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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
137,129 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2001 Toyota 4Runner body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2001 Toyota 4Runner Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #27

Aug 012016


  • miles


The frame is rotting and the 4runner is unsafe.

- Greenwood, IN, USA

problem #26

Jul 062016


  • 193,000 miles
The issue with my Toyota is a rusted frame...rusted to the point that I was advised to park it and never drive it again without a new frame. Although it is a 2001 with 193,000 miles, it mechanically is in great condition. Exterior and interior in good condition, as well. I first noticed the vehicle had a floating sensation on the highway, at times feeling like I had no control with the steering wheel. After another 1-2 hrs of driving, I noticed that when driving over bumps or dips in the road, the truck would rock slightly side to side. It was significant enough that items in my back seat rocked, as well. After several more days and hours of drive-time thereafter, the rock advanced to the point where my entire vehicle was rocking so violently when crossing a bridge @40mph, I had no control over the vehicle. Even braking did not immediately stop the rocking. After that incident, I stopped driving the vehicle until I had it scheduled to take in to the mechanic. The problem with the rusted frame was identified almost immediately. I was told that the holes and rust were so extensive, that it was only a matter of a short amount of time before the frame would not only break apart, but break into several pieces. I was told that it was unsafe to drive and that the only solution was a frame replacement. I understand that Toyota had a recall on their taucoma frames for that same year, but will not correct the identical problem with the 4runner frame. I have an otherwise wonderful vehicle sitting in my driveway that is too dangerous to drive because of Toyota's known, faulty, unsafe frame.

- West Frankfort, IL, USA

problem #25

Jul 022016


  • 182,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Toyota 4runner. While replacing the shocks on the vehicle, the contact noticed severe rust on the frame and a hole approximately 3 and 1/2 inches wide under the driver side. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 182,000.

- Lenexa, KS, USA

problem #24

Apr 092016


  • 125,000 miles


While changing my oil, I noticed a few nice size holes in the frame, in front and besides the muffler. I wondering is it safe for me and my family to drive on a regular basis.

- Ferguson, MO, USA

problem #23

Apr 032016


  • 190,000 miles
Massive rust and deterioration along inside panel of frame on passenger side revealed once exhaust system was removed for replacement. Deteriorated section was about 24" long from rear axle mount to center stabilizer bar. Unknown deterioration on driver side due to location of fuel tank.

- Shorewood, WI, USA

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problem #22

Mar 212016


  • 160,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Toyota 4runner. While performing an oil change, the technician noticed that the rear passenger side of the frame was completely corroded. The technician stated that the frame had to either be re-welded or replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 160,000.

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #21

Jan 062016


  • 101,000 miles


Massive rust corrosion and pieces breaking away located underneath entire vehicle. The rust with breakage has intensified greatly in the last couple of years and required welding this year to pass inspection because the vehicle was unsafe. The welding consisted of welding the frame rail where the rear suspension mounts and a new bracket had to be welded on the axle housing that holds an upper rear strut rod because it rusted off. Both were on the passenger side of vehicle. This vehicle only has 101,000 miles and is washed and waxed on a regular basis.

- Bangor, PA, USA

problem #20

Jan 162016


  • 135,000 miles
The gram has rust perforation in which the left rear control arm has separated from the frame. While I was driving a heard a pop and started to lose proper control in steering vehicle.

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

problem #19

Dec 012015


  • 100,000 miles
Since I got the car, the ignition key does not get in properly and sometimes does not start the car. The movement of the wheel helps sometimes. There have also been leaking engine covers that needed to be replaced. The structure gets rusty and there is problem with transmission.

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #18

Dec 192015


  • 137,000 miles
My 2001 Toyota 4 runner was up on the lift for regular oil change. A service tech brought me to the service bay and informed me of a considerable amount of rust failure of the frame. Not surface rust, but rust that is causing the frame to separate causing visible cracks to appear. He advised me of the potential danger. He advised me that Toyota has addressed this issue on Tundra's, Tacoma's and sequoia's but offers no relief for 4runner owners. The vehicle has 137,000 miles on it. My guess was that I had another 20-30,000 more to go as it doesn't travel many miles on a daily basis. Seems hard to reason that Toyota has had replacement plans in place for other models with the same problem but not for the 4runner.

