2009 Toyota RAV4 (US)

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Small changes here and there.
The most obvious seems to be the outside spare tire delete on the top of the line V6.
Other models keep it. Not sure why…
Base engine is now a 2.5 Liter with 179hp.
More than enough. It also get slightly better gas mileage.

And I guess, you can now get navigation in some models…

No big news, really…

Conversation 13 comments

  1. Run-Flat tires are on the V6 Sport Version. They ride more firm and most buyers wouldn’t like that. I expect the next RAV4 will drop the spare-tire on the back and put it inside like most others.

  2. These perform well with the 3.5 V6 engine, very powerful.
    Not a bad mid model refresh.
    Does’nt look so SUVish with the spare wheel off the tailgate.

  3. I like the idea of the spare hidden inside (thankfully not underneath), but how damned much could it cost to hinge that rear hatch on the driver’s side in left-hand-drive markets? Same goes for the CR-V. It totally blocks access to sidewalks swinging the way it does.

  4. I am with you on the rear swing door opens to the curb, however I don’t think it has to do with its home market (RHD). The Jeep Wrangler, the quintessential American icon also opens into the curb. Dumb!

  5. Two major design flaws still remain… The back cargo door still swings out to the right (curb) side and gets in the way when loading items and the 4 cylinder engine still only gets a 4speed automatic.

  6. I always thought this vehicle looked strange. Out of proportion especially the back of it. Also too many strange curves.

  7. “I thought the new CR-V’s rear cargo door opens upward like a hatchback now.”

    It does, the above poster is wrong.

    If anyone has sat in a new RAV4 you know how poor the interior is. The seat fabric on the Sport model reminds me of the mesh liner in mens bathing suits and the plastics are GOD awful. The only positive of the RAV4 is that monster V6 option. Other than that I see none, the 3rd row seat is a JOKE even for children.

    Keep in mind, if you are ever rear ended the kids (only size that will fit in the rear) are sitting in a crumple zone.

    I’ll take a CR-V any day of the week over the RAV, thanks.

  8. I thought the new CR-V’s rear cargo door opens upward like a hatchback now.

    You’re correct. I meant previous generation CR-V. Honda got smart with the universal hatch design.

  9. I agree the interior feels too cheap (and it’s not a cheap SUV). It sure looks ok in the pictures until you test drive one. Everything looks plasticky and seats are pretty flat. Pretty disappointing since otherwise good size and decent mileage.

    The mpg increase is 1 mpg for both city/highway for base 2.5 (22/28).
    The CRV is 20/27 so Honda could try to catch up a bit.

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