Toyota Tried and Toyota True
The 2009 Toyota 4Runner starting to show its age. However, Toyota is on top of things, and for 2009, the Toyota 4Runner gets a new optional Trail Edition package for V-6-powered four-wheel drive SR5 versions. The Trail Edition Package bundles active traction control, Bilstein shocks and unique 16-inch alloy wheels with color-keyed grille, door handles and rear license plate trim, as well as tubular side steps and roof rack. The seats are covered in water-resistant material and charcoal fabric bolsters.
No. The 2009 Toyota 4Runner is a solid off-roader, but the fact of the matter is that it's thirsty in both six- and eight-cylinder versions, has a dated interior that wasn't much good to begin with, and is outclassed by newer vehicles.
Toyota hasn't officially announced plans, but most speculation says that this is the final year of this particular 4Runner. What the future holds is anybody's guess -- sales of traditional SUVs like the Toyota 4Runner haven't been good of late.
The 2009 Nissan Pathfinder now has a V-8 engine with more power than the 4Runner, and gets mileage that's just as good (or bad). The 2009 Kia Borrego is a newcomer to the scene, but it also has a gutsy, fuel-efficient V-8 available and a killer warranty.
The 2009 model year marks the sixth for this generation of Toyota 4Runner, making it one of the oldest models in Toyota's range. The interior layout is decidedly last-generation, the optional navigation system uses an old-school screen, and there are numerous other anachronisms strewn throughout. However, there's some excellent off-road capability here, further enhanced by the new Trail Edition for the SR5
The 2009 Toyota 4Runner is available in three trim levels: SR5, Sport Edition and Limited. Each trim level is available with either a 4.0-liter V-6 which produces 236 horsepower at 5,200 rpm and 266 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,800 rpm, or a 4.7-liter V-8 which pumps out 260 horsepower at 5,400 rpm and 306 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,400 rpm. Regardless of engine or trim level, every 4Runner can be equipped with four-wheel drive.
Prices for the 2009 Toyota 4Runner start at $29,385 for a V-6 two-wheel drive base SR5 and extend all the way to $40,105 for a Toyota 4Runner Limited with a V-8 engine and four-wheel drive. Major options packages include a third-row seat, power moonroof, and a JBL 10-speaker sound system with an in-dash 6-disc CD-changer. The same JBL sound system can also be purchased with a navigation system.
By Keith Buglewicz Photo credit: Toyota