects. 


  • One-piece, fully-welded design

  • Durable steel construction

  • Dual-layered black powder coat finish

  • Vehicle-specific mounting kit 

  • Simple no-drill installation on most applications

  • Removable front panel supports front emblem cameras (if equipped)

  • Punch plate grille

  • Wrap-around design

  • 1-year warranty

Expert’s Choice: Ranch Hand Legend Series Grille Guard

You can’t discuss grille guards without referencing Ranch Hand, one of the leading manufacturers of ranch-style bumpers and grille guards for pickups! The Legend Series Grille Guard is no exception, featuring a heavy-duty, fully-welded, 12-gauge steel construction. This grille guard is built to last, withstanding impacts and abrasions on the trail or street to keep your Tacoma’s front end looking like new. 

Unlike some lesser-quality grille guards, which mount directly to the bumper, the Ranch Hand Legend Series bolts to your Tacoma’s frame for superior durability. The entire guard is finished in a heavy-duty black powder coat for exceptional corrosion resistance and sleek styling. 

Ranch Hand proudly manufactures the Legend Series Grille Guard in the USA and backs it with a 1-year warranty against manufacturing and workmanship defects. 


  • Heavy-duty, ranch-style grille guard

  • Secure, frame-mounted design

  • Durable 12-gauge steel construction

  • Fully-welded 

  • Corrosion-resistant black powder coat finish

  • Made in the USA

  • Simple bolt-on installation

  • 1-year warranty

Skid Plates

With your Tacoma’s body covered, let’s gravitate to the undercarriage. Components like your Tacoma’s oil pan, transmission pan, fuel tank, and various fuel lines/wiring harnesses are highly susceptible to damage; any major damage to these areas can leave your Tacoma dead on the side of the trail, requiring replacement parts or a specialty towing service for extraction.

 To prevent damage to your Tacoma’s undercarriage, consider investing in premium alloy skid plates! Skid plates form a protective barrier between obstacles and your Tacoma’s sensitive mechanical parts, allowing it to “skid” across obstacles rather than incur damage.

Expert’s Choice: RIVAL Aluminum Skid Plates

RIVAL Aluminum skid plates are a lightweight and protective addition to any Tacoma, guarding the oil pan and front suspension against impacts on the trail. These rugged skid plates are constructed from high-grade aluminum with reinforcing ribs, preventing bending and denting after heavy impacts. They’re also treated with a high-strength polymer powder coat, keeping corrosion at bay and keeping these skid plates looking great for years to come! 

RIVAL aluminum skid plates include everything necessary for mounting and feature a simple no-drill installation; no specialty tools or modifications are required! 


  • Retains ground clearance

  • Apertures for water and dirt drainage

  • Concealed fittings for minimum damage during off-road driving

  • Stiffening and reinforcing ribs for maximum strength

  • Corrosion-resistant powder coat finish

  • Vent and airflow slots

  • Includes mounting kit

  • Simple no-drill installation

  • Limited 1-year warranty

Expert’s Choice: Body Armor 4x4 Backbone Skid Plate Hitch Step

Introducing the Body Armor 4x4 Backbone Skid Plate Hitch Step, a multi-purpose skid plate designed for maximum versatility and protection! This product features a heavy-duty steel construction, ensuring maximum strength. With its built-in 2-inch receiver shank, you can easily install this product onto any Tacoma with a 2-inch hitch receiver. Once mounted, this product acts as a rear skid plate, allowing your Tacoma to glide across rocks and obstacles on the trail. 

It also features an integrated 3x12-inch step pad, making climbing into the bed or accessing cargo on a bed rack a breeze! This product doubles as a wheel chock once removed, keeping your Tacoma from rolling away while parked. 

The Body Armor 4x4 Backbone Skid Plate Hitch Step is backed by a limited lifetime structural warranty; if the product breaks under normal use, Body Armor has you covered! 


  • Made from durable steel to withstand impacts and abrasions

  • Black powder-coat finish protects against corrosion and rust

  • Fits virtually any 2" receiver

  • 3" x 12" step with raised treads for excellent traction

  • Multi-use tool functions as a skid plate, hitch step, recovery point, and wheel chock

  • Hitch pin is not included

  • Limited lifetime structural / 3-year finish warranty

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