"250,000 miles with only significant problem that sensors needed to be replaced twice and water pump at 200,000 miles. Original power steering, master cylinder, alternator and BATTERY! Air conditioning clutch loud last 4 years. Catalytic converter needed cleaning. Plugs replaced twice -- 25.5 mpg through whole life."
"I own the 2003 Rav 4. I bought it new. It now has 170,000 miles and the only thing I have ever done to the vehicle is normal maintenance. It is reliable and a perfect small family car. I do wish it has three seats in the back but it is still okay for what we use it for. The MPG is around 28-30 on the highway. The engine is a little small to pull an AWD vehicle in the hills of PA. Otherwise it is perfect in every way & I cannot express enough how much we depend on this vehicle. We have no intention of getting rid of it till it just simply crokes! My personal goal is 350,000 miles. One note of interest...Keep it clean & you always feel you are driving a new one:)"
"from 2001-2005 there is a problem with the engine control module causing the transmission to miss shift.
warranty is good to 80,000 miles,
mine went out at 89,400 other than that I love the car.
If buying used make sure the ECM has been changed so you don't damage your transmission."
"Our primary complaint is comfort. It isn't comfortable for longer drives. Also, the seats took time to figure out how to remove. I feel safe and confident when I drive this car; I plan on a RAV4 being my next vehicle."
"I love my Rav! It is the best car I have ever owned!! It is big enough to cart around all of my equestrian equiptment and on occassion I have had to use it as the farm vehicle. It is easy and comfortable to drive. It is nice and compact while still offering so much room on the interior. The only complaint I have about this car is that I had to replace the transmission about 3 years ago."
"Bought a newer '03 after having a '97 RAV4 for about 8 years. We will lose about $2k fo having the RAV for 8 wonderful years.
Love our new one - Could have bought a Chrysler PT Cruiser (cute!) for under 11K (new) but paid more to get our '03 RAV4 for $12,450 ++. Are we crazy? We don't think so. Thought about buying a brand new one but I'm retired and my wife is still working. Guess who drives the newer RAV4?? :-)"
Pros: "Great gas mileage, reliable, great in all weather"
Cons: "I have no cons for this vehicle"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I absolutely love this car! It is outstanding in every kind of road condition. It has safely got me through ice storms and blizzards. Gets great gas mileage. Has lots of room, I am always saying there is very little I can't haul around in my Rav. It it completely reliable, have never had any issues with it. Gas, oil changes, new tires, wipers and a battery is all it has ever cost me after purchase. I highly recommend this car!"
"I am the happy owner of a 2003 Rav4 2.0L 4cyl automatic with Sport package 2wd (owned for 20 months and driven 35000 miles). I have used the 2.0L engine to tow a small trailer with my motorcycle on and it does ok. The engine tend to have high revs going uphill under load. I would suggest the upgraded 2.4L engine or the V6 if you are do long highway trips or live in a hilly area. The 2.4 was upgraded in 2004-2005.
Besides the high reving when under load, I have no other complaints! The ride is agile and smooth, the fit/finish and comfort in the cabin is adequate for me (6'3" 240lb man). I live in Iowa and have no troubles getting around in snow, heavy rain, ice, etc. and i have the 2wd model. I have been getting 21 mpg during the winter with mixed driving on mostly a 23 mile commute (11 miles of 55 mph high way and the other 12 miles in 45-35-25 mph in town driving). I have been getting as high as 27 mpg in the summer and driving "softly." regular MPG on an overall basis in the last 30,000 miles has averaged 24 mpg. That also includes about 5000 miles of light towing with a 4x8 canoe trailer and 3 canoes and gear. I haven't had one mechanicle problem yet... Ok well I did have the door lock on the passenger side front jam up and wouldn't work proper but the Toyota dealer took care of it for me (probably since my family is a regular customer... We have 6 from them...). I have 85,000+ miles on it thus far and don't have any complaints! Also something to consider is that you can talk any toyota dealer into doing the used car certification that gets you 6-7yr 100,000 power train warrenty. I bartered them into doing mine for free and I ended up with 45,000 and 3 years... better than they factory warrenty on a new one!!! Oh and if you are concerned with interior cargo area... it's there if you need it... i managed to get a chair and a half into the it by taking out the rear seats..."
"My wife and i bought this 01 rav4L and this thing is a beast in the snow. Im an avid 4wd off roader with a seriously modified tacoma and this rav 4 got around as good or better and i have big mud tires on my truck. This last week we had a record snow fall of 22 inches the snow was up past the bumper, full size 4wd trucks were getting stuck all over on our roadways. This rav4 drove 60miles in this snow and i even stopped on a few occasions to let salt trucks go by in snow past the bumper and the rav didnt ever come close to getting stuck I even pulled a couple vehicles out of the ditch with it. Their all wheel drive system routes power to whichever of the four wheels that have traction similar to a traction control set up. Most conventional 4wds only have one wheel in the back and one wheel in the front that spins while in 4wd, This vehicle uses all 4 if need be. The only problem we have had out of this is a coil pack went out that also fried the catalytic converter which was covered under an 80000 mile emmissions warranty. This thing gets 28 mpg in the city or the highway, theres no difference hardly at all. The 5spd trans. might have something to do with it. The 01 and newer ravs have vvt engines that have timing chains so i like the fact that i wont be having to replace a timing belt every 80000 miles. We also owned a 1st generation rav4 that had a 2.0 4cyl with a/t and it didnt have near the power as this one or as good of gas mileage plus it had a timing belt instead of a chain."
"I bought my RAV new in 2001. Except for 1 sensor that needed replacing 6 years ago, and having the front brakes replaced after 8 years, it has been problem free. I take care of it with scheduled oil changes, inspections, etc. so it has been very good to me. I've never owned a car this long .. and I think buying it was the best thing I ever did."