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Hi All,

So I've been looking to get a new vehicle and the hybrid RAV4 seems to be the vehicle that has most of what I want out of a car, but I had 2 quick questions.

First...how does this vehicle do in the snow? I don't need it to be anything crazy, just something that can get me to work in the winters in the next town over, be able to get to my mom a few miles away, etc. I live in southeastern PA, so we rarely get anything too crazy. I've been able to more or less make-due with a non-AWD 2009 Nissan Versa, to give you an idea of what kinds of winters I'm up against.

My other question is about maintenance. I've never had a hybrid vehicle so I was just wondering...will the this vehicle have any expensive maintenance down the road that a normal vehicle would not have? Also, just because I'm paranoid but don't know a ton about vehicles...is the tire size for this vehicle a common one? The only reason I wonder about this is because a buddy of mine bought a car a few years back that apparently has a very uncommon tire size so when he has to get new tires its fairly expensive for him.

Thank you to anyone that can provide me with any information, I appreciate it.
 

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Its AWD and heavy. Snow shouldn't be a problem.

Maintenance is actually less than the gas model in the long term, (100K+ miles). The hybrid system is warranted for 8/72k.

The 18" tires on the Limited can be difficult to replace. The 17" on the XLE not so much.
 

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Maintenance is actually less than the gas model in the long term, (100K+ miles). The hybrid system is warranted for 8/72k.
As has been stated above, maintance cost is less not more than all gas....surprised me too!
I struggle to see how maintenance would be less than the gasoline-only model given that it has pretty much all the things the gasoline-only model has (same 4-cylinder engine, needs oil changes, plugs eventually, etc., same wheels and brakes, exhaust, etc. albeit a very different "transmission"). Plus (of course) it has added complexity for the electric portion of the hybrid system (large battery, extra motors, the control systems for them coordinating with the internal combustion engine, etc.).

And what if you need to replace the battery pack, for example after 8 years?

How exactly would maintenance costs be less, particularly (as mentioned) in the long term???

I didn't see any facts or even clues backing up that statement.

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R4H performance in snow:

[Snip]
It would be a *lot* easier to believe those results if they would have stated that all the vehicles tested were using the exact same make and model of tires.

Differences in tires can make a HUGE difference in the results for those kinds of winter driving tests.

The comments on the original YouTube page repeat that question, and are interesting.

I'm *not* saying I think it does poorly for winter driving conditions, but I am saying that these specific claims are literally meaningless without information provided about which tires were on each vehicle during the testing. That information appears to be missing from both the video itself and the YouTube page comments for the video when "NYToyotaTraining" published it.

Context and data are everything.

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I change oil & filter on my Hybrid Accord about every 5K just like my I've done on my other cars from forever. Never had another problem except for some reason the "regular" 12V battery only lasts two years. The RAV4 Hybrid is more complicated but with Toyota's exemplary Prius record I wouldn't give "extra" maintenance another thought.
I also give little credence to any contrived traction tests as they have little to do with real driving conditions.
 

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I struggle to see how maintenance would be less than the gasoline-only model given that it has pretty much all the things the gasoline-only model has
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Perhaps what you are really struggling with is a lack of knowledge of the hybrid system, and how very different the wear and tear (or lack of it) on the ICE effects reliability and maintenance. A mile on the car is not the same as a mile on the ICE, in fact the car can go miles without using the ICE. The drive system itself is elegantly simple and suffers almost no wear at all. 300,000 miles on a hybrid system is common in taxis with no major repairs.
 

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... A mile on the car is not the same as a mile on the ICE (gas engine), in fact the car can go miles without using the ICE.
That's not the same as my Accord since it can't run electric-only. the Accord does however have a conditions monitoring oil change interval readout which often goes well beyond 5,000 odometer miles.
Seems the RAV4 Hybrid should have a similar system especially taking into account miles where the gas engine isn't running. Sure'd like to here a relevant quote from the owners manual.
 

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The owner's manual is readily available to download and read. Feel free. Oil changes are at 10K miles BTW.
 

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Perhaps what you are really struggling with is a lack of knowledge of the hybrid system, and how very different the wear and tear (or lack of it) on the ICE effects reliability and maintenance. A mile on the car is not the same as a mile on the ICE, in fact the car can go miles without using the ICE. The drive system itself is elegantly simple and suffers almost no wear at all. 300,000 miles on a hybrid system is common in taxis with no major repairs.
Maintenance is more than just about the ICE. If one were to argue that maintenance for the ICE was lower because the motors are there to take some of the load, I can believe that.

But the original statement about maintenance costs for the R4H being lower was a sweeping, broad statement which (to me) clearly implied that the entire vehicle would have lower maintenance costs than a gasoline-only version "long term," with no time limit specified:

Maintenance is actually less than the gas model in the long term, (100K+ miles). The hybrid system is warranted for 8/72k.
It's my understanding that electric motors have components that eventually burn out, and bearings that can wear out. Motors don't last forever. There *is* wear and tear.

It's also my understanding that battery packs eventually lose their effectivity and need to be replaced, and on the Toyota hybrids those battery packs cost at least several thousand dollars to replace.

If one were to clarify something like "If you get rid of your RAV4 Hybrid before you have to replace the battery pack or other hybrid-specific components, then maintenance costs are lower" I could believe that. However, one would simply be passing those added maintenance costs for the extra components that exist on to the next owner.

But there were no clarifications like that. It was an overarching, sweeping, sales-style statement, the details of which are what I question.

