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Getting a new Outlander, CR-V or RAV4

brown99brown99 Posts: 3
edited May 2014 in Honda
We are going to replace our Civic with some small SUV. My husband considers the Outlander. He likes all the features and the steering. For me reliability is a key factor, so I'd like to consider RAV and CRV. Has anyone done a similar comarison?


  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    I prefer the CRV. Check out the swinging gate on the RAV. It seems much less convenient than the CRV liftgate and looks "old" next to the CRV.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    I guess, don't know enough about CRV, but I have done the RAV4/Outlander comparison and I pick the Outlander. I am just one guy, but check out the owner ratings at Edmunds, Yahoo and MSN: Outlander owners are happier on all three sites. Also check out this list of advantages for both cars:


    Optional dealer installed accessories for Outlander: Outlander catalog
    Consumer Reports ratings: CR Best and Worst

    And I agree with the previous poster: swinging gate on the RAV is not good for curbside loading.
  • Not to sound like a troll here, but let's dissect this comparison.

    Powertrain- All the gears and "tri-mode" 4WD systems in the world don't change the fact that the RAV4 has more power and gets better mileage.

    Handling/Braking- I'll grant you the Outlander had a better slalom time, but even Motor Trend would have to admit that 0.3 seconds in the figure 8 and 2 feet of difference in stopping distance from 60 are far less than the vehicle-to-vehicle variability that you would see on either model. Yeah, 18 inch wheels look nice, but when the tires are 25+% more expensive to replace, you realize that every design choice has its benefits and detriments.

    Safety- Since when are wheel locks and a car alarm safety items? This section is where it starts to become pretty obvious that this comparison was generated by someone who is trying to sell you a Mitsubishi.

    Features- Here we continue the salesmanship. Paddle shifters? My guess is that after the first month of ownership, 99% of owners will put the transmission in drive and forget about the paddle shifters. My sister used to have a first-generation Dodge Stratus that was one of the first manumatics on the market. AutoStick was also really cool- for the first week. If you're looking for fun, involved driving, your dealer likely has a Miata on the used lot that you should consider. Yes, keyless operation is nice, but do you really think it would be a deal breaker for most buyers? Skid plates- Yeah, you need skid plates on a FWD based, unit-body SUV. Dealer installed wood trim? Do I really need to expand on this one?

    Entertainment- Funny, there's no mention here of the standard 6-disc changer or optional rear DVD system in the RAV4. As for the Hard Drive Music Server, my RAV4 has something similar. It's the iPod jack, and you can take it with you and listen through headphones, unlike the Mitsubishi's.

    That final 31-7 score looks pretty convincing, until you stop to consider where it came from...
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Cut to the chase. Just get the CRV. Wait till the next model year so you can get an AVTEC I4. :)
  • psychogunpsychogun Posts: 129
    I'd have to agree that the comparison above is not really an objective one.
    However, instead disecting his comparison, offer your own, more objective comparison.
    The other guy put some effort into what he presented (biased as it may be)... ;)
    In my humble opinion, each of the three vehicles is equally competent. I think that the prospective buyer should test drive each one (which car "feels" best) and then consider the value (what do I get for what I'm paying).
  • mnfmnf Spokane WaPosts: 405
    Here is CR view as you can see they liked the outlander but but dont recommend it.


    Highs: Powertrain, handling.
    Lows: Ride, road noise, fit and finish, radio controls with optional navigation.

    Ratings Snapshot (see below for detail)

    NEW Predicted reliability Fuel economy
    NEW Owner satisfaction Acceleration
    NA Predicted depreciation Ride
    Accident avoidance Front seat comfort
    NA / NA Crash protect w/wo side air bags

    The redesigned 2007 Outlander uses a new, larger platform that allows room for a tiny third-row seat. An all-new 3.0-liter, 220-hp V6 provides a lot of punch and is smooth and refined. A four-cylinder engine will likely be offered later. The slick transmission is a new six-speed automatic. Handling is fairly agile, with restrained body lean and quick, well-weighted steering. It is also secure and capable at its handling limits, due in part to its standard electronic stability control. The ride is fairly stiff and road noise is pronounced. Interior fit and finish is a bit disappointing.

