Overlanding, performance, or luxury, there’s a 4Runner for any drive.
So, you’re seeking a modern, comfortable, efficient midsize SUV—why on earth are you looking at the toyota 4runner? This is no common crossover. The 4Runner is a proper SUV, with old-school body-on-frame construction and a live rear axle. It runs a thirsty V-6 engine joined to a five—five!—speed automatic transmission and true part-time four-wheel drive with low-range gearing. This fifth-generation 4Runner went on sale for the 2009 model year, making it one of the oldest vehicles on sale. Why does this automotive anachronism still find buyers? Because it’s an off-road beast. Read on to compare every 2022 4Runner trim, and our choice in the lineup.Advertisement – Story Continues Below1 / 10
Like all 2022 4Runners, the entry-level SR5 trimgets standard full LED headlights and rear seat occupant alert. Exterior equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, mud flaps, and a roll-down rear tailgate window—an iconic 4Runner feature. Inside, the SR5 has fabric seating upholstery and a power-adjustable driver’s seat, an 8.0-inch infotainment display, and five USB ports. Conveniences include keyless entry with push-button start and—as any off roader should—a full-size spare tire. Every 4Runner gets eight airbags and Toyota Safety Sense driver-assist features. However, its adaptive cruise control is an older system that does not work below 25 mph. Starting at about $38,500 with RWD, choosing 4WD adds $1,875 to the SR5’s price. This, SR5 Premium, and Limited are the 4Runner trims offered with third-row seating.Advertisement – Story Continues Below2 / 10
What’s so special about the 4Runner Trail Special Edition? To start, it gets blacked-out badges. Since some of the 4Runner’s 88.8 cubic feet of cargo space are taken up by a 40-quart food and drink cooler, Toyota compensates by bolting a cargo basket to the roof, so there’s still space for overlanding gear. To the “Trail” part of its name, its 17-inch dark-finished alloy wheels are wrapped in mud-and-snow-rated tires. The Trail Special Edition doesn’t get 4WD as standard; it remains an $1,875 extra above the standard RWD trim’s approximately $40,500 base price.Advertisement – Story Continues Below3 / 10
Toyota Racing Development has long applied its off-road know-how to SUVs, but it takes a different approach with the 4Runner TRD Sport. This new-for-2022 trim has a pavement focus, indicated by its 20-inch wheels and all-season tires. Toyota’s X-REAS cross-linked hydraulic suspension system aims to improve ride and handling. Other distinguishing details include exterior badges, a hood scoop, and TRD shift knob. If, for some reason, you want the most handling-oriented 4Runner, then the TRD Sport is your choice. It starts at about $41,500 with RWD, and $43,000 with 4WD. Nevertheless, other SUVs are more fun to drive.Advertisement – Story Continues Below4 / 10
As its title suggests, the SR5 Premium adds a few upgrades to the base 4Runner trim. These include leatherette seating upholstery, heated and power-adjustable front seats, a 40/20/40 split-folding second row bench seat, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. Built-in navigation and a universal garage door opener highlight the technology upgrades. The additions bring the SR5 Premium’s price to around $42,000 with RWD and $43,000 with 4WD.Advertisement – Story Continues Below5 / 10
Now we’re talkin’. TRD Off Road trim is the least expensive one that’s truly dedicated to trail performance. Headlining its upgrades is standard 4WD with a locking rear differential, which sends power to 17-inch TRD wheels wearing all-terrain tires. Ground clearance measures 9.6 inches. Electronic aids like trail cruise control, multi-surface traction modes, and hill-descent control help in the dirt. Familiar styling cues include a hood scoop and TRD badging. Be aware that the TRD Off Road has basic unheated, cloth-covered seats, but comes with rubber floor mats—all part of its rugged appeal. It starts at about $42,500.Advertisement – Story Continues Below6 / 10
Like with the SR5 Premium and its non-premium counterpart, the TRD Off Road Premium trim gains an auto-dimming rearview mirror, split-folding second-row seats, and heated, leatherette-trimmed power front seats. These ones have headrests emblazoned with a red TRD logo. That’s on top of the requisite trail hardware, and gives the TRD Off Road Premium a roughly $44,000 starting price.Advertisement – Story Continues Below7 / 10
The Limited trim seeks to civilize the 4Runner with luxurious touches. These include a standard sunroof, dual-zone climate control, and heated leather-wrapped seats. Front and rear parking sensors, a 15-speaker premium audio system, and a 360-degree parking camera system are among this trim’s technology inclusions. Lots of chrome exterior trim and absent mudflaps distinguish the Limited trim from its down-and-dirty counterparts. The X-REAS suspension system and 20-inch wheels improve this 4Runner’s handling acumen. Limited RWD models start at just over $48,000, and 4WD at $50,000.Advertisement – Story Continues Below8 / 10
Presenting the ultimate 4Runner: the mighty TRD Pro. This range-topping trim makes the 4Runner more off-road capable thanks to its Fox suspension system, underbody skid plates, and matte black 17-inch wheels shod in Nitto Terra Grappler tires. As you’d expect, 4WD with a locking rear differential is standard. Exclusive styling details set the TRD Pro apart, like its black grille, roof basket, and badging.
Certainly most noticeable is the Lime Rush metallic paint, a rad TRD Pro-exclusive color option added for 2022. This trim also gets tech upgrades including a 15-speaker premium audio setup and a trail view camera system. A sunroof and dual-zone climate control make their way over from the Limited trim. All this equipment makes the TRD Pro the most expensive 4Runner at about $53,500 to start.Advertisement – Story Continues Below9 / 10
We’ll say it again: the 4Runner is no crossover. If you want a vehicle for regular use, there are many options that are much more refined, modern, and fuel-efficient. Now, if you want something to beat up on the trail, the 4Runner is a great choice—that’s what it’s made for. With its many off-road upgrades, the TRD Pro model is certainly the one that’s most ready to get rowdy straight from the factory. It’s also the most expensive. As you consider your budget, also consider the SR5 Premium with 4WD. This trim has features that make the 4Runner nicer to live with, along with good trail capability straight from the get-go. And at about $10,000 less than the TRD Pro, it leaves space for aftermarket modifications. The 2022 4Runner SR5 Premium with 4WD is the trim we’d recommend to most drivers. Be aware, however, that an all-new sixth-generation 4Runner may arrive in the next few years, potentially with an electrified powertrain.Advertisement – Story Continues Below10 / 10
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