4Runner comfort vs Highlander - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
4Runner 5th Generation (2010+) Discussion area for the fifth generation Toyota 4Runner.

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post #1 of 9 Old 06-26-2018, 07:22 PM Thread Starter
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4Runner comfort vs Highlander

I am looking to purchase a new vehicle soon. I have driven the 4runner and the Highlander. I like the Highlander ride, quiet cab, tech, etc. The main issue I had was I am 5'10", but my height is more from the waist up. I know the Highlander steering wheel will extend and adjust, but it seems if I adjust the seat back where I have a comfortable leg length to the pedals, my arms seem to be reaching for the steering wheel as I am too far away from it. The visibility seems poor out the windows from my height. The 4runner has less tech, a rougher ride although I know that is expected with the nature of that particular beast, and I do mean a beast. I will mostly be driving in town and highway, but love the perfect feel of the 4runner. Controls are where I feel they fit me well, visibility seems great for my height, everywhere I look I can see well. I have that same problem with many other vehicles too. I pull up to a light and either need to duck to see the light until it changes, or use my phone as a mirror to see the light if I don't feel like cramping my neck for the next 3 minutes waiting for it to change. Are there any other taller people who have found this to be the case? Also if I get the 4runner, is there a way to change the suspension so it rides better. Issues with my back would prefer an easier ride as well, especially on long trips. Thanks in advance. I am trying to buy my new vehicle before the weekend due to a special interest rate from my credit union only good for 5 days. I have been wanting the vehicle for a few years and had decided to buy something anyway, but when the credit union was offering 2.5% for 5 days special while I am looking, I figured maybe I can get it done.
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-26-2018, 08:03 PM
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The height thing isn't just how tall the driver is, but it has a lot to do with the height of the vehicle and the slope of the windshield. If you were in a lower vehicle and/or one with a much lower slope to the windshield, the top of the roof wouldn't be in your line of sight as much when looking up at traffic signals.

Just something you have to deal with in particular vehicle designs as well as having your head closer to the roof.


As for comfort, tires have a LOT to do with how a vehicle rides and "feels", so you might consider something like the Michelin Defender LTX M/S for tires compared to what's on there, maybe even ask if the dealer will change them out as a condition of the sale.

You can also change out the suspension dampers/shocks, but the OE ones that are on it are probably going to be some of the softest once they get broken in. It can take thousands of miles before a suspension settles and the dampers feel like they are going to feel for the next few years of use. If you do decide to get new dampers, the Monroe SensaTrac models are a decent choice if you want a nice ride.


Also keep in mind the vehicle will ride softer/smoother not just with use and wear and tear, but with addtional weight (passengers and cargo), so an empty vehicle that feels a bit firm when brand new and empty on a test drive might feel just right after some use and once you put your stuff in it and have been driving around with passengers, too.
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-27-2018, 06:23 AM
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4Runner vs Highlander

bump
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Last edited by Phoenix1; 06-27-2018 at 02:19 PM.
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-06-2018, 11:55 AM
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So what did you end up getting? I have the same body build (not sure about arm length but definitely just average), and found the 4Runner much more comfortable position-wise. But the vehicles are two totally different beasts.


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post #5 of 9 Old 11-16-2018, 07:28 PM
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Well since it was bumped.


My wife has a 2015 Highlander SE and I got a 2018 4Runner TRD Off Road.


Highlander seats are much softer and overall I think more comfortable on your ass cheeks.


I like the adjustable lumbar support on the 4 Runner.


I'm short 5' 5" so I can't comment on height.


I can't think of anything else off the top of my head but I can go sit my ass in either one if someone wants me to.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-24-2018, 10:52 PM
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@Dillusion s808 yes sir please let me know the differences in driving between 4runner and Highlander. Specifically I need reasons to convince my wife that a 4runner is better for us than a Highlander (most of all I don't want to drive a soccer-mom car!)

