5 Best Years for the Toyota RAV4: Which Years Are the Greatest for the Toyota RAV4? (Explained!)

Toyota Motors is one of the top automakers in the world, offering a wide variety of automobile types including sedans, small SUVs, trucks, vans, and minivans. Thanks to its impressive history of dependability, efficiency, and competitive pricing compared to competitors, Toyota has long been the preferred automaker for both novice and seasoned drivers.

One of the most well-liked cars in the United States of America is the Toyota RAV4 crossover SUV. The midsize Camry is just behind it. Toyota has also kept its word to protect the environment by providing a large selection of hybrid, all-electric, and alternative-fuel cars.

What Are the Toyota RAV4’s Best Years?

The Toyota RAV4’s finest model year is 2016, and it offers fantastic amenities at a fair price. The 2017 and 2018 versions are also fantastic; however, you’ll likely pay more on them and get older features and technology as opposed to the 2016 model. 2010 and 2009 are excellent choices for budgets. Consumer Reports gave the 2016 RAV4 an unblemished dependability rating. In several testing, including the well-known J.D Power tests, this model excelled.

The 2017 and 2018 RAV4 models, which had been leading the pack for some time, were surpassed by this year’s model. Thousands of verified RAV4 2016 owners gave the 2016 model an overall score of 85/100 at J.D. Power. It was listed as one of the ten most dependable SUVs. Also, it scored an 86/100 rating for quality, reliability, and a pleasant driving experience.

The 2016 RAV4 was rated as having the greatest resale value, earning a score of 91/100. After three months of ownership, the 2016 model has already won a number of accolades for its brilliant design and performance. Despite having more reported issues than the 2017 and 2018 model years, it was still the most trustworthy overall. Owners of the 2016 RAV4 have complained about problems with the inside fixtures, notably the cruise control system.

What Rav4 Models Are the Most Reliable?


One of the best Rav4 models is the 2009 model. This vehicle, which features a V6 four-cylinder engine, has the highest height rating in its class. The 2009 model is distinguished by its roomy cargo area, third-row seat option, and safety. Also, it is among the top models in terms of dependability and excellence. The 2009 model earned a startling 83/100 on J.D. Power’s dependability rating.

Its previous owners have lauded its durability and cheap ownership expenses. It was able to achieve a record 9.4/10 on SureCritic’s dependability rating as a result. Moreover, there have only been 69 complaints for the 2009 model, the majority of which are minor and only required minor repairs.


The dependability, safety, spaciousness, and engine of the 2010 model, like that of the 2009 model, earned it high accolades from reviewers. The automobile received an 88/100 on J.D. Power’s dependability rating. The platform’s resale value earned it an additional 88/100 grade, and it also managed to claim the second place on the list of the finest small SUVs in 2010. It scored a 9.3/10 on SureCritic’s dependability rating. Other reviews lauded it for continuing to work well even after 200,000 kilometers. J.D. Power reports that there are just 75 complaints about the automobile, and none of them are serious or costly.


2016 has only been able to get ratings for its characteristics that are above average; yet, it stands out for its performance It was able to get a dependability and quality grade of 86/100 from J.D. Power. It was also acknowledged as the top SUV for 2016 on the same platform. It has a 4/5 dependability rating on RepairPal. Also, the platform reports that it has an exceptional yearly maintenance cost of $429 for a vehicle of this size. The automobile only has 37 complaints on CarComplaints, which is a very small number. Overall, the 2016 model is among the least troublesome Rav4s ever produced.


2017 was a turning point in the Toyota Rav4’s history. The Rav4 was equipped with a number of noteworthy features in 2017, including Toyota Safety Sense. All models now come with this basic functionality. It received low depreciation and dependability ratings of 87/100 and 85/100, respectively, from J.D. Power. The 2017 model received a 4/5 dependability rating on RepairPal, much as the 2016 model. Its yearly maintenance costs $429. Its yearly ownership expenses, according to some press forecasts, are $4450. The price is $22,300 over the course of five years. The price is much less than the average for the class. For a vehicle in its category, the 2017 Rav4 had a comparatively insignificant 56 complaints, according to CarComplaints.


