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ConsumerReports - First Look: 2006 Toyota RAV4

A quieter and roomier ride; V6 and third row are new options

Overview: Redesigned for 2006, the third-generation RAV4 is significantly larger than its predecessor, measuring 14.5-inches longer and 3.2-inches wider. It is now only slightly smaller than the midsized Toyota Highlander. For the first time, the RAV4 is even offered with an optional-albeit tight-third-row seat. The base, 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine produces 166 horsepower. A V6 is offered for the first time. Shared with the Toyota Avalon, the 3.5-liter engine makes 269 horsepower, besting the output of many larger, more expensive SUVs. Standard safety equipment includes traction control, electronic stability control, and antilock brakes. Side air bags and side-curtain air bags are optional. For an upcoming group test, we purchased a four-cylinder RAV4 Base that listed for $23,165.


More to read at the full article...

They say a full review of the RAV will be in their July issue (June on their website) -- too bad they only bought a four-cylinder... :?
 
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They are currently buying a V6 as well and will be writing up both of them for the June/July issue. One of the CR guys posted about it on their message boards recently. They have a blog describing a rather miserable buying experience with the 4 cylinder.
 
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From Part II of the Consumer Reports article:

"The clincher, and this is what really soured me on this whole deal, was that my salesman asked that when I receive the purchase satisfaction survey form from Toyota if I would be so kind as to fill it out with all “excellent” ratings as “my gift” to him. I just was put through the ringer at this dealership, and the word “excellent” wasn’t the term that first came to mind. I’ve purchased over 30 cars for CR, and this buying experience is among the worst. The salesperson even gave me a preprinted survey with all of the “excellent” boxes already filled in, “in case I need it.”"

BOY...this could have been OUR salesman! Our buying experience was just as bad, if not worse! I'm not sure if y'all saw my post in the Off Topic...if not...check it out:

http://rav4world.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=3365
 

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:lol: I hear ya Rav.. I hear horror stories of sales people that don't know their head from their... well.. you know.. and sure enough.. mine didn't know too much either.. He knew about the 4WD system and the engine, but when it came to the inside of the vehicle he had NO CLUE.. That was a bit dissapointing and I assure you that it WILL show if Toyota sends me a survey.. ;)
 

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I must agree with CR, the Toyota dealerships are no better than say, Nissan, Ford or VW. Toyota make a great car but the buying experience is not always good. Unlike the Lexus buying experience, which is excellent.
 

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Around here at least, the Toyota service departments always close earlier and are less convenient than the ones for Ford and GM (some of which have staffs doing repairs until midnight). You can take a vehicle in at 6pm and get it back at 9:30. Not Toyota. Also, the prices the Toyota service depts around here charge are obscene.
 
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The July issue will be out around the end of May/beginning of June.
 
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It has been my experience that the quality of the new car sales department in a dealership is INVERSELY proportional to the quality of the product they're selling.

Toyota and Honda dealers have always treated me pretty poorly, because their salespeople don't have to sell product, it sells itself. I've been much better treated at Mazda, Kia and others.

Obviously, there are exceptions (most Lexus dealers I've heard about are pretty good).
 
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