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Toyota 4Runner



  • sbell4sbell4 Posts: 446
    The southeast region has some 800 2003 4Runners allocated and 400 are sitting at the port. It was first believed every dealer was going to get one and then more to trickle in over the next couple of months but it appears that larger volume dealers will be getting 10 - 20 4Runners wholesaled on the 15th of October.

    V8 SR5 = 55%
    V8 SR5 SPORT = 15%
    V8 LIMITED = 10%
    V8 SR5 4X4 = 5%
    V8 SR5 SPORT 4X4 = 5%
    V8 LIMITED 4X4 = 10%
  • On my way to work today I saw a tractor trailer full of new 4 runners. They looked to all be Limited. Thought everyone would like to know. Check your dealers!
  • Can we agree that the 3rd Gen V6 will do the job for the size, purpose, function of the vehicle in most situtations (again back in 1999 they were hyping the 183+ HP of the 2000 model as a big PLUS ober the 170+ HP Pathfinder, etc.), but that there are many of us who "need" (i.e., want) more HP because of our particular preferences, driving habits, lead feet, etc.? I am in the latter group and waited all these years because of it - but of course having problems with the new and "improved" look.

    ptrsn, I have been trying to figure out the supercharger as my way out of this. Tell me more about your experience. So far, I have the premium fuel factor listed as a negative (but sounds like the new V6 will require it as well). I am familiar with the site and went through it a while back. Seems to be focused on those really into high-performance and racing - I am hoping that level of engine mods would not be necessary to incorporate the TRD supercharger into a 3rd Gen simply for those desiring the extra HP. At this point, I see inconsistency between what and "claim" needs to be done and am trying to seperate out the fact and fiction from those groups' self-interests. Did you do any additonal mods to your 2000? Or, did you just add it to the stock engine and go from there? How many miles on that supercharged Runner of yours and any problems/maintenance? Thanks!
  • I am NOT saying that the people who want more power is wrong! I would love for my 4Runner to have 300 HPs and 400 Torque...who wouldn't? I am just saying that the current 3rd gen 4Runner is not "gutless"! It's performance is right up there with the best of the best SUVs!

    I agree that towing is not 4Runner's strong point. But, for most of us (including me), the most i will ever tow is a jetski. If you want to tow something heavier, then none of the Toyota products are particularly good at it either. For me, I am more into off-roading and sight-seeing (Grand Canyon, Big Bend, etc.). This is where the 4Runner literally outshines everything else in it's class (reliable, great off-roading talents, built like a tank, etc.).
  • ptrsnptrsn SoutheastPosts: 6
    I traded a '96 4Runner SR5 4WD 5 Speed standard trans. for the 2000 SR5 4WD Auto (after having been a stick shift buff for the past 17 years or so I decided to just sit back and cruise with the automatic) and thinking that the automatic is not as responsive as the 5 Speed, I opted to find something to compensate. I had quite a few talks with TRD and decided to give this, specially designed for the 4Runner, supercharger a go.
    Yes, mjohn99 you're right, premium gas does cost a bit more but I, for one, never used just Regular in any of my vehicles; it was either Plus or Premium anyway so for me that's not a bad point. I ordered the 4Runner from Clearwater Toyota in Florida and did not have the supercharger shipped from TRD until the truck arrived. I drove it around town for the first 1500 miles or so before having the unit installed; you can really tell the difference. The only other item I installed was a transmission cooler (at TRD's suggestion), all else is stock. I now have 48,650 and have not had a single problem either with the 4Runner or the supercharger. I opted to have the dealer install both supercharger and trannie cooler as I get a 5 yr or 50k warranty from them as opposed to only a 1 yr if you do it yourself. Cost is roughly about $300.00 for Toyota to do the work. I just had the truck in for it's 30k service (a little late) and had them replace the supercharger serpentine belt (cost: $ 19.00 and labor $66.00) although the service dept. said I didn't need to worry the belt would last forever. At $80.00 invested in a new belt versus having the old one snap and having to order a new one (not a Toyota stocking part) and wait about a week for it, I opted for the replacement.
    I live in Central Florida and commute to work in Savannah so most of my cruising is on the I-95 corridor. Normal cruising traffic speed on I-95 is in the 75 to 80 mph. This is effortless as I'm only doing 2500 rpm @ 80 mph. What's a kick is dropping out of overdrive and punching it and 105 mph is there awfully quick. Not that I do this all the time but at least I know I still have plenty of power after 80. Gas mileage is 18 - 19 in town and 21.5-22 on the highway if I use cruise @ 78. The one thing some people might find annoying is that @ idle there is a slight kind of diesel sound (not clanking but more of a whirring sound) that come off the pulleys from the supercharger but you can't hear it inside only while standing in front of the vehicle. When I go to get a new vehicle (probably 2004 and probably another 4Runner) I will definitely do the supercharger again if it is available..
  • With the great analysis in previous posts that true minimum running ground clearance of the 3rd Gen is 9.8" (and not 11" per Toyota), and speculation that the 4th gen may be only 0.7' shy of that, I am curious if a 2003 can be had such that it is more akin to the 3rd Gen? [By the way, correction to my earlier post: a LOT of other SUVs received 3 star rollover ratings last year - maybe a good rationalization can result if this slight loss in clearance plus wider body results in 3 stars this year?!? The NHTSA page has a lot of good info. how things like VSC do not change what happens when a two-star gets up off the pavement, hits the soft stuff and ends up rolling (. . . of course VSC does a good job keeping you on the pavement in the first place!).]