While it may not be the finest Rav4, the 2018 model is dependable. The 2018 model has a towing capacity increase to 3500 pounds and has a J.D. Power dependability rating of 88/100. The car’s resale value received a score of 84/100 as well. It has a 4.0 dependability rating out of five on RepairPal.

The average yearly cost to purchase a 2018 Rav4 is $4600, which comes to $23000 over the course of five years, according to US News forecasts. For vehicles in this category, these figures are rather respectable. There were 27 complaints in total for the 2018 models, according to CarComplaints. With these figures, the 2018 may be seen as a very reliable SUV.

The Toyota Rav4’s worst years are


There are very few similarities between the 2018 and 2019 Rav4 models. The vehicle has reportedly gotten a whopping 97 complaints, according to CarComplaints. The difficulties begin as it reaches its average mileage, and its repair prices are absurdly expensive. The average mileage for these problems is 3350 miles, and the car also lurches and hesitates while being driven slowly. Also, the yearly repair expenses might exceed $20,000. The gasoline gauge on this automobile, which never seems to be full, is another significant problem. The typical distance for this problem is 1100 miles. Considering these figures, it’s easy to see how difficult this car may become even before it reaches 5,000 miles. So, it is preferable to stay away from this model.


If you want a pleasant driving experience, you must leave the 2013 model alone since it is the same as previous models. With 128 complaints, it has even surpassed the 2019 model on CarComplaints. These troubles are a result of the typical mileage problems that this automobile has. The main issue with the 2019 model, according to CarComplaints, is abrupt acceleration that completely lacks context. The typical mileage for this issue is a little over 20,000 miles, and the cost to remedy it is a little over $13,000. Another significant issue with this Vehicle is the navigation display, which starts to malfunction after 3000 miles on average. Also, the ventilation system in this vehicle begins to emit a strong odour after 6000 miles. Even more reasons not to test drive this vehicle.


The total number of complaints for the Rav4 model from 2002 is 519, which is much more than for any other Rav4 model. CarComplaints claims that the gearbox, particularly while changing gears, is this car’s major complaint. This issue often arises after the vehicle has travelled 97000 miles on average, and it costs just over $2250 to correct.

This car also exhibits some shaking at low speeds. There have already been 126 complaints regarding this issue, which starts after the first 98000 miles. You’ll need to spend around $2050 to find a solution. Before it ever reaches the 100,000-mile milestone, the computer and the transmission in the Rav4 2002 model might fail, with repair costs of around $3000.

Overview of the Toyota RAV4 in Few Words

One of the few Toyota vehicles to achieve eight-figure sales is the RAV4. Since 1994, more than 10 million RAV 4 SUVs have been sold, making it the most popular SUV. Toyota’s RAV4 has long been regarded as a superb piece of art. Since its debut, its popularity has risen steadily. It has created a market niche for a brand-new kind of small, sporty, and versatile SUV. This SUV has undergone several redesign and improvement procedures, which have helped it outperform other vehicles in its class.

There are six trim options available for the new Toyota RAV4:

  • LE
  •  XLE
  •  XLE Premium
  •  Adventure
  • TRD. Off-road
  • Limited

This SUV is available in a larger variety of trim levels to cater to diverse drivers’ driving preferences and lifestyles, as well as the expanding Toyota fan base. This explains why the Toyota RAV4 is one of the most well-liked and well-known cars in the nation. They are perfect for everyday driving as well as the toughest off-roading challenges and requirements for heavy carrying.

Also, the RAV4 has a strong history dating back to its first model year of reliability and durability. The best years for the Toyota RAV4 are crucial to knowing whether you want to buy a new or used version of the SUV. This will assist you in selecting the model year and trim level that will work best for you and provide a positive user experience over the long term.

The new RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid, which gives RAV4 devotees even more alternatives for an all-electric driving experience with zero-emissions and low fuel use, will be introduced in 2021, significantly altering the RAV4 portfolio.

Questions and Answers (FAQ)

Are RAV4s trustworthy?

Yeah, the RAV4 has continued to be among the most well-liked SUVs in the US, with over 10 million vehicles sold since its debut in 1994. This is mostly due to its reliability, effectiveness, longevity, and capacity for longer-term value retention.

