Reliability - 4WD vs. FWD - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#1 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 01:32 AM
germ79
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Reliability - 4WD vs. FWD

My wife and I are looking at the '06 Rav4. We are Toyota people and just love how reliable they are.

I would kind of like to have a 4WD Rav4, but I was wondering if they are less reliable or will not last as long as the FWD version. It seems like there would be more parts to fail or wear out.

Can anyone shed some light on this for me?

Thanks so much!

Jeremy
 
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#2 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 03:03 AM
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of course that there are more parts in AWD than FWD versions, however Rav4 never had any problems with its AWD drive.
 
#3 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 05:16 PM
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The way 4WD is designed in RAV4, you basically have FWD unless wheel slip is detected or you use the lock button. Thus, there should be very little wear of the 4WD clutch. The rear diff and axles should last very long time, especially since there is rarely any load. Same with the shaft.
This is unlike the AWD, in lets say Subaru, where there is always power to rear wheels and the center diff is a wear item and can be even busted by uneven tire circumference.

At some point Toyota had problems with AWD in some Lexus cars (IIRC), but this should not apply to RAV4.

As you can see I recently abandoned the subaru camp.

RAV4 rules!
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#4 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 07:16 PM
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Germ79 - Here's something that our leader provided a while back on another thread. See page 5 for the image on how the 4WD system works http://www.rav4world.com/tsb/2006/2006_4wdsystem.pdf
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#5 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 08:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by friendly_jacek
This is unlike the AWD, in lets say Subaru, where there is always power to rear wheels and the center diff is a wear item and can be even busted by uneven tire circumference.
RAV4 rules!
Are you speaking from personal experience? I hope you didn't do something silly like replacing a tire with a brand new one while the other 3 tires already got 50K mi on them. I have 173K+ mi on my 97 Impreza Outback Sports with no AWD issue. The center diff on the Subie is a sealed unit and requires no maintenance. The only complaint I have is the lowered MPG with AWD.
 
#6 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epicurux
Quote:
Originally Posted by friendly_jacek
This is unlike the AWD, in lets say Subaru, where there is always power to rear wheels and the center diff is a wear item and can be even busted by uneven tire circumference.
RAV4 rules!
Are you speaking from personal experience? I hope you didn't do something silly like replacing a tire with a brand new one while the other 3 tires already got 50K mi on them. I have 173K+ mi on my 97 Impreza Outback Sports with no AWD issue. The center diff on the Subie is a sealed unit and requires no maintenance. The only complaint I have is the lowered MPG with AWD.
LOL, not my personal, but from posters on USMB frequently complaining about "torque bind" issue. It was a pain to replace 4 tires when 1 blew though. I went through this ordeal twice.
MPG sucked too. I'm getting same MPG in V6 RAV4 as I had in 00 subaru legacy wagon with H4.
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#7 (permalink) Old 07-08-2006, 10:11 PM
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Is the Rav4 the same where you have to replace all 4 tires if one fails? I wouldn't think so, but I want to make sure!

Thanks for all of your replies everyone!

Jeremy
 
#8 (permalink) Old 07-09-2006, 03:22 PM
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Actually the 4WD RAV starts off in 4 wheel mode everytime you move from a stop, so it is constantly operating the system.

From the tech manual...

1) Starting Off
 The system ensures start-off performance by optimally distributing the entire drive torque, which is
transmitted by the engine, to the front and rear wheels.
 To prevent the tight corner braking phenomenon from occurring during low-speed cornering, the
system reduces the amount of torque distribution to the rear wheels.

Also I have felt something happening sometimes when the brakes are lightly applied...

The system disengages 4WD during braking deceleration.
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#9 (permalink) Old 07-09-2006, 09:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarnyFife
Actually the 4WD RAV starts off in 4 wheel mode everytime you move from a stop, so it is constantly operating the system.

From the tech manual...

1) Starting Off
 The system ensures start-off performance by optimally distributing the entire drive torque, which is
transmitted by the engine, to the front and rear wheels.
 To prevent the tight corner braking phenomenon from occurring during low-speed cornering, the
system reduces the amount of torque distribution to the rear wheels.

Also I have felt something happening sometimes when the brakes are lightly applied...

The system disengages 4WD during braking deceleration.
That is true but how much time you spend in 1st gear?

As for the equal tire circumference question, I did not see that requirement in my RAV4 manual. No surprising in the light of the "on demand", limited nature of the RAV4's 4WD.
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#10 (permalink) Old 07-11-2006, 09:47 AM
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I think the verdict is still out when the reliability of this type of 4WD is concerned. This so call electronic 4WD have been on the market less than 10 years, but so far so good. It seems like there are less mechanical part to wear out but it not as heavy duty as its mechanical counter part. If you don’t do much off road and use the 4WD system for slippery on road conditions, then the RAV4 should be fine.
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