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Crossover SUV Comparison



  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    edited May 2013
    Good review - hopefully Toyota has made some comfort changes with the new generation RAV4 that came out in 2013.

    I would have missed the room in my minivan but I can pack "lighter" if I need to.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    CR complained about the base seats in the new one. They recommend the loaded models to get leather, but then complained about the mid 30s price.

    They also mention your elbows end up on hard surfaces.

    It's reviewed in the issue that just came out, I got it yesterday.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    Not a good sign. I'm getting more sensitive to seats as I age; the van is about perfect for me for comfort on the road.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Me too. Will definitely take a longer test drive before buying my next car.

    Thing is, you only get sore after a bit of driving. Everything is OK for a 5 minute drive.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    Yep, but good luck finding a 2013 RAV4 to rent for a day. Some dealers will let you take a car overnight and that helps a lot - probably kills a lot of potential sales too.
  • toomanyfumestoomanyfumes S.E. Wisconsin Posts: 892
    You must have better seats in your Quest then we had in our Villager, my wife and I both couldn't stand those seats on long drives. Ours was a base model, though, that was the last stripped vehicle I 'll ever buy.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    Our '99 is a base GXE. We're both "average" size and both of us think ours is real comfy. It's lots better on trips than our old Outback. The '05ish Buick the in-laws have bothers me after a short while too, even when I play with all the power seat buttons.

    We lucked out with the van since we only tested it for maybe 15 minutes.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    I forgot a couple of other items I did not like about the 2012 Rav4:

    Way too much airflow into the vehicle when everything was turned off. I realize all automakers allow a small amount of air in to avoid CO liabilities, but this thing felt like the fan was on all the time.

    The radio display washed out frequently in sunlight. It really needs a hood over it to shade the display.

    The side swinging door seemed to get in the way a lot when loading cargo. I see Toyota switched to a vertical gate with the 2013 model. Good move.

    All in all, the seat discomfort was the most nagging problem.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    edited May 2013
    I'm used to hatches so the side gate is a deal killer. I still remember what a pain it was swinging the spare tire out of the way to get to the back of my old '74 CJ-5.

    I'm with you on the airflow too - I like being able to turn the vents off, at least the dash ones.

    (btw, one fun part of living in the UP is getting the chance to drive through our old Wisconsin stomping grounds a couple of times a year. It took a while but we finally found the house we rented for a semester in Madison in '84 or so. The Tercel we had then is long gone and we never got another Bucky Badger sticker. :shades: )
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    Doubt seriously if you will find any true "Crossover" or SUV that would 100% suit you. And certainly not one that leans more toward an SUV.

    This is Not a "Compare a small 4wd 4 cylinder SUV to a plush Wallowing boat, close to the road worthless on anything more than a smooth hard road" forum.

    This is a "Crossover SUV Comparison" forum. So what 2 or more Crossover SUVs are you and "Host" comparing.

  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    edited May 2013
    The recent thread is about the new RAV4 vs all the rest. I haven't spotted one in the wild yet myself.

    Interestingly, you can still get the 2012 model if you want - just no 4 cylinder, much less the V6. It's the base for the electric version with a Tesla powertrain. I bet few people have spotted one of those in in the wild.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Boy, talk about an overreaction to my posts. As a matter of fact, a small crossover SUV may be on my list to replace my Taurus in the future.

    I was just posting items that I thought Toyota missed the boat on. Note: I did not complain about handling, braking, ride, noise, which I thought were in general very good on the RAV4. I only posted items I did not particularly like that would apply to anyone buying any vehicle.

    As far as wallowing boat, my Taurus is far from that, and while our Grand Caravan is a smooth rider, neither have ever beem intended for off road use.

    I would surmise very few people would seriously consider a RAV4 useful for off rugged off road use either, however.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,910
    edited May 2013
    It's really too bad it's hard to rent a lot of new cars - most don't seem to make it to the rental fleets and not many dealers will let you take a demo home overnight. Kind of surprising that you wound up in a RAV4 - I'm guessing you rented in Vegas which has a wider variety of cars (and exotics) than most places?
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Way too much airflow into the vehicle when everything was turned off.

    If you set the ventilation to recirculate it should alleviate that. Most cars flow-through vent when left on fresh-air at highway speed.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Actually rented in Reno and returned at Las Vegas. Reserved the car months in advance and got a really good deal. I reserved to get a mid size sedan (Fusion, Camry, Malibu etc. size} Deske agent tried to put us in a Spark but I protested based on what I had reserved. Finally he hemmed and hawed and put us in the Rav4.
  • kipkkipk Posts: 1,576
    You are the one that introduced the Taurus and Mini Van into the conversation.

    I did not, say and am not speaking of "RUGGED" off road use.

