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I've been looking at different vehicles, trying to figure out what I need. At this point I'm not sure if I need a truck or if an SUV would be better. If I go for the truck, it will be the Titan. However, if I go with the SUV there are a few choices that have drawn my attention. I've liked the Armada since before it even came out, so that is one of them. I also really like the Toyota 4Runner. It seems like a very versatile and reliable vehicle to me. I'm wondering which one has better off-road performance. How would you rate the Armada and the 4Runner in terms of off-road performance? And how would you rate their off-road performance against other SUV's on the market? What are some pros and cons of each? I know pretty much everything about the Armada (I've been studying the brochures for a while now) and I know that the 4Runner has some pretty impressive features too like a special kind of diagonally linked suspension that really improves on and offroad performance, and the 8-cyl engine in the 4Runner, although not putting out a monstrous 305hp like the Armada, is no slouch either. So what's the verdict? What are the pros and cons of both?
 

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munkeebinis said:
I know that the 4Runner has some pretty impressive features too like a special kind of diagonally linked suspension that really improves on and offroad performance, and the 8-cyl engine in the 4Runner, although not putting out a monstrous 305hp like the Armada, is no slouch either. So what's the verdict? What are the pros and cons of both?
1. The diagonally linked suspension is a hydraulic line connection of the shocks that is supposed to make it corner flatter at higher speeds by reducing body lean. I don't think it does anything for offroad performance, unless you are doing some high speed off-roading. When I think off-roading, I am thinking how slow can I crawl up or down a rocky trail.

2. The 4Runner optional V8 (as also featured in the Tundra) does not impress, making less HP than the 4Runner's standard V6 for the sake of a little extra torque to raise the towing capacity from 5,000 lbs to 7,000lbs. Sadly, if you opt for the V8, you don't get a transfer case. (No 4WDLo).
 

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I test drove the new 4-Runner and you do get a 4-lo with the V-8. You DO NOT get full-time awd with the v-8. Another thing to watch for is, while the v-8 4-Runner has been listed as one of the most reliable SUVs, the v-6 has been listed as one of the least reliable. This was reported by Consumer Reports.

I didn't like the fact that if you opt for the 3rd row in the 4-Runner, it automatically disqualifies certain options and packages. No Sport package, no sunroof, no navigation...I don't know why when these are seemingly unrelated.
 

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ChuhBaca, how did it drive? Would you say it's a pretty solid machine or did you have some doubts about it? At this point I'm really leaning towards a Titan but I'm just curious how the 4Runner stacks up atleast from a driving/reliability/off-road-worthiness standpoint.
 

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It is a very nice SUV. It is based on a truck frame so it is a real SUV but has a very smooth ride in spite of that. It seemed to have adequate power, but nothing that will get your adrenaline going. You can have it supercharged and warrantied though. Five speed auto and it has the same style shifter as the Titan with captains chairs. I've read that this can take pretty serious off-roading when compared with other stock SUVs. I've also heard from a few different sources (including a friend who has the Sequoia) who says that the traction control/vehicle stability or whatever they call it, is very intrusive and it cannot be turned off.

I think it would probably be my first choice for an SUV because it is a smaller SUV, it has V-8 power (I would supercharge), it can seat 7 (although the back two seats would only be comfy for kids or short adults), it is capable off-road and reliable. The only two factors that would make me think twice would be the traction control and having to change a timing belt every 60k.
 

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I came very close to buying a 4runner last year. If the dealership had gotten the numbers right I would probably be driving one. I test trove a SR5 V6, Sport V8, and a Sport V6. I came away most impressed with the SR5 V6 but was leaning towards the Sport V6 for the heated mirrors. I leave my vehicle outside at night and I despise morning condensation on my mirrors. The V6 is very strong and to be honest the V8 didn't feel substanially faster. I wasn't impressed with the X-REAS sport suspension either. It's like the V8, you can tell X-REAS is better but it's not head and shoulders better than the stock offering.

4runner vs. Armada in off-road performance I would give the edge to the 4runner. The 4runner has a solid reputation as an off-road vehicle where the Armada is to new to tell. The smaller size makes it easier to move around in tight areas and there is less of chance of high centering due it's shorter wheelbase. The one place where the 4runner comes up short is ground clearance where the Armada has atleast an inch more clearance.

Comparing the 4runner to the Titan is a bit of a stretch but we'll give it a try. For everyday driving the 4runner is going to offer a more compliant ride with it's 4-link rear suspension compared to the Titans rear leaf springs. The 4runner will be quieter to boot. IMO Toyota makes the most reliable cars today but I have never had any trouble from the two Nissans I have owned. It's close enough where you could probably flip a coin to see who is better. Off-road wise I don't see where one is clearly superior over the other. The front end weight bias of pickup trucks makes the rear end skittish at times but it's nothing some weight in the rear can't take care of.
 

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ChuhBaca said:
I test drove the new 4-Runner and you do get a 4-lo with the V-8. You DO NOT get full-time awd with the v-8. Another thing to
So Toyota is confused?

