I have owned the Tacoma of some form since 1884… I currently still have a 2015 Tacoma … my son in law came from the F150 to a 2016 Tacoma and still has it…. I’m more than familiar with the good and bad… I also still own a 2005 4Runner.
At Christmas of 2019, I lost my daily driver which commutes 60+ miles per day that I had 250k on the odometer - a 2004 2wd manual 4 cylinder Tacoma. Lost it due to being in an accident where I was T boned.. I ended up replacing it with a, at the time new, 2019 Frontier King Cab Std Bed 6 cylinder Auto on New Year’s Eve of ‘19. I did this as this model was the last of the “non exciting” Frontier product line and, as a result, should have all the issues worked out including that time proven power train. So far, I couldn’t be happier with my decision as have 36k on it and have had no issues - all seems well.
If I were you, based upon my experience, I might try to find a ‘18 or ‘19 Frontier like something coming off lease as it should have all the positives I was looking for (proven and dependable) yet the price tag may not be as high as either the new Ranger or Tacoma