"Bought my 96 Rav4 new about 12 years ago. Has 132,000 miles on it. Finally died on the road a few months back. I thought it was going to be bye-bye. Turns out that I needed a new timing belt and water pump, and not a new engine like I thought. It's still the best car I've ever owned. Unfortunately, when I do buy a new car, it won't be another Rav4. I hate the new ones. What was Toyota thinking when they decided to "upsize" the perfect sized Rav4? They already have plenty of larger SUV's for those that desire a larger one (4Runner, Highlander, Sequoia, etc). I'll probably have to settle for something like a Honda Fit (hoping that they come out with a Hybrid soon)."
"We purchased our rav 4 "Toyo-Kun" four years ago with 65000 miles on the odometer. We now have 118000 miles with almost no maintainance whatsoever. We did the Timing belt at 100,000 per the maintainance schedule, and changed the shocks. Other than that, brakes, tires and an airconditioner re-charge. We have taken Toyo-kun to Massachusettes from Detroit straight through with no problems, other than some tough spots trying to climb steep hills in Northern PA on the way home. I find the interior very comfortable, and I'm 6'1 210 pounds. This vehicle handles excellently in winter, even in up to two feet of snow (yes, we have tested it!). With the seats folded down we can haul most anything we need to for everyday life. The downside is that "toyo-kun" is quite underpowered. The upside is we've been able to pull 28-31 mpg out of the mighty rav four on the highway, and around 26 cominbined city/highway. After nearly ten years, everything inside and out looks almost new, and the engine runs great. A great car indeed."
"As a mother, this car has it all: great on gas, very reliable, safe, does well in bad weather, and nice looking too!
Another thing I like about the RAV4 is that it is a smaller SUV. It has just the right amount of room for what I need and, like I mentioned before, dosn't use a ton of gas like the bigger SUV's.
The only thing that people might not like about the RAV4 is that it dosn't have much power. With the A/C on, you might have to hit the gas more to make it up that steep hill or getting on the highway.
Other than that, this car is flawless. I believe Toyota made a good move on making the RAV4."