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Do other Toyotas or even other brands have the storage space under the back floor like on the Rav4? I carry a lot of stuff with me and really like that it all fits under there. I had a 2012 Jeep Liberty that would've been lucky to get a few magazines in the joke of the storage thing they had in the back. Does the Highlander have it? Or any of the Lexus models? Or if anyone's seen it maybe under the back of the new Ford Explorer Sport? I also have gear under the back seats. Do any other SUVs have that gap the Rav4 does? Most of the ones I've seen go right to the floor so there's no room there, either.
 

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It is my understanding that the vast majority of vehicles - including the RAV4 since 2013 - keep the spare tire in that location (either inside under the floor, or under the vehicle on a crank-down cable system) because most people are so shallow they don't like the "ugly" spare tire on the back, and want their precious lift gate for a rear door instead of a swing gate.

One of the costs for that for most vehicles in this class is that means the loss of a full-sized spare tire and being stuck with a small "training wheel" temporary spare (except for some Jeep Cherokees, but they suffer HORRIBLY for rear cargo space at all, even above the floor).

But the other cost is the loss of the massively useful underfloor storage bins we have in our awesome 3rd gen RAV4s. In fact, that was one of the main reasons I chose the RAV4 over the competition, as it was easy to see the 4.3 was designed for usefulness. My underfloor storage bins are currently chock full of "winter survival kit" stuff with no loss of regular cargo space at all, and nothing sliding around back there. It's utterly brilliant.

Yes, for those that have the spare tire inside under the floor, there tends to be small pockets of storage around the tire and maybe a very little bit on the tire itself, but the tire itself takes up the vast majority of the space and the pockets tend to be very oddly shaped.

I suspect the only way you're ever going to find something remotely similar is to either:

1) Find another vehicle with the spare tire on the back with a swing gate (a Jeep something?), e.g. same basic design, or

2) Drive around with no spare tire at all, using the space where the spare tire was located inside, under the rear floor, or

3) Find a way to move the spare tire to the outside of the vehicle (e.g. securely fastened to the roof rack, or use a trailer hitch mounted spare tire bracket that swings out of the way so you can open the rear gate) - in other words, convert it to a 4.3 RAV4. :thumbs_up:

Best of luck in your search, and please let us know if you find anything designed to be this useful again.

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I like the roof idea. I've seen Land Rovers like that.

Looking cool is one thing. Paying to look cool is quite another. Geesh... might as well just mount a sail on top of the vehicle and plan on wasting more time to fill up with fuel more often.
 

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Have a look at Nissan Rogue. I believe they have under trunk storage and is customable too.
 

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It is my understanding that the vast majority of vehicles - including the RAV4 since 2013 - keep the spare tire in that location (either inside under the floor, or under the vehicle on a crank-down cable system) because most people are so shallow they don't like the "ugly" spare tire on the back, and want their precious lift gate for a rear door instead of a swing gate.
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I would not even look at the RAV until they changed to a rear lift door. Ended up with 2009 Venza because of that.
Has nothing to do with looks. Has everything to do with opening the rear in a garage and function.
"Here let me move that shopping cart 12 feet out of the way so you can open the rear hatch"....no thanks.
 

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[...] Has everything to do with opening the rear in a garage and function.
"Here let me move that shopping cart 12 feet out of the way so you can open the rear hatch"....no thanks.
And the hatch opens from the wrong side.
 

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And the hatch opens from the wrong side.
Not if you're in the habit of doing things from a different perspective.
 

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I genuinely like the rear swing door. Maybe I just don't use the vehicle in the situations most do. Live in an apartment so haven't tried opening it in a garage but honestly don't see how it would be an issue.In most garages I've been in, I'd be more worried a lift gate would hit the roof or the garage door.

Never an issue with groceries, general loading of items for me as I just park whatever buggy or cart I have slightly behind and the left of the car then open the door. To each their own, but a full size spare being easily accessible while leaving normal cargo space unimpeded is pretty nice in my opinion. Also, I for one like the look. I'm not a fan of vehicles that seem to favor form over function.
 

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Not if you're in the habit of doing things from a different perspective.
In the US we drive on the right, and parallel park on the right. Having a door that blocks the curb is stupid.
 

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I genuinely like the rear swing door. Maybe I just don't use the vehicle in the situations most do. Live in an apartment so haven't tried opening it in a garage but honestly don't see how it would be an issue.In most garages I've been in, I'd be more worried a lift gate would hit the roof or the garage door.

