I'm an onsite computer tech. I average 225 miles per day in this Rav4, I bought it with 51k on it now has 150k on it only prob I've ever had was the cat converter. It has been a great car, most reliable car I've ever owned and in my line of work that means money. Great on gas, great on getting me to the client and home again, and fun to drive.
I've had my Rav 4 for almost 5 years. I'm about to go over the 100K mile mark and it's been doing great. The only downside is that the 2001 model has something wrong with the Oxygen sensor software. I had it fail on me around 65K miles and again at about 82K. It was covered under warranty both times and is around an $80 fix for the next time it comes down the line. Not really a big problem, but it makes the check engine light go off.
Spacious seating. Easy to remove back seats for lugging things around. It also has a power outlet in the back like the lighter outlet in the front. Always useful for camping and plugging in those refrigerated coolers.
Great little car. I enjoy driving it and it is easy to enter and exit. Good power and acceleration while getting good gas mileage (about 21.5 mpg).
I like the looks, the room, and the fairly-upright seating.
The car is noisy inside (road noise). The package shelf/luggage cover is inconvenient and poorly designed. Rear headrests interfere with folding of the seats. The air filter housing tabs broke. Battery access is inconvenient. Seat mounting brackets rusted.
We bought our silver, 5-speed, L series beauty-of-a-car on Mother's Day of this year. So far we ABSOLUTLY love it! We got it with 70,311 miles and it drives like brand new! and it has 73,423 miles (as of 7/20/05) now. We haven't actually tried the AWD the way it was built yet, but some friends of ours that have one says that "it drives as if there weren't any snow" do I'm anxious to try it out! I've notice a hair-line crack where the plastic aluminum on the driver's door handle is. The sound is --okay. Over all I'd give the car... well let's just say that I'm gonna be buying another one someday! :) It's a BIG step up from 2000's model, it looks sexy!
Incredible power for it's engine! Love the 5-speed! VERY comfortable, almost like a Lexus!! NO RATTLING! WONDERFUL how quick the brakes respond!
The sound is defintally not a Bose system or Harmon Kardon, maybe the door handles could have been enforced with something a little stronger. Maybe use actual aluminum or something that looks more like aluminum...
This is a car/SUV that seems to do exactly what's intended for it. Design in and out are very sporty. I have the leather/sunroof package so it is essentially loaded with options. One option I did not get (and wouldn't) is AWD. There is simply not enough power from the engine to support the extra weight this option adds, and let's be realistic: how often is one really going to NEED AWD? I live in the Seattle area and travel to the mountains quite a bit - ground clearance is high enough to navigate pothole ridden forest service roads, and being from the midwest, I can manage driving in the snow without AWD. Gas milage for an SUV is pretty good as well - 22mpg city, and 30mpg highway.
I love how easy this car is to drive the most. It's small on the outside, yet big on the inside. I could haul a large gas barbeque grill I bought in it (without the rear seats in), and still manage to parallel park in an economy cars' spot when in the city. I also like the nice big sunroof.
I bought this car used and had to bring it to the dealer several times to fix brake problems (squeaks and minor shudders). After about 8000 miles its finally resolved. More sound deadening material would be nice as the interior is quite loud when driving on the interstate highways.