Susan Frissell

After driving the 4-Runner 4×4 TRD Pro for the good part of a week, we finally discovered the rear wiper. It was hard to imagine there wouldn’t be one; the stalk indicated there was one. Perhaps it had something to do with the rear window, which operates from the console with an up/down switch. After accidentally lowering the rear window, the wiper appeared??

The 2016 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro is a tough-looking SUV, large at over 4,000 pounds, riding high. Who is this particular package is aimed at? Seriously off-roaders who prefer to do it in a SUV rather than a truck, of course.

We couldn’t help think the 4Runner TRD edition seemed dated. A “throwback” of sorts, this cumbersome SUV, does, believe it or not, appeal to some consumers. One can trace the evolution and popularity of the sport-utility-vehicle: from trucks to weekend get-away transportation, to ever-popular sport utes.

Not a vehicle for the ‘common’ crowd, the 4Runner TRD performs best, we’re sure, out West, traversing dunes, back roads and off-road trails. Needless to say, this isn’t terrain this writer covered while driving the 4Runner TRD. We did however drive it through Chicago snow and ice.

We could imagine the 4Runner TRD going on and on, just about forever, never needing much in the way of upkeep, ever faithful. Not a daily driver, this ‘truck-like’ SUV willing to perform for those outdoor types, yet resting during the week.

And, that’s the way most would prefer to use it. Although one could drive the 4Runner TRD every day, as we did, there are many other vehicles that more closely fit the bill, providing more refinement and comfort.

The 4Runner TRD version is almost sinister looking and a little retro (think: the Toyota emblem up front). Kind of silly, but kind of cool looking with its black wheels. Our test vehicle in “Attitude Black Metallic” came with black interior, as well as the TRD stamped aluminum front skid plates, TRD shift knob, TRD Pro floor mats and “TOYOTA” front grille with badging.

Although equipped with the latest brake technology (EBD, Brake Assist, Smart Stop Technology, Crawl Control), we discovered the 4Runner doing some creeping forward when stopped at lights. Without realizing it, we ended up right on the bumper of the car ahead of us. Didn’t sense it. More foot power seemed to be needed when braking the 4Runner TRD.

Other available trim levels in the 4Runner include SRS, Trail and Limited.

2016 4Runner TRD in Attitude Black

2016 4Runner TRD in Attitude Black

With most fleet vehicles, a road-test is what takes place, while writers play with new technology, think about ride/feel and what makes a particular vehicle stand out. With a vehicle like the 4Runner TRD, an off-road test would be in order. Which may mean setting aside a day or two to drive; and of course, to locate the terrain that shows off the vehicle’s attributes. Utilizing such features as the 4Runner’s transfer case to shift into low range gear isn’t something this writer experimented with on Chicago road surfaces.

Nevertheless, we enjoyed driving the 4runner TRD and appreciated some of the ‘normal’ vehicle attributes, such as Keyless entry, safety equipment, AM/FM/CD 6.1 inch /Navigation/App Suite/ Bluetooth, heated front seats.


MSRP: $41,110; total vehicle price $42,540, destination $885
Engine: 4.0-liter DOHC 24-valve V6 w/Dual Independent VVT-I, 270 hp., 278 lb-ft. torque
Transmission: 5-speed auto w/ ECT-I, 4-wheel-drive
Wheelbase: 109.8 in.
Length: 191.3 in.
Width: 75.8 in.
Height: 72 in.
Wheels: 17-inch, TRD alloy
Tires: P265/70R17
Towing Capacity: 5,000 lbs.
Curb Weight: 4,750 lbs.
EPA fuel economy: 17/22 mpg.
Fuel tank capacity: 23 gal.
Warranty: 3 yrs/36,000-miles basic