"We live in the Sierra mountains in California. The 4Runner proves itself with it's true 4WD system in the snow and ice. We use the locking center differential often on slippery conditions and it just plows through. However, you do need compatible tires so we have
our 3rd set of Michelin Mountain tires on the 4Runner.
Ride is not great: bouncy, harsh at times. But this is not your phoo-phoo crossover SUV. It is a true 4WD truck like vehicle and that makes it tough. Whether using it off road in the summer to get to our fishing spot or running it through snow in winter.
Dependability had been excellent. Our OEM Panasonic battery lasted 160,000 miles (8.5 years)! We had to replace front axel seals on both sides due to bearing failure. But the mechanic said it was probably due to hitting a deer some 9 months earlier as he never seen front axel bearings fail before. Other than that we have had an annoying driver's side mirror that vibrates.
I would buy again. But if you are looking for a smooth riding SUV, look elsewhere."
"I would have never believed it if someone had told me that I could get over 300,000 miles on a 4 wheel drive vehicle.
The amazing thing is that it rides like a new vehicle, no squeaks or rattles.
I will definitely buy another one when this one dies."
Pros: "I have bought vehicles from friends before, don't."
Cons: "I have bought vehicles from friends before, don't."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"Bought this 2004 4 runner used skightly in 2004, this suv has been great, nothing has broken down, did need a new Toyota battery, wiper blades, reg. oil changes all noted in the Toyota dealership maintenance records, low milage and a clean vehicle. We use it in the winter bad weather days and to haul loads in the back that would push our Prius hauling capacity. I think about trading it for a truck but can't find a truck with a value close to this that I trust. We usually keep a vehicle until the warrenty runs out but with retirement and some medical concerns this 4 runner has been a keeper."
"Had this 2003 for approx 5 up years. Replaced fluids regularly, and new brakes at 90,000 miles. I had the injectors cleaned at 100,000 mile dealer service . Runs like new. At 100,000 miles I replaced the tires, but the shocks and suspension are still factory. The v6 has a timing chain, so only the 4x4 v8 model needs a timing belt replacement at 100,00 miles. My only complaint....... DASHBOARD cracking.. Most of the 2003-05 models have them, all in the same places....Toyota doesn't warranty the dash. Otherwise, it's just awesome"