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Toyota 4Runner

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Comments

  • alfster1alfster1 Posts: 273
    Nah, you aren't off base. :)

    I guess the first question a potential customer should ask themselves is do they want a car or an SUV. Then think about the potential uses that will most likely be encounted. For most people, a mid sized sedan fits the bill nicely.

    Hmm, you wouldn't compare an FX45 with a Cayenne? They are similar in many ways (other than price). I suppose that the Cayenne would be better off road in some ways, but considering it's price, I doubt it will ever see the well worn off road trails.

    I have test driven many midsized SUVs and I consider the 4Runner with X-REAS the best riding/performing mid-sized SUV out there. Not only that, the seats are supremely comfortable (far more comfortable than the C classs Mercedes).Of course, a Corolla would out corner and kill the 4Runner in the slalom, but now we aren't comparing apples and oranges :) I was also reasonably impressed when parallel parking. The 4Runner is my first SUV puchase. Initially, I didn't expect to do much parallel parking, but one day, I had to. The turning radius is better than on some cars, but this is only a greater advantage in lower speed maneuvers (ie. parallel parking,off road driving).
  • Ah the confusion of the internet. adp3, thanks for clearing that up.

    No, the characteristics of a live rear axle and 1500lbs extra will definitely not give the same ride as a independent suspension A4. I still say it's silly to compare the two. People compare their Honda Civic to a Porsche 911- I think that's silly too. Just be honest to what the vehicle is.

    But, Toyota did a really excellent job with the on road ride of the 4Runner. If all trucks rode like the 4Runner, we would have never moved to 4 wheel independent suspensions!

    I feel the on road ride is "luxurious". Not in a pampered grey poupon way but in a sporty, solid comfortable way.
    It's just really nice to sit behind the wheel, tap the steering wheel radio control to my fav CD, and enjoy! It's great in the city and great in the mountains.
    The 4Runner isn't trendy, it isn't flash in the pan. It is really solid quality built on a chassis that could easily survive jungles, deserts and the mall, very thoughtfully designed and high technology engineering BUT still very simple and reliable.
    I dunno, I'm with kheintz1, I just love this car!
  • Looooooooving you is easy, cause you're beautiful

    Busting trails with you, is all I wanna doooooo.......
  • jaredmsdjaredmsd Posts: 127
    I don't know about you, but I can't bring myself to call the 4runner's ride to be 'truck-like'

    Try driving a mid-80's Bronco, then a mid 90's Blazer, a silverado, f-150, and then tell me the 4runners ride is 'truck-like'.

    It isn't a mercedes or a volvo, but damn, it isn't a true truck until you can feel like you've already rolled over in a turn when all your 4 tires are still on the ground!

    Personally I'd take the stiff ride over the floaty boat ride any day. Every city has at least one road/highway that has a series of whoop-di-woos that'll induce vomitting in any boat-like ride! Highway 80 in Sacramento, and highway 52 in san diego if you are ever in the area :).
  • alfster1alfster1 Posts: 273
    Hehheh, I agree. Maybe we should call the 4Runner's ride "truck-esque" instead? LOL
  • Like I said, the 4Runner has one of the best rides of any midsize suv.

    If they are interested in buying a 4Runner, they can read my opinion on it. I don't care what they end up using it for. If they don't need the off road capability, they might need to tow. If they don't want a minivan or car then what?

    People interested in buying a 4Runner, imo, don't wany someone telling them to go buy something else. They want to know the characteristics of the 4Runner.

    Personally, I don't think there are tradeoffs. Poorer handling and rougher ride? The 4Runner is smooth and handles great.

    All I can say is for people considering the 4Runner to go test drive the vehicle and judge for yourself.
  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    Fer crying out loud, terrafirma, chill out dude. I agree that the 4Runner has a good ride, for an SUV. I bought one after all. I drive it every day.

    For people who don't tow and don't drive off road, they may want to consider something else. It's not out of line to suggest alternatives that might better meet their needs.

