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- Catherine Rampell, student @ University of Washington
"Exactly the help I needed."
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"The best place for brainstorming ideas."
- Michael Majchrowicz, student @ University of Kentucky
Future of Automobiles
Lately the trend in cars has been anything but. Lately in the United States the trend has moved
toward the SUV or the Sports Utility Vechile. Thats Right the family station wagon and the Minivan are
things of the past and I am going to take you through a thorough examination my favorite the Toyota
1997 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4WD
WHAT'S NEW FOR 1997
All-new 4Runner debuts with more interior room, stronger engines, dual airbags, new colors, and a top-of-
the-line Limited trim level. For the first time, the 4Runner boasts a unique chassis and sheetmetal not
shared with the Tacoma pickup.
PROS AND CONS
Great looks and ground-pounding performance make the 4Runner an ideal choice for people who love the
great outdoors as well as those who just want to look like they do.
Steep price and choppy highway ride temper our enthusiasm for this otherwise outstanding truck.
For Successful five-year run, the second-generation Toyota 4Runner has been retired, and not a moment
too soon. Fresh in 1990, the 4Runner aged quickly as the sport utility market exploded and other
automakers introduced larger, safer and more powerful rivals. By 1995, the compact pickup-based 4Runner
offered little, other than Toyota's reputation for reliability, to entice buyers.
For 1996, Toyota has separated this high-volume SUV from its pickup truck roots. The new 4Runner
shares little with the Tacoma pickup. As a result, engineers have created a more refined vehicle without
sacrificing tough off-road ability. Suspension travel and tread width are both up to improve off-road ability,
ride, and handling. The interior is larger in every direction, thanks to a wheelbase that is two inches longer
than the previous version. A lower floor and wider doors make getting into and out of the 4Runner less of
an exercise in contortionism. Rear leg room is up by three inches, and cargo space has been improved as
Two engines are available on the 4Runner; a 2.7-liter inline four cylinder that makes 150 horsepower at
4800 rpm and 177 pounds- feet of torque at 4000 rpm., and a 3.4-liter V-6 producing 183 horsepower at
4800 rpm and 217 pounds-feet of torque at 3600 rpm. These figures represent a substantial improvement
over the old anemic four cylinder and wheezy V-6 -- in fact, the new 2.7-liter four is more powerful than
the 1995 model's 3.0-liter six.
Needless to say, all of this adds up to a much improved sport ute. Safety hasn't been ignored in the
revamped 4Runner, which sports dual airbags. Anti-lock brakes are standard with the V-6 and optional on
four cylinder models. Steering response and feel have also been improved by replacing the old recirculating
ball-type steering with a rack and pinion setup. Access to the cargo area is improved by switching from a
two-piece tailgate to a one-piece hatch-style liftgate with a power-down rear window.
Also new are 20-ounce cupholders, a bigger console storage area, and relocated rear speakers. Seven new
exterior colors debut, and all new interior fabrics and designs round out the new 4Runner package. Overall,
a very nice effort, resulting in a tough truck with looks to match. Pricing runs from $20,000 for a 2WD four
cylinder Base model to $36,000 for a fully-loaded Limited. This lands the 4Runner right smack dab in
Tahoe, Explorer and Grand Cherokee territory. Keep it in mind.
•Basic: 3 yr./36000 mi. •Drivetrain: 5 yr./60000 mi. •Rust: 5 yr./unlimited mi. •Roadside Assistance: NA
•Four-Wheel Anti-Lock Brakes: Standard •Driver Air Bag: Standard •Passenger Air Bag: Standard •Side
Air Bag: NA •Integrated Child Seat: NA •Meets 1999 Side-Impact Standards: No
•Acceleration (0-60 mph): 10.1 sec. •Braking Distance (60-0 mph): NA •Roadholding Index: 0.69 •Base
Engine Type: V6 •Base Number of Cylinders: 6 •Base Engine Size: 3.4 liters •Horsepower: 183 hp
•Torque: 217 lbs./ft.
EPA Mileage Estimates:
•Manual: City = NA Highway = NA •Automatic: City = 16 mpg Highway = 19 mpg
PRICES (MSRP AND DEALER INVOICE) AND EQUIPMENT
(All Prices in US Dollars)
8668 Wagon Limited 4-Dr
Invoice = $29,536
MSRP = $33,738
Destination Charge: $420
Gas Guzzler Tax: $0
BASE: 2.7-liter DOHC 4-cylinder engine, power rack-and-pinion steering, power front disc/rear drum
brakes, shift-on-the-fly 4WD (4WD), double wishbone front suspension with coil springs and gas shocks,
4-link coil spring rear suspension,
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Sport utility vehicles, Toyota 4Runner, Toyota T100, Toyota Sequoia
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