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Hi,

I don't own a RAV4 but I am deciding between a RAV4 limited hybrid with Tech package (includes Safety Sense) vs. Subaru Outback Limited with Tech package.

Things that are attractive to me about the RAV4 over the Outback is the hybrid and the 360 bird's eye view feature but I was wondering if RAV4 drivers here with Toyota Safety Sense find the feature more gimmicky or actually useful?

Thank you very much!
 

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Not sure how Toyota Canada models come but I believe in the US all the Tech Package includes is the birds eye view and JBL speakers. It is not a cheap add on. How every I am sure it is fun and useful just not worth the extra money to me. My Rav4 XLE Hybrid has the front and rear parking sensors and rear cross traffic alert, I just do not see a fancy birds eye video. I also like having 100% of my screen for my backup view. Toyota's Lane Assist will steer you back into the lane, the steering wheel actually moves. I am not sure if the Subaru does that. I did test drive a Crosstrek and really liked it but it was just too small for me, the radar cruise control worked well in that car like Toyota's. All these bells are only good if you actually use them.
 

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Can we use this while the car is in motion (highway -- makes for a nice BSM companion) or just when the car is still or moving slow, like backing into a parking spot?
 

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Hi,

I don't own a RAV4 but I am deciding between a RAV4 limited hybrid with Tech package (includes Safety Sense) vs. Subaru Outback Limited with Tech package.

Things that are attractive to me about the RAV4 over the Outback is the hybrid and the 360 bird's eye view feature but I was wondering if RAV4 drivers here with Toyota Safety Sense find the feature more gimmicky or actually useful?

Thank you very much!
I too went through the same analysis as you.

I looked at almost all the cars out in the market which had these safety features in the price range of $25k - $40k and there aren't many that have these features.

I only found the CX5, which has BSM and some of the TSS features but none of the Mazda's have topview camera nor 360 degree view.

Same with the Subaru's. None of their models have topview or the 360 and not all their models have even BSM.

The Nissan Rogue has BSM and topview but according to Edmunds review and even the NHTSA complaints it has a very shaky record and doesn't seem to be a car I can count on for reliability and resale. I'm not saying that these aren't good cars but if I had a choice between a similarly priced/featured car from Toyota and Nissan, I'd pick a Toyota.

As for usability of the topview, BSM and 360 camera as well as TSS, I have all those on my car and I use many of the features.

BSM is a must for changing lanes on the highway. It has alerted me many times. Only suggestion I have with Toyota's implementation is that the BSM would beep along with the side mirror alert.

The topview is invaluable as it allows me to get into tight spaces and see exactly where I am. It's even helpful when pulling into a space in a large parking lot as I can see the painted parking lines on the ground with the birdseye view.

The 360 degree view is helpful as I can make sure there aren't any objects around me before I start to drive. It literally is a 360 degree pan view of everything around your car. If you have pets or kids, garbage cans, toys, etc, you can see if there are any objects literally around the car.

Another feature I find helpful is the Rear Cross traffic alert. It's helped many times when there is someone or a car behind me as I back up. The feature beeps.

Another favorite feature is the Lane Departure Alert. It beeps when I'm driving, you have to be at a minimum speed, I think above 32mph, when I start to cross over from my lane on the road. You can adjust the sensitivity of this feature.

I almost forgot, another favorite feature is I can setup the topview/front view cameras to come on automatically when the car is going slow. For example, when I'm in a garage and driving slowly I'm about to round a corner, the main 7" screen can be showing navigation and it will automatically switch to a split screen with one view of the front of the car and the other view of the birdseye, so you can see if you are close to a wall or another car. The view automatically switches too when I'm driving on a street and slow down at a red light. The screen can automatically switch to the split screen with these views.

Not to digress but another feature I found helpful is the automatic high beams. When driving at night, if you turn the high beams on, it will automatically detect if there are other cars coming towards you and turn off the high beam and turn it on again after the cars passes you. It's great not to have to manually switch on/off each time a car is coming.