    Handles great? For an SUV, sure. Compared to most SUVs, the 4Runner handles better. Compared to some of the soft-roader SUVs, the 4Runner probably doesn't not match the handling of a Cayenne or the Infiniti FX35/45. Compared to a sport sedan, it doesn't come close. It can't. It weighs 30% more, its center of gravity is a lot higher, its solid rear axle causes it to step out on bumpy corners, it's tires give up too soon, and it doesn't have the turn-in.

    That doesn't mean it is a bad SUV, nor is that a criticism of you or your choice of vehicle. After all, I bought the exact same vehicle.

    But the 4Runner is a traditional body-on-frame, solid-rear-axle SUV with all the advantages and disadvantages that implies.
  • kheintz1kheintz1 Posts: 213
    I've just taken time to review all of the numerous comments and opinions that have been posted at this forum over the past week or so, and I would like to offer some further thoughts.

    First, there are certain "armchair" respondants who seem to be quite vocal and opinionated about the advantages and disadvantages of the new 4Runner, yet based on their member profiles they don't seem to either own or regularly drive a 4Runner. The possible motivations of such individuals are curious to ponder, and I'll just leave it that.

    Secondly, there seem to be several related arguments being put forth by some, who claim that unless one plans to take either a 4WD or AWD 4Runner (or other SUV) "off-road", that the added expense and capabilities of such a vehicle is largely unnecessary, overpriced, and even foolish. Numerous (perjorative?) comments have been made about whether such a vehicle would ever be needed if the toughest duty it would see only involved being driven to and from an unplowed parking lot of a local mall after a light snowfall. In my opinion, those who would put forth such arguments may (at best) not understand, appreciate, and accept the multitude of evidence-based reasons as to why a well-designed 4WD/AWD system (be it found in a car, a truck, or an SUV) tends to be inherently more stable and safe than a vehicle with only a single drive wheel. For those who would like more education in this regard (and who also possess the required attention span) I would recommend reading and carefully studying the following links: http://auto.howstuffworks.com/four-wheel-drive.htm with special note of this subsection:
     http://auto.howstuffworks.com/four-wheel-drive2.htm

    Once you understand the information and instructional animations provided by this excellent on-line tutorial (as well as exploring the related educational links provided), the only questions remaining should be whether one's needs and wants would be best met by buying either a 4wd/awd CAR, vs. a 4wd/awd SUV or PICKUP.

    Thirdly, it is a fact that a vehicle's stability and safety (regardless of the road or surface conditions) is closely tied to the ability of its wheels [especially its POWERED wheel(s)] to maintain positive traction, even on DRY pavement. No traction, no CONTROL-- when this happens, start praying, and if you squeak by, then maybe you'll start thinking more about
    4WD/AWD, be it in a car or truck. Also, the better AWD/4WD vehicles have brakes and other safety features that are integrated with the drivetrain data, making them safer than ever, unless the driver does something really unwise.
  • woodyr1woodyr1 Posts: 142
    Here in Canada, I have yet to see an 04 4Runner, that comes standard with the tire pressure monitoring system. Does anyone have any knowledge how it works? On Nissan, wireless transmitters ($250 Cdn. each) are mounted on the factory rims. If a tire pressure drops below a certain value, a warning light illuminates. They do not use rubber tire valves, but metal units that can get damaged by scuffing the curb. Should you use winter steel rims, the lamps will flash until you either tape over the instrument panel, or remove the bulb.

    Thanks
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    when I said I wouldn't compare the FX35/45 with the Cayenne it was only because of the price difference, that's all. I do understand why someone would compare the two.

