2013 Toyota 4Runner Preview

Jeff Youngs | Apr 30, 2013
  • Body-on-frame SUV boasts off-road capabilities
  • 2013 model carries over from previous year
  • V-6 engine produces 270 horsepower
  • Vehicle can tow up to 5,000 pounds
  • Maximum cargo space is 90 cubic feet


The Toyota 4Runner is a midsize truck-based SUV, made by Toyota since 1984. It competes with the Mazda CX-9, Dodge Journey, and Subaru Tribeca, among others. It's available in three trims: base SR5; Trail (built for rougher use); and Limited (the more luxury-oriented option). All trim levels employ a V-6 engine, and a versatile 4-wheel drive (4WD) system is available (standard on the Trail trim). The 2013 model carries over from the previous year with no significant changes.

Exterior Features

Available exterior colors for the base trim include black, red, and two shades of grey, plus (at a slight additional charge) a premium white paint. Standard equipment includes hill-start assist, hill-descent control, skid plates, and 17-inch alloy wheels. Other standard features include rear privacy glass, heated mirrors, power liftgate, fog lights, keyless entry, and a windshield wiper de-icer. The Trail trim adds a hood scoop and fender flares to the basic SR5 design, as well as a locking rear differential, mud guards, sunroof, and off-road tires. The Limited trim features an adaptive suspension, automatic headlights, and 20-inch wheels, plus keyless entry and ignition. Towing capacity for all trim levels, with proper equipment, is 5,000 pounds.

Interior Features

Standard interior features on the 2013 Toyota 4Runner SR5 include air conditioning, cruise control, cloth upholstery, height-adjustable driver's seat, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, folding and reclining rear seats, power rear window, Bluetooth connectivity, trip computer, and an 8-speaker sound system. The Trail adds water-resistant upholstery (useful for situations that involve a lot of loading and unloading or getting in and out), more power features, sliding cargo floor, rearview camera, and more. The Limited includes leather upholstery, heated front seats, automatic climate control, automatic headlights, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. With rear seats folded down, cargo capacity is 90 cubic feet.

Optional Features

Many of the upgrades offered on the upper trim levels are available as options on the lower trim levels. A voice-activated navigation system is available, and so are automatically deploying running boards on the SR5 and Limited trim levels. Other optional accessories include alloy wheel locks, ball mount, door edge guards, exhaust tip, hood protector, mudguards, paint protection film, roof rack crossbars, all-weather floor mats, carpeted floor mats, ashtray cup, cargo cover, cargo divider, cargo net, cargo tote, first-aid kit, and remote starter.

Under the Hood

The 2013 Toyota 4Runner's standard power plant is a 270-horsepower, 4.0-liter V-6 engine that delivers 278 lb.-ft. of torque. It works with a 5-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive (2WD) is standard on the SR5 and Limited trims; the Trail trim comes with part-time 4WD with a low-range mode and selectable systems for different terrains. A full-time 4WD system with a lockable center differential is available for the Limited trim.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 Toyota 4Runner are:

  • 4Runner with 2WD: 17/23/19 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • 4Runner with 4WD: 17/21/18 mpg


Standard safety features on the 2013 Toyota 4Runner include anti-lock brakes, stability and traction control, active front head restraints, front-seat side air bags, knee air bags, and full-length side curtain air bags. Toyota's proprietary emergency assistance system is standard on the Limited trim.

In government crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Toyota 4Runner received 4 (out of 5) stars for frontal crash protection; 5 stars for side-impact crash protection; 3 stars for rollover protection; and an overall rating of 4 stars. In tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the 4Runner received "Good" ratings--the Institute's highest--for frontal-offset and side-impact crash protection, and an "Acceptable" rating for roof strength.
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