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2011 Toyota RAV4

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2011 Toyota RAV4 Review

Compact crossover SUV still seems spacious

Reviewed by Automotive on

In a Nutshell
The 2011 Toyota RAV4 is a compact crossover/sport utility vehicle (SUV) with two- and four-door variants and an optional third row of passenger seats. Equipped with either a 2.5 liter I-4 engine delivering179 horsepower or a 3.5 liter V-6 engine churning 269 horsepower, paired to either a four- or five-speed transmission, the RAV4 comes with all-wheel drive or two-wheel drive.

The RAV4 is spacious but the interior d├ęcor is a bit on the boring side, while the SUV handles good naturedly, even if a bit stiff in the suspension. Toyota's famous safety features come standard, and the RAV4 has achieved over the years better fuel economy, now in the 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway range.

New for 2011

For 2011, the RAV4 received a brake override system. Also new is a Base Plus Extra Value Package, with moon roof, steering wheel audio controls, roof rails, and 17-inch wheels. RAV4 option packages received minor changes.

Essentials

Engines: 2.5L I-4, 3.5L V-6
Transmissions: 4-speed automatic, 5-speed automatic
Body Style: Crossover SUV
Trims: Base Sport Utility, Sport Sport Utility, Limited Sport Utility

On the Outside

Toning down some of the overly cute lines of the previous generation, the current RAV4's most unique styling cue is the triangular D-pillar, which works with rear side windows that angle toward the back.

From the Inside

A104.7-inch wheelbase gives the Toyota RAV4 room for an optional third row. Standard features are air conditioning, cruise control, and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel. Dual-zone climate control, leather accents, upgraded six-speaker, and six-CD audio with XM Satellite Radio are optional.

Driving Performance

The RAV4's super-fast 3.5-liter V-6 engine outputs 269 horsepower to get the SUV 0 to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds and past the quarter mile mark in 15.0 seconds at 92.4 mph. The RAV4 brakes from 60 mph to zero in 130 feet. While the ride quality of the Toyota RAV4 is a little rough, its on-road handling benefits from the stiff suspension.

Safety Equipment

Standard on the RAV4 are driver and front passenger airbags, dual front seat-mounted side airbags, and two-row roll-sensing side curtain airbags. Also standard are antilock brakes with brake assist and electronic brake-force distribution, stability control, and traction control.

Gas Mileage

Base, Sport, Limited: 19-22 mpg city/26-28 mpg highway

Plusses

  • Spacious interior
  • Good natured handling
  • Very good fuel economy
  • Excellent V-6 engine power

Minuses

  • Boring interior design
  • Stiff suspension
  • Options are pricey

Rating

Compact crossover SUV still seems spacious

People Who Like the 2011 Toyota RAV4 Also Like

  • Honda CR-V
  • Hyundai Tucson
  • Chevrolet Equinox
  • Ford Escape

See the New 2014 RAV4.

Front & Driver Side View

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