This is my 2nd 4Runner. I had an 88 200,000miles & traded for the 97, wanted 4 drs. It has a 2" lift with HD springs & shocks and a TRD cat-back which added a little more low end power. This is my daily driver and hard use off-roader. I tow 3,000- 5,000# on a regular basis and it pulls great. I have removed my front and rear sway bars for better travel off-road, the little extra lean on the streets is not alarming. I run this on trails, service roads, crawling & even use it as follow vehicle at high speeds for quad riders. The truck gets beat hard with bumps & jumps (8ft in the air) & keeps on tick'n. No major probs. Looking to get another one w/V8 but will keep this one. Quality is 2nd to none.
Hard-core durability. Electric rear locker. Performance over similarly equipped Cherokees and X-terras.
Polyurethane bushings for all suspension components.
I purchased this with 111000 miles. It is now at 196,000 miles. I've only replaced timing belt, $900 brakes often (due to oversize tires and going up and down the mountain) otherwise just oil changes. One small problem lately is check engine light comes on when gas gauge shows around a quarter of a tank. Mechanic said it could be just the gas cap. I've been told the ride in the back seat is rough but I haven't replaced the shocks nor do I know if they had been done before I bought it. For the last year I have had the roof and hood area start to peel but I have never had it waxed either. I will probably end up painting these areas when they get worse.
Reliability, gas mileage is reasonable, 4wd easy to engage. Nice looking SUV.
I paid $26,000 for mine new in 1997. I have over 198,000 miles now. The ride is a little unsettled, it's better with a full load. Handling and steering is 2nd to none. I relocated the oil filter to the inner fender well with a bypass kit. I installed a hood deflector. I also installed a makeshift stainless steel screen inside the grill to stop damage to the radiator from road debris and bugs. The only repair I've needed are the head gasket went out under the extended warranty. Also the front brake line cracked from fatigue after a mounting bolt rusted thru. Michelin LTX M+S are the tires of choice for this vehicle. I still have the original shocks, exhaust system, alternator, starter.
Oil filter nearly impossible and messy to reach; fuel mileage should be much better; hood deflector should be standard; parking brake handle blocks center tray; front cup holders block air vents; no glove box light;
I purchased this vehicle new and it has been the most reliable vehicle I have owned. I've had other brands Honda's, Chevy's, Ford, GMC.... and nothing compares to Toyota quality and reliability (not even my Honda Accord). The only maintenance has been oil changes, tires, timing belt per owners manual and brakes (probably weakest feature - upgraded to Tundra front discs last year). I would buy another 4Runner, but this one still has years of reliable service left.
Bigger front discs, maybe a V8 (power) for Colorado passes towing a trailer. The ride is a little firm, similar to my old 911.
This thing is awful. Your feet stick straight out in front of you, putting your legs to sleep in the front seat, your knees are in your nose in the rear seat. It's a gutless wonder, with no power. In the shop all the time for piddlin' little things like wrinkling rubber on the running boards, peeling paint, sticking sunroof, you know Toyota stuff. And the parts are outrageous! A new ignition tumbler cost me $120 bucks! It's like driving a two story house down the highway - tippy around corners. It's a wonder my wife hasn't rolled it. It's a pig in the woods - no diff locks=stuck lots. And be careful if you take it off road, it's fragile. I'm going with a Suburban next.
It's got a couple of stripes. Seriously, my wife likes it, so I don't have to drive it. It is really fragile for a 4X4, though.
Boy, where to start? Better fuel mileage. Reduced body roll. Better plastics inside. Better paint. More corrosion protection. More power. Better seating position. Stronger interior and exterior components.