The Toyota 4-Runner is one of the toughest SUVs in the market. Its substantial body-on-frame design and off-road features give it legit trail capability and support its outdoor-oriented rep. There’s no doubt it’s a popular truck for everything from daily driving to overlanding to weekend mud fests. Here are a few of our favorite builds. These folks took an already-capable SUV and made it even better, and more importantly, made it their own.
Owner @Jordan Montera answers the call of the wild with this 2016. Hailing from Colorado, he took the stock engine and lets it breathe that clean mountain air with an Airaid cold-air intake and Flowmaster FX exhaust. He then re-geared it with Nitro 4.88 gears and added an ARB rear air locker for when things get spicy in the hills. That regearing help spin the 33-inch Goodyear DuraTracs on the Stealth Custom Series Ray10 17-inch wheels in the classic bronze color. It looks so clean with the white paint.
This 4-Runner sits atop a 2.5-inch lift with King suspension. SPC upper control arms and Toytec SuperFlex Rear Springs keep things in check when crawling or loaded up.
On the exterior, Baja Design supplies the fog lighting cleanly integrated with Lil B’s front bumper with a bull bar that just looks mean. We think it really complements the Morimoto headlights for a really tight front end. RSG sliders and front skid plate protect the undercarriage from poor line choices.
Rounding out the build is an Uptop Overland Bravo roof rack to haul all the gear to camp and Eagle Eye taillights. It’s a great-looking build that’s perfect for long days in the backcountry.
What is it about Colorado and 4-Runners? This 2006 Sr5 puts in work from the red canyons of Moab to the aspen-covered highlands of the mountains. Sitting on a 1-inch lift with ICON 2.5 Series coilovers and Total Chaos upper control arms, this SUV rocks 33-inch BF Goodrich KO2 tires, a classic choice for Colorado trails. They don’t call them the Rocky Mountains for nothing, so the RCI skid plate is a must.
Extreme LED pods light the way, and a Smittybuilt OverLander tent and ARB Awning act as a home away from home when out in the wilds.
This 2018 TRD Off Road Premium comes to us from Illinois. The AlphaEquipt snorkel with a K&N filter, along with the TRD Pro exhaust gives the stock engine gets some extra lung capacity and boosts its performance.
To tackle that Midwest mud, Mechagodzilla rolls on 33-inch mud-terrain BFG KM3s on sexy, 17-inch SCS Ray10 wheels. Sure, they look good, but more importantly, they get the job done in any conditions. A 3-inch lift with ICON DJ upper control arms gives her true rock-crawling capability as well. And, when out among the rocks, the Victory front and rear bumpers and SSO sliders offer up a little protection from the inevitable bumps and bruises. If those bumps get really bad, the Warn winch is always there – to pull others out.
The one-of-a-kind exterior wrap is always a nice touch, and rounding out the build is spotlighting by Diode Dynamics and headlights by Alpharex, and taillights by Anzo. It’s clear that the owner, @Joseph Cameron gets after it, and for that, we salute him.
East Coast wheelers are a different breed. If this Tennessee truck’s name didn’t catch your attention, the build certainly wouldn’t fail. This 2015 Limited is sick. The 4.0-liter V6 rocks an ARB Safari snorkel with a K&N filter and a high-clearance Flowmaster exhaust. And, judging by the water crossings owner @Josh Bratcher does, it’s a good thing he’s got it.
And Josh has clearly done his homework. One often overlooked mod is a diff breather. Off-roading generates a lot of heat due to your gears’ constant movement. That heat creates pressure inside your housing that can lead to blown axle seals. Stock breathers are usually low to the ground. They get clogged with mud and grit and can trap gear oil. The installed ARB breather kit protects your differentials, transfer case, and transmission. Well done, Josh.
The drivetrain consists of Yukon axles and 4.88 gears, along with ARB front and rear air lockers. Nothing on the suspension was left stock. Dobinson handles the coils, struts, panhard bar, rear trailing arms, rear control arm, and a diff-drop kit. JBA handles the upper control arms, and the Feral Pig removed its front and rear sway bars for maximum articulation and better bump absorption on washboarded roads. All that easily controls the bronze Method Race wheels and 37-inch Maxxis RAZR tires.
The complete underbelly is protected by CBI with full skid plates, rock sliders, and fuel and washer tank plates. And perhaps one of the coolest mods we’ve seen, is the Velox Offroad Gullwing windows that let you access the gear in the back without opening the rear tailgate and door. Genius.
There’s almost too much to mention on the exterior, where almost nothing was left untouched. Baja Designs does some heavy lifting on exterior accessory lighting and Morimoto tackles the head and taillights. The Warn winch teams up with Factor 55 for winching duties.
Feral Pig is one of the most well-thought-out builds we’ve seen. If we were giving out awards, the Pig would be top in the running. It’s not only badass looking, but it’s utterly capable and ready for anything that comes its way.
One look at this 5th-gen T-Quattro-R and the monster 43-inch wheels jump out. They’re 17-inch Raceline wheels powder coated blue wrapped with Sticky Mickeys. Heavy-duty Crane axles and 5.38 gearing were needed for the build. ARB front and rear lockers and an Atlas 4-speed transfer case are perfect for those who enjoy conquering diverse terrain with one truck. It gives you a single option whether you’re slowly rock crawling or mudding at speed. There is nothing this thing can’t climb, and no river it couldn’t ford.
To power that oversized rubber, owner @Jason Varelli took the stock engine and gave it extra power with a Whipple 2.3L supercharger with a custom intake and exhaust. He’s either very talented at fabrication or has some good friends that are because the truck has extensive modifications. There’s an internal roll cage, the frame’s been stiffened up, the engine has been lifted by three inches, and even the batteries, gas tank, fuel pickup, filter, and fuse box have been relocated. It’s also got full custom skid plates and Jason likes to brag that not a single stock crossmember is left!
The T-Quattro-R is no doubt a ton of fun to drive, keep an eye out for it when in North Carolina.