Many people keep their vehicles for more than 8 years and/or more than 72,000 miles. I sure do!

It's my understanding that while the hybrid spreads the load over more and higher tech components (to eventually replace), in the "long term," physics dictates TANSTAAFL: there ain't no such thing as a free lunch. Having additional components means there's more to eventually replace.

Looking at the context of the original question:

will the this vehicle have any expensive maintenance down the road that a normal vehicle would not have?
perhaps you can now better understand my confusion with the original response.

Am I wrong? If so, how? Please educate me.

Thanks!

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I suppose a person could argue that the Toyota hybrid's 20 year history of industry leading reliability and low operating costs can't possible exist. But the fact is that it does.
 

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I suppose a person could argue that the Toyota hybrid's 20 year history of industry leading reliability and low operating costs can't possible exist. But the fact is that it does.
That's my reasoning too before I took the plunge.
Other makes will have some equivalent models similar or better than R4H in very near future for sure. Adverts and reviews will give these competitors great write ups but R4H's tested and proven technology is all things considered still the safest buy at the moment.
 

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Don't forget the common wear parts. My previous hybrid went 5 years, 120,000km and never had a brake part replaced! I can't see keeping a car that long (8 years or more). Never have.
 

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I suppose a person could argue that the Toyota hybrid's 20 year history of industry leading reliability and low operating costs can't possible exist. But the fact is that it does.
I can't argue with it at all. Other than our scion, which is made by Toyota, we only have Toyotas in our driveway because they just last and are super dependable.:D
 

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Toyota Prius Taxi Running Strong With 600,000 Miles And Original Battery

Toyota Prius Taxi Running Strong With 600,000 Miles And Original Battery

by Sarah Shelton July 21, 2015

For those questioning the lifespan of a Toyota Prius battery, one taxi driver has 621,000 reasons why there’s no cause for concern.

That’s approximately how many miles one man has logged in his Prius taxi. Manfred Dvorak, a cab driver in Austria, tells the story of his 621,000-mile (one-million kilometer) Prius in a series of videos posted by Toyota Austria.

“The figure of one million kilometers itself speaks to its excellence,” Dvorak said of his Prius. “Even if the engine survives [in other cars], the other parts will break down. But this is not the case with this vehicle. It still continues to run well, even now.”

He paused for a moment to try to recall if the Prius has ever broken down before stating, “Nope, never.”

In a second video, Dvorak talked about how much fun the high-mileage Prius is to drive, with the car still maintaining its ability to quickly accelerate and handle the mountain curves with ease.

“The acceleration is very good,” explained Dvorak. “I’m sure the drivers I have overtaken feel the same way.”

Of course, these are promotional videos created and released by Toyota. It doesn’t appear that Dvorak has given an interview to any other news source (at least within the U.S.), so it’s difficult to verify his story.

But his claims of 621,000 miles on an original Prius battery aren’t implausible.

Taxis in general see far more wear and tear than most other cars on the road. In the U.S., the average taxi logs 70,000 miles each year (according to the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission). Compare that to the 13,000 miles most household vehicles travel annually. These aren’t easy miles, either, with taxicabs spending a significant portion of time navigating stop-and-go traffic, which wears heavily on a vehicle’s powertrain.

Even looking beyond the realm of service vehicles, it still doesn’t appear that Dvorak’s taxi is a singular exception of a long-running Prius battery pack.

In the San Jose Mercury News, Gary Richards listed more than half a dozen examples of Prius owners reporting mileage in the neighborhood of 200,000 miles on the original battery. Only one had ever needed to replace the battery, and that was after seven and a half years of use. One owner even rolled over 530,000 miles before a collision took the Prius off the road permanently.

“The only problem that I had regarding the battery was a cooling issue that occurred due to dog hair sucked into and clogging the battery cooling fan located below the rear seat,” remarked the 530,000-mile Prius owner. “Toyota did not design an air filter for this rear seat vent. It is probably the only design flaw I would mention about the car.”

Consumer Reports has also tested to see if Prius batteries lost effectiveness after a long time.

“We hooked up a 2002 Toyota Prius with nearly 208,000 miles on the clock to our testing instruments and compared the results to the nearly identical 2001 Prius we tested 10 years ago,” said Consumer Reports editors in 2011.

“We found very little difference in performance when we tested fuel economy and acceleration,” they concluded. “Our testers were also amazed how much the car drove like the new one we tested 10 years ago. We were also surprised to learn that the engine, transmission, and even shocks were all original.”

“So is an old Prius a still a good value?” asked the editors. “We think so.”
 

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A couple quotes from the latest Green Car Reports Prius battery replacement article June 2016)

http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1078138_toyota-hybrid-battery-replacement-cost-guide

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Replacement is rare

The first, and most reassuring thing you should know about these battery packs, is that replacement is a rare occurrence.​


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Little to worry about

Whatever you think of the prices above, it's worth reiterating that replacement batteries are the exception rather than the norm.

The vast majority of owners will never incur the cost of a replacement unit, as proven by any number of Priuses used as taxis for as many as 300,000 miles.

For the few owners who do require a pack replacement, the prices above give you an indication of what to expect--and the reality isn't quite as dramatic as many people suspect.

If your car is out of warranty, however, check out those third-party hybrid-specialty shops.​





http://www.go2gbo.com/forums/round-the-%27ole-pot-bellied-stove/drove-an-electric-car-yesterday/69/?action=reporttm;msg=1100412009
 
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