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Old 04-23-2010, 12:40 PM   #1
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Default Who drives a 4Runner? Sell me!

I've been hitting the various 4Runner forums and have a pretty good handle on the years, engines, trim levels, going rates, and whatnot. What I haven't found (and I'm not shitting) is anything wrong. Seriously, I can't find anybody who has anything bad to say at all about any year for any reason. They never break, they last forever, everything works all the time, etc...

Most guys who drive various year 2WD V6's get 20mpg mixed driving with low 20's on the highway... perfect.

I went and drove an '05 Limited and I think I'm pretty much sold on a 4Runner. I'm not stuck on any particular year, but it looks like with my price cap of $20k, the best deal is going to be in a '03-'05 SR5 with about 50-60k miles. It's amazing how much these things are worth after 7-8 years. I actully like the look of the GenII (top pic) with the bit more rounded body-style better than the newer ones with the harder lines. If I could find an '01 with low miles, it'd be hard to pass up.

Does anybody who has owned or experience with 4Runners have any info to pass?

'98


'05
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:48 PM   #2
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All the Haitians here love them.
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:49 PM   #3
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The first picture 98 is actually a 3rd generation. I used to drive a 95 4Runner before selling it and switching to a Miata. If I were to buy a 4Runner I would buy a 3rd gen with an electric locking rear differential option.

Check out this site, http://www.larsdennert.com/4runner/ I used to go 4wheeling with this guy. Awesome truck.
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:49 PM   #4
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They are a breeze to work on in most ways. Watched my friend do a timing belt on a v8 and it looked like a cake walk.

Edit: that must have been a land smasher but they look very similar.
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Old 04-23-2010, 01:49 PM   #5
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no experience with newer ones but the older one i was in seemed to have a weird seating position where you were almost sitting on the floor, thought it was really strange.
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Old 04-23-2010, 01:58 PM   #6
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The 3.4l v6 is the same engine I have in my '96 T100 dd. It has only seen preventative/routine maintenance since new. I bought it just a few years ago from the original owner with 50k miles on it, garage kept. I drive 40k+ miles annually. It has 303k miles now and is still cherry. I would have replaced it if it had been any other vehicle, but it runs so well I can't justify it. I changed a starter at 217k miles and an alternator and A/C compressor at about 293k, and that's about it. The steering and suspension are still tight as new. It even has the original spark plug wires and rear brake shoes (yes I checked the adjusters).

I would not hesitate to buy one of the 2001ish body styles with 150k miles on it. The only know issues on those is that the rear leaf springs sag over time and you can end up contacting the bump stops too readily - very easy to remedy. The newer 4Runners are an unknown quantity at this point as they are still somewhat new.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:00 PM   #7
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My dad picked up one in 87 when we got back from Germany, not sure if it was new or used. And we used it until 2000 when I think the engine went. It was a beast and I have lots of fond memories in it from when I was a kid.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:21 PM   #8
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I have a 4th gen ('08) and really like it. The oil filter is the most accessible filter i have ever seen in my life. I have put a lift and intake on a buddy's tacoma ('06 but basically the same frame/v6 engine) and they are really simple vehicles to work on.

CONS: I have had a few little glitches with my vehicle, mostly electical. The HVAC HUD screen started flashing/blinking after at about 20,000 miles. Got it replaced (warranty). Also, this only happened once, but my stereo screen went blank once but continued to operate normally. I think this may of been caused by temperature (it was really cold that day) but i'm not sure and it only happened once.

These are really only minor minor complaints. Other than that, I love the vehicle.
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:23 PM   #9
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Look at an 06 if you can, has better headlights and a thicker windshield (bit quieter)...
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Old 04-23-2010, 10:09 PM   #10
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My buddies 4Runner...he owns a performance shop.

first year 20" rims

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second 22" rims

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third 22" dub rims(i think they look like ****)

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and he has 24" rims on now but he hasnt taken any pics this year yet.
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