What Are The Best and Worst Years for The Toyota 4Runner: Detailed Reviews


When it comes to Toyota 4runners, the best years are those produced between 1988 and 2002, also known as the 3rd generation. The 1988-2002 models were well-liked for their high quality and performance. The worst years are between 2013 and 2014, so stay away from those.

In this review, I will go over the best and worst years for Toyota 4Runners, as well as whether you should get one and why Toyota 4Runners are a great car to own. If you’re interested in Toyota 4Runners, we think you’ll enjoy the research and data presented below.

Best Years for Toyota 4Runners

As previously stated, the best year models for Toyota’s third-generation 4Runners are from 1988 to 2002.

While they were not the fastest when compared to later models (150-hp, 2.7-liter 4-cylinder, 183-hp, 3.4-liter V6), they were praised for their dependability, with enough build quality for a more modern appeal to off-roading adventures.

Those years are an excellent choice for families who need a V6 SUV. Along with the third generation, the second generation from 1990 to 1995 did exceptionally well because it pioneered modern SUVs with the appearance of a truck and the power to tackle off-road trails.

The engine produced 115 horsepower with four cylinders, but the V6 150 horsepower became a more popular option.

The 5th generation, from 2010 to today, fared well as well, as it is seen to be just as reliable as its predecessors while being more durable and dependable. However, the braking system is not automatic, and there is no adaptive cruise control.

Worst Years for Toyota 4Runners

The first generation of 4Runners (1984-1989) had two major flaws: they were slow and looked too truck-like, so they were unpopular with customers.

While model years 2003-09 were given more power and is the only 4Runner to include a V8 along with 235 horsepower and 315 Ib-ft torque, the style wasn’t widely accepted by the public, which slowed sales by the end of its run.

The worst model year was 2015, with the main issue being the infotainment center’s inability to function properly due to freezing and restarting. Other annoyances included a failed Bluetooth connection and the inability to charge phones and other devices.

Drivers had to restart their audio systems regularly, and in worst-case scenarios, they had to restart the car entirely. When the brakes were applied, the rotors warped up quickly, causing the steering wheel to shake. Brake failure after ABS was another issue resulting in a slow reaction time and worrisome stops.

The previous model year, 2014, did not fare well either, particularly in terms of various electric issues. The radios froze and turned off after 10 minutes, and the door locks failed, particularly the rear child safety lock.

Sometimes the running boards got stuck with deployment, only moving halfway. However, if the car was lucky enough to restart, operating systems and lights would turn back on.

The steering was terrible, and dangerous shuddering vibrated the car at 55-65 mph, and the front arm bushing evaluation at the auto shop didn’t help.

During rain and wind storms, the 4Runner veered off the road more frequently, and the tires wore out quickly.

The Latest Model: Toyota 4Runner 2022

As the Toyota 4Runner model line expands, the 2022 model introduced a TRD Sport model as a worthy rival to the pickup Toyota Tacoma.

However, the TRD is not sporty because of its 20-inch featured wheels and a hood scoop. It has a luxurious interior design of soft leather and dampers that will assist the vehicle in being adaptive and providing better body control. The LED high beams in the headlights also provide excellent illumination.

What makes the 2022 model so appealing is the 270HP on 4.0 liters and the V6 engine with five different speed automatic transmissions. This model came with rear, full-wheel, and four-wheel drive systems.

When tested, the model reached 60 mph in 7.6 seconds. This did not optimize the engine’s behavior, even with downshifts requiring a firm press on inputs for the 4Runner to move forward.

The SUV 2022 model is lightweight, sporting a sporty appearance, ideal for off-roading with easier parking navigation, and capable of traversing various terrain roads.

Steering also improved by being lightweight and navigating around other vehicles precisely during rush hour, which proves superior to the competitor model, the V-6 Dodge Durango.

Toyota’s 2022 4Runner has a pitted frame and a powerful torque engine that delivers excellent towing support. This 4Runner’s 5,000-pound capacity blows competitors like the Wrangler out of the water.

As technology advances, safety and driving assistance features such as automatic high-beam headlamps when it is dark, monitor warnings for blind spots, forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking, lane change assistance, and adaptive cruise control are available.


The 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee competition is fierce, but the Toyota 4Runner is a major contender. They have a great sense of adventure and can handle rough trails as well as sleek mountain passages.

Drivers can sense Toyota’s confidence in their products as they find the various year models of the 4Runner dependable, with excellent mileage and features. The Toyota 4Runner has some flaws, but it still has a lot to offer and can be affordable or even fantastic for families and travelers on a budget.