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2010 Toyota RAV4

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2010 Toyota RAV4 Review

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The 2010 Toyota RAV4 has come along way from the cute little two-door pop-top of 1996. Toyota's smallest SUV has left its long-time rival, the Honda CR-V, in the feature-content dust by offering seating for seven, a low-cost navigation option and an optional V6 engine. Moving upscale can have its drawbacks, however, and the current RAV4's conservative styling might be the most noticeable of those. Where the RAV4 was once aimed at young singles with active lifestyles, the new vehicle caters to young couples with active two-year olds. While there are better equipped and less expensive seven-passenger SUVs on the market (the new Kia Sorento, for example), none have the RAV4's impeccable quality, reliability reputation or strong resale value.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want a small-to-midsize sport utility vehicle that combines car-like performance, ride, handling and fuel economy with available four-wheel drive and room for up to seven passengers, or five adults and a fair amount of cargo, the 2010 Toyota RAV4 is a good choice.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If your needs include heavy duty hauling or towing or serious off-road rambling, you may want to look elsewhere. There are many fine competitors in this class, including some that may offer a combination of attributes, price and value that are better suited to your tastes and needs.

What's New for 2010

The 2010 Toyota RAV4 carries over mostly unchanged after last year's makeover. Base models can now be equipped with a rearview camera, and the available Sport Appearance Package is expanded to Sport grade 4x2 and 4x4 four-cylinder models. The Sport trims can also be equipped with a new JBL audio system that includes Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity.

Driving the RAV4

Driving Impressions Toyota engineers have achieved their objective of car-like driving dynamics in a practical SUV package. High-strength steel increases the body's rigidity for improved ride, handling, steering and (if necessary) crash...

energy management, weighs less and reduces noise, vibration and harshness. Improved sealing and insulation keeps most engine noise out of the cabin, except for some (un-Toyota-like) engine harshness at wide-open throttle, even with the V6. Elimination of outer moldings around the windshield and door glass helps reduce aerodynamic drag and wind noise. While the 179-horsepower four-cylinder is more than adequate with light loads and at lower elevations, the 269-horsepower V6 offers acceleration, pulling and passing power at or near the top of this class and is recommended for heavier loads and higher altitudes.

Star Safety System
This comprehensive system integrates five active electronic safety features – enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), traction control, anti-lock brakes (ABS) and Brake Assist – to help avoid accidents, and one passive safety feature (multi-stage front airbags) to cushion occupants should a crash occur.

Hill Start and Downhill Assist Control
Toyota's second-generation Hill Start Assist Control (HAC) automatically prevents the vehicle from rolling backward for two to three seconds when starting from a stop on an uphill slope. Downhill Assist Control (DAC), when activated by the driver, keeps the vehicle's speed to a crawl on steep descents.

2010 Toyota RAV4 Details
Interior

The 2010 RAV4 offers slightly more rear seat head room than the Honda CR-V, and the 60/40 reclining middle-row seats adjust fore and aft and fold flat with levers on their sides or (on two-row models) a one-touch lever in the cargo hold. The available third-row seat folds flat into the same space in the rear where standard RAV4s have hidden under-floor storage. Base RAV4s get durable fabric-covered seats, while higher-level cloth dresses Limited and Sport models, the latter in dark charcoal. The center cluster, door trim and steering wheel spokes are brushed metallic-look plastic. Lighted front cupholders, a console cell phone holder, an extra storage compartment above the glove box and a deep rear storage bin are notable features.

Exterior
2010 Toyota RAV4 photo

The 2010 RAV4 is more substantial and less "cute" than the original, with contemporary but conventional good looks. Only the triangular rear C-pillar and vertically-wrapped taillamps are somewhat unusual, reminding us (in profile) of the very unconventional Nissan Murano. The split-grille's trapezoidal opening flows into the front bumper, with the available fog light housing sculpted into the lower side fascia. The spare tire, mounted to the right of center on the rear door – which, unfortunately and inconveniently, swings open from the driver's side (curb side in Japan) – has a color-keyed cover with a full hard shell on Limited models. Customers who opt for the new Sport Appearance Package lose the rear spare and gain a set of four run-flat tires.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All three trim levels have an automatic transmission, electronic stability and traction control, front side-impact airbags, side-curtain airbags, air conditioning, remote keyless entry, power windows and door locks, rear privacy glass, power mirrors, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, three 12-volt outlets, 10 cupholders, cruise control and AM/FM/CD six-speaker audio with MP3/WMA and a mini-plug jack. The Limited adds 17-inch tires on six-spoke alloy wheels (in place of the 16-inch steel wheels of the base model), fog lights, heated outside mirrors, six-disc CD changer, Smart Key entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather-wrapped shift knob and steering wheel with audio controls, eight-way (plus lumbar) power driver's seat, cargo area net and tonneau cover, engine immobilizer system and a chrome grille. The Sport trim gets much of this plus 18-inch performance tires and wheels, sport suspension, blackout headlamp trim and fender flares.

