2023 Toyota RAV4: What can you get for that money
The RAV4 has been a bestseller for Toyota for many years—it’s a practical and efficient SUV that makes sense for most people. The 2023 RAV4 continues this tradition, with a cargo-friendly interior, an attractive base price, and sensible road manners. A 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine powers the front or all four wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. Acceleration is somewhat poky, but fuel economy is good overall.
The RAV4’s TRD Off-Road model allows it to compete among 4Runners and Tacomas for more suburban tasks, such as daily commuting and trips to the home improvement store. Its driver-assistance tech and infotainment features are also standard, which makes this Toyota an enticing value compared to its opponents. Even so, a hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrain would be better suited for remote locales than the rugged off-roaders.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The 2023 RAV4 comes standard with a 203-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. You can now choose between front or all-wheel drive, depending on the trim you select. The Adventure model we drove had all-wheel drive that could disconnect the rear axle when not in use to help conserve fuel economy.
The 2019 RAV4 model proved to be quicker than the 2018 at our test track, with a 60-mph time of 8.0 seconds recorded for the newer model and 8.3 seconds for the older one. The four-cylinder can be noisy, especially during highway passing attempts, and on our test vehicle, it seemed like the transmission stumbled when asked to downshift.
The RAV4 Hybrid–reviewed in another article–accelerated to 60 mph even quicker, achieving a time of 7.4 seconds. Even though the RAV4 is solid and stable when driving on the highway or taking curves on backroads, it doesn’t provide the same level of confidence as our segment favorite—the Mazda CX-5.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
As per the EPA, the RAV4 has earned class-competitive fuel-economy estimates. For example, front-wheel drive RAV4s can reach up to 35 mpg on highways. We did a tests with an all wheel drive Adventure and it averaged 32 mpg howrying us on our 75 mph highway fuel economy route which is only 1 mp shy of the EPA estimated rating for that specific trim.
The RAV4’s 33 mpg fuel economy was outshined by the Volkswagen Tiguan in that test, returning a whopping 41 mpg. For more information about the RAV4’s average fuel economy and other performance statistics, visit the EPA’s website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The RAV4 prioritizes ergonomics and storage inside the vehicle. A shelf that is useful stretches across the dash and works well with the large center console. The version we tested had a combination of surfaces that were soft to touch as well as some nicer plastics..
The simplest trim, LE, is pretty bare-bones and comes with cloth seats, a plastic steering wheel, and standard manual climate control. On the next level up XLE, Toyota offers some additional features as perks. However, there’s considerably more to like about the top-of-the line XLE Premium–like for instance its faux leather upholstery or genuine leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob along with other classy details like a stitched padded dashboard & center armrest console.
The RAV4’s rear seats are simple to store away, and when they’re folded down, they sit nearly flat. This allows for more space in the cabin for cargo. We were able to fit 10 of our carry-on suitcases behind the rear seat and 22 with it folding down. The Nissan Rogue had a similar amount of space, but the Subaru Forester had one more suitcase in each category.
Will RAV4 be redesigned in 2023?
The 2023 Toyota RAV4 adds to the basics of the fifth-gen RAV4 first introduced in 2018, with a larger 10.5-inch infotainment screen and updated safety systems in Toyota Safety Sense 2.5.
What is the difference between a 2022 and a 2023 Toyota RAV4?
Next year’s RAV4 will get this upgraded tech, which includes wireless CarPlay and Android Auto. Buyers will also get a larger screen in 2023. The 2022’s eight-inch screen will be standard (rather than the current seven-inch unit) with upper trims receiving a new 10.5-inch display.
Is Toyota RAV4 2022 a good car?
Highs Comfortable ride, rugged styling, generous standard driver-assistance features. Lows Base model includes few luxuries, unrefined engine sounds, unexciting handling. Verdict The RAV4 is practical, handsome, and affordable, making it a good choice for anyone seeking long-lasting value.