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2008 Toyota 4Runner

2008 Toyota 4Runner

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$6,136 — $19,360 USED
10
Photos
Sport Utility
5-7 Seats
15-18 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 6 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • V-8 performance
  • Quietness
  • Ride quality
  • Refinement
  • Resale value

The Bad

  • Fuel economy
  • Ride quality in Sport Edition
  • Difficult entry and exit

What to Know

about the 2008 Toyota 4Runner
  • Standard 236-hp V-6
  • Available 260-hp V-8
  • Two or three rows of seats
  • RWD or 4WD

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2008 Toyota 4Runner Review

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Vehicle Overview
Toyota last redesigned its midsize 4Runner SUV for 2003, making a V-8 engine available for the first time. At that time, Toyota wanted to make the truck-based 4Runner larger, roomier and more fuel-efficient, yet still retain its offroad capability. After a drivetrain update in 2005 and a face-lift for 2006, the 2008 4Runner is largely unchanged. Similar truck-based SUVs include the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, Ford Explorer and Nissan Pathfinder, which also have optional V-8 engines.

Three trim levels are available: SR5, Sport Edition and Limited. Four-wheel-drive-equipped 4Runners feature Downhill Assist Control that restricts speed when going down a steep grade. Hill-start Assist Control works to keep the sport utility vehicle from rolling backward on an upgrade.

Exterior
Built on a 109.8-inch wheelbase, the 4Runner measures 189 inches long overall. Body-on-frame construction uses full-length, boxed-section frame rails. The rear liftgate contains a power window.

Standard SR5 equipment includes 16-inch tires. The Sport Edition features a hood scoop, sport suspension, smoked chrome grille and 17-inch wheels. The Limited includes illuminated running boards and 18-inch rims.

Interior
Without the available third-row seat, the 4Runner seats five people on front buckets and a three-place, fold-down 60/40-split rear bench. Seven occupants fit inside models equipped with a third-row seat.

Power front seats are standard in all but the base model. Limited trim levels add leat...

Vehicle Overview
Toyota last redesigned its midsize 4Runner SUV for 2003, making a V-8 engine available for the first time. At that time, Toyota wanted to make the truck-based 4Runner larger, roomier and more fuel-efficient, yet still retain its offroad capability. After a drivetrain update in 2005 and a face-lift for 2006, the 2008 4Runner is largely unchanged. Similar truck-based SUVs include the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, Ford Explorer and Nissan Pathfinder, which also have optional V-8 engines.

Three trim levels are available: SR5, Sport Edition and Limited. Four-wheel-drive-equipped 4Runners feature Downhill Assist Control that restricts speed when going down a steep grade. Hill-start Assist Control works to keep the sport utility vehicle from rolling backward on an upgrade.

Exterior
Built on a 109.8-inch wheelbase, the 4Runner measures 189 inches long overall. Body-on-frame construction uses full-length, boxed-section frame rails. The rear liftgate contains a power window.

Standard SR5 equipment includes 16-inch tires. The Sport Edition features a hood scoop, sport suspension, smoked chrome grille and 17-inch wheels. The Limited includes illuminated running boards and 18-inch rims.

Interior
Without the available third-row seat, the 4Runner seats five people on front buckets and a three-place, fold-down 60/40-split rear bench. Seven occupants fit inside models equipped with a third-row seat.

Power front seats are standard in all but the base model. Limited trim levels add leather upholstery and heated front seats. Cargo-area backup mirrors mounted in the rear pillars allow the driver to see oncoming vehicles when backing out of a parking stall. SR5 trim levels feature two 12-volt outlets and remote keyless entry. Sport models add a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, and Limited editions have black wood-grain interior trim.

Under the Hood
Toyota’s 4.7-liter V-8 is rated at 260 horsepower and 306 pounds-feet of torque. The 4.0-liter V-6 produces 236 hp. Both engines team with a five-speed automatic transmission. Rear- and four-wheel-drive models are available.

Safety
All-disc antilock brakes are standard. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags and side curtain airbags with rollover sensors are standard for 2008. An electronic stability system is standard.

Driving Impressions
Performance is a big plus when the 4Runner is equipped with the available, quiet V-8. From a standstill, a tap of the gas pedal sends this SUV practically lunging ahead. Acceleration while passing and merging is wholly confident.

The 4Runner steers easily and with a reasonably good feel, which is a cut above the truck-based SUV norm. Handling skills also rank above average. For this type of vehicle, the ride is pleasantly soft — not really cushy, but the suspension absorbs quite a few bumps. The Sport Edition feels a bit tauter, and its ride quality is a tad stiffer.

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.6
59 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(4.5)
Performance
(4.6)
Interior Design
(4.4)
Comfort
(4.7)
Reliability
(4.7)
Value For The Money
(4.4)

Read reviews that mention:

(4.0)

Toyota 4Runner - Best Dependable Vehicle

by Breezy from Columbia, SC on October 31, 2020

This vehicle is comfortable, clean, few scratches and is excellent pulling a trailer. Has towing package. Leather seats all features are in working condition. Only 2 owners. Read full review

(5.0)

Love the 4Runner

by Keri from Salem AL on October 2, 2020

This is my second 4Runner and I purchased it new. It is a 2008 limited, has 150K miles and still drives like it did when I drove it off the lot. My first was gently used 2002 SR5. I'm pretty sure I ... Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2008 Toyota 4Runner currently has 5 recalls


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2008 Toyota 4Runner SR5 V6

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
poor
Overall Rear
poor
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
acceptable

Moderate overlap front

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

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
acceptable
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Latest 2008 4Runner Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The 4Runner received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

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.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

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.

What is included in 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).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

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.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker

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