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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2015 RAV4 LE Long Brake Travel

Test drove one of the Canadian RAV4 LE (non-upgrade package---BTW, what's the deal with the Americans getting the BU camera on the base LE but in Canada you're forced to spend another 1500 to get the upgrade package?) Anyway, I was extremely impressed by the old school fit and finish and quality of the RAV4. It does drive more like a pickup but that's coming from someone that has never driven SUVs, CUV's etc. I get it, you have to get used to it, it's not going to drive like an HR-V.

Anyway to point: Is the long brake pedal travel normal? It seems like you have to press it way in, relative to any other car I've driven. They seem to get the job done but kind of don't inpsire a lot of confidence. They are definitely not "grabby" but they will stop hard if you have to (with a long push and a bit of nose dive).

Anyway I've read lots of posts that talk about the RAV4 brakes being a bit mushy but I just wanted to hear from owners as to what their experiences are. Are there differences in the brake travel across each individual build? Ie do some RAVs have tighter braking than others?

Thanks very much for any info!
 

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The LE trim in the US and Canada has smaller brakes than XLE and Limited. Interestingly, LE models sold in Mexico and Puerto Rico have bigger brakes, same size as XLE and Limited.

When I had an LE, I wasn't impressed with the RAV's brakes at all. Actually, I experienced two episodes that clearly pointed to brakes overheating in driving conditions under which they should have NOT overheated. I actually made a complaint to NHTSA about it. They also suffered from very pronounced fading and lose effectiveness after two-three hard stops in hot weather.

IMHO, LE's brakes are undersized for the size and weight of the vehicle. They are at least 1" smaller than any other small/compact CUV in the market. Also, the fact that Toyota is using larger brakes on the LE trim in Mexico and Puerto Rico (presumably to improve performance in hot weather / mountainous terrain) makes me think that Toyota put the smallest brakes needed to barely pass Federal tests requirements. Frankly, skimping on brakes to save a few dollars (at the expense of safety) doesn't make Toyota look good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the info. So the actual rotors are of smaller dimension on the US and CDN LE trim than XLE and Limited. Wow, I guess that explains it a bit. What about the brake pedal travel?
 

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Thanks for the info. So the actual rotors are of smaller dimension on the US and CDN LE trim than XLE and Limited. Wow, I guess that explains it a bit. What about the brake pedal travel?
Yes. LE rotors are 10.8", XLE and Limited (and Mexican LE) are 11.7". Also the master cylinder of the LE is smaller. The RAV LE has the smallest brakes in the category. Pedal travel was long, but no excessive.
 

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I recently purchased a 2015 RAV4 Limited. I too have noted the greater than usual play in the brake travel. Is there any way that this can be adjusted?
 

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My 2013 4.4 and last two 4.3's (06&10) have the mushy brake pedal feel. You get use to it. Still stops on a dime and gives nine cents change.
 

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I just searched Autozone for replacement rotors for my 2015 xle awd. They list fronts for all trim levels at 296 mm or 11.65 inches, and all rear trim levels at 281mm or 11.06 inches.


Where did you find the size difference?
 

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Yeah, I'm not seeing this at all. From the parts guides it looks like the Rav4 rotors haven't changed in years. Pads yes, rotors no. I'm certainly confused.
 

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As it frequently happens, Autozone part search is wrong.

Gen 3 RAV had two front rotor diameters:
275 mm for 4-cyl models without 3rd row seats
296 mm for 6-cyl models and models with 3rd row seats

The same brakes were carried-over to Gen 4 RAV
LE (USA and Canada) has the smaller rotors
XLE, Limited and Puerto Rico and Mexico LE have the bigger rotors

The same applies to the corresponding pads.

Attached are the official specs from Toyota.

My personal experience is that Autozone, PepBoys, etc. catalogs can only be trasted 50% of the time, especially when newer model-years are concerned.
 

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@katekebo,

That's really interesting stuff. Is there a way forward to swap out the caliper and rotor for the bigger setup on the 3rd gen? I wonder if that makes any sizable difference. Cars still use proportioning valves to control the front/rear bias?

I might try this because I'm totally bored working on fixing up this Lexus I've been at for too long..
 

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As it frequently happens, Autozone part search is wrong.

Gen 3 RAV had two front rotor diameters:
275 mm for 4-cyl models without 3rd row seats
296 mm for 6-cyl models and models with 3rd row seats

The same brakes were carried-over to Gen 4 RAV
LE (USA and Canada) has the smaller rotors
XLE, Limited and Puerto Rico and Mexico LE have the bigger rotors

The same applies to the corresponding pads.

Attached are the official specs from Toyota.

My personal experience is that Autozone, PepBoys, etc. catalogs can only be trasted 50% of the time, especially when newer model-years are concerned.
Where did you get the official specs from Toyota? There are some other things I want to check and would like to know where you found it.


Thanks
 

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Where did you get the official specs from Toyota? There are some other things I want to check and would like to know where you found it.


Thanks
Due to my profession / job I have access / subscription to a number of technical databases / libraries. I don't remember now where did I download that particular file from. But most of this stuff is copyrighted material so I can only share limited amount of it.

You can buy technical documentation / manuals directly from Toyota via a subscription service but it's pricey.
https://techinfo.toyota.com/
 

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Due to my profession / job I have access / subscription to a number of technical databases / libraries. I don't remember now where did I download that particular file from. But most of this stuff is copyrighted material so I can only share limited amount of it.

You can buy technical documentation / manuals directly from Toyota via a subscription service but it's pricey.
https://techinfo.toyota.com/
I see. Can you tell me what the weight is of the stock LE steel wheels on the latest generation?
 
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