4Runner Owner: 1958 Test Drive Impressions

solidbrix

Well-known member
📛 Founding Member
Feb 17, 2024
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293
Richmond, VA
Vehicles
2020 4Runner
I posted this on a LC Facebook group, but wanted to share it here with you guys:

Pros
+The hybrid system is quick, and nothing like the 4Runner, completely different acceleration, breaking, and feel, I loved it. SO MUCH TORQUE!

+Steering: also completely different from the 4Runner, night and day difference, felt like a premium sedan or something (not a bad thing in my book), little effort to turn the wheel, no shakes at all even at high speeds or gravel roads.

+Build quality was excellent, matching my 4Runner, I played around with every button, pulled off every panel I could, and knocked around with everything from the front to back, solid stuff. Made in Japan for ya.

+The look. Wow does it look good in person. Every angle.

+Space, I just came back from car camping in the 4Runner, I had to lay diagonally to sleep, not a problem inside the LC w/ seats down, I was impressed.

+That battery step up in the cargo space is smaller in person than it looks in photos or on camera, wasn’t an issue

+Interior height, wow was it tall inside, much more than the 4Runner

+Driving position was absolutely perfect, could see everything around me with minimal blind spots

+Quality materials: aside from the excess interior plastic on the 1958, the buttons, steering wheel, and shifter felt great and super sturdy, I can see this lasting a long time

+A/C: it was 90 degrees and the 3 climate zone is fantastic, the rear head vents are a game changer as a 4Runner owner (& proud Golden Retriever owner)

+Quiet interior even at 75mph on I-95, minimal wind noise and no hood flapping like the GX 550 has

+No joke, the cloth seats felt better and more comfortable than my softex 4Runner seats (yes I don’t believe it either), material was nice even for cloth.

+Easy to close the back tailgate, way less heavy than the 4Runner, upper trims this is automatic, manual on the 1958

+Minimal body roll on turns, it’s there, but way less than the 4Runner

Cons
-Unless your 6ft or taller (I’m 5’ 10), you’ll have a hard time getting in and out of the LC, it needs some type of running board or rock rail to step on getting in. Your significant other ain’t gonna be happy if she’s short haha (or kids will have issues as well)

-On the 1958 there is a bunch of hard plastic everywhere including the door handles themselves on the inside, it didn’t feel bad but for 56k I expected a little more cushion

-The design around the smaller 8 inch screen in the 1958 isn’t bad but still looks cheap and obvious that a bigger screen should’ve been there

-Pop out glass doesn’t seem that practical, no way to partially open it for say a surf board or for lumber to stick out, good for quick drop ins, that’s about it.

Conclusion
I will be purchasing a Land Cruiser shortly. I was already 95% the way there thinking this was the right vehicle for me, and now I’m 100% convinced. It was literally everything I wanted & more. The design both interior and exterior is amazing. The drive is truly impressive for a body on frame suv. It does feel like an upgrade from the 4Runner. If you have the money, it feels worth it. That being said, the amount of plastic inside on the door panels was enough to convince me that the mid-tier trim is the way to go, better materials and lot of other nice creature comforts. These haters saying we need a V6 or V8 engine haven’t drove this new hybrid system, I see why now Toyota is putting it in the new Tacoma, 4Runner, and Land Cruiser.

My Advice
Skip the 1958 & First Edition: If you’re not in a rush to get an LC soon, I think the Mid-Tier trim without the premium package is the sweet spot at 62k, I think it’s worth the upgrade cost, you get a lot of nice amenties and access to the full pallet of exterior colors. I’d stay away from First Editon or any LC over 75k, it’s not worth it once it gets to that high of a price. I would consider the 1958 if you can get it for 53k or below (knock off 2-3K)… and so far these are not selling (very fast)… so come the end of Summer, I won’t be surprised to see people getting good deals on the 1958. The most in-demand spec is the mid-tier, so don’t expect discounts anytime soon.

448178886_7891760647512421_1473609815283851358_n.jpg
 
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I posted this on a LC Facebook group, but wanted to share it here with you guys:

Pros
+The hybrid system is quick, and nothing like the 4Runner, completely different acceleration, breaking, and feel, I loved it. SO MUCH TORQUE!

+Steering: also completely different from the 4Runner, night and day difference, felt like a premium sedan or something (not a bad thing in my book), little effort to turn the wheel, no shakes at all even at high speeds or gravel roads.