All in all, I thought the RAV4 with Advanced Tech Package and TSS was the best value for a car in this price range. I think it's the best value. It would be nice if the Rav4 had better gas mileage and a stronger engine but it's a well rounded car.

Feature wise, I think the Rav4 has the Subaru beat. Subaru's are known to be safer cars but the Rav4 is rated very good for safety too.

I would highly recommend you do a test drive and verify all these features for yourself.
 

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Toyota's tech package includes the option to pay for:

- Pre-collision System (this is what gives the RAV4 its a top-of-the-list safety rating... the car stops when it senses a frontal collision)...
- Blind Spot Monitor - crucial as the 2016 RAV4's includes more blind spots than prior years...
- Lane Departure Alert (which I tested and is off the hook amazing and valuable - it cordially nudges the RAV4 back into the lane)...
- Automatic High Beams (AHB) - I understand this works REALLY well... just set it and forget it...
- Birds Eye View Camera system (not as good as Infiniti's system in my humble opinion... graphics are not high resolution)...
- Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) - as good as Infiniti's version at a far more reasonable price point...

Unfortunately, Toyota hides this information. I am not sure why. I had to get these tech features from multiple sources.
 

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OLAF,

Good to know the Bird's eye view can operate while driving slow. My wife hasn't set hers up much. What's the quickest way to set this up so that the bird's eye view gets displayed as often as possible (stand still or in slow motion)? Is the instruction found in the owner's manual, especially the split screen?

When parking into the tight garage, she goes by the parking assist sonar. Never thought about the bird's eye view being of great assistance.

Thank you.
 

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OLAF,

Good to know the Bird's eye view can operate while driving slow. My wife hasn't set hers up much. What's the quickest way to set this up so that the bird's eye view gets displayed as often as possible (stand still or in slow motion)? Is the instruction found in the owner's manual, especially the split screen?

When parking into the tight garage, she goes by the parking assist sonar. Never thought about the bird's eye view being of great assistance.

Thank you.
There is a button that comes up on the bottom screen when the actual camera feed is being displayed. Turn the button that says AUTO to on (green light on the screen). It will then turn the camera's on when you approach a very low speed. I liked the idea at first but then I realized I wanted to look through the stations while I was at a red light or something and the camera mode was taking up the entire screen I couldn't do anything unless I turned it off.

For me, it's better to just press the camera button as I'm approaching the parking spot.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks.

Toyota Canada only offers Safety Sense for 2 trims:
Limited (included)
Hybrid Limited (Tech package)

Subaru's new Eyesight does have something similar to Lane Assist in the 2016 model.

Not sure how Toyota Canada models come but I believe in the US all the Tech Package includes is the birds eye view and JBL speakers. It is not a cheap add on. How every I am sure it is fun and useful just not worth the extra money to me. My Rav4 XLE Hybrid has the front and rear parking sensors and rear cross traffic alert, I just do not see a fancy birds eye video. I also like having 100% of my screen for my backup view. Toyota's Lane Assist will steer you back into the lane, the steering wheel actually moves. I am not sure if the Subaru does that. I did test drive a Crosstrek and really liked it but it was just too small for me, the radar cruise control worked well in that car like Toyota's. All these bells are only good if you actually use them.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you for the thoughtful comments. If I end up going with the RAV4, I may forgo the hybrid and just get the Limited AWD but its fuel economy certainly lags behind many of its competitors - CR-V, CX-5, Rouge etc.

I too went through the same analysis as you.

I looked at almost all the cars out in the market which had these safety features in the price range of $25k - $40k and there aren't many that have these features.

I only found the CX5, which has BSM and some of the TSS features but none of the Mazda's have topview camera nor 360 degree view.

Same with the Subaru's. None of their models have topview or the 360 and not all their models have even BSM.

The Nissan Rogue has BSM and topview but according to Edmunds review and even the NHTSA complaints it has a very shaky record and doesn't seem to be a car I can count on for reliability and resale. I'm not saying that these aren't good cars but if I had a choice between a similarly priced/featured car from Toyota and Nissan, I'd pick a Toyota.

