We own a generation 1 rav4 and have nearly 250,000 miles on it. We have a baby on the way and needed more room for a car seat. We test drove a few other makes and models and ultimately decided to buy a new rav4. I really enjoy the peppy 4cyl engine and the decent gas mileage. I am 6'1" tall and find the front leg room to be a bit lacking. Also, the new rav4 doesn't brake as well as our old rav4. However, the new rav4 turns easier and maneuvers better. I miss being able to park in the tiniest spaces, but hey now we have room for a stroller, groceries, and a car seat. I would recommend a 2009 rav4 to anyone looking for a small SUV that is lots of fun to drive.
Very versatile. Lots of cargo space. Safety features...side impact air bags. Base model includes a host of features like power everything, decent radio with mp3 support, tinted windows, etc.