- Geneva, IL, USA

problem #17

Aug 182015


  • 102,000 miles


These vehicles are notorious for frame rust/rot. The Tacoma of the same time period used the same frame as the 4runner and the Tacoma has had a recall.

- Girard, PA, USA

problem #16

Oct 152014


  • 113 miles
Eccesive rust on the frame and body makes it unsafe to drive as intended

- Princeton, NJ, USA

problem #15

Nov 182014


  • 204,507 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Toyota 4runner. The contact stated that while having maintenance performed, the technician notified the contact that the frame was rotted due to excessive corrosion. The dealer was contacted and made aware of the failure. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 204,507.

- Newtown , CT, USA

problem #14

Oct 272014


  • 120,000 miles
The body of my 2001 Toyota 4runner is completely rusted out. Recently, I brought the vehicle to a Toyota service center who suggested that the vehicle no longer be driven due to safety concerns associated with driving the 4runner in its current condition. I was told the frame was completely rusted through, compromising the integrity of the frame.

- Freeport, ME, USA

problem #13

Sep 062014

4Runner 4WD 6-cyl

  • 166,000 miles
The 4runner has developed surface rust on the frame underneath the car. The rust is also apparent on suspension components and brakes.

- Moravian Falls, NC, USA

problem #12

Jun 262014

4Runner 6-cyl

  • 150,000 miles
Vehicle failed state inspection due to rusted frame. With the exception of rust on the bumpers (which is also a common problem for this generation 4runner) the rest of the vehicle is in excellent shape and mechanically very reliable. Inspection station suggested that I contact Toyota since they were aware of recalls for rusted frames on other Toyota trucks (Tacoma, sequoia for example.) Toyota stated that there are no recalls for 4runners but offered a $500 customer loyalty rebate if I were to purchase a new or certified used Toyota vehicle. I believe this is a potential safety issue since the rusted frame problem would only be identified by a very thorough inspection of the underbody of the truck. It is possible that there are many other 4runners of this generation that are on the road with an undiagnosed rusted frame problem.

- New Boston, NH, USA

problem #11

Jul 052014

4Runner 6-cyl

  • 152,000 miles
Took vehicle to local Toyota dealership for safety and mechanical inspection after purchasing used; mechanic notes that frame is rusted through on passenger side, near lower trailing arm bracket and on drivers side near fuel tank skid plate. Damage appears to have originated on the inside of the frame and has eaten its way to the outside. Mechanic advised that vehicle may not be safe to drive, no recall by Toyota on 4runners despite similar issues with same year Tacoma.

- Boone, NC, USA

problem #10

Mar 082014


  • 112,080 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Toyota 4runner. The contact stated that the dealer found the suframe corroded in the fuel tank area while the front rotors and brake pads were being replaced. The frame was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 112,080.

- Warren , MA, USA

problem #9

Oct 082013


  • 147,000 miles
Brought vehicle to Toyota dealer for removal of seized hardware. Technician pointed out rust spot on frame, rot has spread to wheel well on both sides of frame and has continued down to transmission crossmember. Technician pointed out rot has eaten through frame on both sides at rear control arm bracket. Spoke with other early 2000's 4runner owners who all have rot in same places. Preventative maintenance practices have been used on this vehicle since I purchased it. Frame has no drainage holes forward of rust holes in wheel wells. Concerned for other 4runner owners who are unaware of rust spots by control arm brackets. Further rust on frame in same spot on other vehicles could result in separation of bracket, control arm and rear axle from frame.

- Enfield, CT, USA

problem #8

Sep 242013

4Runner 4WD 6-cyl

  • 306,781 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Toyota 4runner. The contact stated that the frame was rusted. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic where the failure was confirmed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted, several times. The failure mileage was approximately 200,000. Updated 12/20/13 the consumer stated the vehicle is on the same frame as other recalled Toyota vehicles. Updated 12/26/13

- Bath, MI, USA

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