    I agree with kheintz about the AWD/4WD thing, though I haven't put my money where my mouth is yet. Looking at the XC90 (becaue I don't need the offroad ability and my wife is gonna drive it every day and that's the vehicle she likes)

    as many have said, keep the wife happy - especially when it ain't that hard to do. Hell, this is the first time I've ever seen her excited about a car, so I might as well go with it.

    what is weird about kheintz's post is that is my second howstuffworks reference TODAY, and I can't think of the last time anyone mentioned that site to me

    As to kheintz questioning motivations, I just think it is silly for folks to completely overlook cars and jump to SUVs when a car would do the trick for them. Lady of Lux's expressd needs seemed to be met with a car. Heck, maybe even an SRX. I think people who don't know HOW to drive an SUV shouldn't be driving them. You guys just take it for granted that other folks know what you do about operating their vehicle. But folks don't. Most folks are clueless. They didn't have buttons to push to engage or disengage anything. They turned the key and off they went. Turn on DSC? Turn it off?

    :-)
  • alfster1alfster1 Posts: 273
    Oh, I see. I agree with you. There is a tremendous disparity between the Inifinit FX and the Porshe Cayenne.

    The SRX is nice, but I hear that there is a servere wind buffetting problem when the huge moonrood opens. It is also very pricey. A Pacifica is much cheaper, but may have less cache. I don't know much about the reliability of either since there is little info out there for these new models. The Volvo is nice also, but I would worry more about long term reliability and maintenance.

    As for choosing vehicles, you are right. For years, families have somehow gotten along with all sorts of vehicles. For some families, a Corolla could be a primary vehicle (although you wouldn't be able to buy much at the price club :). The sweet spot for many years has been the mid sized sedan, but so many families aggregated towards minivans (perhaps bigger than necessary?). We can definitely see though that crossover SUVs are where the market is heading as they have the best of all roads for most people. Fortunately, there is more than enough choice for all.

    I don't think that the skills to drive an SUV are all that different for a sedan. Basically, you need to know to brake earlier, not drive as quickly in turns (esp. dec. radius turns), and not to be overconfident in driving (particularly in treacherous road conditions).
  • rogers12rogers12 Posts: 140
    I have read here that the tire pressure monitoring system on the 4Runner works by monitoring the relative rotation speed of the 4 wheels (through the ABS system sensors) and warns you if one wheel consistently turns more revolutions than the others, as would be caused by its diameter decreasing from underinflation.
  • > In my opinion, those who would put forth such
    > arguments may (at best) not understand,
    > appreciate, and accept the multitude of
    > evidence-based reasons as to why a well-
    > designed 4WD/AWD system (be it found in a car,
    > a truck, or an SUV) tends to be inherently
    > more stable and safe than a vehicle with only
    > a single drive wheel.

    I agree - automobiles with a "single drive wheel" really suck. Going round and round in circles gets old so quick! I guess motorbikes are kinda fun, but they do get pretty unsafe with all of these 4000-5000 lb monster trucks on the roads.

    Just an attempt to inject some humour ...
  • kjack100kjack100 Posts: 133
    Terrafirma and jaredsmd, I thought, were quite level headed in their whole assessment of this "thing".

    To paraphrase, in Alabama jargon, "the 4Runner ain't no car, but it is damn close...and by g*d, the handling and power dwarf anything in its class and most cars. Call a 4Runner whatever you want; I don't give a rip."(Slightly sanitized)

    Kheintz, you must be a textbook writer or grant writer. I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts; a shade long winded, but well thought out and on the money.

    Adp3, you are a pot stirrer. Welcome to the board. I do ask that you go drive a 4Runner first before you make another rash comparison. I saw your posts on the board "I Don't Like SUV's. Why Do You?" You make some valid points, but drive a 4Runner, you'll be hooked. Good evening.
  • Has anyone put 265/75/16 tires on their 16" rims?

    I am curious to find out if the slightly larger size will fit in the spare tire storage area underneath the truck. The tow hitch looks like it may make it a tight squeeze.

    thanks
  • chill out? I think you totally misread my post because I am not upset at all. I was just stating my opinion.

    I think saying the 4Runner "handles great for an suv" is...odd.

    Uh, It is an suv so the 4Runner handles great-- which is what I said.

    Should the 4Runner handle great for a sports car?