"Drivetrain 2WD Front engine, rear-wheel drive

V6 4WD Multi-Mode 4-wheel drive with Torsen® [1] limited-slip center differential with locking feature

V8 4WD Full-time 4-wheel drive with Torsen® [1] limited-slip center differential with locking feature"


Quoted from: http://www.toyota.com/vehicles/2004/4runner/specs.html
 

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speedtrip said:
Comparing the 4runner to the Titan is a bit of a stretch but we'll give it a try. For everyday driving the 4runner is going to offer a more compliant ride with it's 4-link rear suspension compared to the Titans rear leaf springs.
This comparison (as you probably know) would, however, not apply to the Armada, which differs from the Titan in that the Armada has independent double wishbone front & rear suspension.
 

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To be honest, I don't really know the specifics of a each. I could be wrong and it wouldn't be the first time, but I don't see that either excludes a low range.
 

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ChuhBaca said:
To be honest, I don't really know the specifics of a each. I could be wrong and it wouldn't be the first time, but I don't see that either excludes a low range.
Yes, I think you are right, Now, I think they do both do have a 2-speed X-fer case.

I couldn't find gear ratios on Toyota's site, but here is a link:

http://www.new-cars.com/2004/toyota/toyota-4runner-specs.html

If they have the same X-fer case, the crawl ratios would be:

V6: 2.804x3.909x2.566 = 28.13

V8: 3.52x3.727X2.566 = 33.66

So the V8 has more torque and lower gearing.

Armada crawl ratio (4wdLo/OffRd) = 33.35

So the crawl ratio of the Armada matches the V8 4runner, but the Armada has more torque.
 

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This site has a lot of info:

http://www.toyota-4runner.org/



This thread has a lot of info on the 4wd system.

I've been looking at both. I like the V8 4Runner more than the V6. The 38 ft-lbs tq more than the V6 is nothing to ignore. The V8 has a big flat tq curve like the Titan, torque down low. Also, the V8 is a proven performer, the V6 is a new engine.

I really need the extra utility of the bed, so I'm leaning towards a Titan.
 

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Bluto said:
...
I've been looking at both...
I really need the extra utility of the bed, so I'm leaning towards a Titan.
I think that is the only way to compare the Titan to the 4 Runner. Do you need/want a pickup bed. That is the reason I went to a CC truck away from a SUV. Basically, the Titan is a SUV (that only sits 6) with the added bonus of outside storage (or inside if you add a top) for gas, tall objects, ATV, etc.. I just found that it has more utility for me than a SUV. I had bought the Fronty CC or the Xterra (They are the exact same vehicle) for this very reason. I put a full cap on it and when I need to load tall objects, I took of the cap.

I think you can't go wrong with either of these vehicles.


:cheers: :cheers:
 

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Bluto said:
This site has a lot of info:

http://www.toyota-4runner.org/



This thread has a lot of info on the 4wd system.

I've been looking at both. I like the V8 4Runner more than the V6. The 38 ft-lbs tq more than the V6 is nothing to ignore. The V8 has a big flat tq curve like the Titan, torque down low. Also, the V8 is a proven performer, the V6 is a new engine.

I really need the extra utility of the bed, so I'm leaning towards a Titan.
When I get the time I will register over at the 4runner forum and start a thread, maybe something like "Armada & Titan Kick 4Runner's A**". That should elicit a detailed comparison.
 

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bestatchess said:
When I get the time I will register over at the 4runner forum and start a thread, maybe something like "Armada & Titan Kick 4Runner's A**". That should elicit a detailed comparison.
Before I bought my Titan I had an 04 4runner and it is a very nice vehicle. It has better materials and fit and finish than the Titan, but it is like a Maytag appliance, it is not going to stir your soul or hit any emotional connection with you. Its power was ok, it rode fine and my v6 could get great fuel economy for such a vehicle, but in the end I decided that I had to have some kind of connection to a car that I am paying big money for, I could not just drive it and park it and that was all. So I drove a Titan and while the 4Runner was nicer inside and did not have that dash squeek like that Titan in the end I smile after driving the Titan while I was indifferent to the Runner. It seems to me to be a situation not unlike old British roadsters there are "better" cars, but nothing that will make you turn back and smile when you put the truck away for the night.

Ok, now that traction control, vsc control, and other electronic nannery is way too intrusive on the Runner, I have never heard so many chirps, clicks, and beeps as I did when I drove it on some snow. The performance was fine, but I wish it would have just let me drive it. Even if you turned off traction control on the Runner it will automatically turn back on at 25 mph or after a few minutes. If you have any questions about the Runner I would be more than happy to elaborate or tell you about what any tech specs you would like to know. But just for hahas here is a picture that I took on a mission to get the best fuel economy I could in the Runner one night.
 

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Titan4UGA said:
Before I bought my Titan I had an 04 4runner and it is a very nice vehicle. . . . It seems to me to be a situation not unlike old British roadsters there are "better" cars, but nothing that will make you turn back and smile when you put the truck away for the night.
Yeah, if not for the Titan I probably would have bought a Toyota. I have purchased 3 new Toyotas over the years: 1975 Land Cruiser; 1996 Tacoma 4x4; 2004 Camry. All of them were/are good vehicles (in contrast to some other Jeep and GMC junk I bought). I really miss that Land Cruiser.
 
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