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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, we are shopping around and looking for 4.3 Rav4 limited 4x4 model.

Just curious about this car and have lots of silly questions.

Can someone help me a bit if you know the answer? Highly appreciated everyone feedback.

Here is some background about our family. I am buying the car for family use. My wife will drive it daily for grocery and school/daycare. I will drive it during weekend since my wife hates driving. She is petite woman and I am big (fat). We have 1 child and ready for school this September. We live in north NJ and always commute to NYC during weekend.


1) Rav4 Limited I4 4WD - do you prefer 2012 or older model? We are looking for 2012 model and hopefully low mileage.

2) I am seeking for power seats. Is it standard on all 4.3 RAV4 Limited I4?

3) Backup monitor - is it standard feature on 2012 Limited RAV4 I4 model?

4) Any suggestion for 4.3 RAV4 I4 all season tires? (Living in New Jersey apartment,so I don't have storage for winter tires)

We prefer tires are safe to drive on bad weather and winter weather. Also we prefer minimize road noise and comfortable ride for the children who constantly eating and drinking in the backseat.

5) Overall do you recommend 4.3 or 4.4 Rav4 limited model?

Sorry for being tedious, lots of questions from Honda fans. Hope to try Toyota since my wife has been Toyota fans.
 

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1) Rav4 Limited I4 4WD - do you prefer 2012 or older model? We are looking for 2012 model and hopefully low mileage.
If you're getting the 4-cylinder version, get one that's at least Model Year 2009 or newer. Older than that had a different engine, many of which burned crazy amounts of oil.

I believe the only noticeable difference between the 2012 and previous back to 2009 is that 2012 radios had USB input.

2) I am seeking for power seats. Is it standard on all 4.3 RAV4 Limited I4?
I believe that's true, but note that only the driver's seat was powered. The front passenger seat was manually adjusted, and in the 4.3 Limited there was no "seat memory" for the power driver's seat.

3) Backup monitor - is it standard feature on 2012 Limited RAV4 I4 model?
I believe that's true. The backup camera image can be seen in the rear view mirror.

4) Any suggestion for 4.3 RAV4 I4 all season tires? (Living in New Jersey apartment,so I don't have storage for winter tires)...
I'm going to abstain, as that's a hornet's nest of a question.

5) Overall do you recommend 4.3 or 4.4 Rav4 limited model?
That's up to personal preference. The 4.3 Limited had some things the 4.4 (any flavor) doesn't, such as a 110V outlet in the back seats, back seats that slide back and forth, almost 1.5" more ground clearance, 1" more head room front and back, 3" wider rear seat, a full-sized spare tire, massive underfloor storage bins in the rear, sunglasses holder for the driver, and many other things.

The 4.4 has things the 4.3 didn't, or different things, such as the backup camera being displayed on the radio screen (but major sun glare issues), a liftgate in the back vs. the 4.3's swing gate, some more soft-touch type materials, generally more comfortable front seats (though some people find them miserable, apparently it's a love-it-or-hate-it thing).

Of most important note, though, the 4.4 has a 6-speed transmission vs. the 4.3 4-cylinder's pretty lame 4-speed transmission. The 4.4's fuel economy is a little better, too, owing mostly to the transmission.

Many people complain of the stiff, harsh ride in the 4.4, especially the Limited version, which has bigger 18" wheels, thus less rubber sidewall in the tires to absorb bumps.

I suggest you test drive them both, and pay particularly close attention to the ride on rougher roads and seat comfort, as most people don't seem to pay close enough attention to those things on test drives.

For the 4-cylinder model, it would be a tough call for me, though I think I'd stick with the 4.3 Limited for the rear underfloor storage bins, smoother ride, full-sized spare tire and extra ground clearance (it snows where I am), more than anything.

Best of luck.

.
 
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If I were to buy a 4 Banger it would be a 4.4.....I don't think I would call the under floor storage massive since a gallon of water or milk will not fit standing up without the lid hitting but they do come in handy for smaller items and you can even carry those collapsible chairs in them.....the back up camera in the rear view mirror is a total joke as is the stock stereo system.....none of them ride like a Cadillac but they handle well.....with the 4.4 I feel the interior is nicer and laid out better.....you get better headlights......I think the 6 speed auto also has manual control as well......they both are great for large men and small women.....my wife hated my grand Cherokee but loves my rav.....if it were me buying a 4 cylinder it would be the 4.4 BUT....and it's a big but.......the 4.4 doesn't offer the v6 and I would not own the 4 cylinder so the 4.4 is out.....the power and performance of the v6 trumps all else LOL.....as suggested drive several of both generations to see what YOU like.....I don't think you will go wrong either way...
 

