• (4.9) 100 reviews
  • MSRP: $34,210–$44,560
  • Body Style: Sport Utility
  • Combined MPG: 18-19 See how it ranks
  • Engine: 270-hp, 4.0-liter V-6 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: 4x2
  • Seats: 5-7
2017 Toyota 4Runner

Our Take on the Latest Model 2017 Toyota 4Runner

What We Don't Like

  • Tall step-in height
  • Lacks crash avoidance features
  • Engine refinement
  • Fuel economy
  • Tow ratings
  • On-road body lean

Notable Features

  • Body-on-frame SUV
  • Automatic or manually selectable transfer case
  • TRD Pro version available for max off-roading
  • Seats five or seven with optional third row
  • Rear- or four-wheel drive
  • V-6 engine standard

2017 Toyota 4Runner Reviews

Cars.com Expert Reviews

The Verdict

The 2017 Toyota 4Runner is an affordable, no-frills, off-road-capable SUV with a hint of weekend-toy fun factor.

Versus the competition

If the 4Runner TRD Off-Road were a Jeep, its capabilities and luxuries would fall somewhere between the primitive-but-capable Jeep Wrangler and the more refined Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The 2017 Toyota 4Runner is slowly becoming one of a kind thanks to a focus on off-road capabilities and ruggedness rather than the refinement, passenger comfort and crash avoidance technologies that are prioritized in competing models. If you'd like the latter, there are a plethora of car-based SUVs out there, like the Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot, to get the family around in comfort. The 4Runner, on the other hand, has hardware better suited for weekend camping trips, mountainous exploration or, as I found, oddly good maneuvering of an urban landscape.

What makes it so capable? The 4Runner retains body-on-frame construction, a once-common chassis type that's given way to lighter — and less-capable — unibody SUVs (commonly called crossovers or car-based SUVs)



People who tow frequently may not find the 4Runner suitable for much more than light-duty use. Despite its rugged construction, the 4Runner's 5,000-pound towing capacity is the same as the Highlander's, and it's less than a Grand Cherokee's 6,200 pounds (with the gasoline V-6). The Jeep's V-8 can tow up to 7,200 pounds, while the Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited max out at 3,500 pounds.

Safety

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2017 Toyota 4Runner a score of marginal in its small overlap front crash test (out of a possible good, acceptable, marginal and poor) and good in four other crashworthiness tests. These ratings match the 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 4Runner an overall safety rating of four out of five stars, while the Grand Cherokee has an overall five-star rating with four-wheel drive and four stars with rear-wheel drive.  

The Highlander aced IIHS crash tests and scored five out of five stars from NHTSA.

In NHTSA's rollover testing, the 4Runner earned three stars — the rating most often earned by off-road and truck-based models — with both RWD and 4WD. The Grand Cherokee earned three stars with RWD but four with 4WD. Typical of car-based SUVs, the Highlander rated four stars regardless of driveline.

The Highlander and other popular SUVs, including the Grand Cherokee, have more optional crash-avoidance features than the 2017 4Runner. The 4Runner lacks forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, blind spot warning and more. That may change soon, however, with Toyota's promise to include automatic emergency braking for the 2018 model year. A backup camera is standard, and front and rear parking sensors are optional.

Value

For $39,835, a TRD Off-Road is still the sweet spot in the 4Runner lineup, just like it was when it was sold as the Trail trim level in 2016. It offers a lot of capability but not a lot of refinement, which could be endearing to weekend adventurers or those who just want to feel like they could dive deep into the woods at a moment's notice.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee is arguably a more modern interpretation of an off-roader, with all the safety and convenience features you'd expect in a modern SUV. Of course that also comes at a higher price, and it's hard to argue with Toyota's reliability and ownership perks. J.D. Power's 2017 Vehicle Dependability Study, which measures reliability of 2014 vehicles, rates the 4Runner five out of five for predicted reliability, while the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee gets just two out of five. (Neither model has been redesigned since 2014, so these ratings set reasonable expectations for the 2017s.) Toyota also offers two years/25,000 miles of free scheduled maintenance.

With less-than-stellar crashworthiness ratings and some modern features absent, the 4Runner is certainly not for everyone, but the roomy and off-road-oriented SUV certainly packs a lot of capability and ownership perks for less than $40,000.

Consumer Reviews

(4.9)

Average based on 100 reviews

Write a Review

Reliable Road/Off Road Warrior

by MAX from Santa Rosa Beach, FL on December 13, 2017

A great balance between road comfort and off road capability. The additional third row seat is great for when our kids and grandkids visit. The current top two automobiles for resale value are both T... Read Full Review

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9 Trims Available

Photo of undefined
Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2017 Toyota 4Runner trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Toyota 4Runner Articles

2017 Toyota 4Runner Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

IIHS Ratings

Based on Toyota 4Runner Limited

Head Restraints and Seats
G
Moderate overlap front
G
Roof Strength
G
Side
G

IIHS Ratings

Based on Toyota 4Runner Limited

G Good
A Acceptable
M Marginal
P Poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
G
Overall Rear
G
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
G

Moderate overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
A
Left Leg/Foot
G
Overall Front
G
Restraints
G
Right Leg/Foot
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Other

Roof Strength
G

Side

Driver Head Protection
G
Driver Head and Neck
G
Driver Pelvis/Leg
G
Driver Torso
G
Overall Side
G
Rear Passenger Head Protection
G
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
G
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
G
Rear Passenger Torso
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Small overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
G
Hip/thigh
G
Lower leg/foot
A
Restraints and dummy kinematics
G
Small overlap front
M
Structure and safety cage
P
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests. IIHS also evaluates seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Toyota 4Runner Limited

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Toyota 4Runner Limited

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Side Barrier
Side Barrier Rating Driver
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
Side Pole
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Recalls

There are currently 2 recalls for this car.


Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $1,400 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

36mo/36,000mi

Powertrain

60mo/60,000mi

Roadside Assistance Coverage

24mo/unlimited

Free Scheduled Maintenance

24mo/25,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years