Predator Steps mount to the sides of your Tacoma to improve accessibility, but some people report that the placement of the steps could be improved.
When it comes to aftermarket mods, few things are as desired as Toyota Tacoma Predator steps. Yet, most people have some unanswered questions when purchasing and installing these steps.
To help make sense of it all, I cover all there is to know about these Predator steps. This guide walks you through all the installation steps and gives you some helpful tips to make purchasing easier.
As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting our website.
What Are “Predator Steps”?
Predator steps are an accessory that mounts to the sides of the Tacoma to make it easier to get in and out of the truck. They have a satiny, powder-coat finish that makes them stylish with any Tacoma truck configuration and color.
While designed to make entry and exit easier, some argue that they sit a bit too far in front of the truck, so the stepping angle can be awkward. It would be better if the steps were moved back slightly, but these still have plenty of function.
Predator Steps offer these design features:
- Black powder-coat finish
- Tubular construction
- Durable, 6061 aluminum construction – chip- and rust-resistant
The long bar with two steps is affixed to both the driver and the passenger side of the truck. Steps are positioned downward so they don’t stick out horizontally, resembling a ladder rung.
The step contains a slight drop, so it’s not as low as some other options. The stepping surface measures 4.5” wide, so there’s plenty of room beneath your foot.
What are Predator steps good for? Here are a few benefits:
- Easier access to the truck
- Adds safety when exiting the truck
- Provides side protection from kicked-up debris, such as dirt and rocks (on- and off-road)
- Protects the steel underneath, but not to the same degree as rock sliders
If you have trouble getting in and out of the Tacoma or you simply want a more rugged-looking upgrade, the Predator steps may be right for you.
Which Tacoma Models Are Compatible
If you have a Tacoma and want Predator steps, you must first ensure they are compatible with your truck. Thankfully, all Tacoma models from 2016 on can be equipped with these steps. Just make sure you check the fitment before purchasing.
Additionally, once you get the Predator steps, it’s important to note that they are meant to be installed in a particular direction. Predator steps are offered for the driver’s and passenger’s side of the truck.
Cost (New and UseD)
There are several places you can buy Predator steps from, whether you choose to get them from a Toyota auto parts retailer or eBay. You can also choose new or used parts. Let’s look at a few estimates.
Genuine Toyota Predator steps can between $550 and $760 in new condition. You can also find them for approximately $400 to $450 if purchasing them used.
- Part Number PT92535172 (Access Cab): $645 (new), $450 (used)
- Part number PT925-35170/PT925-35160 (Double Cab): $550-$760 (new), $400 (used)
When it comes to buying Predator Steps, you can find a lot of brands offering knock-offs. While these may save you some money, they may not perform the same way. Sticking to the original brand is usually best to ensure proper fitment and a quality finish.
Real vs. Knock-Off Brands
Before you purchase a set of knock-off Toyota Predator steps, there are some pros and cons to consider.
Genuine Toyota Predator Steps
- Sit lower than most
- Includes perforated steps with slots that make it easy to knock mud and snow off of shoes
- Simple installation
- Looks good
- Easy to clean
- Legs and shins don’t hit against the step like running boards
- Secure fit
- Dated design
- Not ideal for off-roading
- Made from aluminum, so it won’t hold up against obstacles
Off-Brand Predator Steps
- Lower priced
- More customization – different design options available
- Doesn’t look like the classic Predator step
- Lower quality
- Fitment issues possible
Where to Buy
You have options when it’s time to buy Predator Steps. There’s also the option to buy either new or used steps. Consider these purchasing locations.
- Toyota: You can purchase through a dealer’s parts department or buy online. When you choose Toyota, you know you get the genuine product, giving you peace of mind.
- Amazon: By purchasing genuine predator steps on amazon, you get a hassle-free return policy if something goes wrong.
- eBay: Various sellers offer brand new to used options. eBay provides some buyer protection, but it’s also good to read the seller’s reviews before buying anything. You also want to note the return policy and warranty terms.
- Tacoma World: Plenty of Tacoma owners sell their used parts on this forum. Choose to buy from someone that posts regularly for the best results.
- Other Automotive Parts Websites: You can buy Predator Steps from lesser-known auto parts stores online, but you should do your research first.
- Facebook Marketplace or local classifieds: Unless you can check the reviews of the seller, you could easily get ripped off going this route. However, these are some of the cheapest places to find truck modifications.
I recommend buying through Toyota (either through their auto parts department or Amazon) if you can afford it to ensure you receive the genuine product. However, if you need to save money, there are plenty of other options available to you. Just make sure you perform due diligence before parting with your money.
Here are the part numbers to look for:
- PT925-35170 or PT925-35160 Double Cab: All Models between 2016 and 2023
- PT92535172 Access Cab: All Models between 2016 and 2023
It doesn’t take long to install Predator Steps. Give yourself 15 to 30 minutes if you have all your tools gathered beforehand. It helps to have a second person to help you out.
- 12 mm socket
- Flathead screwdriver
- Predator steps with direction booklet
- Bolts/hardware included with assembly package
The Predator steps are meant to be installed in a certain direction. Lay out the steps around the truck to ensure you know where each one goes. The front attachment is wider than the back, helping you determine where to place each step.
Once you have everything set up, you are ready to follow these installation tips.
- Remove the plastic plugs underneath the sides of the truck with a flathead screwdriver or drill.
- In the front, there are two plugs. The middle has two plugs, and the back also contains two plugs.
- You should have removed a total of six plugs for the step.
- Put the plastic plugs in a safe place in case you ever want to take the steps off.
- Line up the bolt-hole locations on the step rail to the plug holes.
- Thread the bolts into the Tacoma at the three locations (front, middle, and back).
- Don’t tighten the bolts all the way until the step rail is perfectly adjusted.
There’s no need to have a professional install the steps for you. There’s very little that can go wrong, and you don’t need advanced tools.
Here’s a step-by-step video to guide you through the process.
Are Predator Steps Bad for Off-Roading?
If you go online, you will get adamant responses to this question both ways. Some people will tell you you can off-road with Predator steps, while others will advise you to avoid it completely.
The reality is it all depends on what type of off-roading you plan to do.
Predator steps should be fine if you’re headed down gravel roads or forest trails. On the other hand, you won’t want to take the truck down trails with deep ruts, large obstacles, or big rocks. If the steps hit an object, they become easily damaged.
If you do a lot of moderate or heavy off-roading, I suggest looking into rock sliders.
Beef Up the Look of Your Tacoma
With Predator steps, the Tacoma looks better than ever. Not only are the steps functional, but they give it an appearance that turns heads.
Most people love the apperance of usefulness of the Predator steps, but I also know they aren’t for everyone. While they are easy to install, they won’t work with an extreme off-road lifestyle. Therefore, it’s best to consider if the Predator steps or another option is the way to go.