    People just need to go drive it. At this point in the conversation, there really is nothing further need to be said since we are all basically saying similar things.
  • pat84pat84 Posts: 817
    I agree with you. The 4Runner, while a truck, rides very comfortably and handles great. It is designed as an off road capable vehicle. It is awesome off road.
       For an off road capable truck, the ride is incredibly smooth and very quiet.
       I made an excellent choice getting a 4Runner.
  • I'm still reading the board about the 4Runner. I like the Limited, but couldn't afford it. My price range is the 4x4 Sport V6. Is it possible to get dealer installed leater seats (with or w/o heated) installed? How much typically? Has anyone done this? If so, your opinions on the quality, durability, etc. Would it be possible to have the same exact factory leather seats that are in the Ltd. version installed by the dealer on the aforementioned Sport model?

    This is one of my few complaints about the 4Runner.
  • When I bought my 2004 4Runner (17inch), the pressure indicator was blinking for some reason and it had to go back to service 5 min after the purchase. A junior mechanic tried to fix it. First looked for a "reset" button and then was instructed by a senior mechanic how to fix it. However it was too complicated that he couldn't figured it out. After 10-15 min of try, the senior mechanic finally took it over and explained how it works to the junior mechanics, sales person, and me.

    Well, I couldn't really understand how it works because it was VERY complicated (sophisticated as he put it). He also said 4Runner tire monitoring system is most advanced among Toyota vehicles. Basically, the valvestems (including the spare tire) transmit signals when the pressure is lower than a threshold. To reset the monitoring system, you have to deflate all the tire once and start inflate one by one. Each time one tire is inflated, it seems that you have to turn on and off the vehicle.

    The metalic valvestem costs $150-200 each (very cool looking). The wheel is specially designed to accommodate the valvestem so you can't simply buy new wheels. He said the wheel is "very expensive" too. He also said that I should think twice before I bring this car to a regular tire store for tire change at least people out there become familiar with this new system. We also adviced "don't side-swipe this wheel"!
  • baki44baki44 Posts: 24
    I have a 2004 4Runner 2WD and I got my Leather seats from dealer but I know they got from "Classic Soft Trim" Company. I got stone cloth interior and they put exactly same matching color Leather. The price is $1200 with 3years 36000 warranty. I'm very happy with the quality.
    Go to www.classicsofttrim.com and you will see they have a alot of locations all over the country
    you will leave your car two days for the installation.
  • When I bought my 2004 4Runner (17inch), the pressure indicator was blinking for some reason and it had to go back to service 5 min after the purchase. A junior mechanic tried to fix it. First looked for a "reset" button and then was instructed by a senior mechanic how to fix it. However it was too complicated that he couldn't figured it out. After 10-15 min of try, the senior mechanic finally took it over and explained how it works to the junior mechanics, sales person, and me.

    Well, I couldn't really understand how it works because it was VERY complicated (sophisticated as he put it). He also said 4Runner tire monitoring system is most advanced among Toyota vehicles. Basically, the valvestems (including the spare tire) transmit signals when the pressure is lower than a threshold. To reset the monitoring system, you have to deflate all the tire once and start inflate one by one. Each time one tire is inflated, it seems that you have to turn on and off the vehicle.

    The metalic valvestem costs $150-200 each (very cool looking). The wheel is specially designed to accommodate the valvestem so you can't simply buy new wheels. He said the wheel is "very expensive" too. He also said that I should think twice before I bring this car to a regular tire store for tire change at least people out there become familiar with this new system. We also adviced "don't side-swipe this wheel"!
  • "Lady of Lux's expressd needs seemed to be met with a car. Heck, maybe even an SRX. I think people who don't know HOW to drive an SUV shouldn't be driving them."