    Question: seeing Cliffy's breakdowns for the CAT region, would it nevertheless be possible next year to "order" the monochromatic Limited (or near monochromatic silver SR5 with gray PAINTED cladding - that's a relief) withOUT the rear spoiler and roof rack? I have always bought off the lot and am not sure if/how that can be done.

    A lot of the posts on this board are helpful and thanks are in order. With the reviews plus rumors that base prices may be lower than anticipated, the fact that the V8 is only one MPG less than the new V6, the fact that the V8 is tried-and-true and is not first year out like the new aluminum V6, the fact that the DVD, air suspension, spoiler, and roof rack are all options, and Cliffy's suspicion that any less cargo space may only be due to newly-accurate measurements, a monochromatic V8 may be priced such that it is a better "value" than the loaded $31K 2002 supercharged SR5 I am looking at ($27.5K plus $3.5K charger). Of course, there's no way out of that headlight package . . .
  • That was a terrific post and very helpful. Most who have gone with the TRD charger seem to do nothing but off-road. Your positive review is helpful. It sounds like the 3rd gen computer took right to it, and as promised by the TRD folks, you really didn't have to do much else - just install and go. How much for and what type of transmission cooler? I really like the idea of getting the last of the rock-solid 3rd Gen and having a Toyota dealer up here install the charger - warranty terms are great! Gas mileage is great - some claim it even improves with the charger. I heard no real maintenance on the unit until around 90K. Florida, eh? Long drive - :> - I wish you had a Toy. mechanic up here in DC to recommend - I've read some bad stories about guys putting these things on wrong or not having installed enough such that when they get the part from TRD they don't have the expertise to tell that something is not as its supposed to be on the charger.
  • Any info on what the Western (California) region will be receiving when the new Runners ship?
  • Looks like there is a dealer in Dearborn, MI that has the '03s on the lot.
  • I'm guessing you got TRD's trans oil cooler . . . but did you go with their boost gauge as well? (just saw both on their web site.) If so, then you got the charger, cooler and gauge all installed for $3.5K back in 2000?
  • I am sure you know about this site, but there are a few things you need to know about superchargers (and possible complications):

    Also, remember, the 4th gen ground clearance is 9.1". I don't think this is the "MINIMUM" running ground clearance. Speculation. This maybe the maximum ground clearance. The Lexus GX470 (same frame/suspension as 4Runner) has a MINIMUM ground clearance of 8.3". I don't know why 4Runner would have a higher ground clearance than GX470.

  • yes, thanks, I have gone through that whole site and that is what has caused me concerns. Contrast that site to what TRD claims and try to seperate out the self-interests of the two respective parties/sites. That's why I need some 3rd party, relatively "unbiased" info like ptsrn's experience. Intmed, have you had some bad luck with a charger or just an FYI to the site?

    On the ground clearance, my goof. So as not to confuse new readers:

    3rd Gen Runner: Toyota listed "ground clearance" = 11"; true, measured "minimum running ground clearance" = ~ 9.8".

    4th gen Runner: Toyota listed "ground clearance" = 9.1"; true, measured "minimum running ground clearance" = ??? (probably ~ 8.3" as you surmise).
  • Well, initially, i had some interest in putting a supercharger into my 4Runner. However, after reading that site, i am very hesitant. As stated (repeatedly) above, i think the 4Runner power is decent. Also, from reading about Eaton S/Cs (which is same as TRD S/C), at low-RPMs and high-RPMs, supercharger tends to rob power, rather than give, UNlike turbochargers (which do not run of the engine power, but exhaust).

    I wrote a thread a while back on another forum regarding this issue (for a CRV; however, would apply to any SUV):

    Just scroll down to my first post in the thread, (my name is "Thai").

