Todd Chernesky (toddchernesky)
Toyota Tech: Toyota SUV Suspension Lift Collaboration
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1996 Toyota 4Runner SR5, 2WD, 2.7 Liter, 4 Cylinder, 5-Speed

Old Man Emu 881 Springs and N91SC shocks

Old Man Emu 891 Springs and N86SC shocks

Suspension Lift Obtained

The above springs resulted in 3.5 inches of lift in the front and 3.25 inches of lift in the rear, which is more than OME states that these springs would provide. Several possible reasons are that my 4Runner which has about 105,000 miles on it could have settled and, my 2WD 4 cylinder 4Runner is about 500 pounds lighter than a 4WD V6 4Runner.

Trim packers for the front and rear are also available that provide lift in 5mm increments which may be necessary to make some vehicles sit level. Given that my 4Runner is lighter up front with the 4 cylinder engine, it turned out that these were not needed.

Gary at Wheelers Off Road was key in identifying the correct springs and shocks. I had been told by several others, including an Old Man Emu seller, that there were no springs available for 2WD 4Runners. My stock suspension was bottoming out constantly and the first attempt to remedy by getting the rear coil spring recall for 96-98 4Runners installed only made it worse. With the original bump stops replaced with cones inside the rear coils, I was left with about 1 inch of travel before bottoming out in the rear.

Front Before Front After Rear Before Rear After Final View

Improvement in Ride Quality

Other OME Options Considered
880 Front Coils (Softer)
882 Front Coils (Firmer)
N91S Front Shocks (Firm)
890 Rear Coils (Softer)
892 Rear Coils (Firmer)
N86S Rear Shocks (Firmer)

The ride improvement is incredible. Dont get me wrong, it still feels like a truck, but the bumps feel like they should now. There are several dirt roads that I occasionally travel on and I purposely took them right before swapping out the springs and shocks. The Old Man Emu setup works great. Bumps and potholes that had me going slow and bouncing all over the road before, are now no problem. The articulation of the rear axle is improved with much more travel.

I am really happy with the setup and I am no longer worried about towing my boat. In fact it seems to ride a little better with some weight in the 4Runner. I wish I had the opportunity and time to try out the softer 880 and 890 springs to see if they ride a little softer, but not sure how much lift they would provide. Looks like I am going to have to get some 33s next time I need tires as my 30s dont look so big anymore!

Special thanks to Gary from Wheelers Off Road for doing the research to get the correct parts for my application.

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