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XPEDITIONREADY
12-26-2011, 10:58 PM
Hey everyone,

Its time to find my new DD/expedtion/4wheeling/travel rig and I am trying to decide if the 4th gen 4runner will serve all my needs. I has good space for 4 adults comfortably, comfortable to drive, decent gas mileage, good towing capacity, but I am concerned about its capability offroad. How does it stack up to a tacoma off road? IS there good aftermarket support? I am looking at the earlier years 03, 04, 05 cause they are in my budget range so anything good or bad about them that makes a year more desirable than another?
Thanks for the help.

enzo
12-26-2011, 11:13 PM
Try T4R.org, they've got some good info there.

joneseyyy
12-26-2011, 11:34 PM
They are plenty capable off road and there are good aftermarket options for all of the "core" mods expo-minded people are inclined to do. In addition to T4r.org, check out the "expoorition" thread on this site, it is relevant as well.

seanz0rz
12-27-2011, 01:45 AM
short answer: yes, a 4th generation 4runner is and can be very capable offroad. ive wheeled with 4th gens that were totally stock all the way up to long travel front, 4 linked rear beasts.

im not keen to the differences in the years, other than the 06+ has better headlights.

aftermarket support is there from places like toytec, wheelers, allpro, etc.

Ryanmb21
12-27-2011, 02:29 AM
I just filled up, my last tank was 319 miles on 15.5 gallons or 20.6 MPG. I have 32" and ~3" lift.

CA-RJ
12-27-2011, 05:00 AM
Redline and I have been discussing 4th gen 4Runners. Hopefully he will chime in with some thoughts. If you're looking at V8's, try to get and '05 as that's when Toyota went to VVTI and the horsepower increased about 30 hp. '06 is when the front fenders became rounded.

Martinjmpr
12-27-2011, 06:17 PM
Also if you're going with a V6, I think 05 was when they went to the 5 speed auto. Earlier 4th gen V6's had the 4 speed (don't know if it's the same as the 4 speed auto in the 3rd gens, but I assume it's not. Anyone know?) When I was researching 4th gens (before I decided to go ahead and get a 3rd gen) I think 05 was my starting year for that reason. For some reason I think that they also got LED taillights that same year so if you see a V6 with LED taillights it should have the 5 speed. I think the V8's always had the 5 speed but they also have full time 4wd which cuts your MPG a bit.

mph
12-27-2011, 08:59 PM
We have an 06 runner and love it. We have taken it all over Utah, Colorado, and Idaho. Does very well. We have the v6 and get around 17-18 when fully loaded.

We then drove a LC100. Don't do it...We now have both:)

Good luck with your search!

daPitbull
12-27-2011, 09:43 PM
The 4th gen seem to meet all of your criteria. Some one mentioned t4r.org for references, but my opinion is most of the rigs there are all show, no go. Check out toyota120.com for rigs that are actually used as intended.

Aftermarket support isn't that great, but you'll find the FJC and 4R share similar suspension, and much will crossover. Properly fitted (and a capable driver of course) the 4R will go almost anywhere. Click my sig for pics of mine.

nwoods
12-28-2011, 01:31 AM
I'm not too sure about the "fits 4 adults comfortably", but in all other matters, yes. the 4th Gen does great and there is a growing off road supply chain for it.

http://nwoods.smugmug.com/Land-Rover/Misc/DirtyToySchool/DTS-20081206-18/436921968_Uhuou-XL.jpg
http://nwoods.smugmug.com/Other/Misc/expoordition/i-dqfdXW3/0/XL/Expoordition-Day03-37-XL.jpg

Rightovercrest
12-28-2011, 02:32 AM
I recently replaced my '06 double cab Tacoma with an '08 V6 4runner and so far am really enjoying the vehicle. After my 3" lift and 32" tires I too get around 20 mpg average (about 2 mpg better than the comparably equipped Taco) . Fits 4 adults much better than the tacoma but not quite as well as my FJ80. I have yet to do any serious trails but wouldn't hesitate it to do anything with it I would have done with the Tacoma. I like the extra cabin space and the shorter length for trails as well as city parking. Aftermarket seems to be getting better every day.

java
12-28-2011, 04:06 AM
Love mine! Check out toyota120 as mentioned

jason04
12-28-2011, 08:01 AM
I purchased my first 4th gen in 2008. Got the 04 V6. Then came sliders, 33" tires & OME lift. Very capable and overall enjoyed the day to day drive and offroad capability. Decided I wanted something a little more capable and trail worthy so I sold the 4th gen and got a '97 LandCruiser. Slee 4" lift, 35's, sliders locked front and rear....... sold it after 6 months or so as it got much worse MPG and didnt take me anywhere the 4th gen wouldnt take me.

I now have a 2005 4runner with the V6. The '05+ V6 has the 5 speed tranny and imo is much better then the previous years 4 speed. The ATRAC in the 4th gen is an amazing offroading asset and as you continue to do you're homework I think the 4th gen will suite you just fine. As mentioned, your best source of information can be had at www.toyota120.com I've been all over southern Utah and there isnt a single place I wanted to go the this rig hasnt taken me. It should be noted I've added a rear ARB air locker. Again, ATRAC works great, I just wanted to make things even easier in the "sticky situations" so I added the rear locker. Dont know that the locker was a must have but for me I feel I'm better able to get through difficult terrain at a slower more controlled rate with the locker engaged in the rear and ATRAC up front.