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BUT....and it's a big but.......the 4.4 doesn't offer the v6 and I would not own the 4 cylinder so the 4.4 is out.....the power and performance of the v6 trumps all else
Amen, brother!

Take a V6 for a spin and you'll probably never look back.

I don't think you will go wrong either way...
Agreed.

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It's also a question of budget. Like others have said, drive both and decide for yourself.

The hidden cargo area in the 4.3 is indeed very handy. I have an emergency kit, an axe, booster cables, tools, ropes, emergency kit when your stuck in ice and some other [email protected] in there :) but you would not know unless you look under!

But the 6-speed in the 4.4 is indeed very tempting.

Comfortable tires for both summer and winter, go with General Tire RT43, 102 H rating. Very decent tires for the price.
 

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The hidden cargo area in the 4.3 is indeed very handy. I have an emergency kit, an axe, booster cables, tools, ropes, emergency kit when your stuck in ice and some other [email protected] in there :) but you would not know unless you look under!
I keep a ton of stuff in mine too, including jumper cables, basic tool kit, trailer hitch ball and ball mount, tow straps, first aid kit, flares (battery-based), bungee cords, Swiss army knife, ratchet tie-down straps, clothes line, trash bags, towels, air compressor, tire plug kit and probably a few other things I can't remember.

In the summer I have a fire extinguisher as well (marine-rated) and in the winter I have big boots, socks, warm gloves, wool hat, winter coat, candles, tin cup, granola bars, and a collapsible shovel.

It's several cubic feet of extremely useful storage, all below the rear floor so it takes up no "regular" cargo space.

I'm kind of liking the axe idea, or at least a hatchet...

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[...]
The hidden cargo area in the 4.3 is indeed very handy. I have an emergency kit, an axe, booster cables, tools, ropes, emergency kit [...]
Exactly what I use if for, and it is correct storage for a state law that requires that a firearm not be easily accessible from the interior. Then there is the middle hidden compartment where I keep nothing because it is a PITA to get to.
 

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Sounds like you've got a start on the kit in "Supernatural".
I gave up on that show after the 2nd episode. Did they ever replace that burned out headlight?

As for the rear storage compartment, I have among other things, a rubber mat to cover the cargo area, a Q-beam light, tool kit, an assortment of ty-raps, a couple of bungie cords, and a vacuum packed space bag containing a complete change of clothes. Sometimes I have my laptop back there. No jumper cables, though, because when the battery is dead you can't open the rear cargo door. I keep the jumper cables in the front narrow compartment for that reason.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you for everyone's input. We really appreciate them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Just want to give everyone the ending credit scene of my story.

I finally purchased 2011 Rav 4 Limited with JBL speaker. The price is very good, I also get the certified Toyota platinum care (8 year /100K) in case anything happen. The finance manager offer me a price much cheaper than the "Buying an Extended Warranty? READ THIS FIRST!!" thread.

Before I buy this car, I have the correct expectation on it already. This is not a Lexus RX, don't expect you driving a luxury car. This is not the latest Nissan Rogue SL level. Technology definitely can't catch up with 2015 new cars. I just want a comfortable, reliable ride, with enough leg room at the back (thank you for the sliding feature at the back).

After own it for month, I can tell you I am very satisfied. Thank you everyone convincing me to buy used Rav4 4.3 generation, this is a hidden gem. A lot of people trade-in for the 4.4 generation, in my eyes, I rather keep the 4.3 generation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
2011Rav 4 limited, 4 cylinder with JBL stereo. 53000 miles. Toyota certified Perfect condition. 1 owner, every 4K miles dealership service records on carfax. All Tires were replaced around 40000 miles in 2014. Michelin latitude tour hp.

$16500 car price
$920 Toyota Platinum Care 8 yr/100k
Doc fees, sales tax etc.

Old school dealer, no aggressive sales and no greedy nonstop selling finance manger. I didn't bargain hard because they are offering reasonable price. Maybe I am too nice to people.


Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Good for you and yours. Enjoy your ride. Read more here about various maintenance items.
 

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Looks like you got a good deal and a good RAV! 2011 was a vintage year for RAVs :wink!!
Hope that you enjoy it.
 
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