Trucks & SUVs

The Worst Used Toyota 4Runner Model Years

Are you looking for a used Toyota 4Runner? That’s a great way to save some money while still getting legendary Toyota 4Runner power. However, not every used Toyota 4Runner is a good option to buy. Avoid getting a clunker by learning which used model years have the most problems. 

A quick 2020 Toyota 4Runner update

First, we will update you on the current 2020 Toyota 4Runner. It has a base model starting price around $36k, so you have to pay a pretty penny for a brand new one. This model year also still has the Storm Trooper look, so consider being reminded of StarWars if you get a white one. 

2020 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro crawling over a rock
2020 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro | Toyota

With the 2020 Toyota 4Runner, you’ll get 16 mpg in the city and 19 mpg on the highway, so don’t expect fuel savings. It also comes with a 4.0-liter V6 engine that offers 270 horsepower and 278 lb-ft of torque, so there’s no shortage of power with its steep price. 

The worst used Toyota 4Runner years

The worst Toyota 4Runner years are determined by you, the people. Based on complaints compiled by reviews from real Toyota 4Runner drivers and NHSTA complaints, it’s easy to find the models with the most problems. The 2014 and 2015 Toyota 4Runner models have more complaints than any other model years.

2020 Toyota 4Runner Venture Edition driving through mud
2020 Toyota 4Runner Venture Edition | Toyota

The 2015 Toyota 4Runner 

According to CarComplaints, the 2015 Toyota 4Runner has quite a few issues. The most prevalent problem stems from the infotainment center failing to work correctly. It randomly freezes and restarts. 

Some drivers experienced the failure to connect devices via Bluetooth, and sometimes the error message would be stuck on the display for up to a week. Even plugging phones or other devices via USB failed to establish a connection or charge devices.

Other drivers constantly have to manually restart the audio system by holding the button down for about five minutes or by restarting their 4Runner. 

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Another Toyota 4Runner issue includes brake problems brought up by drivers on the NHTSA site. The rotors become warped quickly, and the steering wheel shakes as the brakes are applied.

2020 Toyota 4Runner Venture Edition driving through mud
2020 Toyota 4Runner Venture Edition | Toyota

Another driver faced the failure of their brakes after the ABS kicked in. The rotors seem to warp around 15k miles, and they seem to be slow to react, making it dangerous to try and stop.

The 2014 Toyota 4Runner 

The 2014 Toyota 4Runner is another model year that has racked up tons of complaints, especially when it comes to electrical problems. One driver had their radio freeze and turn off after 10 minutes of use. Another driver had all of their locks fail, including the child safety lock in the rear. 

Another driver had their running boards get stuck. They only deployed halfway and wouldn’t go any further. Also, there are complaints of the 2014 Toyota 4Runner randomly cutting off in traffic. When restarting the vehicle, none of the lights or operation system came back on.  

The 2014 Toyota 4Runner also has reports of steering problems or the ‘Toyota death wobble.’ When accelerating between 55 to 65 mph, the 4Runner seems to shake violently. Alignments, checking the transfer case, checking the front arm bushings, and more all failed to resolve the issue. 

2022 Toyota 4Runner driving through sand
2022 Toyota 4Runner | Toyota

Other drivers noted that the 2014 Toyota 4Runner seemed to have abysmal handling in the rain or wind. The vehicle starts to wander and requires constant course correction to stay in its lane. Also, the tires seem to feather on the edges and prematurely wear.