2019 Toyota RAV4 Review and Comparison in Albuquerque, NM

Putting a Focus on Meeting your Needs: the Toyota RAV4

Sometimes it isn't about being at the top of the list for one category, but about making onto as many lists as possible. This is the philosophy that the Toyota RAV4 lives: meeting all of your needs in a satisfactory way. It fits into the median of all major categories: price, horsepower, and capability. Many people are looking for a vehicle that can do as many things as possible, and the RAV4 certainly meets the mark for that.                  

It upholds the tradition that Toyota has set for itself by providing reliable performance well over the average mileage that a vehicle tends to see in its lifetime. If you want to look at how it's selling, you'll be impressed to see that it has sold more models than top competitors like the CR-V and Rogue. If you want a vehicle that offers practicality in nearly every scenario without breaking the bank, you have found it in the RAV4.                 

Trims of the RAV4 include the LE, XLE, Adventure, and SE, with the most features and options left for the RAV4 Limited and Platinum options. You can even choose a Hybrid option lets Toyota remind you that they are still at the forefront of hybrid technology. 

Consistent Style is no Surprise               

Seeing that the RAV4 prioritizes practicality over flash and style, it is kind of obvious that its design has stayed pretty much the same over the years. Many people consider this as a strike against the RAV4, citing the lack of innovation, but the more sensible crowd will note that if it isn't broken, don't fix it. It is a clean design that promotes the dependability and ruggedness that the RAV4 seeks to provide. We might be seeing a new design in the next generation or two, but it isn't a necessity as the current look fits the character of the vehicle. If you want it to have a bit more flash, you can choose one of the bright colors for it. 

The colors you can choose from include Galactica Aqua Mica, Electric Storm Blue, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Blizzard Pearl, Super White, Black, Ruby Flare Pearl, Black Currant Metallic, Silver Sky Metallic, and Black Sand Pearl, while there are also dual-tone colors like S-Code Black, S-Code Electric Storm Blue, and S-Code Super White.

How the Adventure Trim Lives up to its name               

As a standalone trim, the RAV4 Adventure differentiates itself from the rest of the RAV4 options. It is Toyota's move into the off-roading corner of the compact SUV market. The RAV4 Adventure fits nicely into this very specific community, adding several features that make it geared towards a life off of pavement while still providing the style that can fit into an urban landscape. The unique wheel design and availability of the S-Code paint options allow it to do more than just blend in when you are on the road.                 

While the RAV4 Adventure does increase ride height, it still lives up to the RAV4 master-of-none mentality, gearing it more towards a camping trip than trailblazing. The total ground clearance is up to 6.5 inches, accompanied by bigger fender flares, larger wheels, and black roof rails. There are some significant interior changes that make it even better for those looking to go on any adventure.                 

This trim offers a Cold Weather package that makes sure you can stay comfortable in some of the harshest conditions. Such features that come in the package include heated fabric front seats and a heated leather steering wheel, a wiper de-icer, and all-weather floor liners and cargo mats. Since adventure isn't only about where you are going, but also what you can bring along, you can choose the Tow Prep Package to increase the towing capabilities to 3,500 pounds, putting it near the levels of full-size SUVs and compact pickups. 

Without Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, what are we left with?               

Toyota continues to leave out Apple CarPlay and Android Auto of their new vehicles. The infotainment system is still formidable even though it leaves out the most common system among vehicles in the current market. The RAV4 LE and XLE includes the Entune Audio System with Multimedia Bundle to incorporate the normal set of audio choices (CD, MP3, AUX, USB) into a 6.1-inch touchscreen display.

In higher level trims and packages, you will see the Entune Premium Audio Package with integrated Navigation and App Suite for a larger 7-inch screen and the Scout GPS Link App to give you detailed instructions to get where you need to go. There are many other packages for those of you who like to have the latest-and-greatest technology. Toyota includes all of the things that Apple CarPlay and Android Auto can do, they just refuse to do it the most simplistic way. 

Even more for you to love              

All-Wheel drive should not be a surprise for a compact SUV anymore. At first it was a selective group that offered it, but customers showed interest and voila, every vehicle in the segment has it. This doesn't discredit the AWD system in the RAV4, its actually very good, monitoring road conditions to distribute power to the front and rear wheels depending on where it is most needed.                 

Adding a small level of surprise, Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) is on every RAV4 model, making sure all drivers and passengers can be as safe and possible. TSS-P uses the most advanced technology to support the Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, and Automatic High Beam, as well as the standard backup cam. Toyota has not left out upgrade options, quite the opposite, you are left with many other options and packages that you can include if you see fit. The RAV4 with equipped LED Headlights has made the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ list for 2017, officially naming it as one of the safest vehicles that you will find. 

Where does this leave the RAV4?               

It succeeds at putting itself on as many lists as possible, confidently accomplishing all of the needs of your life without standing out as the best, but certainly not lingering at the bottom of the list. If you are looking for a versatile and practical vehicle, the RAV4 will provide everything that you are looking for.

Compare the Toyota RAV4 vs the Competition