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When Driving is about Lifestyle, Car Life Nation is the Answer

When Driving is about Lifestyle, Car Life Nation is the Answer

A white 2024 Toyota 4Runner SR5 Premium is shown driving in a forest.

7 Ways the Rugged Durability of the 4Runner Breaks Expectations

Toyota has built up a strong reputation over the years as the go-to brand for reliable, long-running vehicles. For one such vehicle, which has continued to build out its legacy as an absolute anvil, you should check out the Toyota 4Runner for sale.

The bulletproof reliability of the 4Runner is found throughout its design intentions since the 1980s as a go-to option for driving both on the road and off it. Many drivers want not only a great family vehicle but a tank-of-an-SUV for off-road adventures, and they’ll find the 4Runner perfectly suited for the intended driving purposes.

However, before you get serious about shopping for a Toyota 4Runner, you might be wondering why so many people love it. Well, we’d like to highlight seven ways the rugged durability of the 4Runner breaks the expectations that your average outsider might have. If they’re compelling enough, maybe it’ll convince you to get a 4Runner of your own.

#1) Toyota’s Simple Design Ethos

The Toyota 4Runner has five generations under its belt, dating back to 1983. It’s had multiple refreshes over the years, too, to update its features and functionality. It has not received as many generational refreshes as some other nameplates, which consist of a dozen different iterations. This is because the 4Runner is all about embodying the design simplicity that Toyota is renowned for.

The 4Runner has a generalized structure atop a body-on-frame design, foregoing fancy lines, excessive curves, and gaudy angles. The 4Runner embodies Toyota’s ethos of providing a focused set of features and functions for a vehicle of the utmost quality. It’s not about over-engineering or over-complicating the intent of the vehicle, and the 4Runner is a perfectly suitable midsize SUV that many people love for both daily driving and off-roading.

The gray and brown interior and dash of a 2024 Toyota 4Runner for sale is shown.

#2) Safety Is a Core Tenet

Being rugged and durable doesn’t mean you need to forego safety. In fact, the 4Runner—just like other Toyota models—is packed with a ton of safety features built right into its core. This is for those engaged in daily driving, from running errands and grocery shopping to dropping kids off at school; you can get there easily with the 4Runner thanks to its stable handling and copious driver assistance features.

Alternatively, for those engaged in more risky antics, you have a midsize SUV that can tackle off-road trails with plenty of active safety measures in place. With the Toyota Safety Sense P suite, you have pre-collision systems for those of you doing a lot of driving in the city, such as pedestrian detection, dynamic radar cruise control, and driver alerts for lane centering. Off-road, you have safety features like the hill start assist, panoramic views, and a backup camera so you can navigate where you’re going as you venture beyond lights and traffic signs.

#3) An Absolute Crash-Test Tank

Safety isn’t just about the active features; there are also the important passive features to keep you safe in a collision—and this is where the 4Runner really shines. It has picked up some fairly impressive crash test results over the years, especially from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which gave the 4Runner “Good” results—which is the best rating a vehicle can receive from the IIHS—for the roof strength, head restraints, side crash tests, and moderate overlap front crash tests.

The NHTSA tests were also quite impressive, where it received an overall four out of five stars. A lot of current 4Runner owners swear by this vehicle’s durability and body-on-frame design for safety and have noted how it can still keep going even after a serious crash, which is great news for someone looking for a tanky midsize SUV.

#4) Built to Take an Off-Road Beating

The Toyota 4Runner is built around off-roading. Toyota specifically made multiple off-road trims for the 4Runner and has expanded these capabilities with each successive generation. The later model years of the fifth generation have four different off-road-themed trims: the TRD Sport, TRD Off-Road, TRD Off-Road Premium, and TRD Pro. The 4Runner has bash plates, roof racks, FOX shocks, an off-road-tuned suspension for high-arc articulation, and Nitto Terra Grappler all-terrain tires.

Basically, you get all sorts of great utility and functionality out of the 4Runner and its TRD trims for off-roading. These are designed so you can hit up dirt trails, tackle mud, crawl on rocks, and trek overland. And thanks to the rugged design of the 4Runner, you can experience all of the great off-roading thrills you could desire, all while feeling like your vehicle was designed specifically for the task at hand.

Two dogs are shown in the rear cargo area of a red 2024 Toyota 4Runner.

#5) Upgrade for Greater Durability

Maybe you have a vehicle that you currently use as a daily driver for commuting or a vehicle specifically for the family. Maybe you want a second vehicle for adventures or a pet project for your weekend warrior outings. The 4Runner is perfect as the buffed-up, secondary vehicle you bring out when your inner Indiana Jones is itching to get out.

This midsize SUV is actually designed to be upgraded beyond what you can get from simply buying a base trim and sticking with it. There are tons of aftermarket parts to further reinforce and buff up the durability of the 4Runner, including bull bars, rock sliders, winch bumpers, lift kits, overlanding swing arms, Baja kits, heavy-duty running boards, and custom skid plates. You have a ton of options when it comes to improving or increasing the 4Runner’s durability off-road, all to your liking.

#6) No Complex Interactions Required

A lot of SUV shoppers might think that “newer” means “more complex,” but Toyota took the opposite route with the 4Runner. It’s all about making sure that what you use your vehicle for is straightforward in its design and has a comfortable interior and a simple layout. There is nothing over-complicated about the interior cabin; straightforward door panels and controls—along with a simple center console stack—make the 4Runner an easy SUV to get into and drive. But that doesn’t mean that the 4Runner is ancient with its tech—not by a long shot.

You still have a lot of accessibility here—such as with the push-button start, smart lock and open, dual-zone automatic climate control, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity—so you can enjoy your favorite apps and media through smartphone pairing. It’s the perfect combination of modern design sensibilities meeting user-friendliness, which is what most people looking for a good utility vehicle are seeking.

#7) Drive for Hundreds of Thousands of Miles

Longevity is the name of the game, and the Toyota 4Runner is all about longevity. This goes back to the Toyota design ethos of making a vehicle that is reliable and long-lasting, and the 4Runner—in addition to being a rugged, durable, off-road midsize SUV—is all about that. It’s been found that many 4Runners can easily last up to 200,000 miles, but if you can keep it well-maintained, it can easily achieve 300,000 miles or more.

It’s been found that the 4Runner has moderate annual costs, and with a bit of regular care and properly scheduled tune-ups, you can get the 4Runner to last for hundreds of thousands of miles like some lucky owners out there. So, if you want an SUV with the capabilities necessary to accommodate your rugged and adventurous lifestyle but also want something that can last a long time while doing so, the 4Runner can very readily achieve that.

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