Officially one of Toyota’s oldest models having debuted in its current fifth generation form twelve years ago, the still popular 4Runner has been revised with the inclusion of a new TRD Sport model in the United States.
Taking the 4Runner line-up count to ten, the TRD Sport, despite wearing the iconic Toyota Racing Developments designation, is more about affordable luxury and balanced off-road prowess than focusing on one or the other outright.
Effectively the new most attainable TRD model below the off-road focused TRD Off-Road, TRD Off-Road Premium and top-spec TRD Pro, the Sport is in fact based on the entry-level SR5 and thus likely to be positioned between it and aforementioned TRD Off-Road in spite of Toyota having remained mum on pricing details.
Based on the same body-on-frame platform as the Tacoma bakkie, the Sport’s exterior changes from the SR5 includes a TRD bonnet with an air intake, LED headlights, a colour coded grille, black roof rails, dark grey 20-inch alloy wheels and colour coded door sills as well as panels.
Boasting automatically adjusting dampers taken from the pricier Limited that is claimed to better on-road driving, the Sport’s interior boasts SofTex imitation leather seats with the fronts being heated, TRD floor mats, a TRD gear lever and TRD embroidered headrests.
As with the 129 052 4Runners sold in the States last year, the TRD Sport is powered by the stalwart 4.0-litre V6 petrol engine whose 200kW/378Nm is channelled to the rear or all-four wheels via a five-speed automatic gearbox with a low range transfer case being included with the latter configuration.
Likely to be priced around $38 000 (R523 517) given the $36 765 (R506 503) starting price of the SR5 and the TRD Off-Road’s $40 730 (R561 128), the TRD Sport will go on sale in the United States soon and like the standard 4Runner, remains a no-no for South Africa as it won’t be with right-hand-drive.