+Build quality was excellent, matching my 4Runner, I played around with every button, pulled off every panel I could, and knocked around with everything from the front to back, solid stuff. Made in Japan for ya.

+The look. Wow does it look good in person. Every angle.

+Space, I just came back from car camping in the 4Runner, I had to lay diagonally to sleep, not a problem inside the LC w/ seats down, I was impressed.

+That battery step up in the cargo space is smaller in person than it looks in photos or on camera, wasn’t an issue

+Interior height, wow was it tall inside, much more than the 4Runner

+Driving position was absolutely perfect, could see everything around me with minimal blind spots

+Quality materials: aside from the excess interior plastic on the 1958, the buttons, steering wheel, and shifter felt great and super sturdy, I can see this lastly a long time

+A/C: it was 90 degrees and 3 climate zone is fantastic, the rear head vents are a game changer as a 4Runner owner

+Quiet interior even at 75mph on I-95, minimal wind noise and no hood flapping like the GX 550 has

+No joke, the cloth seats felt better and more comfortable than my softex 4Runner seats (yes I don’t believe it either), material was nice even for cloth.

+Easy to close the back tailgate, way less heavy than the 4Runner, upper trims this is automatic, manual on the 1958

+Minimal body roll on turns, it’s there, but way less than the 4Runner

Cons
-Unless your 6ft or taller (I’m 5’ 10), you’ll have a hard time getting in and out of the LC, it needs some type of running board or rock rail to step on getting in. Your significant other ain’t gonna be happy if she’s short haha (or kids will have issues as well)

-On the 1958 there is a bunch of hard plastic everywhere including the door handles themselves on the inside, it didn’t feel bad but for 56k I expected a little more cushion

-The design around the smaller 8 inch screen in the 1958 isn’t bad but still looks cheap and obvious that a bigger screen should’ve been there

-Pop out glass doesn’t seem that practical, no way to partially open it for say a surf board or for lumber to stick out, good for quick drop ins, that’s about it.

Conclusion
I will be purchasing a Land Cruiser shortly. I was already 95% the way there thinking this was the right vehicle for me, and now I’m 100% convinced. It was literally everything I wanted & more. The design both interior and exterior is amazing. The drive is truly impressive for a body on frame suv. It does feel like an upgrade from the 4Runner. If you have the money, it feels worth it. That being said, the amount of plastic inside on the door panels was enough to convince me that the mid-tier trim is the way to go, better materials and lot of other nice creature comforts. These haters saying we need a V6 or V8 engine haven’t drove this new hybrid system, I see why now Toyota is putting it in the new Tacoma, 4Runner, and Land Cruiser.

My Advice
Skip the 1958 & First Edition: If you’re not in a rush to get an LC soon, I think the Mid-Tier trim without the premium package is the sweet spot at 62k, I think it’s worth the upgrade cost, you get a lot of nice amenties and access to the full pallet of exterior colors. I’d stay away from First Editon or any LC over 75k, it’s not worth it once it gets to that high of a price. I would consider the 1958 if you can get it for 53k or below (knock off 2-3K)… and so far these are not selling (very fast)… so come the end of Summer, I won’t be surprised to see people getting good deals on the 1958. The most in-demand spec is the mid-tier, so don’t expect discounts anytime soon.

View attachment 2951
nice review, can't wait!!
 
Don’t think you can partially open glass and put a surfboard out the back if you drive slow? I see folks with shells for trucks doing that a lot around San Diego, was hoping I could do the same with the pop out glass of the LC.
 
I am on day 10 of the 1958. Agree with most of your comments. Compared to my old FJ Cruiser, the power train and the ride quality are way better. I would say my main complaint as of day 10 is the engine noise - the combination of the electric system and 4 cylinder is not a pleasant auditory experience. Might have to keep the radio up! Speaking of the radio, the speakers themselves are solid for a base model but with only 6 speakers, it is lacking that surround sound experience. Overall, I love it and happy with the trim I chose. From a straight value perspective, I agree the mid-trim without premium is the best value, but for me those headlights are a deal killer - looks like something from my wife's Highlander. I was also looking for a basic interior so I would yell at my kids and dog a little less due to the inevitable spills/mud/trash. Would be cool if the 1958 came without carpet on the floors for a super basic rubberized look that you could wash out.
 