    Quick Picks
    For all-around competence:
    Toyota RAV4 Limited (V6)
    Toyota RAV4 (base, 4-cyl.)
    Subaru Forester Sports 2.5 XT
    Honda CR-V
    Subaru Forester 2.5 X

    Both RAV4s are refined and capable. The Forester is a practical and affordable vehicle, but it has stability control only in the Sports XT trim. The CR-V is fairly agile, with good fuel economy and a roomy rear seat.

    For off-roading and towing:
    Nissan Xterra

    The Xterra’s strong V6 and truck-based platform allow it to tow 5,000 pounds. It is also good for serious off-roading.
  • Absolutely true. That's why I'm an engineer and not a car salesman. It's my job to figure out how to cheaply and effectively build what the marketing people figure that John Q. Public wants and needs in his next vehicle. For my car payment, the RAV4 does the best job of giving me what I want and need. Your mileage may vary... ;)
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    My comparison includes only unique features on one car vs. the other (except for CR rating). Therefore other options available on both cars equally (standard/optional) not mentioned: MP3 6-CD changer, optional DVD player, iPod jack, and a lot of other equipment.

    Your response includes only excuses. Nice big tires, but “25% more expensive to replace”. No wheel locks and security system – ‘Safety’ is a wrong category! (alright I should call it ‘safety and security’). Paddle shifters and autostick – useless! Skidplates – useless! “Looking for fun, involved driving” – get Miata (not the RAV, I guess)! No music server – use iPod! No navigation system - use a map! No car – walk!

    You call my comparison biased, but I listed the all hard facts. You could not deny a single one and you have not found any unique RAV4 feature, which I did not mention. You response is more biased, since you provide only excuses. As Psychogun said, “offer your own, more objective comparison”.

    RAV4 is a nice car, but the Outlander is better. RAV4 has more powerful and efficient engine, but Outlander beats RAV in everything else: warranty, features, handling, AWD system, transmission, safety and security, entertainment, value. Outlander is better all-around car. If you have a conspiracy theory, that I am a Mitsubishi salesman, who are the other hundreds of people, who rated Outlander higher and RAV lower on major consumer ratings sites? Are they salespeople too?
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    So,then,why does the CRV outsell them both combined? What effect do you think that will have on the resale of your Outlander?
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    RAV’s mileage is just slightly better, but the car is more expensive and the warranty is much worse so be prepared for all these repair expenses. Also, I get a lot more car for my money.
  • okay then...

    Most of your standard/optional/not available information on the RAV4 is just plain wrong. I'm not going to go into detail, because you obviously don't care. If you did, you would have checked the facts before posting your original comparison.

    Paddle shifters on an automatic transmission? They're absolutely useless without the proper software package. Don't kid yourself into thinking that you're in control because you have the shifter paddles- the powertrain controller is. Skidplates: You're seriously going off-roading in an Outlander? Good luck with that. Maybe there's some advantage to the music server that I haven't seen yet, but it smells like a pure gimmick to me. If navigation had been a deal breaker for me, I obviously wouldn't have gotten a RAV4. Walk? Now you're just being silly... This is a car forum, not

    I'm not going to change your mind about the Outlander, and frankly I don't want to. You're happy with your vehicle and that's fine. My intention was simply to point out that you may be trying to look objective, but you're doing a very poor job of it.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> So,then,why does the CRV outsell them both combined?

    Do you have a link for this kind of statistics?

    RAV has lately more problems (read feedback from real owners on Yahoo Autos) so it could be that the CRV is ahead. Outlander can not equally compete in sales figures due to much smaller dealer network in US. But I’ve read that Outlander outsells RAV in Japan 3 to 1. Another factor: until 2005 Mitsubishis sold in US was also made in US, were based on Chrysler powertrain, and on parts, which was made by Detroit suppliers. The result is mediocre reliability, damaged reputation and lower resale values.

