Toyota 4Runner '20-21?

Stampede.Offroad

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The time remaining before the presentation and release of a new Bronco from Ford would seem to be more than enough for some of the existing market competitors to finish developing and to release an update to vehicles of their own. The Toyota 4Runner in particular is living an unusually long time in its current model.


First generation (N60; 1984–1989) ------------- 5 years
Second generation (N120/N130; 1989–1995) --- 6 years
Third generation (N180; 1995–2002) ------------ 7 years

Fourth generation (N210; 2002–2009) ------------ 7 years
Fifth generation (N280; 2009–present) ------------ 10 years


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Comparing this current lifecycle with the previous ones would suggest we're due for a new 4Runner any moment now. Toyota has had only one competitor for their 4Runner in the body-on-frame off-road capable SUV market in the US for many years, and that's the Jeep Wrangler, which has taken a different approach to the balance of on/off road capability. A little over a year ago we saw the launch of a new JL Wrangler, which itself has maintained several decade long cycles.


With the larger Toyota Sequioa entering the TRD Pro off-road equipment lineup, I would not expect a newer 4Runner to experience much bloat in physical dimensions. We also just saw the Tacoma, long the leader in the midsize truck market receive a very minor refresh instead of a substantial update, even though the midsize truck market has been quite hot with new models.

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I suspect that if we see an update for the 4Runner before the launch of the Bronco, the 4Runner will also see a relatively minor refresh like the Tacoma. Toyota has repeatedly shown a very gradual approach to model updates, and the brand relies on a perception of dependability -- which is aided by this design strategy.

With a mild, gradual model update, what could we expect in a 2020 or 2021 4Runner update? Some interface technology in the dash, safety systems, and a new front fascia would be the most probable, following the pattern of the Tacoma. While the engine has certainly proven reliable, and the relative simplicity would remain popular with off-road enthusiasts, I suspect a drivetrain update of both the engine and transmission would also be likely possibilities to help with the fuel efficiency, and driver experience for such a hefty vehicle.

Ford has a lot of opportunity to outshine not just the current 4Runner, but even an updated model year matching offering from Toyota.

With turbos and 10-speeds in everything from compacts to superduties for Ford, we can expect the same for the Bronco (and fingers crossed, a 7-speed manual too) -- so the powertrain should be no competition, with the exception of the possibility that Toyota would offer a V8 in the 4Runner and Ford would fail to do so for the Bronco. Toyota does continue to offer V8s in their Land Cruiser, which just this year will received an off-road oriented Heritage Edition, as well as in their new Sequioa TRD Pro.

On the front of technology and general quality and fit and finish, the a new 4Runner could give the Bronco some more fierce competition. This is one of the categories that I would expect to motivate Toyota to release an update to their midsize SUV, with both the Wrangler and coming Bronco able to make the 4Runner look genuinely antiquated if they don't -- and it's hard to justify the kind of price tag these vehicles typically command if the competition is substantially more up to date.

One area that will remain a significant question in regard to how the Bronco and 4Runner will compete is in the suspension, until Ford bestows us with some insight to what lies under their offering.


(I swear this forum hates pictures. It spazzes out and throws errors constantly every time I try to add some.)
 

csusza2000

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I am kind of a Toyota fan, but unfortunately in Europe they don't have off-road oriented models, there is the Rav4 (?), the Hilux and the LandCruiser. But all of these have some average approach / departure / ramp angles and ground clearance. If you modify them for off-roading then you have issues with the authorities, especially due to beefier tyres, that are not in the OEM specs of the car :frown:. I was also thinking about importing the 4Runner, but this model's off-road specs are not out of the (Toyota) ordinary very much. Furthermore I don't like at all the front grille of the 4Runner and as far as I know it comes with automatic transfer case. But if by 2020 / 2021 Toyota will reshape the car and give it more serious off-road capability then I might be considering the import.

However I presume that the Bronco would be released with much more serious off-road specs, probably also manual version. So I am waiting to see if it happens. If not, then I am considering to import a Troller from Brazil. I saw some of the forum members spitting on the design of the Troller, but I could live with that. Heck, it has 51 degrees approach / departure angles straight off from the production line. Not even the Rubicon has got specs like that.
 