    So what exactly are you trying to imply in this post? That I don't know HOW to drive an SUV and so I shouldn't drive one? I mean really, in reading alot of the posts on this site, the ignorance of alot of you are really starting to come through. If I would've came on this board questioning my choice between 4Runner and RX330 and was a MALE, I'm sure all of you who like to question my driving abilities and ability to handle an SUV would not be adamant to steer me towards some ugly XC90, unreliable SRX or any sedan regardless of what I state my uses would be. But I came in here and simply because I am a woman most people are trying to steer me away from the 4runner to a minivan, or a wagon or sedan. Well I didn't come in here asking for advice on what type of vehicle I should choose because believe it or not this is not a rash decision like many of you like to suggest. I have been in the market searching for the right vehicle for myself since 2002, and my number one concern is reliability. I want a vehicle that has a proven track record of reliability, I don't spend money to watch it go down the drain or spend money on some depreciation hungry dodge, ford, mazda, mitsibushi or a vehicle/manufacturer with questionable reliability. And with those considerations in mind most of you would be hard pressed argue with me that the three companies that have proven themselves reliable, have excellent resale value and are very safe vehicles are Honda, Toyota, and Lexus. So with that being said, obviously a Volvo, Cadillac, Chrysler or whatever else will not fit my two most important criteria.

    As for the fact that I am limiting myself to a SUV without considering a sedan. PLEASE! You all only know what I come here and tell you, what you don't know is that I've already looked at the Avalon, Camry, and Accord, and if one of you could get my dog's crate in the trunk or even backseat then PLEASE let me know. However, we do have a dog and are getting another one next month and we take frequent road trips where we have had to rent SUV's because we had no space for our luggage and our dog. So please get off your high horse and stop assuming you know my life and exactly what my needs are. And frankly who gives a crap if I didn't even have a dog, had no husband, never went anywhere but work, grocery store, mall and home and still wanted an SUV, so what?? So let's stop assuming and implying that we all know what is best for me because I do have a father and none of you are him.

    As for the rest of you that have given me your opinions and suggestions, I really appreciate it, I take into account everything you all say and I am still weighing my options, I will let you all know once I come to a final decision.

    HAVE A BLESSED DAY!
  • pat84pat84 Posts: 817
    I do believe that most here are trying to help anyone who posts here. This is one of the better boards I have been on. I believe adp3 is looking for a SUV, too. I'm not sure he has one yet.
     Those of us who have 4runners are very happy with them.
  • woodyr1woodyr1 Posts: 142
    The system on the Toyota sounds very similar to the Nissan Pathfinder unit. Te transmitters could be manufactured by the same company. I would expect as TPM becomes more common, the valve prices will reduce. The $250 Canadian price would equate to a $US of the $150-200 range.

    Thanks
  • OK...I've watched this one for awhile, and many good points have been made.

    I traded in an '00 Audi A4 wagon for an '03 V8 sport 4Runner. The audi was a great car - it wasn't overpowered, but it had plenty of "kick" when driving 80 for passing, etc. I could sit low and had a great feel for the road. It had the great audi quattro system (AWD). This was probably the best car I have ever owned. Unfortunately, it was a bit small for my growing family, the ground clearance was minimal, and, the killing blow, it couldn't tow. SO - off I go vehicle shopping.

    The 4Runner is also a great vehicle, and handles very well. Did I say for a truck? No, but....
    I'm only talking driving impressions here...I don't race, and I haven't had it on a track. However....you sit taller, which gives a wider view, but I for one am concious of the higher center of gravity. Braking distance is noticably longer. It has a larger turning radius, and is not nearly as "nimble" or "agile" as the audi. I *think* the X-REAS is great, but I didn't compare it with a non X-R 4R. I have driven LOTS of explorers, however, and there is no comparison. The rocking and rolling on twisty mountain dirt roads can make you sea-sick in an explorer. Am I happy with it? You bet! Do I love this truck? ummm....no. It is a competent, safe vehicle, and I don't think there is a better one that can do what it can do. It is very comfortable, can hold a ton of gear, and tow 5000 lbs. effortlessly. Dirt roads, mud, snow, are no barrier. My wife, on the other hand, loves this truck! So...go figure.

