$10,939 - $15,139

2009 Toyota 4Runner Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2009 Toyota 4Runner was new.


Interior: 7.7

Reviewers said the 4Runner's cabin is a pleasant place to be, although cargo space is just average for the class.

  • "The Toyota 4Runner cabin is a good place to be in rugged terrain or nasty weather. For starters, it's roomy and comfortable, and it's highly functional. The quality of materials and they way they fit together is good, and loaded models are quite luxurious. Overall, the cabin looks traditional SUV." -- New Car Test Drive
  • "The 4Runner's interior looks great and employs some of the highest-grade materials found in any midsize SUV. Seats are comfortable -- even for six-footers -- in both cloth and leather trim and provide adequate support, though we'd like more lateral bolstering." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "4Runner interiors are nicely appointed with a good mix of textured plastics and soft-touch surfaces." -- Consumer Guide.
  • "On the whole, the 4Runner's interior is handsomely designed with quality materials. Comments on the Limited version's accommodations are akin to those you'd hear regarding a Lexus. Dials and switches are intuitive and well-placed with the exception of the odd, joystick-like climate controls (we'd much rather have conventional knobs)." -- Edmunds 
  • "The 2009 model year marks the sixth for this generation of Toyota 4Runner, making it one of the oldest models in Toyota's range. The interior layout is decidedly last-generation, the optional navigation system uses an old-school screen, and there are numerous other anachronisms strewn throughout." -- Autobytel   


Reviewers had good things to say about the 4Runner's seat comfort. SR5 and Limited models offer available third-row seats, though reviewers didn't find them too useful, since they're too cramped for most adults.

  • "The 2nd-row bench is nicely contoured but low, allowing good headroom but forcing adults to sit knees-up. It's a squeeze for three. Toe space is poor without the front seats elevated. A handy bag holder folds from the rear of the console. As in front, tall step-in hampers entry and exit. Unable yet to test with 3rd-row seating." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Even large children, like a healthy 11-year-old, will sit in these rear [third-row] seats with knees pressed up toward the chest and hair brushing the headliner." -- New Car Test Drive
  • "Unfortunately, the third-row seating is extremely cramped, providing barely enough legroom for children. Making things worse, the 50/50-split third row does not stow or fold flat for added cargo space. Instead, the seats must be folded to the sides or removed altogether." -- Edmunds  

Interior Features

Reviewers generally liked the 4Runner's interior layout. Available features include a navigation system and rearview camera.

  • "Despite its rugged pretensions, the 2009 4Runner actually feels refined inside, with a good list of standard equipment. The base SR5 features power accessories, cruise control, a CD/MP3 player with input jack, and 16-inch wheels." -- Car Gurus
  • "The dash is clean and sporty, with straightforward switchgear for everything from the standard automatic climate controls, to the optional GPS navigation system." -- Motor Week
  • "The 4Runner's dash is typical Toyota: Handsome, functional and assembled of the finest materials with the tightest tolerances." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The gauges are deeply recessed and can be tough to read. Convenient controls work with precision, but their markings may be too small for some eyes." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Toyota designers may have had a bit too much fun when devising the center-console controls, a set of three video-game-like knobs control the air conditioning and heat. Some finagling of these 'joysticks' is required before figuring out what they actually do." -- Automobile Magazine


The 4Runner offers 12 cubic feet of cargo space with the third-row seat in use, which is just average for its class. It offers a maximum of 75.1 cubic feet of cargo space with the seats folded, which is also an average amount of space.

  • "The split rear seat folds without removing the headrests. Cargo area has handy tie-downs, nets, and cubbies. A useful double-deck cargo shelf folds from the floor; it's standard or available depending on model. The liftgate includes a power-down window instead of flip-up glass." -- Consumer Guide
  • "With the third row installed, however, cargo space falls near to zero." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "The second row split-folds flat 60/40 and the third row also folds and can be removed. A second-row fold-down armrest offers up a pull-out tray with cupholders." -- Car Gurus

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