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Stampede.Offroad

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I am kind of a Toyota fan... I was also thinking about importing the 4Runner, but this model's off-road specs are not out of the (Toyota) ordinary very much. Furthermore I don't like at all the front grille of the 4Runner and as far as I know it comes with automatic transfer case. But if by 2020 / 2021 Toyota will reshape the car and give it more serious off-road capability then I might be considering the import.
Both the Tacoma and 4Runner are very off road oriented, having given up interior comfort, and towing and hauling capacity, in exchange for more flexible suspension and very functional terrain management systems. I'm not a fan of the front fascia of the 4Runner either -- it doesn't repel me as much as it used to, but it still seems like a big ugly plastic snout.

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However I presume that the Bronco would be released with much more serious off-road specs, probably also manual version. So I am waiting to see if it happens. If not, then I am considering to import a Troller from Brazil. I saw some of the forum members spitting on the design of the Troller, but I could live with that. Heck, it has 51 degrees approach / departure angles straight off from the production line. Not even the Rubicon has got specs like that.
I certainly hope the Bronco is a real competitor for the Wrangler, and pushes the balance of on/off road in favor of off-road capability more than the 4Runner has. Many modern vehicles have attempted to replace simple reliable mechanical systems with complicated electronic ones, and I hope that's not the case for either the Bronco or next gen 4Runner.
 

csusza2000

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I get it, but the Tacoma has Approach/breakover/departure angles 35.0/19.1/23.9 and the 4Runner has Approach/departure angles 33/26. The Wrangler Approach/breakover/departure angle about 36/26/30 depending on model version. However the Troller has 51 / 30 / 51. I really hope that even if the Bronco won't have the Trollers specs, at least it would have 40 / 30 /40 values or above with a ground clearance of 10-11 inches : )

In my case considering the above parameters of the Tacoma and 4Runner I can say that the Ranger Raptor has almost the same values and higher ground clearance. Given the fact that the Toyotas are not available in Europe, but the Ranger Raptor will be (soon). Then I better turn towards a Ranger Raptor, instead of the importing complications involved with the Toyotas.

But then again if the Bronco will top these values and is made available in Europe, then I am leaning towards the Bronco (without thinking twice). However if the above specs are not met by the Bronco then I shall really think it over to stay with the Bronco or go for the Troller import process.

I wrote to Toyota regarding the Hilux / Tonka concept, asking if they consider to put it in production now that the Ranger Raptor is already on the Australian market, but there are no plans at the moment / near future for the Hilux / Tonka production. :frown: That would be an interesting alternative.
 

sbronemann

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My wife currently drives a '16 4Runner SR5. Loves it. Been a great vehicle but barely broken in at 53k currently. She's wanting to upgrade. Just don't know if I'll be able to hold her off for another 1.5 years dang it! Love the off-road capability of the 4Runner, but it needs a refresh/completely new redo so badly. But....the resale value is absolutely amazing on them. So we'll be looking at about $15k in equity in it by next year by the time the new Bronco's come out hopefully.
 

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I'll be really interested to see what the 6th gen 4Runner has/looks like. After years of watching forums and everyone thinking the 6th gen would come out in 2017...then 2018...then 2019...2020...now maybe 2021?, I got tired of waiting. Just picked me up a 2016 Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel and love it so far. Doesn't hold value nearly as well as a 4Runner which is why I bought used. Ford has a good opportunity here to offer a well-rounded SUV with off-road chops. My GC won't do a whole lot off-road but good enough for me. It tows 7200 lbs, has adaptive cruise, rain sensing wipers, panoramic sunroof, large touchscreen with Apple CarPlay, gets good gas mileage with the diesel & 8-speed ZF trans, is comfortable and roomy without being too large to drive/park (especially for my wife). My wife loves the Jeep so much I think a new Bronco might be for me (hoping for manual trans!) Toyota needs to update at least the features and drive-train...way overdue! I could have gotten some of the features the Jeep has with a Lexus, but damn even used they are expensive and I just don't care for the looks of them. The V8 is nice but a gas hog and can't compare to the diesel in the Jeep (well, maybe in reliability..lol)
 

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Just went and test drove a 2020 4Runner the other day. I loved the size of it, so it makes me happy to see that the Bronco might be close to the same size. The cargo volume was immense, especially with the fold flat rear seats... I could even go for a bit less rear cargo space. But man, the engine was such a bore, and the auto-only did it no favors for the excitement factor. A lot of the interior felt cheap and plasticy (like most Toyota’s). Overall, pretty decent vehicle... ride nicer than I expected and definitely more what I’m looking for than the Wrangler, but I really hope the Bronco can offer even more than the 4Runner!
 

