There are so many things to like about Toyota 4Runner. For more than three decades, this tough and rugged SUV has been making people and families happy on the road.
And, of course, off the road too.
I appreciate the wide variety of trim levels like SR5, TRD Off-Road, TRD Pro Limited and Nightshade. Plus, the new 2021 4Runner Trail Edition is here.
Most people realize Toyota 4Runner is ready to change and be redesigned. Time for the 6th Generation to arrive for us to see.
We have been on our 5th Generation design since 2009. People really like the current entry, but they also are ready to see what comes next.
People talk about 2021 Toyota 4Runner
Comments from viewers of my “Toyotajeff” YouTube channel and readers of my Torque News / Toyota News column are what provide ideas for new content. Like this article I am writing today, for example.
People have had interesting observations when talking about our current 4Runner and what might come next. Time to open the comments bag.
“Cannot wait to see what Toyota has next for 4Runner!” Exclaimed Terry.
Lamar apparently thought it has been awhile. “Redesign time. Hasn’t it been a decade already?”
“Jeff do you know if there will be a redesign next year?” Asked Commander Rhino.
Mr Bobby Brown shared his thoughts. “Beautiful, but kind of crazy how they can charge so much for it considering how outdated it kind of is. Specifically, the engine and transmission.”
“Just picked up a 2021 4Runner Venture and plan on trading it in for the new design in a couple years.” Commented Brad.
Good plan Brad. Until we hear differently, probably the best thing to do is think about a redesigned 2023 Toyota 4Runner.
Rumors are swirling in Toyota circles for that time frame. I do not know more but it is a good frame of reference – for now at least.
Here are some of my thoughts on what could be changed or updated.
Toyota 4Runner Hybrid
Toyota has an aggressive plan in place for its growing hybrid offerings in the next several years. This movement includes its entire lineup of cars, trucks and SUVs. I was lucky enough to discuss this a year ago with a Toyota expert in the know.
“In the next few years, we’re trying to increase the number of vehicles that we have with an alternate, electrified power plant to 25% (of total vehicle sales). And give every vehicle we offer an electrified power plant option.” Offered Tom Kretschmann, who is the Product Subject Matter Expert with the Toyota Product & Sales Engagement team.
Having a 4Runner hybrid option for consumers would fit a specific buyer market.
People looking to significantly improve their gas mileage would benefit from a hybrid 4Runner. Currently 2021 Toyota 4Runner buyers will find listed mpg at 16 city / 19 highway / 17 combined for part-time 4WD 4Runners.
Other potential benefits for Toyota 4Runner hybrid could include improved low-end torque, lower emissions and pollution, and potentially higher values.
Toyota 4Runner engine
Current 2021 4Runner powertrain is a 4.0-liter V6 engine that is matched with a 5-speed automatic transmission. This produces 270 horsepower and 278 lb.-ft. torque.
This is not the only engine we have seen over the years on Toyota 4Runner. Options such as a 2.4-liter engine and as high as a 4.7-liter V8 engine have moved drivers from Point A to Point B in the past.
It is difficult to speculate what powertrain evolution we can expect to see next. I do feel the biggest room for improvement is in this department.
A more modern transmission would satisfy 4Runner fans and enthusiasts for sure.
Also, I would not be surprised to find a turbo-assisted path similar to the rumored 2022 Toyota Tundra next-gen design.
What are your thoughts on ideal powertrain combinations?
2021 Toyota 4Runner features
When Toyota 4Runner was refreshed for the 2020 model year, it gave owners a few incredibly important upgrades.
On 2020 and 2021 4Runners you will find Toyota Safety Sense, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, larger multimedia screens, slightly updated interior design and rear USB ports.
Yes, there are LED lights across the lineup for 2021 4Runner now too.
VIDEO: Take a tour of 2021 Toyota 4Runner Venture Special Edition in my video review.
These are practical and essential features for some. Plus, these additions have helped satisfy the cravings of fans who are calling for a redesign as soon as possible.
I would expect a similar but more modernized interior cabin. I would be shocked if new updates do not include standard blind spot monitor on all trim levels.
People want convenience, the latest technology and safety available, along with a “with the times” look.
Not all people, of course, but many. We have many traditionalists as well.
Time for your thoughts on Toyota 4Runner
The important consideration here is that Toyota 4Runner fans and owners love their vehicles because they are 4Runners. It is essential to maintain the legacy and foundation already in place.
Do not change the look too much. Modernize it. Provide ample seating and storage areas. Make it tough and rugged and versatile for weekend camping and trail trips.
Continue to make us proud of 4Runner. Just in modern ways.
What do you think? Are you a 4Runner owner and what has your experience been so far?
What improvements and updates are on your next generation 4Runner wish list?
Thanks for reading everyone. See you next story when I show exclusive pictures of new 2021 Camry color.
Follow Jeff Teague on social media:
Thank you everyone for following me.