Toyota hit the nail directly on the head with the new RAV4 providing what American drivers need and want. In-city mileage is 20 mpg+. Had a little rattle for a few miles but service department solved it. I've continued to "shop" after the purchase and am convinced the RAV4 is the best of the breed especially for a tall guy like myself.
Never thought much about a 6-CD changer and love the convenience. Roof rack standard - a small thing - but a $500 extra on CRV. Have used it a lot since downsizing from a truck. Very handy.
Rear mounted spare technically passe. Live in city where street parallel parking a must. I know cover will be damaged and it's expensive to replace. I admire Honda's thinking to bury spare horizontally inside. Safer that way in rear end collision.