The Best Reasons the Third-Gen Toyota 4Runner is an Exceptional Off-Road Vehicle

Jane Seymour A few hours ago · 5 min. read
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Toyota Built The Third-Gen 4Runner On A Bigger Wheelbase Than Ever Before

Toyota created an all-new shell and chassis for the third generation of the 4Runner, making it sportier than ever before. This new design was unique to the 4Runner; it was no longer just a closed-off Hilux like its predecessors.

The third-generation 4Runner was longer and had a larger body than its predecessor, leading to more interior space for passengers as well as making it appear more commanding on roads.

The Iconic V6 From The Third-Gen 4Runner Remains The Stuff Of Legends

The third-generation 4Runner, offered by Toyota in 1996, was available with either a 150 horsepower 2.7-liter inline-four engine or the now infamous 5VZ-FE V6 engine making 183 horsepower. The 5VZ has gone down automotive history as being heralded as one of the most dependable engines ever created.

The 5VZ-FE engine's 183 hp and 217 lb-ft of torque kept it class-leading when it was first released. Even today, this engine performs admirably if you can find a '90s model. Nearly perfect, the 5VZ-FE is one of the main reasons why the third generation Toyota 4Runner still has high demand in the used market.

A Redesigned Interior Made The 4Runner More Spacious

The third-generation Toyota 4Runner has a longer wheelbase than its predecessor, allowing for more space in the interior cabin. At the time of its release, Toyota kept things simple inside the car.

The third-generation Toyota 4Runner had plenty of space for all passengers. The backseat was the best place to be, with copious amounts of legroom and headroom to relax on long trips. With SUVs as popular as they are today, people still consider the added roominess of the third-gen 4Runner when buying it used.

The Third-Gen 4Runner Paved The Way For Safety In Off-Roaders

Before 1996, SUVs had something of a reputation for being unsafe. And there was some truth to that–manufacturers didn’t tend to prioritize safety features in their designs. But the third-generation Toyota 4Runner shook things up.

Although it wasn't common for auto-makers to include safety features like reinforced doors, ABS, and dual airbags on their cars at the time, Toyota did so anyway on the third-gen 4Runner. As a result, this car is now considered much safer than its competitors from that time period.

The Gen-3 Toyota 4Runner Was As Reliable As They Come

The Toyota 4Runner from 1996 to 2002 was3.4-liter V6 is one of the most reliable vehicles of all time , due in part to its brilliant and indomitable 3.4-liter V6.

The gen-3 Toyota 4Runner is a well-maintained model that can ride for 400,000 miles or more. Today, you can easily get a third-gen 4Runner driven less than 200,000 miles for under the $10,000 mark.

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