    I choose the 4runner over any other comparably priced similar vehicles due to: X-REAS, the smoooth power and transmission of the V8, the reputation for reliability and resale, the comfort, the quiet interior, and the fairly roomy back seat. I have the cladding, btw, and am very happy with it. It has already saved the painted steel from numerous scratches, etc. from bushes and branches, not to mention parking lot and garage dings.

    As one of the very wise men on these boards says repeatedly

    "Drive what you like"
  • Does any know the money factor for the 4runner. I test drove one lastnight and really liked it. The stiker was $32848
  • alfster1alfster1 Posts: 273
    Well for a midsized SUV with great reliability, here are some good choices that will fit your bill :)

    Toyota 4Runner (of course)
    Lexus RX 330 (although you do lose a fair bit of luggage space with the severely sloped rear)
    Toyota Highlander (car-like ride with mild off roadability and lots of space - trifecta? :) )
    Nissan Pathfinder (a little smaller, good power, great reliability).

    As for the Volvo XC90, although MT SUV (CAR) of the year last year, is a nice vehicle and safe, reliability is something of concern. The same goes for the Caddy stationwagon.

    Hope that helps a bit.
  • jaredmsdjaredmsd Posts: 127
    I thought your post was mindful and justified. For every board full of people who are thoughtful/knowledgable/kind there are still the bad seeds. Most of us here I'm sure respect your decision to go the true SUV route and are truly trying to be helpful. These same people I'm sure would give you the same advice if your name was 'manofluxury' (although we might question your name choice)!

    I don't think anyone needs to justify themselves to someone else, so I'm with you on that one. I tell people that the 4runner is the best thing I have ever driven (all the cars I've driven where older), but if they are not going offroad or towing a lot, there might be some better options. If it turns out that they pick the 4runner b/c they hate minivans or they think the Pilot/highlander/pacifica/etc are weak and boring, then so be it, they are getting a great truck, and they got what they wanted. And THAT is the most important thing.

    I don't see why you have to go offroad to own a 4runner, I personally offroad myself, and I don't mind a bit. But I DO mind if you go and put all the accessories for offroading on your 4runner that I can't afford and then not go... that'll piss me off.

    -Jared
  • adp3adp3 Posts: 446
    Lady: it's not really fair to call me sexist. In fact, I admitted that many of us don't know how to drive an SUV. Specifically, some of the stuff posters here have mentioned (locking differentials; inlocking; enabling DSC; disabling DSC; etc.) That is ALL I meant. I guess my7 point is, you are paying at least 5 grand for utility that you don't know how to use - so why do it?

    Trying to fit a dog crate into a sedan IS a losing proposition, I agree.

    How about a station wagon? How about a minivan? There are some great wagons out there. Try the Passat wagon. Try the Audi (talk about unreliable). Try the RX330 (we can all pretend it's an SUV, but we know it really isn't).

    I'm not sure it's fair to say the SRX or the XC90 aren't "reliable." The SRX is so new we don't even have reliability data for it. Is the CTS unreliable? Has the XC90 been unreliable? We have at least one year to go on.

    I can't imagine the 4Runner ride is better than the SRX, but I could be wrong. If someone is never gonna go offroad, why buy the 4Runner over an SRX or the RX330?

    Lady: I am totally with you re Honda, Toyota, Lexus. When I started my search, I would only look at those cars, but I have learned that other cars are more reliable than I had assumed, so I broadened my search. No question that you can't go wrong with a 4Runner. Everyone I know that has one loves it. YOu did say you are driving an Accord, so I think it is fair for me to say that you are used to the ride of a sedan. The 4Runner will be a different ride. Not necessarily worse, but different. You may like it more.

    And there's no question that you don't want to be putting dog crates into the back seat of your Camry, etc. You may be surprised at how nice some minivans are. My friend has a Sienna and it is a sweet vehicle. Plenty of places for me to put my juice box.

    :-)
  • hey guys,
    i was wondering if you knew of any good off roading trails in lake tahoe in the snow covered winter? my friend and i are caravaning up to tahoe for the new years and want to do some snow 4x4ing. thanks in advance.
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