What are the Biggest Tires you can run on 4Runner (Stock, Lift Kit, and Leveling Kit) – Largest Tire Size on 4Runner Explained
We have had a few questions on the biggest tires you can fit on your 4Runner. Asking this question on a forum might get you a few snarky comments, but it is welcomed over here. We got this question again and figured we should probably write something about it.
If you are asking yourself what the largest tire you can fit on your stock 4Runner is, you will find it here. If you want to know what the largest tire size you can fit with a lift or leveling kit is, we are also going to be covering this.
This should serve as your complete guide to the 4Runners tire size (for most people anyway). If you have any questions about tire size on your stock, leveled, or lifted 4Runner, you are in a safe place. There are no forum trolls on this page waiting to bark at you for asking one of the most common questions in off-road history.
I had these question at one point as well:
- How big can I go?
- Do I want to go as large as possible?
- What are the benefits of going bigger?
- What are the downsides of going bigger?
- At what point do I need a BMC (Body Mount Chop)
- Should I keep my stock wheels?
- What is the best wheel size for Off-Road use?
- What are the best All-Terrain tires?
The most common questions about Tire Size:
- Largest Size Tires on Stock 4Runner?
- Largest Size Tires with Leveling Kit?
- Largest Size Tires with Lift Kit?
17″ Wheel/Tire Options (Examples for Rubbing Vs. Non-Rubbing)
- 265/70/17 (31.61″ – Stock 4Runner Size) (7-9″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 255/75/17 (32.06″ – 6.5-8.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 275/70/17 (32.16″ – 7-8.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 285/70/17 (32.71″ – 7.5-9″ Space Needed) – Questionable (BMC Might be Needed)
- 305/65/17 (32.61″ – 8.5-11″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
- 255/80/17 (33.06″ – 6.5-8.5″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
- 305/70/17 (33.81″ – 8-9.5″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
- 285/75/17 (33.83″ – 7.5-9.5″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
- 35X12.5R17 (34.76″) – Yes, you guessed it – Adjustments/Mods Needed
18″ Wheel/Tire Options (Examples for Rubbing Vs. Non-Rubbing)
- 265/65/18 (31.56″ – Close to Stock) (7.5-9.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 275/65/18 (32.07″ – 7.5-9.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 285/65/18 (32.59″ – 8-10″ Space Needed) – Questionable (BMC Might be Needed)
- 295/65/18 (33.10″ – 8-10″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
20″ Wheel/Tire Options (Examples for Rubbing Vs. Non-Rubbing)
- 245/60/20 (31.57″ – Stock) (7-8.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 275/55/20 (31.91″ – 7.5-9.5″ Space Needed) – Won’t Rub
- 285/50/20 (32.22″ – 8-10″ Space Needed) – Questionable (BMC Might be Needed)
- 285/55/20 (32.34″ – 8-10″ Space Needed) – Questionable (BMC Might be Needed)
- 275/65/20 (32.99″ – 7.5-9.5″ Space Needed) – Will Rub – Adjustments/Mods Needed
Resources and Guides:
- 33″ tires: Fender liner push back
- 34″ tires: Fitting larger tires guide
- 35″ tires: Fitting 35×12.5R17s
- Trimming body and fender liners
- Body Mount Chop (BMC)
- Fiberglass fenders installation
The best resource out there for checking tire sizes and exact diameter measurements are tirerack.com and Tacomaworld.com (Tire Calculator). You can use both of these websites to check your tire size diameter and height and width to make sure the tire will clear your mud flaps, body mounts, fender liners, body plastics, firewalls, and pinch welds/seems.
You should always consult with these websites before you go larger on tires. One of the most important aspects of buying new wheels is the correct width and offset as well as backspacing.
If you don’t do your research on Width, Offset and Backspacing, you will learn how to do a body mount chop and trim multiple areas of your wheel well. But this is also not a bad thing, either.
Body mount chops are nothing to be afraid of. Once the edge of the body mount is cut off, you paint over a new piece of metal and it looks factory again. When and if you go to sell your 4Runner, it’s likely no one will notice.
How to Check Tire Size and Wheel Size Fitment
Recommended Wheel & Tire Size for the 4Runner
Option 1: ToyoTires.com
If you are looking to figure out if a wheel fits a tire size, head over to ToyoTires.com.