As for usability of the topview, BSM and 360 camera as well as TSS, I have all those on my car and I use many of the features.

BSM is a must for changing lanes on the highway. It has alerted me many times. Only suggestion I have with Toyota's implementation is that the BSM would beep along with the side mirror alert.

The topview is invaluable as it allows me to get into tight spaces and see exactly where I am. It's even helpful when pulling into a space in a large parking lot as I can see the painted parking lines on the ground with the birdseye view.

The 360 degree view is helpful as I can make sure there aren't any objects around me before I start to drive. It literally is a 360 degree pan view of everything around your car. If you have pets or kids, garbage cans, toys, etc, you can see if there are any objects literally around the car.

Another feature I find helpful is the Rear Cross traffic alert. It's helped many times when there is someone or a car behind me as I back up. The feature beeps.

Another favorite feature is the Lane Departure Alert. It beeps when I'm driving, you have to be at a minimum speed, I think above 32mph, when I start to cross over from my lane on the road. You can adjust the sensitivity of this feature.

I almost forgot, another favorite feature is I can setup the topview/front view cameras to come on automatically when the car is going slow. For example, when I'm in a garage and driving slowly I'm about to round a corner, the main 7" screen can be showing navigation and it will automatically switch to a split screen with one view of the front of the car and the other view of the birdseye, so you can see if you are close to a wall or another car. The view automatically switches too when I'm driving on a street and slow down at a red light. The screen can automatically switch to the split screen with these views.

Not to digress but another feature I found helpful is the automatic high beams. When driving at night, if you turn the high beams on, it will automatically detect if there are other cars coming towards you and turn off the high beam and turn it on again after the cars passes you. It's great not to have to manually switch on/off each time a car is coming.

All in all, I thought the RAV4 with Advanced Tech Package and TSS was the best value for a car in this price range. I think it's the best value. It would be nice if the Rav4 had better gas mileage and a stronger engine but it's a well rounded car.

Feature wise, I think the Rav4 has the Subaru beat. Subaru's are known to be safer cars but the Rav4 is rated very good for safety too.

I would highly recommend you do a test drive and verify all these features for yourself.
 

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The birds' eye topview is totally awesome. I want it in my next car too.

Lane departure alert is also nice to have.

As for most of the other stuff, I can't say yet, since I haven't had the car long enough. I'm thinking blind spot monitor would be great but so far I haven't needed to use it.
 

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The birds' eye topview is totally awesome. I want it in my next car too.

Lane departure alert is also nice to have.

As for most of the other stuff, I can't say yet, since I haven't had the car long enough. I'm thinking blind spot monitor would be great but so far I haven't needed to use it.
Don't you have a blind spot across you? I can't see anything behind the rear passenger area even when it is empty. Maybe the bigger side mirrors are at the wrong angle.
 

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Couldn't agree more. All the tech features are nice. Never had them before (other than BSM on a previous CX-9). Although I find the automatic high-beams are finicky in city driving, where street lights can vary depending on which city/subdivision.

The birds' eye topview is totally awesome. I want it in my next car too.

Lane departure alert is also nice to have.

As for most of the other stuff, I can't say yet, since I haven't had the car long enough. I'm thinking blind spot monitor would be great but so far I haven't needed to use it.
 

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Hi,

I don't own a RAV4 but I am deciding between a RAV4 limited hybrid with Tech package (includes Safety Sense) vs. Subaru Outback Limited with Tech package.

Things that are attractive to me about the RAV4 over the Outback is the hybrid and the 360 bird's eye view feature but I was wondering if RAV4 drivers here with Toyota Safety Sense find the feature more gimmicky or actually useful?

Thank you very much!
I have the 2016 Limited Hybrid has this. Really helpful. You can even see if one of the car door opens.
 

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To begin with this is my first post on the forum although I've been reading here since early December. On December 9th I was involved in an accident (my first that was not on the job) that resulted in my 2004 Toyota Hybrid Limited being totaled. It had 81,xxx miles and was in great condition including a six day old set of new Cooper Discoverer SRX SUV tires. I was and am still devastated as we had not planned on replacing that car for several years but have to move on and replace it relatively soon.

