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I am looking at buying a rav4 to commute to college. My sister as a 2001 with the 4cyl in it and it has been pretty trouble free. Im looking at buying that era 01-05 4cyl or possibly 2006-11 4cyl or 6cyl.

I don't know much about the newer models or possible issues. I was considering getting a 6cyl but not sure of the mpg or reliability? I was only thinking the 6cyl so i can use the hitch for little stuff. Main goal is mpg and reliable. I have a 3/4 ton truck but thats going to kill my wallet commuting. any suggestions?
Thank you!
 

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Your Humble Administrator
2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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If you go with a 4.2 model, stick with the 2004-2005 models. They have a better engine, and don't suffer from the transmission ECM problems the earlier ones have. If you can afford it, I would recommend a 2009 or later with the V6. You don't want the 2006-2008 4 cylinder models, they have oil consumption problems. The 4.3 was updated for the 2009 model year, and the V6 would be excellent for your commute, getting almost the same mileage as the I4.
 

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If you go with a 4.2 model, stick with the 2004-2005 models.
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You don't want the 2006-2008 4 cylinder models, they have oil consumption problems.
Actually, it's my understanding that 2004 was the first model year to use the same 4-cylinder engine that was in the 2006-2008 models, so it and the 2005 had the same oil consumption issues.

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Your Humble Administrator
2008 RAV4 Limited V6
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Actually, it's my understanding that 2004 was the first model year to use the same 4-cylinder engine that was in the 2006-2008 models, so it and the 2005 had the same oil consumption issues.

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Yeah, but the funny thing about that is I never hear any of the 2004-2005 owners complaining about oil consumption from their 2AZ-FE engines. I wonder if something was changed on that engine for the 2006 model year?
 

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Yeah, but the funny thing about that is I never hear any of the 2004-2005 owners complaining about oil consumption from their 2AZ-FE engines. I wonder if something was changed on that engine for the 2006 model year?
Woah, that is WEIRD. I did some poking around online and discovered that the first few articles I hit all mentioned 2006-2008 RAV4, but not 2004 or 2005. They mentioned some other flavors of Toyotas, but none before 2006 or after 2009.

Maybe they changed piston ring (or other component) manufacturers when 2006 came along?

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