    After the 2005 Mitsu has nothing to do with Chrysler. Outlander is made entirely in Japan. As a result, it beats both CRV and RAV in major owner ratings. This should also improve resale values.
  • At the risk of opening another can of worms here, I'd like to point out that some CR-Vs and all RAV4s are built in Japan.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> ...plain wrong ...useless smells like a pure gimmick to me...

    More excuses for a lot of missing features. And no comment on warranty and poor owner ratings.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> I'd like to point out that some CR-Vs and all RAV4s are built in Japan.

    Really? Perhaps those sold in Japan?
  • cbmortoncbmorton Posts: 252
    ALL RAV4s are built in Japan. Always have been.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    Good. I thought they also make them in Woodstock, Ontario?
  • cbmortoncbmorton Posts: 252
    They will be, but not yet. The factory is still under construction. It will join the two other Toyotas and one Lexus model already being built in Canada.
  • Basic warranty is important to some people, and the Outlander clearly has a better standard warranty package than the RAV4. Touche.

    Do you seriously think that Yahoo and MSN are even remotely scientific? People who don't really care about cars post there when they have a gripe about their car. JD Power and some other come closest to being scientific in quality surveys, so if you want to quote them feel free.

    I am waiting with baited breath to see what happens next.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> You're seriously going off-road in an Outlander?

    No, Outlander is not build as serious off-road vehicle, but interesting to note, that 07 Outlander is the direct descendant of the Pajero Evo 2+2 Concept. The same concept where the current Dakar Rally champion Pajero MPR13 was derived from. From a glance you can see right away that the Pajero Evo MPR13 looks strikingly similar to the Outlander rather than the production Pajero/Montero:

    Evo Dakar video

    12 Dakar wins, 7 of those in a row, there's no mistaking about quality of engineering, technology, and reliability.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> Do you seriously think that Yahoo and MSN are even remotely scientific? People who don't really care about cars post there when they have a gripe about their car.

    To me the real owner's feedback is more important vs. test of brand new car, fresh from dealership by an "expert" who is not always independent: some of them indirectly paid by car manufacturers. You would never read from an "expert" this:

    Over-sized, over-rated and over-priced.
    by Hennie B. from San Francisco (4/27/07)

    Pros: Good power (V6).
    Cons: Please read the review.

    My wife and I decided to test drive the RAV4 to see why Consumer Reports rated it highly. First of all, the 2007 model should not even be classified as a "compact" SUV as it has become quite large (it should be considered a mid-size) and, consequently, so has its price tag. Paying nearly $30K for this is just silly. Yes, it has the most power (V6) in its "class", but it just has that trashy, tin-can feel. The exterior is overdone and rather ugly, while the interior is cheap-looking and toy-like. It has come out that "Tokyotas" have exaggerated gas mileages and, sure enough, we have heard consumers grumble about the RAV4's lower-than-advertised mileage. We feel that the quality and reliability ratings are also quite exaggerated as we've read reports that Japanese manufacturers have not been fully open with their safety recalls and repair reports. All in all, we believe that this SUV has some good points, but it's plain over-rated and over-priced. There are better bang-for-your-buck domestic and European compact SUV's in the market.


    by Gerome Smith from Geauga Ohio (4/11/07)

    Pros: Peppy on the highway. (with extreme loss of fuel economy)
    Cons: Loud interior. Cheap materials, bumpy, can't here poor quality of stereo when driving Overpriced

    Don't waste your money on this overpriced vehicle. We bought a 07 Rav limited V6 loaded six monthes ago. Traded it in for a Honda EXL loaded Pilot. Gets the same gas mileage as the Rav. Why not get the bigger nicer car for a little bit more money, than the compact gas guzzler. Get's about 13 mpg city when 4wd is engaged in lock out mode.


    by Kisnell from NY (3/27/07)

    Pros: I traded it in for JEEP Liberty
    Cons: Ride is rough, engine noisy and not that powerful

    I bought this car it was great for the first month and then the engine became very noisy and less powerful. The car also seemed to hydroplane easily in wet weather. As wel I experinced numerous quality problems; trim falling off and transmission shifting funny. Regretful purchase!

