Toyota RAV4 Re-Design Marks The End Of The 4-Speed Automatic

Derek Kreindler
by Derek Kreindler
toyota rav4 re design marks the end of the 4 speed automatic

Aside from the antiquated gearbox, Toyota’s next-gen RAV4 is also ditching its third row seat and V6 engine option. The 2.5L four-cylinder option making 176 horsepower. Oh, and the liftgate now opens upwards, rather than sideways. Excuse me, my heart feels like it’s beating too fast…

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  • Angus McClure Angus McClure on Nov 29, 2012

    A rear liftgate is not an improvement over a side opening one. Old shocks start to droop and I have had the experience of really cracking my head when I would raise back up. Side openers mimic the old sedan deliveries and work very well. I don't like having the spare mounted on either one.

  • Bkmurph Bkmurph on Nov 29, 2012

    Ugh. I *hate* the way the cowl is higher up than the front corners of the side windows. The hood, fenders, etc. all need to be several inches lower. In the profile view, one should be able to imagine the hood leading directly into the beltline as a continuous stroke of the designer's pencil. On this mess, it's as though the cowl is a subduction fault, the windscreen is being subducted into the earth like a tectonic plate, and the massive hood will swell up like a mountain range and obliterate useful visibility for eons.

  • Jimmyy Jimmyy on Nov 29, 2012

    Being a fan of conservative and neutral styling, I like it. Toyota's styling originates from design studios in Southern California. I am not surprised people from Detroit have a hate for Southern California styling ... the 2 places are so different you would not know they are in the same country. Southern Californians also have plenty of negative comments about Detroit styling. That is one reason Detroit vehicles sell so poorly on the east and west coast. I suggest Detroit automakers move their stylers to the east and west coast. The world does not revolve around Oakland County. In fact, I don't think anyone on the east or west coast has ever heard of Oakland County. But, I would bet all of Detroit has heard of LA and Orange County since that is the center of car culture. Not Detroit.

  • Jimmyy Jimmyy on Nov 29, 2012

    The big question I have about this Rav4 is the black plastic on the front and rear bumper. Is it durable enough not to be nicked by small bumps in city parking? My 11 Honda Pilot had black plastic which could withstand small bumps. But, my 12 Honda Pilot gets a nick or scratch in the rear black plastic every time it touches something. This really bothers me.

    • Shaker Shaker on Dec 02, 2012

      @jimmyy: Not to mention how that black plastic will look after a few years of UV exposure - I've always been suspicious of the use of this stuff as anything other than a subtle push to purchase the "upscale" trim levels, which offer body-colored bumpers. Funny how they'll warranty paint/rust, but not the inevitable woeful appearance of the ubiquitous black plastic (which has started an entire industry unto itself i.e.; Back-To-Black and products like it). Oh, and don't get wax on it, because pulling out one's own hair isn't covered under warranty, either.