They have a really good “recommended” wheel size for whatever tire size you enter. Go to ToyoTires.com and enter in your tire size. From there, Toyo will give a list of their tires. Select a tire that you have or are considering and then you will see a section labeled “APPROVED RIM WIDTH RANGE (IN.)”. This will give you a range of wheel sizes that are compatible with the tire size you enter.
From there, you see what wheel sizes will fit that tire. If you do not see your wheel size there, that doesn’t mean it won’t fit. It just means that it is not “recommended”. What does this mean? Maybe the tire company will not warranty the tire if some type of defect occurs. In any case, call your local tire shop for details on this one.
Option 2: TireSize.com
If you have any questions about the recommended wheel size for a certain tire size, what I usually do is visit the Tire Size website and search the tire size. From there, it will tell you what the recommended wheel size is for that tire size.
Go to TireSize.com > Search your size > Find the “Generally they are approved to be mounted on “X” wide wheels.
- Example: 235/80/17
- Recommended wheel size: Generally 235/80/17 are approved to be mounted on 6-7.5″ wide wheels.
- TRD Off-Road Wheels: 7.5″ width.
- 235/80/17 will work with the TRD Off-Road Wheels.
When Choosing Wheels (Look at these specs):
Our wheel specs:
- Bolt Pattern: 5th Gen = 6×139.7mm or 6×5.5
- Wheel Bore: 5th Gen = 106mm
- Offset (-offset pushes the wheel out giving you a wider stance. +offset pulls wheel into the wheel well)
- Backspace (Similar to offset – the space between center tire and inside wheel)
- Rating (Weight rating wheels were designed for)
- Weight (lb)
- Lug Type (tapered “conical” and radiused)
- LipSize (in)
Here is a good guide on offset and backspace to help you understand the differences.
Note: When shopping for a wheel, I look for a wheel with at least a -6mm offset or higher. Maybe a -10mm or even higher offset. This is going to push your wheel out of your wheel well which may eliminate the need for wheel spacers, but not always, all while providing a wider stance.
An extreme example of offset is the -38mm SCS (Stealth Custom Series) F5. That is going to push your wheel out of the well 1.5″ which is a lot. Most wheels are going to come in a 0mm, -6mm (.2″) or -10mm (.4″) offset. If you buy a wheel at this offset and are looking for a very wide stance, you want to add a set of wheel spacers to widen your stance even more.
Stock wheel size on our 5th Gen
- The SR5 comes stock with 17 x 7, 4.5″ backspace.
- The TEP (Trail), the TRD Pro, and the TRD Off-Road come with 17 x 7.5″ and a 4.875″ backspace.
- The Limited Edition comes with 20 x 7 with a 4.5″-inch backspace.
Largest Tire Size on 5th Gen 4Runner?
The short answer is 32″. Our stock 4Runner has a 31″ tire (265/70R17 – 31.61″). Making the jump to a small 32″ tire should be fine on stock suspension. You want to make sure this is a smaller 32″ tire and not a larger 32″ tire. Some 32″ tires measure closer to 33″ tires.
For example, a 32.06 is basically a 32″ tire, while a 32.79 is closer to a 33″ tire. If you get a 32″ tire that is closer to 33″, you may end up doing a BMC and other modifications like a fender liner push back to ensure your tires will not rub without a leveling kit. If you want a larger tire, you should really look into a leveling kit or lift kit, though.
Most owners make the jump to a 33″ tire (285/70R17 – 32.71″). Moving up to a 33″ tire requires a leveling kit or a lift kit. If you have 3″ of lift in the front, then moving to a 33″ tire should be fine, but there are 33″ tires that will rub even with 3″ of lift. It may seem confusing but every tire is different due to the tread pattern, and general design.
With 33″ tires and 3″ of lift, you may have some rubbing on the fender liners – which is a really easy fix that no one will notice. If you are trying to avoid trimming fender liners, BMC and other areas of the well, stay away from 34″ tires or large 33″ tires as this will absolutely cause serious rubbing all the way around. 34″ tires (285/75R17 – 33.8″) will rub on the front fender liners, and body as well as the body mounts and possibly even the firewall.
Largest Tire Size with Leveling Kit?