Best of luck!

mysticzt4r
12-28-2011, 08:33 AM
Love my 4th gen, also recommend toyota120.com:victory:

Redline
12-28-2011, 03:14 PM
IF a 4Gen is a big enough car for you (4 adults) then it's a nice platform. As noted, the advantages are that it can be mildly modified, still drive VERY well on-road, and obtain reasonable fuel economy. Since they are all relatively new, a clean, stock, low mileage example is relatively easy to find. They are quite low in stock trim, so it's hard to argue against lifting the chassis first to prevent belly dragging. If you don't want to go crazy with modifications, lift it with OME suspension, run a 265 tire and be done. ATRAC is better than open diffs.

Martinjmpr
12-28-2011, 03:38 PM
One nice thing about the 4th gen vs. the 3rd gen is that the 4th has a much bigger gas tank. Considering that they get about the same MPG that means the 4th gen has noticeably longer range, which is great for an ExPo vehicle.

If I could only change one thing on my 3rd gen it would be the size of the fuel tank. Unfortunately I'm not aware of any aftermarket fuel tanks and having something fabricated would be very expensive.

Robinhood4x4
01-01-2012, 03:49 AM
After my 3" lift and 32" tires I too get around 20 mpg average (about 2 mpg better than the comparably equipped Taco) .

Is that based on the computer mileage or you own manual calculations? My computer shows 2 mpg better than actual and actual for my bone stock 07 V6 is 20mpg.

Ryanmb21
01-02-2012, 12:42 AM
Is that based on the computer mileage or you own manual calculations? My computer shows 2 mpg better than actual and actual for my bone stock 07 V6 is 20mpg.

For me that is actual gps miles divided by gallons, on average my tanks are 18.5-20.5 mpg.

Rightovercrest
01-02-2012, 01:34 PM
Is that based on the computer mileage or you own manual calculations? My computer shows 2 mpg better than actual and actual for my bone stock 07 V6 is 20mpg.

Manual calculations based on GPS mileage over several tanks of fuel. I run Yokohama Geolander ATS tires which do help a little over a mud terrain and I cover a lot of highway mileage. I agree that the computer is typically about 2 mpg more generous than actual but with a 32" tire the odometer is about 6-7% off as well.

Redline
01-02-2012, 05:06 PM
On my 2006 V8, the PCM calculated MPG was always high/optimistic when stock.

With 33" tires the PCM stated MPG is typically lower than the true MPG.

XPEDITIONREADY
01-02-2012, 07:22 PM
Thanks for the help everyone, especially leading me to toyota 120. I had been to t4r but felt they were a bunch of street queens to be answering off road related questions. I am on the hunt for the V8 for the ability to pull the occasional trailer, and a bit more power to lug the inevitable 33s, camping gear, and bumpers :smiley_drive:

If I can swing it im hoping to find a 05 to get the V8 with a bit more giddy up....I have found a couple just under 15k asking price with around 100k on the clock. Seem like a good price point to shoot for?
Thanks,
Ben

motochain
01-02-2012, 08:35 PM
We love our '03 V6. We paid $12k out the door 4 years ago, and it only had 50k miles. For comparison.

I'm stilll quite amazed at how well it does off-road as well.

XPEDITIONREADY
01-02-2012, 09:50 PM
wish i could find a deal like that, but havent seen them for less than 11k for an 03 with 110k on them

XPEDITIONREADY
01-21-2012, 05:12 PM
Well i found the truck....

03 v8 4wd with 95k on the clock and in great shape. A couple things I have found with it is the driveshaft clunk that appears to be pretty common, and the driver seat is loose. Crawled under and greased everything up but it still clunks so may just have to learn to deal with it. The seat i am not sure where to go with it. The bottom is is solid and the top part seems to wiggle over bumps. Think I will have to find a junk yard seat.

Other than that, the running boards have been removed, and I am getting ready to remove the shelf thing in the cargo area that doesnt seem to serve a purpose. Will get a picture up when it stops raining....

daPitbull
01-21-2012, 05:48 PM
In my experience, the clunk went away once I lifted it.

Good find, you will be happy with the V8.

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk

Ryanmb21
01-21-2012, 06:20 PM
Congrats! Six years and I still really enjoy mine!

spikemd
01-21-2012, 09:12 PM
I have a 2003 4Runner V8 with 160k on the clock. Its been a relatively reliable vehicle, but had a few issues. I had to replace the front calipers after they locked up at around 100k miles. Now, I am dealing with a transfer case/actuator leak that is a poor design from toyota. They have an o-ring between the transfer case and actuator (box with electric motor that shifts between 4HI and 4LO). Its a $4 part and 14 hours of labor to change. :Wow1: Some folks have changed it by removing the accutator and getting it free to change the o-ring, but I jacked mine up during the process. I am now looking for a used transfer case. ugh...

Be sure the timing belt has been changed on your. Its due at 90k-100k miles and when/if it has been done, change the waterpump and tensioners while you are in there.

It does sit a bit low, but is decently capable in stock form. You will be glad you got the V8 especially for the earlier years since you get more power, 5-speed tranny, full-time 4wd, and almost the same gas mileage. Toyota120 is your best resource. Good luck. I will be selling mine this fall and getting an LR3.

java
01-21-2012, 10:15 PM
Well i found the truck....

03 v8 4wd with 95k on the clock and in great shape. A couple things I have found with it is the driveshaft clunk that appears to be pretty common, and the driver seat is loose. Crawled under and greased everything up but it still clunks so may just have to learn to deal with it. The seat i am not sure where to go with it. The bottom is is solid and the top part seems to wiggle over bumps. Think I will have to find a junk yard seat.

Other than that, the running boards have been removed, and I am getting ready to remove the shelf thing in the cargo area that doesnt seem to serve a purpose. Will get a picture up when it stops raining....

There is a thread on 120 about the seat. A weld seems to break on one of the adjusters in the back. Mine does it too. Doesn't appear to affect the strength of the seat. Just rocks a little.