  • Good discussion. I realize the effect of the charger on the power curve and lower RPM's, but at least this is one option open to consideration for those seeking more HP on the 3rd Gen. I too would prefer the HP from a redesigned engine of course - hence, my 3 year wait. Unfortunately, I am having trouble coming to grips with the new look - may be just my strange idiosynchroncies (sp?) - but things like that spoiler and even the new look of the roof rack (while more substantial now) is too carlike/minivan for me. As it's all relative, it makes the supercharger perhaps worth the risk. In any event, if Cliffy tells me I can kill the spoiler and put on my Thule's (yes, you can do so without using the manufacturer's roof rack), then my decision to wait until Oct. 15th has been "so far, so good" . . .
  • Cliffy,

    I remember a post a few months back saying something about the new 4Runner being able to transfer power to one wheel (like Grand Cherokee), instead of just side to side, as it currently does.

    Is this still the case for the 2003's? Any other updates you know about regarding the Traction Control and VSC?

  • glzr2glzr2 Posts: 70
    Is this a confirmed sighting or did you look at inventories online? What dealership? If it's there, I'll take I-94 and swing by after work to kick the tires. I should stop in at TTC in Ann Arbor to see if they have one.
  • ptrsnptrsn SoutheastPosts: 6
    Wow, just read all the pros and cons about the supercharger stuff. I just looked into sent by intmed99 and I don't know what to tell ya. Yes I guess most problems occur from bad installations; when I had mine installed in Clearwater, Fl. the dealer had told me that they had installed a couple, which to me was 2 or 3 more than none, and if it had screwed anything up then they would have been liable but in any event that is all speculation as not one thing has gone wrong.
    To answer your question mjohnr99, I bought the charger, TRD's transmission cooler (I think it was about $150.00 or so, a little priceyer (sp?) than most), I did not get the boost gauge but plan on getting it soon, not that you need one but it's just another gadget to have. I believe it costs about $100.00 and all this stuff has to be obtained from a Toyota dealer as I don't believe TRD sells to the public. If you have more than one Toyota dealership in the area it would pay to shop around. Clearwater is right next to Tampa and there are about four dealerships in the area. All of them gave me different prices and labor charges. I didn't go with the cheapest offer. When I purchased my charger (March of 2000) it sold for about $2895.00 from TRD then the Dealer marked it up to about $3150.00 and then charged about 300.00 to install it. The Trans. cooler cost me about $50.00 to have it installed so I guess the grand total was more like close to $3700.00 give or take a buck or so. And that would not include to cost and installation on the boost gauge.
    And, you know, I was just looking at the specs on the Gen 4 and based on horsepower I still think the aluminum V6 with a charger (I'm sure TRD will come to the rescue soon) would be the way to go. TRD claims about a 45% increase in horsepower so that would be: new V6= about 235 h.p. + about 45% = 106 h.p. that would equal about 341 h.p. !! That would be killer, especially with the lighter V6 (I wonder if it is a Japanese V6?) as opposed to the heavier V8 ( I heard that it is a Chevy V8, does anyone know?).
    A guy I work with has a late model 5 liter Mustang and installed a Paxton charger which was installed inline with the air intake and looks pretty shabby. The TRD on the other hand replaces the intake manifold and looks clean plus I believe I get a larger % of horsepower than he does.
  • - all good information, I'm right with ptrsn on all of that posting: "the 2 or 3 more than none" experience with the dealers, the pricing, the good looks of the charger when installed, as well as the preference for the new 2003 engine(s). I think I come down where you are on this topic and that we can safely put this one to bed until the 15th. Appreciate the advice, both.
  • I think the Edmund's embargo is on, so I can't post the link, but for anyone following the major boards on the 4Runner (you should know the ones . . .), there are more shots of the new Runner at a dealer!!! This is no promotion of that site (I'd like to name it, but already in trouble with Edmund's for that terrible "masked profanity" . . .) and only intended as useful information for additional discussion here. Have you guys not seen these? These are the best shots yet. (Hint: there are 72 of them!)

    The bad news (at least for these photographed here): the ugly plastic cladding and fender flares are still there on the SR5/Sports! And the Limited is not monochromatic unless that gray on the roofrack and bumpers is a protective coating that peels off . . . sheesh.
  • The 4th gen 4.0L V6 engine is all-aluminum with a relatively high compression ratio (i think). Usually, most people prefer an iron-block when supercharging their engine. Secondly, a high compression ratio is difficult to supercharge i believe (not sure on this one).

    Based on the Hp/Torque ratings, the 4th gen should have plenty of power...i don't think a supercharger is needed, unless you want to race a F150 Lightning.
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