The largest tire size you can run with a leveling kit is entirely up to you. With a 2″ leveling kit, you may still be stuck at a small 32″ without any modifications like a BMC.
If you move up to a small 33″ (32.7″) tire with a 2″ leveling kit, you will likely need to do a fender liner push back.
Small 33″ tires are probably as big as you want to go with a 2″ leveling kit unless you want to get into more adjustments than just your fender liners. Which, at the end of the day these adjustments are not hard, they just require some testing and consistent adjusting until you no longer have rubbing.
Largest Tire Size with Lift Kit?
Most owners that have a lift kit are still at the same level of a leveling kit, but possibly up 1″. The basic suspension lift kit for a 4Runner is 3″ – 3.5″. 33″ tires are usually fine without any major modifications here, but it also depends on the exact measurements of your 33″ tires and the terrain. If you Mud Terrains with large tread blocks and lugs, you may be closer to rubbing as opposed to mild All-Terrain tires.
Small 33″ (285/70R17 – 32.71″) tires should clear fine with 3″ lift kit but if you get into 33.5″ tires or 33.7″ tires, you will need to do some adjustments for sure.
With 33″ tires, you still always run the risk of a BMC, fender liner mods and actually trimming off parts of your body. Just keep in mind, that if you go with 33″ and up, you will have a higher probability of adjustments to make.
At 34″ tires with a 3″ Icon suspension lift, we had to do numerous modifications (fender liner, body, pinch welds, rocker panel caps, etc.).
Wheel Spacers & Offset (same concept)
When you add wheel spacers, this may cause more rubbing than before. After we installed our Icon stage 2 suspension and added Spidertrax wheel spacers, we had more rubbing on the fender liners and body.
With the 2″ (50.8mm) spacers (for example), you are pushing your wheel and tire out of the well 2″.
Without spacers or little to no offset, your tires are sitting in the center of the wheel well, for example. In this position, they have plenty of room to turn inward without rubbing because your fender liners are curved inward. But, once that wheel comes out of the wheel, that outside edge of the inward curve (body and fender liners) then becomes a collision course for your tire thus causing the rubbing.
So keep in mind, the more negative (-) offset your wheels have, the more likely you are to rub on the fender liners and body plastics.
Common examples with a 3″ of kit:
- 275/70R17s (32.16″): Rubbing unlikely
- 285/70R17s (32.71″): Mild rubbing, fender liners and plastics, BMC likely, body trimming optional, rocker caps questionable.
- 285/75R17s (33.8″): Prepare to trim and chop mostly everything.
With 33.8″ (34″) tires, we had to chop our body mounts, push back our fender liners, slice big sections off of our fender liners, slice sections off our rocker panel caps, new lines in our 4Runner’s body, smashed in the pinch welds, and removed the mud flaps.
It was a lot of work to get things to work and constant testing but the off-road result with 34″ tires was well worth it. Once you get your 34″ tires to comfortably fit inside your wheel well, wow. The results are amazing. Just make sure you have an adjustable suspension (Icons, KINGS, FOX, Radflo) or any others so you have more flexibility in your adjustments.
Do I want to go as large as possible?
Not always. Going with the biggest tire you can mean that you need to cut your body mounts, trim your fender liners and cut into your 4Runner’s body. If that is something you are interested in doing, then, by all means, go all out. If we could have gone larger than 34″ tires, we would have. We likely will in the future.
What are the benefits of going big?
Having bigger tires allows you to clear more obstacles off-road. With larger tires on your 4Runner, you have more grip on all types of terrain. There is a huge difference between 33″ tires and 34″ tires and 35″ tires when you are off-road. I have had 31″ tires, 33″ tires and 34″ tires and with 34″ tires, everything is easier. It also depends on the driver and how much experience you have. Also airing down your tires has a big impact on what you can do and what your tires can grip.
What are the downsides of going big?
Gas mileage and trimming 4Runner liners and plastics. When you make the jump to 33″ and 34″ tires, you will see a decline in gas mileage. Even if you regear (change the gearing ratio), you will still see a slight decrease in gas mileage with larger tires.
The good happy-medium tire size is probably 32″ – 33″. With 33″ (285/70R17) tires, you can still trek just about anywhere you want off-road while still maintaining some decent MPGs.