JimmyDean

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Just went and test drove a 2020 4Runner the other day. I loved the size of it, so it makes me happy to see that the Bronco might be close to the same size. The cargo volume was immense, especially with the fold flat rear seats... I could even go for a bit less rear cargo space. But man, the engine was such a bore, and the auto-only did it no favors for the excitement factor. A lot of the interior felt cheap and plasticy (like most Toyota’s). Overall, pretty decent vehicle... ride nicer than I expected and definitely more what I’m looking for than the Wrangler, but I really hope the Bronco can offer even more than the 4Runner!
yeah the engine while stout and reliable is anemic. It just has zero ass to it.
 

Hautian

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If the redone 4runner has the same engine that is currently in the tacoma the the bronco should kill it in every way. Except for maybe perceived reliability.

I had a 2016 Tacoma and it was annoying to drive with the 3.5 v6. The engine wanted to rev for power but the auto tranny wanted to stay low in the rpm range. You really had to push the pedal to get it to move.

The other issue with the 4runner and tacoma is that if you want to run 285 or larger tires you have to do a body mount chop. At least if you do any off road driving.
 

wjfawb0

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Ford can't match Toyotas reliability, but I bet they're going to try to sell the bronco for as much as a forerunner. All of Toyota's cars feel anemic and underpowered, but that may be why they are so reliable. I don't like their engine controllers respond to gas pedal movement with their automatics. I always refer to Toyotas as a sterilizing driving experience. I've had a half dozen Toyotas over the years. My wife test drove a 2018 edge sport with the twin turbo 2.7 V6. She loved the power and how it drove, but she still ended up buying the cheaper, larger, and more lethargic highlander AWD. I'm tired of working on fords lately, so I'm glad she got the highlander.
 

Ride Em Bronco

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With a wheel base of 109.8 for the Toyota 4-Runner, versus 112 for the Bronco Bronco 4-door and 100 or less for the Bronco Bronco 2-door, I will also be looking at the Totota 4-Runner. The Bronco Bronco 4-door is too big for me and the Bronco Bronco 2-door is too small for me -as I am looking for something that is closer to 106 like I have now with my 2008 Jeep Liberty Sport. Scratch this post - as I see now that the Toyota 4-Runner is not available with a man-stick.
 
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... All of Toyota's cars feel anemic and underpowered, but that may be why they are so reliable. ...
This is probably very true.

As either enthusiasts or Americans we value "wow" factor in the power train, but that kind of performance isn't very compatible with longevity and reliability.
 

Jake_zx2

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Ford can't match Toyotas reliability, but I bet they're going to try to sell the bronco for as much as a forerunner.
I really hope this is the case... When I was looking at 4runners, I was finding ones spec'd pretty similar to how I would want a Bronco, and the price was just right

With a wheel base of 109.8 for the Toyota 4-Runner, versus 112 for the Bronco Bronco 4-door and 100 or less for the Bronco Bronco 2-door, I will also be looking at the Totota 4-Runner. The Bronco Bronco 4-door is too big for me and the Bronco Bronco 2-door is too small for me -as I am looking for something that is closer to 106 like I have now with my 2008 Jeep Liberty Sport. Scratch this post - as I see now that the Toyota 4-Runner is not available with a man-stick.
Overall, I imagine they should be a similar length... the 4Runner has pretty long overhangs compared to the Bronco prototypes running around
 

Rogues Gambit

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First of all, 90's called, they want their engines back, Toyota!

Remember test driving a Taco, 2nd and 3rd gen, Manual only. Tbh, only reason I even like them is because they were available with stick, that basically was the foundation to me enjoying it, though never got why they stuck with Drums, and until recently, they didn't have a Turbo kit for the current V6 there. I refuse to even consider driving an automatic 'Yota, I don't want to be bored

Ford will be at a major advantage considering the competition , they'll easily become #1 compared to everyone else. Sure, they're not as reliable as the Yoda, but it's not like they're garbage either.

Really, think the best move for Toyota though is to hold off a bit to observe the Bronco, send a few spies in and then replicate some of it's magic in the next 4chan and Taco
 








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