    Sketchy so far
    by Zach Masters from Newport, Maine (11/17/06)

    Pros: the cubby hole undeneath the back floor
    Cons: the quality has been sketchy

    Been to the dealer several times for ongoing problems, they cant seem to either fix it , or by the time its fixed there is another problem. They dont offer a loaner car or hours that work with my schedule. I think in hindsight there are better alternatives on the road than the Rav4, mine also gets way below the MPG on the sticker said and eats oil.


    by Rick from Columbus, Ohio (11/16/06)

    Pros: None
    Cons: Poor quality of vehicle and the toyota 800 3 is a joke and sad

    own new RAV with less thatn 10,000 miles had numerous trips for roof squeks, suspension problems, paint chips, not starting and Toyota's suggestion was "see the dealer" even after I have seen the dealer so much I know every single person there on first name basis.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    Although a happy Outlander owner, I don't share the extreme arguments here.
    One thing to note thought - I would take any day 2 ft. less braking distance of the Outlander over 1+ sec. more to 60 mph (@ 8.1-8.2 sec to 60mph, the Outlander is not slow at all). Braking is safety related and Outlander's advantage should not be overlooked. 2 feet is the difference of being into and accident or not.
    I read CRV and RAV4 forums and both cars seemed to have more severe initial quality issues compared to the Outlander (one minor mechanical problem fixed shortly after launch). Outlander's predicted reliability is the main reason the CR did not recommend the Outlander (yet), although Mitsubishi as a manufacturer, is on the 9th place on the 2007 Predicted Reliability Report published by CR few month back (very honorable IMO) only surpassed by Honda/Acura,Toyota/Lexus/Scion,Subaru, Hyundai and Infinity.
    In the US, the price gap between the Outlander and the RAV4 and CRV is smaller, but in Canada is huge ( MANY thousands of dollars more for less equipped vehicles). This makes the Outlander a much better value for the buck. The looks is a factor too, but this is a personal preference. Personally I wouldn't buy the CRV based on the exterior looks, engine, interior design, and I would have to bite my tongue to buy the RAV4 if this would be the only choice (cannot stand the bland in/out design, swing rear door and lack of features for the money).
    In all fairness, Toyota's V6 in the RAV4 is an outstanding engine, perhaps one of the very best out there.
  • cbmortoncbmorton Posts: 252
    What I always find funny about these "my car is better than yours" threads is that a lot of people can't wrap their heads around the concept that what's better for them isn't necessarily better for someone else, who may be looking for different things out of a vehicle. Each of these vehicles is superior in some areas, and part of the buying process is deciding which of those areas are most important to you.

    Yes, the Outlander XLS is sportier overall, looks better outside (but not in, to my eye), is cheaper, has a better warranty and offers more "stuff". On the other hand, the RAV4 is much more powerful (this can also be a safety feature) AND better on gas, larger inside, doesn't make me take a third row I don't need, and comes in a colour combination I prefer. I'm not really into techno gadgets and I don't mind paying more for a vehicle I like better, even if it's not as good a value. Ultimately, the RAV4 is closer to what I'm looking for. Someone else with different priorities might choose the Outlander, or CR-V, or... The perfect car doesn't exist, so it's all about what compromises you're willing to make to get what's closest to what YOU want.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    The only thing I defend is that the Outlander is no longer a second grade vehicle and it's an equal competitor for the CRV and RAV4. Depending on what a person values most in his/her car, any one of them could win. They are all very good vehicles in their own way.
    What I would argue is that most people have the perception that the Outlander's quality and reliability is inferior compared to CRV or RAV4. I say this is a very wrong assumption and I can back up my point if needed. I dare to say that, based on the number and severity of the issues reported so far, surprisingly, the Outlander seems to have better initial quality than both CRV and RAV4.
  • jflorjflor Posts: 20
    Yes, I totally agree with your point of view. Most people have this silly perception that the Outlander can not match CRV or RAV4 in terms of quality and reliability. On a long term basis, the first generation Outlander's quality and reliability has been excellent. My wife uses a 2003 model as her daily commute for the last four years and is totally satisfied of owning one since so far it has not given her any problem at all.
  • biscuit_xlsbiscuit_xls Posts: 194
    The main thing for me was that the 4 cylinder CRV has to work MUCH harder to get going. When going up hills, merging onto the freeway, carrying 4 people, the transmission has to kick down more often and the engine gets noisy as it revs higher. It's just nowhere near as refined of a drivetrain as the Outlander and V6 RAV4.

