Review: 2005 Toyota RAV4

The Manufacturer

The RAV4 isn't a vehicle for the enthusiast--it's not exciting or outgoing enough. What it is, though, is reliable, easy to drive, predictable, and efficient. In other words, it's a Toyota, and the perfect ride for a buyer in the market for a vehicle that's practical and provides decent fuel economy (around 23/28 city/highway mpg) along with versatile cargo space. It will even provide a modest amount of towing ability, as the RAV4 is rated to pull up to 1,500 pounds--as much as a CR-V or four-cylinder Escape. Fully loaded models can get a little pricey, but in addition to a great little sport/ute, that money nets Toyota reliability, quality, and resale value. Ending this generation on a high note, the RAV4 earned the 2005 IntelliChoice Best Overall Value award for Compact Utility Under $21,000. The RAV4 includes a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, in addition to five-year/60,000-mile powertrain coverage and a five-year/unlimited-mile rust-through warranty.

With class-leading safety, reliability, and quality, the RAV4 remains a great sport/cute choice and an excellent value.

What's Hot

  • Great driving position
  • Lots of safety features
  • Toyota refinement and reliability

    What's Not

  • Rear-seat comfort
  • Sometimes choppy ride
  • Limited tow capability

    With a new model expected just around the corner, the 2005 RAV4 received only a Sport package update, including a new metal mesh grille, silver sport pedals, and available foglamps.

    RAV4 buyers who want a little more luxury can opt for the "L" package, which adds a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, cargo tonneau cover, rear privacy glass, color-keyed body trim, heated mirrors, 16-inch aluminum wheels, a hard spare tire cover, and foglamps.

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