Which RAV4 year has the best track record?

The 2016 model year of the RAV4 is the most dependable. Owners of this model have given it high marks in Consumer Reports and J.D. Power feedback. J.D. Power gave the 2016 RAV4 model an overall score of 85/100 and a further score of 91/100 for its greatest resale value. As a result, the 2016 model is the SUV in the range that can be relied upon the most. The 2017 and 2018 RAV4 variants lost out to this SUV. The 2017 and 2018 model years are still a good choice if you’re looking for a used RAV4. They continue to provide a pleasant and quiet ride and hold their value longer.

Which RAV4 model is the best?

The RAV4 Limited trim levels come with the majority of the amenities that drivers appreciate most, even if the 2016 model of the RAV4 SUV is the greatest in terms of dependability, performance, and resale value. The Limited Edition of the RAV4 is the greatest model. This trim level has a ton of cutting-edge technology, as well as top-tier luxury and performance amenities.

Which RAV4 years must I stay away from?

Despite being one of the world’s most dependable automobiles, certain 2019 RAV4 vehicles (5th generation) are not recommended for purchase. Yet, if you must purchase them, you must first do your research. It is wise to have used and previously owned automobiles properly examined before purchasing. This should not deter you from purchasing a 2019 RAV4, but more problems have been documented with this model year than the others. Yet since the RAV4 is typically built for dependability, the majority of these problems have subsequently been resolved.

Prior to making a purchase choice for an older RAV4 model, check to make sure the most prevalent faults have been resolved for your own peace of mind. The worst RAV4 models to purchase list does not include the latest vehicles. Nevertheless, the fifth generation and later (2019 Model) have several issues that buyers should be aware of, remedy, or use as a negotiating chip.

What are the Toyota RAV4’s most typical issues?

Consumer Reports gave the 2019 vehicles the lowest dependability rating (2/5). Interestingly, this model had the fewest complaints, except that the faults included crucial elements like gearbox troubles and engine parts. Owners of the 2019 RAV4 model have complained about loud acceleration, gear slippage, stalling or sliding forward at modest speeds, and broken gas gauges. Several owners claim that the gas gauge miscalculated the amount of gas in the tank. This was a significant issue with the majority of the early RAV4 models. Due to the fact that it no longer occurs on the updated models, this problem has subsequently been fixed.

Is purchasing a pre-owned Toyota RAV4 worthwhile?

Yes. One of Toyota’s most dependable SUVs is the RAV4. The RAV4 is the best option for you if you’re on a tight budget and want to get a small crossover SUV that will cost you less to buy and maintain. This vehicle offers you a pleasurable driving experience, is less expensive to maintain, and has a lot of horsepower. All RAV4 models are long-lasting and retain their value for a considerable amount of time. Hence, investing in a RAV4 is worthwhile since you can sell it with confidence and peace of mind for a decent price.

In addition to strength and value at resale, the used RAV4 has a track record of performance in North America. As a result, you may purchase one knowing that there is proof that it will serve you better. One of the main goals in the development and production of RAV4 SUVs is safety. The RAV4 is one of the safest SUVs on the market, whether it is new or old, thanks to its extensive array of highway safety measures.


There is a solid reason why Toyota is one of the most well-known car brands in the world and in the United States. Since they were first released in the middle of the 1990s, the Toyota RAV4 SUVs have had a long reputation of being dependable and pleasant to drive. Nevertheless, each year will have a different impact on the RAV4 models’ performance and dependability ratings. If you’re in the market for a RAV4, it’s crucial to do extensive research and only purchase from the Toyota RAV4’s top model years.

In general, the RAV4 is intended to be a trustworthy, tough, entertaining, and comfortable car. Nonetheless, performance may, and often does, change from one model year to the next. While Consumer Reports and J.D. Power have given the 2016 RAV4 model a superior dependability rating, you cannot go wrong with either the 2017 or 2018 RAV4 model years. The 2019 RAV4 model was the only one with several issues documented. Take your time to ensure that any performance-related concerns have been resolved before purchasing the 2019 model or any other prior model. Aesthetic problems might be overlooked since they are fixable quickly and affordably.