You'd be tempted to say that a vehicle as old as the 4Runner would suffer from declining sales, but it's the exact opposite. In 2021, demand for the venerable SUV grew by 12.1 percent to 144,696 units. The fifth-generation model is still going strong despite being on sale since 2009. For the 2023 model year, Toyota is not switching to the all-new model, but it's sprucing up the go-anywhere vehicle with a special edition.

Celebrating four decades since the original 4Runner was launched, the 40th Anniversary Special Edition gets a retro makeover with yellow/orange/red body graphics reminiscent of the 1980s. The old-school livery is applied to the SR5 Premium trim level finished in Midnight Black, Barcelona Red, or White. It gets a body-colored heritage front grille with large "TOYOTA" lettering and a bronze 40th Anniversary badge on the tailgate.

Toyota 4Runner 40th Anniversary Special Edition

There’s more bronze to be found on the 17-inch alloy wheels and inside the cabin for the stitching on the seats and gear knob. In addition, the headrests are adorned with an embroidered anniversary logo and even the floor mats are exclusive to this version. As standard equipment, Toyota fits the SUV with an electrically operated moonroof.

Sold exclusively in 4WD guise, the 4Runner 40th Anniversary Edition will be limited to 4,040 examples, as denoted by the plaque on the passenger side of the dashboard.

Elsewhere, the 2023 model year brings Blind Spot Monitor + Rear Cross Traffic Alert standard across the range. In addition, all trim levels now have LED high beams to complement the LED low beams and fog lights on most grades. The Toyota Safety Sense (TSS-P) is also standard, while buyers get to pick from 2WD and 4WD versions with seating for up to seven.

There's still no word about when the sixth-generation 4Runner will arrive, but we've been hearing it will share the same platform with the not-for-America Hilux to significantly cut costs and speed up development.

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