Quick research revealed a CRV, Forester and RAV4 would be the most suitable for us with limited space in the garage for two cars and a lawn tractor with 48" deck.

Drove all three and my wife and I both like the RAV4 the best. So, been reading here regularly finding this site is the go to place for obtaining good information. Some of the posts mirror exactly what we are thinking but learn something new every time we login. Thanks to all here for that!

Forgive me for being off topic and I'll get to something relevant now.

Have driven the 2015 RAV4 Limited (new), the 2016 RAV4 Limited (gas) and the 2016 Hybrid Limited. Liked all three but there is a difference in the 2016 that we prefer and the electronic goodies are part of the mix.

We drove a RAV with the Advanced Tech Package and the 360 is cool. Does work up to about 20 mph and would be very useful albeit expensive. Sure hope all this stuff is reliable as I'll bet it would take serious money to fix out of warranty.

The printed brochure from the dealer states the 2016 RAV4 comes with a Predicted Path Backup Camera. Found it on Totota's site as well but two different salesman could not get it to work. Does the new RAV actually have one? Not a deal breaker just curious as the CRV did have one and seemed useful in some situations.

Enough for now and thanks for this forum!
 

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The printed brochure from the dealer states the 2016 RAV4 comes with a Predicted Path Backup Camera. Found it on Totota's site as well but two different salesman could not get it to work. Does the new RAV actually have one? Not a deal breaker just curious as the CRV did have one and seemed useful in some situations.
Good news. It does.

In fact, by May of 2018, all cars sold in the US are required to have backup cameras by law.
 

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To add onto Rav41996's reply, I think you can also remove those predictive lines if you don't need/like them.

JohnSTL - I did look at the CRV also but compared to the Rav4 it lacked many of the features the Rav4 was capable of. For example, the CRV didn't have BSM. Their Lanewatch feature only works for the passenger side I think. I find it awkward to look at the display to see if a car is in the blindspot. Since I'm looking over my shoulder to change lanes, I find it more natural to glance at the side mirror( with the blindspot) and then checking the back windows. And the CRV doesn't have the topview cameras as well as the 360 view. Of course it comes with a price. For me I plan to keep the car many years so its worth it to have all the technology that won't be outdated.

What the Toyota also has as an advantage over the other manufacturers is the no-cost 2year/ 25000k mile oil changes, etc.

It really depends on what features one wants as well as how much its worth to them.
 

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Must be a US feature? I just bought my car and no such thing was offered.

What the Toyota also has as an advantage over the other manufacturers is the no-cost 2year/ 25000k mile oil changes, etc.
 

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This is definitely offered in the U.S.. It's something that differentiates versus Honda, Mazda, and Nissan. It doesn't sound like it's offered in Canada.

One feature the Canadian Rav4 has that isn't available in the U.S. is a heated steering wheel. It would've been a good feature to have here in the states.
 

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What the Toyota also has as an advantage over the other manufacturers is the no-cost 2year/ 25000k mile oil changes, etc.
As much as I am a Toyota fanboy...

I realize the 2-year, 25K "free maintenance plan" is merely a marketing ploy. (A clever one at that)...

For example, the 1,000 "break-in oil change" is nothing but a top off of the fluids. They do not change the oil.

Let me repeat: the initial "free" service is a joke. Toyota tops off the fluids (and does a gazillion-point check... which of course is unneeded because the car is barely used).

The first oil change comes in at 10K.

The next is at 20K.

Then it is over.

So that "free maintenance plan" is just 2 FREE oil changes. (It used to be 5).

The main reason for it is to get us acclimated into servicing our RAV4 at the dealership.
 

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My Toyota dealership let me change the oil every 3.5k miles for free for the two years in my highlander vs the scheduled 10k. I towed a lot and they honored the free oil changes whenever I scheduled an appointment, no questions asked. I had them rotate the tires at the same time too. The 2 year free maintenance was offered when Toyota was having the stuck accelerator issues. It was successful so they continued it...not a ploy, just smart business. Works out for everyone..
 
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