    I own 2 other Hondas, so the CRV was my first choice going in, but the Outlander won because it has a lot more features that fit my needs. Honda needs to put the Accord V6 in both the CRV and Element if they want to get my business.

    RAV4 has a little more real world power, basically the same fuel ecomony, but didn't look as nice to me and is missing a lot of key features for me... Nav, 10 year warranty, 6 speed, Xenon headlights, PZEV engine, 3rd row with leather etc.

    After 4,000 miles I give my Outlander 2 thumbs up.
    by Gerome Smith from Geauga Ohio (4/11/07)

    Pros: Peppy on the highway. (with extreme loss of fuel economy)
    Cons: Loud interior. Cheap materials, bumpy, can't here poor quality of stereo when driving Overpriced

    Don't waste your money on this overpriced vehicle. We bought a 07 Rav limited V6 loaded six monthes ago. Traded it in for a Honda EXL loaded Pilot. Gets the same gas mileage as the Rav. Why not get the bigger nicer car for a little bit more money, than the compact gas guzzler. Get's about 13 mpg city when 4wd is engaged in lock out mode."

    Thanks for finding this to me. I alluded to it the other day in another post but didn't feel like searching for it again. My problem with most of the poor RAV4 reviews on MSN, et al, is that this seems to be the typical intelligence level of the posters. This guy is complaining that he only gets 13mpg with 4WD lock engaged. 4WD lock is a system that's there to get you unstuck should the need arise, it's not for trunding around town on dry pavement. I would expect to get 13 mpg if I were keeping it engaged whenever possible.
  • dodo2dodo2 Posts: 496
    Who wrote that post is indeed a bozzo. Personally, I don't take those reviews seriously either. Same goes for the "expert" reviews. Instead, read the dedicated owners forums and you get a pretty good picture of the car.
  • comem47comem47 Posts: 399
    Some people are just plain brand loyal and that's fine if it floats your boat. I considered the RAV-4 and the CRV but found the V6 AWD Outlander able to tow my snowmobile trailer and while the RAV-4 could do the towing, the refrigerator door with the tire on the back was a deal buster (gets in the way unloading at curbs). While Toyota and Honda won't deal price and have a lesser warranty(riding on past reputation), they are dealing on Outlanders with price and the 10 yr/100k driveline and 5 yr /60K bumper to bumper with roadside assist warranty is superior. (Mitsubishi willing to give more to gain some market share and prove the reliability). V6 Mileage on the RAV and Outlander are very close and the 166 hp CRV was not enough ooomph for towing. (probably great for good mileage, non -towing vehicle) I do believe the Outlander is the largest interior of the 3 also. I'll give that the interior finish may be nicer on the Honda and Toyota, but I love my Rockford Fosgate sound system. I tend to keep cars for several years and the extended driveline and bumper to bumper warranty was enough to take the chance. No regrets so far. If it wasn't for my AWD winter towing needs I'd probably not be looking any any of these vehicles and just going for FWD economy car. (best compromise under these constraints) Actually the closer match for me was with the Hyundai Santa Fe (Santa Fe is even larger than the Outlander, but personally the scales tipped towards the Mitsubishi for me with things like selectable 2WD/FWD and 6 speed auto.and the sound package. I have gotten 27 mpg in FWD on hwy, but mid 20's is typical.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Shoot, I was reading the comparison stuff yesterday and thought the drivetrain warranty was 10/60k. 10/100k is pretty impressive.
This discussion has been closed.