Build/Rig Feature + Interview – Michael Reardon & His Lifted 5th Gen 4Runner On 37″ Mud Terrains
Welcome to the second installment of our newest weekly series, Walkaround Wednesday, where we interview owners of trail-built 4Runners and discuss the process of building their rig.
Last week, we talked to Tanner from Expedition Overland about his 2014 Trail.
Today, we’re headed ever further north to Ontario, Canada to chat with Michael Reardon. You may have seen Michael’s rig before scrolling through Instagram or on our aftermarket light setup post on Feature Friday.
In this article, we’ll dive deeper into the build and talk to Michael about how he uses this beast of a 4Runner. Without further ado, I’ll turn it over to Michael.
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Each week, we cover a new rig to help people imagine what their own rig can look like.
- Instagram tag: @6IXRunner
- Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
- Year: 2017
- Make and Model: Toyota 4Runner
- Trim: TRD Off Road
- Color: VVivid Wraps Ultra-Gloss Candy Red
- Mileage: 120k
- Toyo Tires Open Country M/T (37.5 x 12.5R17)
- SSW Off Road Dakar Wheels, Machined Silver (17×9.0 -25)
- Dobinsons 1″-3.5″ MRR Lift Kit (Review)
- Dobinsons 749 Rear Springs
- SPC Upper Control Arms
- Icon Vehicle Dynamics Billet Trailing Arms (upper and lower)
- Big Country Customs Weld-On Spindle Gussets
- Sumo Springs Bump Stops (front and rear)
- Dobinsons Rear Adjustable Panhard Bar
- Eimkeith Panhard Correction Kit (Install & Review)
- Snowbound Customs Washer Fluid Tank Relocation Kit
- Toytec 1″ Body Lift Kit
- ADV Fiberglass Fenders (Install & Review)
- Extended rear brake lines
- Custom Front Bumper by @krawlfab
- OK Expedition Aluminum Skid Plate Package (Install & Review)
- OK Expeditions Lower Control Arm Skid
- DIY Weld-On Rock Sliders
- DIY high-clearance rear bumper cut
Lightning & Electrical:
- Vivid Lumen Industries FNG-3 Pod Lights
- Vivid Lumen Industries FNG-5 Spot Lights
- AlphaRex NOVA-Series LED Headlights
- AlphaRex LUXX-Series LED Taillights (Install & Review)
- Diode Dynamics SSC2 Chase Lights
- Rigid Industries Flush-Mount Pod Lights
- Lensun 100w Hood Solar Panel (Install & Review)
- Auxbeam 42″ 5D-Pro Light Bar
- Auxbeam 8 Gang Switch Panel (Install & Review)
- Odyssey Group 34/78 Extreme Battery
- Auxito Rock Lights
- Raptor Lights
- ICS Fab Dash Mount
- SolidWoodWorx Rear Drawer System (Install & Review)
- Kicker Plug & Play 8-Piece Speaker Set
- Kicker Subwoofer
- WeBoost Drive Reach Overland Cell Booster: (Install & Review)
- Go Overland Canada Summit Rooftop Tent
- RA Motorsports Modular Roof Rack
- Wilco Hitchgate Solo (Install & Review)
- Velox OffRoad Passenger Side Gullwing Window Replacement (Install & Review)
- Velox OffRoad Interior MOLLE Panel
- Strikeforce 67 Rear Tire Bag and Table
- Rago Fabrications Driver Side Exterior MOLLE Panel
- Iceco VL45ProS Fridge/Freezer (Review)
- Iceco Fridge Slide Mount
- Greenlane Offroad Tailgate Ladder
- Go Overland 270 Degree Awning
- Warn VR Evo 10s Winch
- MORRFlate Quad Tire Inflation/Deflation Kit (Review)
- Factor 55 Flatlink (Install & Review)
- RotopaX 1 Gallon Fuel Pack
- Vvivid Wraps Ultra-Gloss Candy Red
- MBRP 2.5″ Cat-back Exhaust
- Amazon Bug Deflector
- Amazon Window Rain Guards
- TRD Pro Grill Swap
- Dobinsons Snorkel w/ Pre-Cleaner (Install & Review)
Tell Us About Yourself. Why Choose A 4Runner?
I am Michael Reardon, a real estate broker based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. In addition, I work part-time at Beast Offroad Canada, where I focus on Toyota builds. I have been a proud owner of my 4Runner for three years now.
I opted for the 4Runner platform after my Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel broke down on the highway, and I had to deal with the Jeep warranty department. I needed a vehicle that could tow and perform well off-road, and the 4Runner was the perfect choice for me.
I chose the TRD off-road trim level because I knew I would remove the suspension and wrap the truck, so the Pro model did not appeal to me for the extra money.
How Do You Use Your 4Runner?
My 4Runner is my daily driver, and it serves me well, from showings in the city to camping up north.
However, I should consider getting a more fuel-efficient vehicle as I spend a lot on gas every month. One of the challenges I faced was, when my truck hit 60k, and my KDSS system failed and leaked. Instead of paying the $7k Toyota wanted to replace it, I decided to rip it all out and run no sway bars, which turned out to be the best decision I ever made.
Tell Us About Your Build Process.
When building my truck, I consulted with Beast Offroad Canada, and we went over all the options. I knew I had to have skid plates and suspension, and from there, it got way out of hand, and we did everything to it.
Every year, I embark on a new phase of the build, and I am amazed at how far I have come with this truck. When I started building it, there wasn’t as much information available as there is now, so over the course of three years, I have run five different sizes of tires and four sets of rims until I got it right. The Trail4Runner website was helpful when choosing highly reviewed parts.
Do You Regret Any Mods?
One mod I regret is the SPC UCA, which I have blown through many ball joints and bushings. I highly do not recommend that product if you are over three inches of lift.
The cheap interior LEDs I previously had in the truck were also a regret. They would flicker in cold weather, which was quite bothersome.
What’s Your Favorite Mod?
My favorite mod would be the Dobinsons suspension. I love the adjustability of the MRR kit, and the rear spring options are amazing too.
The Solidwoodworx drawer system comes in a close second, as it provides an amazing storage solution for all my camping gear in the truck.
What’s Next For Your 4Runner?
Moving forward, I have plans to install a Backwoods Adventure Mods front bumper and a Coastal Off Road rear bumper for my truck. Additionally, I am considering changing the color. I am also contemplating adding a new axle to the rear and upgrading the front suspension for better off-road capabilities. I find myself torn between wanting a Baja truck and an overland rig, so my build will be a combination of both. Living in Ontario, Canada, our terrain consists mostly of rocks and mud, as opposed to sand dunes.
What a cool rig, eh? Jokes aside, Michael’s rig is among the most capable and eye-catching 4Runners you’ll find out there. It was also great to see some new brand names on the build list, many of them being Canadian brands for our friends up north.
If you want to follow this build as it undergoes a rebuild in the upcoming months, head on over to Michael’s Insta (@6IXRunner) and give him a follow. While you’re there, you should also check out Beast Offroad (@beast_offroad) and TRD North (@trdnorth), both of which played an integral role in making this rig a reality.
Tune in next week when we chat with Youtube’s Francis Ngo (@wheresfrancis) to check out his 2016 TRD Pro!
Interested in having your own rig featured in a future installment of Walkaround Wednesday? Click here to submit your build!