    A while back we attended a huge arts and crafts festival. We had to park in a grassy field in a slight hill, so there were terraces. The sedans were scraping as they went over them. Most SUVs didn't. To add insult to injury it drizzled rain for a few minutes while we were there, and the grass on the parking field became slick. Nothing "RUGGED" about that, but many sedans with their low plush ride couldn't deal with the terraces and slick grass. Our '03 CR-V 4wd was parked on the lowest part of the field and came out without any problem.
    I don't even know if it ever engaged the rear wheels to drive, as it is all totally automatic.

    That type of scenario would also apply to snow. Low slung vehicles that necessarily lean (wallow) in corners resulting from soft suspension can cause serious problems in snow conditions. Of course if you wish to spend a ton of money there are some cars that ride great and go around corners flat.

    However there must be some reason that you rented a 4WD and possibly the same reason there may be a small SUV to replace the Taurus in your mind.
    And yes, unless it is an SHO, it leans a great deal in corners when compared to a stiffer sprung vehicle.

    I agree with "thegraduate" put the control in "Recirculate" and that will likely stop outside air from coming through the vents. :)

    Unless you get an upscale model of any SUV, the seat may not be adjustable to your liking. SUVs, by design, have a higher center of gravity than a passenger sedan, resulting from more ground clearance. So there will be more felt motion. They also ride stiffer as most folks, that either have them or have spent some time in them, know.

    Good luck with your search!

  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    edited May 2013
    I did not "introduce the Taurus and minivan" into this conversation. I only provided that information as background information about myself.

    And, once again you will note that I never complained about the Rav4's handling or ride characteristics, which I thought were acceptable.

    My critique about the Rav4's shortcomings could apply to nearly any vehicle as they were mostly seat comfort and ergonomics related, not vehicle category related.

    I do take issue with your statement about handling of non SHO tauri of my car's generation. My Taurus does not lean considerably in any turns. It is much more stable, even to the point of providing a stiffer ride than most sedans, which is one reason I bought it in the first place.
  • toomanyfumestoomanyfumes S.E. Wisconsin Posts: 892
    Madison's a cool town, I 'm south of of Milwaukee but try to get over there a couple times a year. I really like the hatch on our Outlander, with the top part swinging up, and the bottom flips down, you can use it for a seat, or longer cargo. Not digging the looks of the new Outlander, I'd like to keep our '07 for winter use for me, and get the wife something else. I drove a new Escape, pretty nice but a little tight I rear seat room. I might check out the new Rav4, but we may go with something a little bigger like an Edge.
  • fushigifushigi Posts: 1,217
    Not digging the looks of the new Outlander..

    Seems like most automakers are styling for the "Sport" in SUV while Mitsu is stepping back & going more for the "Utility".

    I'm also not super fond of the new styling but I can live with it as long as the rest of the vehicle meets or exceeds my expectations. I'm looking at the PHEV version.

    Though it'll probably be a few years before I buy as my '10 Outlander GT has yet to roll 30K miles.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,442
    Comparing the same vehicle, but different generations?
    We have '04, '09, and '13 Escapes.
    All are pretty much top of the line models, either Limited or Titanium.

    Starting out with the '04, it has about 110k on it. 4WD, 200 hp 3.0 V6, Leather heated front seats, power moon roof, upgraded sound system.
    Noisy on the highway, but tracks very well. Pretty trouble free, one wheel bearing (replaced under warranty), a rear parking sensor replaced under warranty, and air bag light has flashed a couple of times. First time fixed under warranty, second time both harnesses under the front seats were replaced for around $300.
    Has a slight oil leak, dealer wants $900 to fix.
    Original Continental tires were horrible (16 inch), and replaced at 25k with Goodyear triple treads, much better.
    Front rotors/pads replaced @ 50k, still original rear drums.
    Overall fuel mileage a bit over 19.

    '09 is also a Limited model. About 60k on it. AWD, 240 hp 3.0.V6, Leather heated front seats, power moon roof, upgraded sound system and factory NAV/SYNC.
    'Leather' seems to be of softer quality than '04. Both have held up well.
    Left front half shaft leak fixed under warranty.
    Still on the original Michelin tires with plenty of tread left.
    Overall quieter than the '04, but not quiet.
    Front brake pads replaced @55k and rear drums still original.
    Overall fuel miles about 21.5.

    '13 Titanium has just over 7k on it. AWD, 230+ hp 2.0 I4. It has pretty much everything including self parking. 1 oil change/tire rotation so far.
    NVH is much improved from the other 2, even thought is has 19 inch Continental tires.
    Mileage is a tick higher than the '09 despite no long trips.
    That will change over the summer.
    The previous 2 models are more space efficient due to their boxy shape, but can't compete in the tech or refinement. Once we take a road trip, the mileage will be better with the '13, too.
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