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2006 Toyota 4Runner

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2006 Toyota 4Runner Review

A favorite model for off-roaders and families.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 2006 Toyota 4Runner remains an extremely popular model even in its fourth generation. The midsize SUV benefits from full off-road capability. Its looks reflect its no-nonsense design—reminiscent of a truck. Toyota markets its off-road capability as a selling point over its nearest rivals.

The Range

Body Styles: Midsize SUV
Engines: 4.0-liter V-6, 4.7-liter V-8
Transmissions: five-speed automatic
Models: 4Runner SR5, 4Runner Sport Edition, 4Runner Limited

What's New

In 2006, Toyota updates the 4Runner’s interior to include new headlights, bumpers, grille, and lower cladding. The Limited trim now comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, and the Sport Edition has a new roof rack and tube steps. The 2006 Toyota 4Runner benefits from lower wind noise due to a thickened windshield and front window glass. New standard features include an exterior audio jack for portable devices, and the sport and SR5 trim have a seat memory feature, while the Limited offers a six-disc CD changer.


Not the prettiest SUV, the 2006 Toyota 4Runner's appearance looks somewhat functional. It sits on a 109.8-inch wheelbase and measures 189 inches long and 68.5 inches high. The rear liftgate has a power window, and standard equipment for the SR5 includes 16-inch tires, an integrated towing hitch, and multi-reflector headlights and taillights. The Sport Edition features sport suspension, 17-inch tires, and color-coded exterior mirrors; the Limited eliminates running boards and uses 18-inch tires.


The Toyota 4Runner seats five people without the optional third row seats, with two in the front bucket seats and three on the fold-down 60/40-split rear bench. If the model includes third row seating, then it accommodates seven passengers.

The standard SR5 trim comes with automatic climate control, remote keyless entry, a telescoping steering wheel, cruise control, a power driver’s seat, a CD player, and a trip computer. The Sport Edition comes with a power driver’s seat and high-contrast seat fabric, and the leather-wrapped steering wheel has stereo controls. The top-of-the-range Limited trim features dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, and leather upholstery. Options for the 4Runner include a rear-seat entertainment system, a third row seat, and a DVD-based navigation system.

The 2006 Toyota 4Runner overall interior design looks functional but pleasing, and most controls are well placed and easy-to-use with the exception of the climate controls, which operate like small joysticks. Its storage capacity may be a little less than that of its competitors, with a maximum of 75 cubic feet available, but it does have an advantage in that it offers two-tiered loading via a foldable cargo shelf. The 4Runner also comes with an optional third row of seats, but unlike its competitors, this third row does not fold flat into the floor.

Performance & Handling

The 2006 Toyota 4Runner comes with two different engines, either a four-liter V-6 producing 236 hp, or a 4.7-liter V-8 that generates 260 hp and 306 lb-ft of torque. It offers three different trim levels.

The Toyota 4Runner delivers a surprisingly smooth and comfortable ride, and you won't feel many lumps and bumps in the road. The suspension on the Sport Edition feels a bit firmer. Both engines provide sufficient power, although drivers who plan to engage in towing should opt for the V-8. If you only need to tow loads occasionally then the V-6 offers better fuel efficiency.

On the road, the Toyota 4Runner proves very responsive and handles extremely well. It has sufficient capacity to easily overtake other vehicles. Its off-road performance is excellent, and it tackles steep hills with very little fuss. Both off and on the road, it compares favorably with other models in its class.


2006 Toyota 4Runner’s standard safety features include stability control, brake assist and electronic brake force distribution, and four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes. Optional extras for all models include front-seat-mounted side airbags and overhead side curtain airbags for the first two rows of passengers.

The 2006 Toyota 4Runner performs very well in crash tests, achieving four out of five stars in frontal-impacts and five stars for side impacts. In frontal-offset testing the 206 Toyota 4Runner achieves the highest rating.

EPA Fuel Economy

4Runner SR5: 15/19 mpg city/highway
4Runner Sport Edition: 16/20 mpg city/highway
4Runner Limited: 15/19 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Impressive off-road ability
  • Powerful engine
  • Well-equipped cabin

You Won't Like

  • Below average storage capacity
  • Inability to fold third row seats flat

Sum Up

A favorite model for off-roaders and families.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Ford Explorer
  • Buick Rainier
  • Chevrolet Trailblazer EXT

See the New 2015 4Runner.

Front & Driver Side View