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2014 Toyota RAV4

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2014 Toyota RAV4 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 6.9

While it’s true the RAV4 started the whole compact- crossover SUV genre, lately it has taken a backseat to competitors offering more features, better fuel economy and better styling. Some buyers may not like the deletion of the V6 engine option, but we think most will appreciate Toyota’s newfound commitment to better ergonomics and interior materials. Features such as a standard rearview camera show Toyota’s push toward customer safety. Another area important to consumers is fuel economy, and while not bad, the RAV4’s EPA numbers are bested by competitors such as the Mazda CX-5 and all-wheel-drive Subaru Forester. Likewise, the Mazda CX-5 and Ford Escape offer a more dynamic driving experience, while the Subaru Forester and VW Tiguan offer more powerful turbocharged engines. An all-electric version remains for sale in California.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you’re shopping for a compact SUV with good cargo space, a car-like ride and a low sticker price, the 2014 Toyota RAV4 is worth a look. Audio buffs will love the straightforward Entune audio system that includes apps and Bluetooth audio streaming. Those seeking an all-electric SUV will only find it in the 2014 RAV4 EV.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you’re looking for power, handling or off-road ability, the 2014 RAV4 won’t impress you. The AWD Subaru Forester offers a powerful turbocharged engine and is more capable when the road turns from asphalt to dirt. The Ford Escape and VW Tiguan also offer turbocharged engines and better handling.

What's New for 2014

The 2014 Toyota RAV4 gains four new Entune audio choices, including Entune Apps Suite on up-level trims. The Limited gets a new Technology Package option that includes Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Alert and Auto High Beam. The battery-powered model carries over unchanged and is based on the prior-generation RAV4.

Driving the RAV4
Driving Impressions

A short time behind the wheel of the Toyota’s RAV4 for 2014 reveals a vehicle that is well-balanced, quiet at highway speeds and smooth riding over most surfaces. Acceleration is...

... tepid but acceptable, with the RAV4 making the 0-60-mph run in under 10 seconds. To help when passing or merging, Toyota equips the RAV4 with a Sport mode that quickens throttle response and holds shift points longer; the Sport setting also firms up the steering feel. The system includes an Eco mode aimed at maximizing fuel economy at the expense of acceleration. Eco mode is fine if you’re not in a hurry, but we found the lazy throttle response annoying, leaving the system in the Normal mode for most of drive. The RAV4 EV, meanwhile, is surprisingly quick thanks to the peak torque of 273 lb-ft from its electric motor. In sport mode it can zip to 60 mph in seven seconds. In ordinary driving the RAV4 EV feels comfortable and composed. Its EPA-rated range is 103 miles.

BLIND-SPOT MONITORING
Once a safety feature reserved for luxury vehicles, this option is now available in the RAV4 to warn you when drivers enter the side area of your vehicle that you can’t see. Additionally, the system has Rear Cross Traffic Alert to warn you when other vehicles are approaching as you back up.

CAVERNOUS CARGO CAPACITY
Toyota’s team has worked their interior design magic to create a roomy RAV4. Cargo volume behind the front seats is a class-leading 73.4 cubic feet, and with rear seats that fold flat, all that real estate is easy to fill and use.

2014 Toyota RAV4 Details
2014 Toyota RAV4 photo Interior

The RAV4 for 2014 uses high-quality plastics and soft-touch surfaces to create a comfortable and inviting interior. Even base LE trims have contrasting colors, always a good antidote for blandness. The only piece out of step is faux carbon-fiber cladding around the doorsills and gearshift lever. Leather is no longer an option in top models, which now receive a leather-like material called Softex that's also in the RAV4 EV. We found the driver’s seat comfortable even in base models with cloth, and especially so in the Limited trim with Softex and added lumbar support. Rear legroom is good and the one-pull folding rear seats are easy to operate.