Never an issue with groceries, general loading of items for me as I just park whatever buggy or cart I have slightly behind and the left of the car then open the door. To each their own, but a full size spare being easily accessible while leaving normal cargo space unimpeded is pretty nice in my opinion. Also, I for one like the look. I'm not a fan of vehicles that seem to favor form over function.
With a standard garage door closed, no way you can open that door (very far anyway) without first opening the garage door. Also, it's just plain often in the way IMO.
The lift door opens fine inside the garage, and can be programmed to open at the height you set. Works perfect with my 2016 SE.
 

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The Rogue, Juke and Pathfinder all have hidden storage compartment at the rear.
 

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I genuinely like the rear swing door. Maybe I just don't use the vehicle in the situations most do. Live in an apartment so haven't tried opening it in a garage but honestly don't see how it would be an issue.In most garages I've been in, I'd be more worried a lift gate would hit the roof or the garage door.

Never an issue with groceries, general loading of items for me as I just park whatever buggy or cart I have slightly behind and the left of the car then open the door. To each their own, but a full size spare being easily accessible while leaving normal cargo space unimpeded is pretty nice in my opinion. Also, I for one like the look. I'm not a fan of vehicles that seem to favor form over function.
Amen, brother! :thumbs_up:

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The Rogue, Juke and Pathfinder all have hidden storage compartment at the rear.
3 cubic feet or so of underfloor storage space? Anywhere near as much or as contiguously long and wide as in the 4.3 for bulkier items?

How do they do spare tires?

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I'll give you two reasons why I have my '09. Well, maybe 3. The first is because the '09 made some styling and feature changes over '08 that I really approved of. I would have still bought one even if they hadn't made the changes though, so that one doesn't really count. The two main reasons are 1) V6 V6 V6. Why I would want to buy an I4 when a V6 gets nearly the same gas milage and has way more power and towing capacity is beyond me. They were even practically the same price. Why they got rid of that for the Rav is beyond me. I may have considered the 4th gen if they hadn't gotten rid of it, but then comes my second reason. Reason 2) The storage space. Exactly because the spare tire is on the back, I have a ton of storage space. I run a detailing business on the side and getting a vehicle that could carry all my stuff without taking up the back seat was one of my big priorities. When I'm doing a big job that takes a couple days (I do a lot of aircraft. A G5 takes time, believe you me) I tend to need to bring more stuff with me. My cart and pad washer can be taken apart and stacked, but not having to do that is a huge deal for me. I can just lift the whole cart into the back and then stack stuff around it and behind it without even needing to put stuff in the back seat. I used to carry all this stuff in my Corolla and it would fill the trunk and back seat and was a pain to disassemble and reassemble. This is so much better. (I've learned how to pack it up better since this picture. Now I don't even take the cart apart at all. I should show you what it looks like in the back of the car at this very minute. Packed to the gills and the seats aren't even pushed forward.)





That cart is actually pretty tall. This is what my other one looks like when it isn't in the back of the car. It isn't generally that full of stuff, but I just got back from SEMA and this was my haul of goodies. :) That is how it was loaded in the back of the car, though. Saved me from having to find boxes for everything and disassemble the cart.





Being able to pull this around without any problems is a bonus too, but that goes back to the whole V6 thing.



Sure the door opens the wrong way. That actually doesn't bother me though, because when I get out on the driver side and need to get something in the back, there is the door. Not a problem. It also works out well since I park on the right side of the garage and it makes it easy to unload when I don't have to walk along the wall or all the way around the open door. And yeah, I can't open the back door all the way in my garage with the door closed, but that isn't an issue. I can't open the hatch on my Odyssey with the garage door either. It's just what you get when you have a small garage. My last house had a much larger garage and I had no problem opening the back door with the garage closed.

Anyway, different strokes for different folks. I wouldn't trade this car in for anything at this point. It has the storage I need which is unmatched by any other vehicle in this class. It also has the power I need which is also unmatched. And it is a Toyota, so I don't care if some crapbox from Korea thinks it can copy the looks and offer me the same thing, because nothing is better than a Toyota other than a newer Toyota. :) For my purposes it doesn't get better than the Rav. That doesn't mean I wouldn't like to trade the Odyssey in on a Highlander, but that's another story. I'll still keep my Rav till the wheels fall off.
 

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In the US we drive on the right, and parallel park on the right. Having a door that blocks the curb is stupid.

I'm not trying to be contentious, but driving on the right side of the road has absolutely nothing to do with it, and even mentioning that fact is just a red herring.

