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really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
171,500 miles
Total Complaints:
5 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (3 reports)
  2. new frame (2 reports)
1998 Toyota 4Runner body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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1998 Toyota 4Runner Owner Comments

problem #5

Jan 272018

4Runner SR5

  • Automatic transmission
  • 161,000 miles


I purchased this truck only 20 days ago. I was so excited because I have only heard great things about 4Runners and my family has been loyal to Toyota for years. The truck seemed immaculate when I bought it. Engine runs great, low miles, interior is immaculate. I noticed after about its 3rd drive it was starting to sway when I let off the accelerator on the highway. Took it to Toyota and they deemed it unsafe to drive due to the frame being entirely rotted out. Oh and there is no fix to the issue. I was devastated as I had just dumped half of my savings into buying this truck private party.

Now that I've done my research and found out that this is extremely common in 3rd gen 4Runners I am trying to do my part by submitting this complaint. This should absolutely be recalled and covered by Toyota seeing as how they have recalled the exact same thing in their other models such as the Tacoma, Tundra, and Sequoia.

- Desiree B., Colorado Springs, US

problem #4

Dec 242016

4Runner SR5 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 179,000 miles

This is the 4th Toyota I have purchased. the last was a 2016, purchased before I was aware of the problems with the 1998. Not sure I will ever buy another one. Toyota did the right thing on the Tacoma and replaced the frames. Why did they not do the same with this. I am find it terribly disappointing Toyota has not stepped up and done the right thing with the 4Runner. Do the right thing, Toyota...

- Martin K., Eau Claire, MI, US

problem #3

Feb 142016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 174,500 miles

1998 Toyota 4-Runner. My mechanic indicated the frame is completely rusted out and the car is not safe to drive. First indication of a problem was the vehicle swaying side to side while driving.

- Jeff P., Shawnee, KS, US

problem #2

Jul 152011

4Runner Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 187,000 miles

We have a 98 4runner that was in the shop several times for bad sway bar, they replaced this 3 time thinking the bushing was bad but in the end it was frame rust. While towing our sxs the frame finally busted and we almost lost control of the 4runner. Luckily my husband was able to regain control of the truck after violently swaying across 2 lanes of traffic, and almost rolling the truck. If we did not have a trailer attached I believe the 4runner would have rolled. After reading the issues with Frame rust in gen 3 4runners this is the same issue. Frame rusted out both sides where the rear sway bars mount.

My brother in law has welded a support so the truck is drivable but will never tow again, this frame was undercoated as required for living in the snow belt. Toyota needs to step up and replace these frames as this is a quality issue not a maintenance error....

- mlindamood, Sugar Grove, OH, US

problem #1

Aug 312015

4Runner SR5 6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 156,000 miles

Bought this truck and intended to keep it for a long time. I am a long time Toyota buyer. Love the truck. Runs great, looks good, and has had no problems beyond maintenance. The frame caused the truck not to pass inspection. Rotted hard, 30+ inches on one side and 20+ on the other. I was recommended not to fix it due to the cost. Very disappointed in my truck, but when I found out this is a common problem, I am very disappointed at Toyota. Now I have a truck with lots of go left in it but isn't worth much except for scrap or parts. Really second guessing any more Toyotas.

- Jim W., Nescopeck, PA, US

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