Top 10 Most Frequently Asked Toyota 4Runner Questions Answered

The Toyota 4Runner has been in production since 1984. As one of the most popular SUVs for off-road enthusiasts and commuters alike, five generations of 4Runners have proven to be dependable, long-lasting vehicles.

With such a die-hard following, the Toyota 4Runner serves as a point of comparison with other offerings in the midsize SUV segment. For those with questions before they purchase a used or new Toyota 4Runner, here are some of the most common inquiries.

Is the Toyota 4Runner worth buying?

New Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary with an empty background
2023 Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary | Toyota

The Toyota 4Runner SUV is tried and true, but Car and Driver believes major updates are necessary to keep it in the competition. Over 12 years have passed since its last update, and its body-on-frame construction and EPA-rated 17 mpg city and highway combined make it a more old-fashioned offering in the popular segment.

Is the 2023 Toyota 4Runner a redesigned SUV model?

Toyota has been on a makeover mission with the Tundra, Sequoia, and Lexus LX600. While the 4Runner is primed for a redesign, Cars Direct reports an all-new sixth-generation model is likely to be unveiled in the 2024 model year. Nevertheless, 2023 is the 40th Anniversary of the 4Runner that will be celebrated with a Special Edition limited to just 4,040 vehicles.

Is there a hybrid Toyota 4Runner?

Fourteen hybrids are now available under the Toyota brand, but the 4Runner isn’t one of them. The model still runs with the 270-hp 4.0-liter V6, but consumers want more hybrid options for larger vehicles like SUVs. Since Toyota is committed to delivering a hybrid for every model by 2025, a hybrid 4Runner may be revealed next year.

How much is the base model 4Runner SR5?

The 2022 Toyota 4Runner SR5 is currently listed at a starting MSRP of $38,105. Although the SR5 is the base model, it provides all the rugged dependability expected from a 4Runner. It also includes Toyota Safety Sense, which packs the SUV with standard active safety features like radar cruise control, pedestrian detection, and road sign assist.

What problems do 4Runner SUVs have?

Besides its old-school underpinnings and less than stellar gas mileage, Four Wheel Trends states that customers have run into transmission problems. Bad shift solenoids are reportedly behind the gearbox issues but can also affect the transfer case and the shift lever seat. Some 4Runners have had transmissions break around the 100,000-mile mark, but an entire overhaul isn’t necessary in most cases.

Which is better: the Toyota 4Runner or the RAV4?

Toyota’s 4Runner and RAV4 have similar capabilities in slightly different-sized bodies. Therefore, their price difference of over $10,000 may make potential buyers rethink what they desire. True Car reports RAV4s begin at $28,310. As well, the RAV4 boasts an impressive EPA-rated 30 mpg city and highway combined.

Is the Toyota 4Runner a reliable SUV? 

The Toyota 4Runner SUV has consistently proven itself to be reliable. Motor1 reports that 4Runner maintenance after 30,000 miles typically only costs between $100 and $200 per visit. More extensive services after 60,000 can cost between $300 and $600 depending on what needs to be fixed or replaced, but major repairs are infrequent.

What are the best used Toyota 4Runner model years? 

Consumer Reports (CR) details the 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, and 2010 model year 4Runners have top ratings in owner satisfaction. Moreover, the 2006, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2021 model years are reported by CR to have better than average ratings among consumers.

What are the worst used Toyota 4Runner model years?

The 2018, 2019, and 2020 model year 4Runners don’t garner as much delight. Moreover, CR states there are five active recalls on the 2018 model and four on the 2019 model. Recall details state there are issues with the fuel pumps causing engine stalling while driving and loose fasteners that may result in a loss of vehicle control.

Are used 4Runners worth the money?

4Runners retain their value much better than other SUVs due to their reliability. Repair Pal states that the average annual cost for repairs and maintenance for the current generation 4Runner is just $514, compared to $573 for midsize SUVs and $652 for all vehicle models.

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