I dare say that parallel parking is not even an issue for the vast majority of the US population, and even where it is, a percentage of that parallel parking "experience" takes place on one-way streets where you can park on EITHER side. Even the majority of folks who live around major cities typically also work, shop, and otherwise visit places outside of downtown areas where parallel parking can be a regular activity. Obviously, though, at least for you, the parallel parking issue is a real issue, and in that particular case, having a door block the curb is a real inconvenience. I just don't agree with presenting it as an overall major problem for most people, and there ARE other small SUV's with lifting rear hatches as viable alternatives to the RAV4.

Personally, I've owned vehicles with both double rear barn doors and rear lift hatches, and each has its own set of pros and cons and will be issues of preference for every individual depending on their circumstances and needs. For my petite daughter, I'm grateful that the RAV4 has a rear swing door (and outside mounted spare AND interior subfloor storage compartment) because it is more easily controlled by a small person. In the RAV4's case, it's just not really large enough, in my opinion, to justify the manufacturing complications associated with a double rear swing door, even though that would be more space conscious (except that EVERY parallel parking experience would be presented with blocked curbs when accessing the rear compartment). Even if the rear door was a motorized lift hatch, motors and hydraulic cylinders DO and WILL fail, and that can create quite a headache for even a large person who is in the way when it drops.

Oh... the garage door issue... it's purely a function of the size of your garage and how much space you can allocate for your vehicle, and there are plenty of garages big enough to allow for the rear door on a RAV4 to fully open with a closed garage door. Along these lines, OCDetails makes an excellent point regarding which side of the garage he parks on and how that works perfectly with the opening arrangement. The fact is that either opening arrangement can be a problem if you park on the opposite side of the garage space. If you have only a one-space wide unit in which to park, you're going to have issues with either configuration.
 
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^^^ Good points from F250. How often are we really getting into the back of the car when parked along a curb anyway? Sure it is awkward at curbside drop off at the airport, but if you are doing that 5 times a week then you should probably have thought of that before buying a car with the door that opens on that side. Other than twice at the airport, I can't think of a single time I parked along a curb and needed to get into the back of the car for anything. I think it is an inconvenience that some people have invented just so they can find things they don't like about the car. Sort of like those infomercials where they make people look like they are having extreme difficulty with simple tasks to convince you that you need the RoboThingy 2000 XR Ultra. ;)

It is somewhat of a pain when I am at Home Depot picking up something that needs to go in the back and I find that someone has parked right behind me with their nose against my bumper and I can't open the door. But for that reason I just make sure I don't pull all the way forward in a parking spot when I know I need to get into the back. Problem solved just by adapting my behavior for the vehicle I am in. If these are problems that you run into all the time and adapting your behavior to avoid them just isn't possible, then I say again... Maybe you should have thought of that before buying a vehicle that has a back door that opens this way.

If the pros don't outweigh the cons on a vehicle purchase, then skip that car and look at something else. I don't believe any of us were sentenced to drive a Rav4. It wasn't the cheapest car on the lot when you bought it and we all had a lot of other choices. Unless it was given to you, of course, but if that was the case then quit looking a gift horse in the mouth. You don't like it? Buy your own car next time. ;)
 

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OCDetails wrote in part: "When I'm doing a big job that takes a couple days (I do a lot of aircraft. A G5 takes time, believe you me)"

All that work for $10 an hour! :) Kidding, of course. You have my admiration.

Aside: About forty years ago I came close to buying a Beechcraft 18 that was polished by a compulsive best friend. I could imagine losing my weekends maintaining the appearance. I passed. :)
 

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lol I'm glad it isn't $10 an hour. Apparently when you have a $100 million dollar plane it doesn't phase you to peel off four or five grand to get it polished up once in awhile.

Not to totally derail the thread, but speaking of airplanes... This one isn't the G650, but it is close. It's a Global 6000, so basically Bombardier's version of the G650. I could drive under the wing without the antenna hitting it. lol Freaking beast...



I much prefer a smaller project. Preferably one that I maintain on a regular basis. Just like a car, if you only polish and protect the paint on rare occasions, then it is just going to be harder to bring it back to life each time you do it. Airplanes are a little different because of the environments they are in and what they are painted with, but they are just like cars in that they need regular care to avoid oxidation and fading. The one I'm starting on today has been neglected for several years, so I'm really not looking forward to how rough this is going to be. I'm getting too old for this... lol That is one of the reasons I bought the Rav a few years ago. I got tired of cramming everything into a car that barely fit it. By the time I'm done with one of these things I can barely see straight let alone play the complicated Tetris game of loading everything back in. That extra storage on the floor of the Rav is an absolute life saver. I couldn't find anything else that had that and gave me everything else I wanted in my budget. (See? I got it back on topic after all. ;) )
 
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