2020 Toyota 4Runner vs. 2020 BMW X7

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Toyota 4Runner are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X7 doesn’t offer height-adjustable front seat belts.

The 4Runner has standard Active Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The X7 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Both the 4Runner and the X7 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available four-wheel drive and rear parking sensors.

Warranty

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Toyota’s powertrain warranty covers the 4Runner 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the X7. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the X7 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 4 times as many Toyota dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the 4Runner’s warranty.

Reliability

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A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the 4Runner’s reliability 28 points higher than the X7.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 14 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 7th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. BMW is ranked 8th.

Fuel Economy and Range

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To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Toyota 4Runner uses regular unleaded gasoline. The X7 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The 4Runner has 1.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the X7 (23 vs. 21.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping

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The 4Runner stops shorter than the X7:

4Runner

X7

60 to 0 MPH

131 feet

136 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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The Toyota 4Runner’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The BMW X7 only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The 4Runner has a standard full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the X7, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare or run-flat tires, either of which has mileage and speed limitations.

Suspension and Handling

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For better maneuverability, the 4Runner’s turning circle is 5.4 feet tighter than the X7’s (37.4 feet vs. 42.8 feet).

For greater off-road capability the 4Runner has a greater minimum ground clearance than the X7 (9.6 vs. 8.7 inches), allowing the 4Runner to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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The Toyota 4Runner may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 850 to 950 pounds less than the BMW X7.

The 4Runner SR5 is 1 foot, 1.1 inches shorter than the X7, making the 4Runner easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

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The 4Runner has 1.9 inches more front legroom and 9.8 inches more third row shoulder room than the X7.

Cargo Capacity

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A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the 4Runner easier. The 4Runner’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 30.7 inches, while the X7’s liftover is 32.5 inches.

The 4Runner 5-Passenger’s optional sliding cargo floor is capable of supporting 440 pounds, to make loading and unloading cargo easier and safer. The X7 doesn’t offer a sliding load floor.

The 4Runner’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The X7’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.

Payload

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The 4Runner has a much higher standard payload capacity than the X7 (1625 vs. 1202 lbs.).

The 4Runner has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the X7 (1700 vs. 1202 lbs.).

Ergonomics

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Consumer Reports rated the 4Runner’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the X7’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

The 4Runner has a 115-volt a/c outlet in the cargo area, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The X7 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Model Availability

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The 4Runner is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The X7 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the 4Runner owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the 4Runner will cost $6185 to $8615 less than the X7 over a five-year period.

The 4Runner will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the 4Runner will retain 61.48% to 71.13% of its original price after five years, while the X7 only retains 37.87% to 40.24%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Toyota 4Runner will be $50245 to $64037 less than for the BMW X7.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/16

The TRD Pro was selected by Petersen's 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine as their 2015 4x4 of the Year. The X7 has never been chosen.

The Toyota 4Runner outsold the BMW X7 by almost ten to one during the 2019 model year.

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