Exterior
2014 Toyota RAV4 photo

One of the biggest aspects of the RAV4’s 2014 design is something that’s missing: the spare tire that has resided on the rear of these SUVs ever since they were tiny 2-door runabouts in the mid-1990s. That isn’t the only relevant change at the RAV4’s posterior. The compact SUV has a rear door that swings up instead of out as on previous-generation RAV4s, making it easier to access and helping shield you from rain as you load groceries. Top-line Limited models feature a power liftgate that can be adjusted to raise to a customized height. The limited-production Toyota RAV4 electric vehicle retains a modified body from the last-generation RAV4.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2014 RAV4 is available in three trims: LE, XLE and Limited. Base LE models come nicely equipped with 6-speed automatic transmission, Entune 6.1-inch touch screen, rearview camera, Bluetooth connectivity, AM/FM/CD system with six speakers and auxiliary/USB inputs. XLE trims add a power moonroof, Entune with HD Radio and iTunes tagging, 17-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, and front seats with extra bolstering and French stitching. Limited models get a power liftgate, Softex leather-like seating (heated in front), 18-inch wheels, leather-trimmed steering wheel, Entune Premium audio with navigation and apps and push-button starting. All 2014 RAV4s have eight airbags (six for EV models), stability/traction control, and two years/25,000 miles complimentary maintenance. RAV4 EVs are loaded with dual-zone climate control, navigation and Toyota's Entune smartphone-enabled system.

Optional Equipment

All RAV4 trims except the EV can be equipped with all-wheel drive, which enhances traction in wet weather and on dirt roads. Other options vary by trim level and include a navigation system with Toyota’s Entune telematics system that includes voice recognition and various apps for everything from making reservations to finding sports scores, JBL premium audio system with 11 speakers, and blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. For the RAV4 EV, a Level 2, Leviton 240-volt home charging system is available.

Under the Hood

The 2014 RAV4 is powered by a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine that makes 176 horsepower, enough to get the SUV up to speed in a decent – but not the quickest – manner. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard and all-wheel drive (AWD) is optional. The RAV4 will eagerly tow up to 1,500 pounds. The limited-production RAV4 EV has an AC induction motor, lithium-ion battery, and single-speed automatic transmission. All RAV4 EV models are front-wheel drive and not rated for towing. Charging can take over 40 hours on a standard 120-volt outlet, but decreases to as low as five hours on a 40-amp, 240-volt outlet.

2.5-liter inline-4
176 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
172 lb-ft of torque @ 4,100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 24/31 mpg (FWD), 22/29 mpg (AWD)

AC induction motor
154 horsepower
273 lb-ft torque
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 78/74 mpg equivalent
Range on a full charge: 103 miles

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2014 Toyota RAV4 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.2
Out of 10

Based on 120 Ratings for the 2013 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    8.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.2/10
    Styling
    8.3/10

Horrible Gas Mileage

By on Thursday, July 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 47,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
2/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "comfortable seating, nice sound system, roomie"

Cons: "very poor gas mileage, road noise in cabin"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 4

"Driving this vehicle was nice because it handled so well and I experienced no issues whatsoever with it mechanically prior to selling. There were only a few disappointments, but they weren't small ones. The atrocious gas mileage it obtained was a huge drain on my bank account and the high degree of road noise in the cabin was most obnoxious. Also worth mentioning is the fact that the nav/radio/system screen was very difficult, and at times nearly impossible, to see during daylight driving. Considering the overall expense of my experience with this SUV, from the inital purchase price to the many dollars spent on gas, I have to rate the overall value of the vehicle poorly. I've elected to sell it for a more economical form of transportation and feel sure I'll have no regret!"

12 people out of 18 found this review helpful

Worst experience, already repaired twice

By on Thursday, July 7, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,100

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
4/10
Reliability
3/10
Quality
2/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "comfortable roomy, stable, good lookng"

Cons: "Rubbery brakes, low mileage, wind and road noise"

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

"I heard good things about toyota and RAV4 and thought it to be a safe buy. Its just 3 months old, 3000 miles RAV4 XLE. Already been to service center 3 times and two repairs done on the car. Brakes were faulty and mechanised back door just wont open. Disappointed with Toyota quality and service. Had heard about their reputation for both these things but experienced the opposite. Service centre in Avenel - sad, harried consultants/ engineers. Not even ready to commit time of delivery. Empty water bottles and no glasses in service centre, leave aside any beverages. Will never buy a toyota again."