Is there anything on the 4runner that appeals to women?
Is there a major driving difference when comparing size (ie. Parking)?
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-25-2018, 09:41 PM
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Haven't driven the HL, but can say this one thing about the Runner I do not like: the angle of the windshield. It is too perpendicular to the road in my opinion. It should have been slanted backwards a few degrees more. Every damn rock that hits it puts a chip in it. I guess I will be replacing it every 2 years or so, and that if I can live with the dings for a year.

Otherwise I like it - mileage is not so great, but if I stripped off all the armor plating when just commuting to work that may help a tad. My wife loves it, so as far as appealing to women, if she likes a bigger truck feel she will like the Runner.
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Camry Mod

THIS

'15 4Runner SR5 (1GR-FE)
'09 Camry SE 2.4L (2AZ-FE)
'97 Tacoma XL 4x4 Ext Cab 2.7L (3RZ-FE) - Manual
'97 Ford Explorer XLT V6 SOHC 4.0L 4x4

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post #8 of 9 Old 12-09-2018, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim2017 View Post
I am looking to purchase a new vehicle soon. I have driven the 4runner and the Highlander. I like the Highlander ride, quiet cab, tech, etc. The main issue I had was I am 5'10", but my height is more from the waist up. I know the Highlander steering wheel will extend and adjust, but it seems if I adjust the seat back where I have a comfortable leg length to the pedals, my arms seem to be reaching for the steering wheel as I am too far away from it. The visibility seems poor out the windows from my height. The 4runner has less tech, a rougher ride although I know that is expected with the nature of that particular beast, and I do mean a beast. I will mostly be driving in town and highway, but love the perfect feel of the 4runner. Controls are where I feel they fit me well, visibility seems great for my height, everywhere I look I can see well. I have that same problem with many other vehicles too. I pull up to a light and either need to duck to see the light until it changes, or use my phone as a mirror to see the light if I don't feel like cramping my neck for the next 3 minutes waiting for it to change. Are there any other taller people who have found this to be the case? Also if I get the 4runner, is there a way to change the suspension so it rides better. Issues with my back would prefer an easier ride as well, especially on long trips. Thanks in advance. I am trying to buy my new vehicle before the weekend due to a special interest rate from my credit union only good for 5 days. I have been wanting the vehicle for a few years and had decided to buy something anyway, but when the credit union was offering 2.5% for 5 days special while I am looking, I figured maybe I can get it done.
I am guessing you have already made a purchase by now, but I have a 2018 HL & a 2018 4R. I am 6'3", but mostly torso. All trucks and SUVs I have driven I had visibility issues when first at the traffic lights, just get used to it. The HL rides way nicer, it is touch longer (2") than the 4R, but it feels narrower (haven't checked that measurement). The HL has many bells and whistles that I am jealous of, push button start, heated seats, bigger touch screen, blind spot indicators, homelink, touch locks on the handles. But most of that is because I went with an Off Road model and not the Limited Edition 4R. 4R is a true FOB,so rougher ride, I am sure you could invest in some nicer shocks if you want, but not sure how much of a difference it will make.
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post #9 of 9 Old 12-10-2018, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YodasToy View Post
@Dillusion s808 yes sir please let me know the differences in driving between 4runner and Highlander. Specifically I need reasons to convince my wife that a 4runner is better for us than a Highlander (most of all I don't want to drive a soccer-mom car!)

Is there anything on the 4runner that appeals to women?
Is there a major driving difference when comparing size (ie. Parking)?

I personally couldn't convince you one way or the other. They are both good vehicles for the purpose we needed them for. I'd say think of couple things you must have and maybe I could let you know which is better.



Highlander is cheaper and a little better on gas. The seats in the HL are softer and more comfortable for the long drives if you ask me. But they are smaller. Steering is a lot easier in the HL also compared to the 4Runner. We went with the HL for the wife because she doesn't like cars due to how low they were and she refuses to drive a van. The RAV is a bit small for our liking.



I got my 4Runner just for fishing. So I needed the 4WD. Seats are bigger but firmer and hurt my ass on long drives.


Also a reminder I'm not up to date on the features available on the HL but the 4Runner is still on older technology. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles available like a HL probably does. For some people thats a good thing.
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