Disclosure: The Rav4 in the feature below was provided to me for a week compliments of Toyota!
There are tons and tons of crossover SUVs on the market now a days, they seem to be all the new rage. With the new design of the Toyota Rav4 I think I have a new favorite!
The most obvious difference on the 2013 Rav4 is the new body. The new contemporary look relocated the spare tire from the rear door to a well under the cargo compartment floor, a move long overdue.
The removal of the tire on the swing out rear door becomes a safer, handier, more conventional swing up rear lift-gate that auto opens and closes, much like a minivan. The Rav4 Limited I test drove also had a super handy height-adjustment feature. All you have to do is raise the liftgate to your ideal height, then press and hold the cargo door button for two seconds until a confirmation beep sounds. Now, whether you open the liftgate via release or key, it will open to the desired height every time. This feature is great for those that park in a garage and can only have the gate go up so far. We also found this very helpful at the drive in movies, no need to tie the door down.
The Rav4 interior has plenty of room for all your gear. In fact, you can stow up to 38.4 cubic feet of gear with the rear seatbacks in their upright position. We had more than enough room for a double stroller plus extras. If you plan to only tote around gear you for can fold the second-row seats down and get 73.4 cubic feet of cargo space. We folded the rear seats down and went to the drive in movies and were able to fit all five kids in the back to watch the movie.
The interior is all-new too; new and much nicer than before. Beautiful textures and vibrant colors help the RAV4′s interior look like it belongs in a premium SUV, much like a Lexus with out the price. The steering wheel tilts and telescopes closer to the driver for a perfect fit every time and the integrated controls for the things you use most, like the audio system are right on the wheel.
The second row of the Rav4 frustrated me beyond no belief. There are three seats back there, however fitting three car seats across proved to be impossible, even though I tried multiple configurations. You could easily transport two full grown adults or two huge car seats, but the middle seat would not be usable. Pictured below you will find a rear facing Combi Coccoro and a forward facing Britax Frontier 90!
If your in the market for a crossover the Rav4 is a great choice. Oh and did I mention that during my test drive I got 27 miles per gallon? You can find a dealer near you to test drive or purchase a Toyota Rav4 by clicking here.
Special thanks to Toyota for letting me test drive the Rav4.