Toyota Rav4 Fourth Generation
The fourth generation Rav4 has to be one of the best used buys out there.
Launched in 2013 and facelifted in 2015, the fourth generation Toyota Rav4 was replaced by the all-new fifth generation in 2018. But because of the Rav4’s immense popularity in South Africa, there are many great examples of the fourth generation around for the discerning buyer.
I remember driving the fourth generation Rav4 back in 2013 when it was launched, and I couldn’t get over the value it offered when compared to most rivals, and the extra space and features it offered on top of the great price.
Three engines were available: 2.0 petrol, 2.2 D-4D turbodiesel and 2.5 VVT-i petrol. The 2.0 produced 107kW of power and 187Nm of torque, while using just 7.7 litres of petrol per 100km on the combined cycle. While it isn’t a ball of fire, the 2.0 was more than adequate, especially considering the great fuel economy. Buyers could choose between a six-speed manual or a CVT transmission. This engine was only available in the GX trim.
Also available only in GX trim was the 2.2D-4D, a very smooth turbodiesel variant that produces 110kW and a maximum torque of 340Nm, which is the real selling point of the diesel along with the fuel economy of just 5.6L/100km on the combined cycle. Six-speed manual and auto gearboxes were available in the diesel.
At the top of the range was the 2.5 VVT-I, a well-balanced offering that produces 132kW and 233Nm and uses 8.5L/100km. It was only available in the VX trim, which means extra bells and whistles to go with the extra power, and came with a six-speed automatic gearbox.
Both the diesel and the 2.5 came with All-Wheel-Drive, unlike the front-wheel-drive 2.0.
This generation Rav4 was a big departure from the one before it in terms of styling, which meant better aesthetic design as well as a more comfortable and spacious vehicle. The seating position was noticeably improved upon and lent the vehicle the commanding driving position that SUV drivers expect.
Speaking of driving, the fourth Rav4 was dynamically and comfort-wise significantly improved over the third generation, living up to the Rav’s aim to be fun and engaging.
A flatter design with sharper nose and narrower headlights was the distinctive cue, while the rear was angular and far more masculine than the generations that preceded it. The rear-mounted spare wheel of the previous generations was removed for aerodynamic reasons, and the tailgate was made top-hinged for practicality.
Inside the Rav4 the evolution of the series was obvious, with high quality materials, blue backlighting and silver trim accenting the functional black, soft materials. Exact specifications obviously changed over the lifetime of the fourth generation Rav4, specifically with the 2015 facelift where things like a 7-inch touchscreen display were added. The GX models featured electric windows, remote central locking, a multi-function steering wheel and manual air-conditioning, while the VX models also go leather upholstery, auto air-con and cruise control.
The fourth generation Rav4 might not be the very latest iteration of the admired vehicle, but it remains extraordinarily good value and a beautiful car to drive. And because it was so popular when new, there are lots of clean examples available on the used car market. The Rav4 came with a 3-year/100 000km warranty and a 5-year/90 000km service plan, which means that some late model vehicles are still covered by both.
Excellent resale value
Interior space and build quality