Notes: Although it has a stellar record in terms of vehicle problems, initially the 4th generation (2003 - 2009) 4Runner didn't earn our top "Seal of Awesome" rating because it received poor crash test ratings for rear impacts. However it's proven to have one of the lowest driver death rates out of all vehicles (not just SUVs), so we've bumped it back up to our top award.


definitely annoying
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
53,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (1 reports)
2004 Toyota 4Runner exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2004 Toyota 4Runner Owner Comments

problem #1

Dec 052009

4Runner V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 53,000 miles


Granted, I did not buy my 4Runner, new. I purchased it in Dec 09 and it's a 2004. It's relative condition is GREAT! However, this EXTREME EXHAUST ISSUE is starting to piss me off. It's been like this since I got it. At first, the dealership service department tried to tell me they didn't notice the smell. THEN when I insisted there's no way possible to miss it.... they said, well we smell it but it's "normal", there's nothing wrong. Feeling frustrated and not getting anywhere, I called my sales-guy. (who by the way truly is awesome and will do everything in his power to help out) - [Thanks Justin!!] He told me there was a "Service Bulletin" that was put out on this exhaust issue and that the serv dpt HAS TO have SOMETHING on it. HA-Which they DID. HOWEVER.... They insist that it is NOT related to that service bulletin. WTF?? No attempts made to satisfy me... no attempts to fix anything related to these horrible exhaust fumes! They don't have a CLUE! The fumes are beyond 'normal' exhaust. ISN'T THIS A HEALTH HAZARD to breathe these fumes????? Not to mention.... if the A/C is on and it's set to 'recirculate'; an additional AMMONIA smell is emitted from the venting system. I've been back and forth with the 'adviser', the 'foreman' and the service manager... SO FRUSTRATING!!! I've NEVER been SOOO disappointed in a Toyota vehicle or the service dept. I don't even know how to act, having to have a Toyota vehicle serviced for something other than general maintenance. I've never had issues with Toyota before. =o( I told the service manager that there responses to me on this, was like me saying, "My SUV makes a loud noise and shakes when I turn left"... and they respond with... "Then don't turn left!" I've wanted a 4Runner since the 80s.... Always got something else "more affordable". I finally get one and now I'm wondering if I made a big mistake. I'm so disappointed. Other than the fumes issue... I LOVE this SUV!! I know friends who have them, yet I've never heard anything about this exhaust issue until I started researching on the Internet - only to find that it seems to be an issue that Toyota and service departments don't understand or don't want to own up to. RRRRRrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!! Where do you go from here???

- , Sykesville, MD, USA

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