Are 285s worth it?? Update


I’d personally go back to 32’s unless you’re doing trails to justify 33’s. If so, I’d bite the bullet and regear.

Forget skinny tires, ie 235/85 or 255/85. They don’t do jack for MPG or power.


Ive found, for IFS Toyotas, 265-75R16 is the perfect compromise tire. There is none that performs better all around without noticeable cons.

Firstly, and perhaps most importantly, weight is kept low. So extra strain on your front end is reduced drastically. This is KEY on 3rd gen 4Runners where ball joint and steering rack failure is common.

Second, MPGs arent as badly hurt on stock gearing.

Third, they are only a fraction of an inch lower than 285-75R16 without any rubbing on most vehicles.

Me personally, I've had a few variations of IFS Toyotas for the past 15 years. All have run 265-75R16 on stock Toyota aluminum wheels. As overlanding vehicles. I've never had rubbing (even on stock height vehicles), never had premature front end trouble (none at all in fact) and mileage has always stayed much lower than the same or similar vehicles running larger tires.


I guess I am the odd one that looked for a 3rd gen that came factory with 15s to get 4.10 gears vs 4.30 before buying...

1999 5Runner V6 5speed 4x4.

I daily drive it on 245/75R16s on factory aluminum wheels, then swap to 255/85R16 on factory aluminum wheels for trail use. I would not change to a lower rear end gear if it were free, much less spend money to do so.

I enjoy the lower RPMs on the freeway, and the pretty decent MPG. (25-27on 245/75, 22-24 on 255/85)

I have noticed a hit in power pulling a trailer loaded approaching the max tow rating when climbing hills in overdrive, so I just downshift to fourth. I can't imagine being "downshifted" all the time with lower rear end gears, just so I don't have to downshift...


235/85r16 were the best tires I ever had on my 3rd gen 4Runner. 255s were ok but I didn't regret going smaller. The 5 speed with the factory 4.10s and 3.4 are decent. The auto needed taller gears from the factory. If you aren't going to regear I would step down a size.


Well, it’s getting close to decision time. Rear diff is going to need replacement pretty soon. Dilemma. Go ahead and regear and replace the front as well? No more than it’s driven, just replace stock and roll on. (5000 to 6000 miles a year) ? Seems to make sense to regear at this “opportunity “. If you can call it that. At the same time, we use the 4th gen for longer trips now. It is more comfortable and tows the teardrop much better, but dammit, I love the the 3rd gen and had rather drive it. 4th gen is the wife’s daily, she thinks she’d like a lift and such, but as we all know, one mod just leads to another. Don’t want to mess with the ride and reliability of it at this point. If we ever replace the 97 I’ll take the 04 and get her a 5th gen, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Have owned the 97 for 18 years and the 04 for 11 years.
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FWIW I put big fat 35 ATs on my Tundra and MPG actually went up vs the wee stock 32s.

It isn't the weight or the size, it's the frictional (hysteresis) losses in the casing. And with AT tires it's very hard to tell what you'll get because no one tests them. Some roll good and some don't. Probably the best bet is to search reviews for comments. Mine are Hankook ATMs, BTW... no longer made.


New gears in. Pretty sweet. Not a huge difference, but accelerates much smoother. way much quieter. Rear pinion was howling terrible. About 500 RPM higher at 70mph. Start the break in tomorrow.