The Toyota 4Runner: A Blast from the Past
In a world of ever-evolving technology and modern advancements, the Toyota 4Runner stands as a nostalgic reminder of the past. With its unchanged design and limited updates, the 2023 Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary edition takes us back in time. But does this old-school SUV still hold up in today’s market?
Verdict: A Respectable 7.6
Let’s start with the verdict. The 2023 Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary edition receives a rating of 7.6 out of 10. While the design and features may feel outdated, this SUV has managed to stay relevant and even had its best-selling year in 2021.
Minimal Changes, Maximum Nostalgia
Despite its long-standing presence, the Toyota 4Runner hasn’t seen many substantial changes over the years. The current model still comes with the same 4.0-liter V6 engine and five-speed automatic transmission. However, Toyota did make some content revisions in 2020, adding standard features like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, adaptive cruise control, and lane departure warning.
A Stylish Dinosaur
Cruising around in the 2023 4Runner 40th Anniversary edition feels like a journey back in time. Its retro styling and unchanged design give it a unique charm. While some may argue that these features make it feel outdated, there is no denying its enduring popularity.
Dated Technology and Limited Comfort
Inside the 4Runner, you’ll find an infotainment system that will transport you back to the era of early MP3 players. With limited modern features like lane departure prevention and absence of a surround-view camera in the 40th Anniversary edition, the technology feels behind the times. Additionally, the fixed-height passenger seat may leave taller passengers wanting more headroom.
Driving Experience: Charming Yet Thirsty
Despite its age, the 4Runner still delivers an enjoyable driving experience. Its soft suspension leads to some body roll in corners, but the overall ride remains smooth and comfortable. The 4.0-liter V6 engine provides ample torque, and the dated five-speed automatic transmission shifts more purposefully than some modern counterparts. However, fuel efficiency may disappoint, with a paltry 17 combined MPG, falling short of even the thirsty Jeep Wrangler.
Robust Build Quality and Spacious Interior
Toyota’s reputation for quality shines through in the 4Runner. The structure feels solid and capable, ready to take on any adventure. The 40th Anniversary edition features class-competitive plastics and Softex faux leather upholstery, creating a comfortable and accommodating interior. With ample cargo space and generous rear-seat legroom, the 4Runner offers versatility for both passengers and belongings.
The Price of Nostalgia
Starting at $41,550, the 4Runner may seem expensive, especially considering the additional cost of part-time four-wheel drive. The 40th Anniversary edition, tested at $49,115, comes with added features like Softex upholstery, heated front seats, and satellite radio. Although these prices may deter some buyers, there is no denying the appeal of owning a limited-production SUV with unique badging and special body decals.
Competitors in the Market
When comparing the 4Runner to its competitors, it’s hard to ignore the Ford Bronco. With a similar price point, the Bronco offers a more powerful and efficient turbocharged engine, distinctive styling, and the allure of a removable roof and doors. While the Bronco may be the more logical choice, there’s still something undeniably fun about the 4Runner’s classic vibe.
The Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary edition may not be the most modern SUV on the market, but it has its undeniable charm. Its unchanged design pays homage to its roots, and despite its outdated technology, it delivers a reliable and enjoyable driving experience. If you’re willing to embrace the nostalgia and appreciate the 4Runner’s enduring appeal, it might just be the perfect choice for your next adventure.