A larger tire has a greater circumference. So the wheel turns fewer revolutions to go the same distance as a smaller tire.
How does that affect RPMs?
So you’ll be increasing tire size by 10%, so you’ll decrease engine speed by 10% too. Assuming you’re running about 3000 rpm at 70 mph with the small tires, you’ll drop 10% with the big tires. 10% of 3000 is 300, so you’ll go down to 2700 rpm. Jalopyjournal.com
Re-gearing your 4Runner is not cheap. The cost of Nitro Gears is about $1200. Depending on where you take your 4Runner, you can spend $1000-$1500 in labor. And while you have IFS apart, you might as well add a front locker. An ARB front locker is $1000. All out the door, re-gearing and locking the front diff can run you around $3500.
With 33″ tires, re-gearing is debatable. Very few guys do it. With 34″ tires, gearing is highly recommended, and most shops will recommend a gear ratio of 4.56. If you are moving to 35″ tires, you can go with 4.88s or even 5.29s. This completely subjective though and many guys will argue this point back and forth.
Just know re-gearing can get expensive but is highly worth it if you decide to go with larger tires.
At what point do I need a BMC (Body Mount Chop)
- The Metal Tech BMC Kit: Check Today’s Price
This all depends on what lift kit or leveling kit you have. In most common cases, you will want to go with 33″ tires. With 33″ tires, you need a 3″ lift in order to avoid a BMC, but not always. Once you go to 33″ tires, you will likely need to chop the body mounts.
If you only have a 2″ leveling kit with 33″ tires, you will need to do a BMC for sure.
With 34″ tires and 3″ of lift, you will need to do a BMC, trim your fender liners, push back your fender liners and cut into your 4Runner’s body.
Aftermarket UCAs (Upper Control Arms) are also recommended to get better caster (to push your wheel/tire away from the body mounts) but not always needed. For this, you want to contact a good off-road alignment shop in your area. We live in Sacramento, CA so we go to Stellar Built. They do the off-road alignment (yes it’s different), installs and much more.
Should I keep my stock Wheels?
Always a good option. There is nothing wrong with keeping your stock wheels and making the jump to bigger tires. The stock 17″ wheels are great for on-road and off-road use. Moving to an aftermarket wheel is only more expensive and oftentimes, more confusing.
If you are a first-time owner and not sure about aftermarket wheels, just grab a new set of larger tires and go experience what your 4Runner has to offer.
What is the best Wheel Size for Off-Road Use?
Typically, the smaller the wheel size, the better your off-road performance will be, but not always. When it comes to our world, 17″ wheels are probably your go-to size. You want to stay away from 20″ wheels on your 4Runner if you plan on frequent off-road trips.
When it comes to a smaller wheel size, you can air down the tire pressure further than you can with a 20″ wheel. Having less air pressure in your tires means your tire will have more flotation and grip the terrain much easier than at full PSI where the ride is stiffer.
With less air pressure, the ride will be smoother and less bumpy, all while gripping the terrain much more efficiently.
What are the best All-Terrain Tires?
The section of copy came from another post we wrote on Mods (Part 1). All these tires are based on a 285/70R17 (about 32.71″ depending on tread). Always check prices online Vs. your local tire shop. If online is cheaper, just have them shipped to your tire shop.
For the best AT tire or MT tire, Cooper offers some pretty great options for just about every driver. Of course, the BFG KO2 is a popular brand but Cooper has quickly become one of the go-to brands in the Toyota SUV/Truck market.
Check out our complete guide to buying tires – An article created from 20+ different drivers.
Most popular options linked below.
$100-$200/ per tire
- Yokohama Geolandar
- General Grabber
- Firestone Destination
- Nitto Terra Grapplers
- Toyo Open Country
- Cooper Discoverer AT3 4
- Cooper Discoverer AT3 XLT
- Cooper Discoverer S/T MAXX
- Falken Wildpeak
$200-$500/ per tire
- Cooper Discoverer STT Pro
- BF Goodrich KO2
- Toyo Open Country AT 2
- Toyo Open Country MT 2
- Cooper Evolution MT
- Cooper Discoverer MTP
- Goodyear Duratrac
- Nitto Trail Grapplers
- Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac
If you guys have any questions – let us know.
If you see a question asked that has not been answered – feel free to answer it.