I loved my 2008 rav 4....until I hit a deer going barely 25 miles an hour and the car burst into flames.
Luckily, I got out of my car immediately after hitting the deer to inspect the damage. I honestly thought there may be little or no damage based on the minimal impact (airbags didn't go off and there was only a dent in the driver's side headlight area) but the car almost immediately started smoking and then promptly burst into flames. Toyota has been extremely non-responsive to my questions and I would never buy another one.
Sadly, though not my first Toyota, this will be my last.
I had to replace my engine due to a hose failure.
No recall on this part, but they changed the design in 2009.... wonder why...mmm.
I take good care of my vehicles and got regular oil changes.
This has become the most expensive car I have ever owned.
And I bought it because of the Toyota reputation.
Before the final stroke of the pen, I decided to buy the Toyota extended warranty - which actually seemed ridiculous that a Toyota wouldn't go 100K without a major problem.
That was the only redeeming feature of my purchase: by 80K miles they replaced the alternator, air conditioning condensor, all valve stems and the COMPLETE ENGINE.
When I informed Toyota of this total disaster they produced, the best response I got was that it was a good thing I bought the warranty.
It is now gone and I'll never deal with a Toyota product again.
2008 Toyota RAV4 SUV Limited 4dr SUV 4WD (2.4L 4cyl 4A)
After testing other brands as well as the base and Sport model RAV4s, decided on the Limited. Much quieter, more comfortable ride (it's based on a car platform, not truck) and better interior materials than the base. The two extra hidden storage behind the rear seats are awesome as well as the three 12v outlets and iPod jack. Seats are super comfortable. The 4WD handles off-road duties superbly. Everything on this vehicle is laid out well with emphasis on order and functionality. Purchased rain guards, mud flaps, bug deflector, and better crossbars for my kayaks to make it perfect. I purchased this car used and it now has 48,000 miles. Every tank has been 24-26mpg with mixed driving.
Fold-flat seats, two storage areas under carpet in the back. Storage compartment above glovebox and the two-compartment armrest. Dual-zone climate control (the significant other likes warmer temps than I), sunroof, privacy glass, heated side mirrors, Bluetooth, steering wheel controls, power seat (especially lumbar support). Comfort and quietness, especially on the highway. Electric-assisted steering makes steering effort intuitive. Overall space and layout. Upgraded interior materials over base model
Spare tire rattles over bumps (will be attempting to fix this with more rubber inserts), engine seems down on low-end power accelerating from 50mph. Seats and carpet are very tough to clean dog hair out of
2008 Toyota RAV4 SUV Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (3.5L 6cyl 5A)
I have owned a number of AWD/4WD cars, including a WRX, Outback Limited 2.5XT, the 2009 Rav4 Limited (which got totaled by tree) and now I got this one. This car easily tops the list. For a high sitting car, it handles very well with the 18inch rims and 235mm tires. It actually rides better the the Subaru WRX and feels commanding and not cheap.
The torque steer of my limited is not there and feels very even. The car is very fast for its size, suprisingly faster than most cars off the line.
Its really an understated car. JBL upgrades stereo is more than adaquate, and the black interior looks sweet.
Power, handling, reliability. Safety - I tested this when a 2.5' tree fell onto the car while I was driving at 25mpg. The car was totaled but I came out without a scratch... thats why this is my second RAV4. This time I chose the Sport over the Limited as the suspension is definatelly more responsive.
The button press - second glove compartment is goofy!
Some way of telling whether the dome and map lights are turned on when locking the car, as the lights stay on after you shut the car you cant tell if they will stay on.
Ability to turn on dome lights in the rear from up-front (to see my kids).