After a function reserved for behemoth full-dimension SUVs, the third row is quick turning out to be a staple of the midsize crossover segment as automakers make a play for more substantial households. For 2014, Toyota has added an optional third row to its redesigned 4Runner.
2014 Toyota 4Runner: Very first Drive
Mixed with fresh exterior and interior styling, the optional third row makes this SUV known for its off-roading talents into a versatile loved ones-hauler. Far-fetched, you feel? Think about the Nissan Pathfinder’;s current transformation from hard SUV to family members-pleasant crossover and then inform me this is impossible.
For me, a third row’;s well worth comes down to 2 aspects: accessibility and fit. In other words, how simply can a individual get into it and how well does that individual fit.
When it comes to fit, the 4Runner’;s third-row seats are reasonably effectively-cushioned and supply some assistance. Furthermore, optional working boards indicate even preschoolers are capable to climb into this SUV. But there is far more to fit than seat comfort it generally depends on the passenger’;s size, too. An adult can match in the 4Runner’;s third row — but not that comfortably and definitely not for extended periods of time.
My practically 6-foot husband managed to get in the 4Runner’;s third row, but his head hit the roofline and his knees had been bent at an unpleasant angle when he sat down. He only lasted a handful of minutes back there. On the flip side, my kids, ages 3, 5 and 7 fit nicely. They had ample head- and legroom and the third-row accessibility permitted them to slide back there simply.
The second row slides forward and the seatback tilts, making an opening to the third row, but it really is only on the SUV’;s passenger side. It’;s not a ideal setup, but because it doesn’;t need my young children to vault above the second row to get into the third, I’;m a fan. I only want this slide-and-tilt function was obtainable on the driver’;s side, also.
You can slide the 2nd-row seat forward with a booster set up on it, but it truly is not possible with a convertible or infant-safety seat put in. Nonetheless, the middle seat of the forty/20/40-split 2nd row folds down to supply a kind-of path to the third row. Common side curtain airbags offer safety to all 3 rows of seats.
The optional third row comes in cloth upholstery for $ 805 on the SR5 base trim and in leather on the leading-of-the-line Limited trim for $ one,365.
If you have an energetic loved ones, the third row is well really worth the additional investment — as long as the children are sitting back there.
Cars.com photographs by Courtney Messenbaugh and producer image