The 2019 Toyota 4Runner Is Flawed and Perfect According to Consumer Reports

As other reviewers have said before, the Toyota 4Runner is best for roads less traveled. This Toyota shines more for its performance off-road than on, which is OK for some. If you’re shopping for used models, you’ll see that the 2019 4Runner is particularly attractive. Simultaneously, this model was also widely criticized.

Driving dynamics 

2019 Toyota 4Runner off-roading
2019 Toyota 4Runner | Toyota

The 4Runner is one of the few midsized SUVs left that’s not car-based. This Toyota has vintage vibes and persists as a body-on-frame SUV. Like many before it, the 2019 4Runner features a 270-hp 4.0-liter V6 and a five-speed automatic transmission. The SUV is standard with rear-wheel drive; upgraded models will have part-time or full-time all-wheel drive.

It’s important to note that the 4Runner is not a comfort-oriented model like its sibling, the Highlander. The 4Runner’s ride quality is on the harsh side, as Consumer Reports notes. CR is among the many reviewers who feel that the 4Runner is an awkward performer.

“The 4Runner feels clumsy. Even in routine cornering maneuvers the body leans considerably. Bobbing and bouncing chips away at driver confidence. The X-REAS suspension included with the Limited trim reduces the bouncing, but doesn’t make this SUV feel more agile. The steering feels vague and disconnected from the road. The wide, 45-foot turning circle makes parking a chore.”

2019 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro

A 2019 4Runner Nightshade Edition with distinguished dark finishings.
2019 Toyota 4Runner Nightshade Edition | Toyota

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Toyota’s most significant change for the 2019 4Runner was the updated features for the top-tier TRD Pro model. For 2019, the TRD Pro model got a new suspension with oversized Fox high-performance shocks. This model also has Toyota’s unique alloy wheels and all-terrain tires, which enhance comfort on-road and traction off-road. 

What was also new for 2019 was the 4Runner Night Edition, which adds distinct factory upgrades. It makes sense to shop for the 4Runner’s off-road-oriented trims if you plan on doing more extreme adventures. For a more practical experience, CR recommends the SR5 Premium version for additional creature comforts like heated seats.

2019 4Runner lows

A Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro on display at an auto show
A Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro | Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

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Aside from its unrefined ride quality, CR didn’t like that the 4Runner is kind of hard to climb in. Additionally, the CR team took points away for the 4Runner’s low ceiling, which impacts visibility. The SUV’s loud engine also can put a damper on your overall driving experience. 

Another bummer is that the 2019 4Runner didn’t come standard with many modern tech features. For example, base models didn’t come with helpful safety features like blind-spot monitoring. Toyota didn’t make connectivity features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard until 2020. 

Overall ratings 

Based on CR’s criticisms, you would think the organization would have given the 2019 4Runner low overall rankings. But that’s not the case at all. CR gave the 2019 4Runner a perfect five out of five score for predicted reliability. Furthermore, the organization gave the model a perfect score for owner’s satisfaction too.

These ratings are based on CR’s member data. Owners are most satisfied with the 4Runner’s style, comfort, and value. That said, adventurers are likely to be very satisfied with the 4Runner, despite its driving dynamics. The average price for a used 2019 model falls between $31,650 – $42,225.