Don’t think you can partially open glass and put a surfboard out the back if you drive slow? I see folks with shells for trucks doing that a lot around San Diego, was hoping I could do the same with the pop out glass of the LC.
I think you definitely could for short trips in a 25-mph zone. I plan to do so.
 
Don’t think you can partially open glass and put a surfboard out the back if you drive slow? I see folks with shells for trucks doing that a lot around San Diego, was hoping I could do the same with the pop out glass of the LC.
I made an Ikea run with my 4Runner and had to stick these wood beams out the back, 2 hour drive on the highway to home. Don't think I could get away with the LC doing what I did with the 4runner. But yes, around town, you could leave the back open, I just wouldn't go over 35-40 mph.

tempImageREYf2D.jpg
 
I am on day 10 of the 1958. Agree with most of your comments. Compared to my old FJ Cruiser, the power train and the ride quality are way better. I would say my main complaint as of day 10 is the engine noise - the combination of the electric system and 4 cylinder is not a pleasant auditory experience. Might have to keep the radio up! Speaking of the radio, the speakers themselves are solid for a base model but with only 6 speakers, it is lacking that surround sound experience. Overall, I love it and happy with the trim I chose. From a straight value perspective, I agree the mid-trim without premium is the best value, but for me those headlights are a deal killer - looks like something from my wife's Highlander. I was also looking for a basic interior so I would yell at my kids and dog a little less due to the inevitable spills/mud/trash. Would be cool if the 1958 came without carpet on the floors for a super basic rubberized look that you could wash out.
I feel like the softex seats (or even leather) would be easier to clean up then spills on the fabric, I could be wrong. You should test it with some water and see if it bubbles onto the seat or soaks into it?
 
I made an Ikea run with my 4Runner and had to stick these wood beams out the back, 2 hour drive on the highway to home. Don't think I could get away with the LC doing what I did with the 4runner. But yes, around town, you could leave the back open, I just wouldn't go over 35-40 mph.

View attachment 2953

This is why I own a 1/2 ton pickup, and will plan to keep it for truck stuff even after I buy a new LC.
 
Very nice mini-review. Thank you. I was waffling on the Premium Pack when my dealer texted to see if I wanted a Premium Trail Dust that was at the port. That decided it for me. Perfect color and the Premium Pack has some nice stuff, like the sunroof, JBL, HUD, and adjustable bottom seat cushion length for the driver. This last one seems minor but will be very nice to have, as I’m tall. Worth $4,600? Probably. And the rig was otherwise my ideal spec, so I said yes. 😁
 
I made an Ikea run with my 4Runner and had to stick these wood beams out the back, 2 hour drive on the highway to home. Don't think I could get away with the LC doing what I did with the 4runner. But yes, around town, you could leave the back open, I just wouldn't go over 35-40 mph.

View attachment 2953
Thanks yes this makes sense. I live 3 miles from ocean and only plan to do the window trick when I’m cruising solo to surf and don’t want to fuss around with strapping the boards on top or moving seats around.

Longer rides I’ll strap to roof rails or keep in the car (with seats down)….

Thanks!
 
Have queried them via email, but they are not great at responding, based on past communication...
I haven't heard anything on my emails either, When the FE gets here, I'm going to see if the ones I have installed on the Tacoma can be adapted. It's basically drilling a 9/16 hole in the frame and attaching the mount. The mount kind of fits in the frame channel and the bolt keeps it in place. so If the boards are long enough and the motors swing far enough, I can modify the mount to fit the channel if needed.
 
Thanks yes this makes sense. I live 3 miles from ocean and only plan to do the window trick when I’m cruising solo to surf and don’t want to fuss around with strapping the boards on top or moving seats around.

Longer rides I’ll strap to roof rails or keep in the car (with seats down)….

Thanks!
If you take a pool noodle, cut it to length and slice 1/2 way through the center, slip that on to the lower glass edge. Take a bungee and attach it to the wiper base and the trailer hitch..... should be fairly stable and absorb road bumps.
 
Thank you for the review. Also have a 4Runner that is coming off lease (work thing) next spring and am very interested in the 1958 as a replacement.
 
Thank you for the review. Also have a 4Runner that is coming off lease (work thing) next spring and am very interested in the 1958 as a replacement.
I was shocked the the base model felt like a genuine upgrade from my 4Runner, it's a Venture trim (aka TRD Off-Road Premium equivalent) and the 1958 has some nice features/upgrades. Only downside is that plastic door panel trim w/ cushioning for elbows on those longer trips.
 