8 people out of 13 found this review helpful

Hybrid great mileage. Road noise & bumps disappoin

By on Sunday, July 3, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 250

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Hybrid pep, extra 8mpg, front center visibility"

Cons: "Doesn't absorb road bumps. Noisy road noise under"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"2016 Hybrid Limited. While I've only had this car a couple of days & drove only 250 miles, initial impressions are as follows; Good front visibility, highway noise from side-traffic is good but from underneath, asphalt between 25-45mph is noisy, at highway cruise speed much better 55-75mph. May be Yokohama tires. Ask to switch to Michelin if you can before delivery. Side street bumps you feel every one of them. Glove compartment box kept opening - no latch, just a snap in catch. They seem to have fixed it next day. Weather-tech hasn't made rear seat floor liners for the hybrid vehicle yet. Rear cargo slopes up at rear of back cargo area but I knew that before I bought it. Cargo space seems the same as my 2013 prius yet suppose to be one of the best. Hybrid loses 3 cubic ft. Rear leg room not as good as my prius or Forester. Technology package is great for an easily distracted driver like me, lane departure warning, side passing car side mirror warning, camera birds eye great for staying within parking lines while parking. I wonder if the bells & whistles of the Limited vs. the XLE are worth the extra$$. If I did it over, I might go for the Hybrid XLE vs. Limited. Hybrid pep pickup is worth it 174 vs 194 horse power not to mention the extra 8mpg. Little bit of roll for tight exit turnoffs but certainly acceptable. Not tight like a sports car. Great car if looking for economy, value & a car consumer reports rates as one of the best for reliability. Boston Bandit!"

9 people out of 13 found this review helpful

great buy

By on Tuesday, June 21, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 200

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

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

"I absolutely love it. I also own the camry and was skeptical... I was pleasantly surprised. The driver seat is not as comfortable as I would like, however everything else is fabulous."

8 people out of 12 found this review helpful

RAV4 Hybrid is AMAZING

By on Thursday, June 16, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,500

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
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Price, Value, Quality Feel of Materials, MPG"

Cons: "Stereo, Cruise Control, Acceleration"

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

"I drive a lot, and needed something more economical. I test drove a Subaru Forester and Honda CRV. What sold me on this Rav4 Hybrid was the value, financing, and reliability Toyotas are known for. I purchased the Hybrid Limited model. I like all of the tech stuff (navigation, reads your text messages, traffic, xm, etc.) along with the safety items (blind spot monitoring, lane departure, adaptive cruise control, park assist). This vehicle feels very well built, sturdy, and most of the textured surfaces you come in contact with feel like they came from something more expensive. The fake leather sport seats are nice looking, too! Minor complaints would be the steering is a little vague and non-communicative, and it's not the fastest vehicle (although it is faster than the regular Rav4).I would also say the adaptive cruise control can be a little sensitive, wanting to keep you too far from the vehicle in front of you (it's probably right, though). Spring for the JBL sound system, though. I'm a music teacher and I'm underwhelmed with the quality of the standard sound system on the Limited. The best part about this Rav4 Limited Hybrid is the mileage. It's rated 34 city 31 highway and I have consistently been averaging 37-38 miles per gallon out of entire tanks of gas. It is a fun game to see how long you can keep it in electric mode before the engine kicks in. I traded in my beloved BMW X3 for this vehicle and I have not looked back! If you're in the market for a sharp-dressed vehicle with all wheel drive and you're on a budget, this one is it. The sharp LED running lights AND headlights are very snazzy as well! Thank you Toyota!"

8 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Great vehicle for all around driving.

By on Thursday, June 16, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

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

"It is well equipped. It handles very well for a small SUV and the engine performed well even when fully loaded. I drive it almost a 100 miles a day and have had no mechanical problem with it during the 3 years I owned the vehicle."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

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