Optional Equipment

Options for the base model include the six-disc CD changer, daytime running lights, rear camera with built in rearview mirror monitor, black painted roof rails and cross bars, 17-inch wheels and tires, third-row seat, cargo area net and tonneau cover and (with the V6 only) a tow package that increases towing capacity to 3,500 pounds. Available options on the Sport include a power moonroof with sunshade and a JBL six-disc CD changer with nine speakers, Bluetooth and steering wheel audio controls. The Limited offers optional leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats and a rear-seat DVD entertainment system with rear-seat audio. Both the Sport and Limited can also be equipped with Bluetooth and GPS navigation.

Under the Hood

Toyota provides a choice of a 179-horsepower 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), or a potent VVT-i V6. The former is one of the most powerful fours in this segment, while the latter, pumping out a claimed best-in-class 269 horsepower, is good for zero to 60 miles per hour bursts in slightly under seven seconds. The four-cylinder engine drives through an all-new four-speed automatic transmission and the V6 is fitted with a five-speed automatic.

2.5-liter in-line 4
179 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
172 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/28 (2WD), 21/27 (4WD)

3.5-liter V6
269 horsepower @ 6200 rpm
246 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/27 (2WD), 19/26 (4WD)

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2010 Toyota RAV4 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.5
Out of 10

Based on 674 Ratings for the 2006 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.7/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    8.8/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.6/10

Good On Gas. 6 cylinder is great for Winter & Pass

By on Saturday, August 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive & dependable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Handles well. 6 cylinder great for mountains,Winter and passing. 4 cylinder ONLY for in town. brakes are great and Plenty of space inside for semi-large items. I've put a dresser in mine,trees from the nursery, you can get an optional third seat if you need it. RAV/4 is popular,dependable and has terrific fit and finish. Would I purchase another ? Probably. Purchased it brand new but the new tires that were on it and the battery were garbage. Get better rubber and battery. I've a cloth interior and don't stick to the seats - when its over ninety degrees you'll stick to leather and be uncomfortable."

Best value out there

By on Thursday, August 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Very reliable, low cost to operate, gas milage"

Cons: "rear door opens to the right"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is my second RAV 4. The first was a 2008 V4 that was trouble free for 196,000 miles. I was very pleased at the trade in value when I traded it for the 2011. Both have been extremely reliable and I have no grounds to complain. My current RAV 4 has the V6 and I do like the extra power. My only dislike is the read door opening to the right instead of the left. It makes sense in Japan but not the US."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Bought this model as I didn't like the 5th wheel

By on Thursday, August 06, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 52,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Sturdy, stylish, Reliable"

Cons: "Uncomfortable Ride, unimpressive gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"Very jittery ride, poor gas mileage Extremely well made vehicle, good performance and reliability is unquestionable Never had any issue so far-mechanical or electrical Overall very stylish car. Still stands out on the road even after 6 years. Bit impractical model-expensive, runs on RFT (run flat tires). RFTs are pain-no mileage rating and quite pricey. Can't say I wouldn't recommend it to a friend. Newer RAV4s are nice and do not have the 5th tire jutting out. It was not in 2010."

Very Reliably

By on Saturday, July 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 90,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Reliability"

Cons: "None to speak of, newer vehicles are quieter"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Provided many hours and miles of reliability for my wife and her trips to visit her family. Never left her stranded."

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Rav4 is THE Best Vehicle Ever!

By on Wednesday, July 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 87,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "The carrying convenience!"

Cons: "Never enough cup holders."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This car is basically like having a truck, except you can pretty much fit anything on the inside after putting the seats down AND it won't get wet if it rains! Also, this car has incredible durability & drives great on almost any terrain. You can even add an entire extra row of seating in the "trunk" (hatchback) if needed! And the sound system is incredible!"

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

Best car I've ever owned!

By on Sunday, July 05, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 85,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "reliable,comfortable,easy access,lots of room"

Cons: "doesn't have bluetooth"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have had it for over five years without any problems. I don't want to sell but need a truck for pulling fifth wheel."

9 people out of 16 found this review helpful

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