2011 Toyota 4Runner Reviews

2011 4Runner New Car Test Drive


The Toyota 4Runner is built for durability and all-terrain capability. Using rugged body-on-frame construction, the 4Runner is intended to be a tough and reliable sport utility for the more adventurous owner. 

Completely redesigned and re-engineered for 2010, the Toyota 4Runner carries over unchanged for 2011. The 2011 4Runner represents the second year of the fifth generation. 

The 2011 Toyota 4Runner is powered exclusively by a 4.0-liter V6 that generates 270 horsepower and 278 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy ratings are 17 mpg City and 22 mpg Highway with 4WD. Maximum towing capacity is 5,000 pounds, enough for light boats, ATVs, snowmobiles, and motorcycles. (No V8 or four-cylinder models are available for 2011.)

Two-row and three-row seating configurations are available, for five or seven passengers. 

The 2011 Toyota 4Runner comes in three distinct models, each with specialized equipment packages, to suit a variety of luxury, recreational capability, and affordability priorities. All are sturdily built, with an extensive suite of safety features, flexible seating, and multiple cargo options. 

The SR5 is the standard grade with cloth upholstery, automatic air conditioning, and 17-inch wheels, while the Limited is loaded with leather, dual-zone climate control, and 20-inch wheels. The Trail grade is designed to maximize off-road performance with superior approach and departure angles, high ground clearance, and an array of functional upgrades for the most demanding active outdoor enthusiast. It is distinguished by a unique hood scoop, unique 17-inch wheels, black side mirrors, front and rear bumper guards and dark smoke treatment on the head lamps and tail lamps. 

We found the 4Runner has good on-road dynamics with rack-and-pinion steering and well-proportioned disc brakes. It may be as nimble as the lighter-duty Highlander crossover. But the key point here is that the 4Runner is far more capable and much more durable for use on rough terrain. That durability factor is crucial for owners who frequently drive on rough, unpaved roads or over rugged terrain. Compared to the FJ Cruiser, the 4Runner is more versatile and more passenger-friendly, and nearly as capable off-road. 


The 2011 Toyota 4Runner is available in SR5, Limited, and Trail grade. Trail grade and SR5 4WD use a part-time four-wheel-drive system. Limited 4WD includes a full-time multi-mode four-wheel-drive system. Two-row or three-row seating configurations are available, for five or seven passengers. The 4.0-liter V6 mated to a 5-speed automatic is standard across the range. 

4Runner SR5 ($30,305) comes with cloth upholstery, automatic air conditioning with air filter, six-way manual driver's seat w power lumbar, four-way passenger seat, sliding second-row seats split 40/20/40, AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio with eight speakers, auxiliary jack, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, overhead storage, cruise control, map light, 10 cupholders, multi-information display, compass, HomeLink garage door opener, sonar park assist, power windows, power locks, remote keyless entry, three 12V power outlets, auto-off headlights, integrated fog lights, color-keyed fenders, spoiler, exterior puddle lamps, 265/70R17 tires on 17-inch alloy wheels, towing hitch, skid plates. The 4Runner SR5 4WD ($32,045) uses a part-time four-wheel-drive system. The Premium Package with Leather ($2,790) includes leather upholstery and trim, power front seats. Third-row seats are optional ($805). 

4Runner Trail Edition 4WD ($36,555) includes special trim, unique 17-inch wheels, upgraded cloth upholstery, a power moonroof, rearview camera (small display inside rearview mirror), power front seats, XM Satellite Radio, under floor storage. Navigation is available for the Trail Edition ($2,420) that includes the DVD navigation system, voice-activated, rearview camera, Bluetooth, XM Satellite Radio with XM NavTraffic, steering wheel controls, and premium JBL 15-speaker audio system. 

4Runner Limited ($38,400) upgrades to leather upholstery, first and second rows, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, JBL AM/FM/6CD audio with 15 speakers, subwoofer, MP3, chrome exterior trim, push-button start, heated front seats, leather-trimmed steering wheel with audio and telephone controls, X-REAS Sport Enhancement suspension, 245/60R20 Mud and Snow tires on 20-inch alloy wheels. Limited 4WD ($40,435) uses a full-time multi-mode four-wheel-drive system. Navigation is available for the Limited ($1,420) that includes the DVD navigation system, voice-activated, rearview camera, Bluetooth, XM Satellite Radio with XM NavTraffic, steering wheel controls. Third-row seats, leather trimmed, are optional ($1,365). 

Safety features on all 4Runner models include active front head restraints, ABS, electronic brake-force distribution, quick brake assist, Vehicle Stability Control, traction control, Hill-start Assist Control, LATCH child-seat anchors, seat belts with ALR/ELR, force limiters, pretensioners, tire-pressure monitor, Downhill Assist Control (DAC) in included on 4WD models. 

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