I posted this on a LC Facebook group, but wanted to share it here with you guys:

Pros
+The hybrid system is quick, and nothing like the 4Runner, completely different acceleration, breaking, and feel, I loved it. SO MUCH TORQUE!

+Steering: also completely different from the 4Runner, night and day difference, felt like a premium sedan or something (not a bad thing in my book), little effort to turn the wheel, no shakes at all even at high speeds or gravel roads.

+Build quality was excellent, matching my 4Runner, I played around with every button, pulled off every panel I could, and knocked around with everything from the front to back, solid stuff. Made in Japan for ya.

+The look. Wow does it look good in person. Every angle.

+Space, I just came back from car camping in the 4Runner, I had to lay diagonally to sleep, not a problem inside the LC w/ seats down, I was impressed.

+That battery step up in the cargo space is smaller in person than it looks in photos or on camera, wasn’t an issue

+Interior height, wow was it tall inside, much more than the 4Runner

+Driving position was absolutely perfect, could see everything around me with minimal blind spots

+Quality materials: aside from the excess interior plastic on the 1958, the buttons, steering wheel, and shifter felt great and super sturdy, I can see this lasting a long time

+A/C: it was 90 degrees and the 3 climate zone is fantastic, the rear head vents are a game changer as a 4Runner owner (& proud Golden Retriever owner)

+Quiet interior even at 75mph on I-95, minimal wind noise and no hood flapping like the GX 550 has

+No joke, the cloth seats felt better and more comfortable than my softex 4Runner seats (yes I don’t believe it either), material was nice even for cloth.

+Easy to close the back tailgate, way less heavy than the 4Runner, upper trims this is automatic, manual on the 1958

+Minimal body roll on turns, it’s there, but way less than the 4Runner

Cons
-Unless your 6ft or taller (I’m 5’ 10), you’ll have a hard time getting in and out of the LC, it needs some type of running board or rock rail to step on getting in. Your significant other ain’t gonna be happy if she’s short haha (or kids will have issues as well)

-On the 1958 there is a bunch of hard plastic everywhere including the door handles themselves on the inside, it didn’t feel bad but for 56k I expected a little more cushion

-The design around the smaller 8 inch screen in the 1958 isn’t bad but still looks cheap and obvious that a bigger screen should’ve been there

-Pop out glass doesn’t seem that practical, no way to partially open it for say a surf board or for lumber to stick out, good for quick drop ins, that’s about it.

Conclusion
I will be purchasing a Land Cruiser shortly. I was already 95% the way there thinking this was the right vehicle for me, and now I’m 100% convinced. It was literally everything I wanted & more. The design both interior and exterior is amazing. The drive is truly impressive for a body on frame suv. It does feel like an upgrade from the 4Runner. If you have the money, it feels worth it. That being said, the amount of plastic inside on the door panels was enough to convince me that the mid-tier trim is the way to go, better materials and lot of other nice creature comforts. These haters saying we need a V6 or V8 engine haven’t drove this new hybrid system, I see why now Toyota is putting it in the new Tacoma, 4Runner, and Land Cruiser.

My Advice
Skip the 1958 & First Edition: If you’re not in a rush to get an LC soon, I think the Mid-Tier trim without the premium package is the sweet spot at 62k, I think it’s worth the upgrade cost, you get a lot of nice amenties and access to the full pallet of exterior colors. I’d stay away from First Editon or any LC over 75k, it’s not worth it once it gets to that high of a price. I would consider the 1958 if you can get it for 53k or below (knock off 2-3K)… and so far these are not selling (very fast)… so come the end of Summer, I won’t be surprised to see people getting good deals on the 1958. The most in-demand spec is the mid-tier, so don’t expect discounts anytime soon.

View attachment 2951
This is a really nice review in addition to the 4 runner comparisons! Thanks! I’ve a deposit on the trail dust mid tier with premium package, sight unseen, and your comments are right in line with my deductions.
As for skipping the FE, well unless I’m missing something they are all spoken for. Maybe you might get lucky and be in the right place right time. Another point is just how capable these are off-road, like big time. And the mid tier has the sway bar disconnect a plus over the 1958 for those who do such things. Headlights… both are fine I wonder which work the best? Wife thought the rectangular are much cooler! So hey, that’s one unbiased perspective!
 
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