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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I'm looking for advice. I want to buy a toyota RAV4 from the year 2009 to 2013, ideally with kms bellow 100k. I manage to save $15k (AUD) as I am only starting my career as a veterinarian this year. I'm looking for a reliable car, that can take me to rural farms and if needed I could sleep inside (when working in distant properties).
To be honest I don't have a lot of knowledge in cars in general. But I would like to know what people would recommend? Diesel vs petrol? Older car with less mileage vs newer car with more mileage? What should I look for when viewing a car?

Thank you for helping out!
Chris
 

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I moved your post to 4.3 since that covers 2006-2012, most of your years of interest.
Hopefully you'll get some advice from outside North America where most of our members reside. For instance we've never seen a Diesel RAV4 and don't have a standard shift option after 2005.
I will say tho that I don't pay any premiums for "low" mileage and would buy a newer one with higher mileage rather than older with lower.
 

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I would pick a petrol over diesel. They both have their advantages but petrol vehicle repairs are not as expensive as diesel I heard. Unlike Dr. Dyno I prefer a lower mileage vehicle since certain fluids such as transmission, transfer case, rear differential and coolant may not have been changed causing wear and high repair bills. This is only if you have no information when any maintenance was done and the owner did not take it to Toyota. You can save money buying a higher mileage vehicle but many times I see owners not replacing worn parts and deciding to sell their car instead. All the worn parts add up in a high mileage car in which you need to pay instead of the previous owner. Sometimes repairing/replacing all the worn parts for a high mileage car turn out not a great deal. Bought my used 2009 sport with 88,000km and was in top shape. The battery and tires were about 2 years old. The brakes for the front and rear were new. Tires and shocks/struts are expensive so factor that in when buying your vehicle.
 

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Since as Dr. Dyno said we don't have diesel RAV4s in North America suggest checking with a Euro-based forum for owner posts about diesel vs petrol and possible problems with each, for example: Home | RAV4 Drivers Club
 

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Your Humble Administrator
2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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Chris, I highly recommend you get one with the 3.5L V6 engine. It is very reliable and the most powerful engine the RAV4 ever had. Mine is 11 1/2 years old and still runs like new.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you JuneBug for the recommendation, I was looking online for the 3.5L V6 engine, does it only come in automatic transmission? I heard some issue with the 2013 RAV4 automatic transmission, does that apply for that car too you think? Thank you again for the help!
 

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In North America the V6 only comes with an automatic and I've never heard of one with a manual being available anywhere else either.
2012 was the last year for the V6, the 2013-on models have the 2.5L I4 and AFAIK all have automatics.
 

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Automatic transmissions are more reliable than the manual ones, if fluid is changed regularly. No expensive clutch replacement, no stress on the engine due to owner not shifting at the right times...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
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152653


Just as a reference, a car like this one would be ideal based on JuneBug comment? Thank you guys for helping, you all have been really helpful so far.
 

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It would be ideal based on ANY and ALL of us besides JuneBug who are driving V6 RAV4s!
 

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I think the only difference from the US to the Australian ones is the driving position and that they don't have the spare on the rear door... On the plus side, the rear door opens "correctly", not into traffic like for us.
 

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Your Humble Administrator
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Just as a reference, a car like this one would be ideal based on JuneBug comment? Thank you guys for helping, you all have been really helpful so far.
Oh, yeah, that's exactly what I was talking about!!
 
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