Which should I choose, the Honda CRV or Toyota RAV4 (2012 or 2013)

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Posted 1/28/2013 by NewfCathy in NSBR Board


PeaNut 268,368
July 2006
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Posted: 1/28/2013 4:21:57 PM
Time for a new car for me. I am excited. At present, I am considering a 2013 CRV with navi pkg, a 2012 RAV4 Ltd or a 2013 RAV4 Ltd.

I have a 2005 Element with 139k miles on it that will set aside for ds (17). Dh has a 2010 Ridgeline with 100k miles. I Hondas, my first brand new car was a Civic & I really like our dealership.

I test drove the CRV, once alone and once with dh. I did notice the road noise, a Consumer Reports complaint. The Element also registers quite a bit of road noise. It's a 4 cylinder, but I want the loaded package, heated leather seats, navigation system, backup camera. It has a ECON button that helps to improve the mileage.

The RAV4 dealership looked nice, a small caf, nice seating area. I drove a 2012 Limited. It had the heated leather seats, backup camera but no GPS has I guess most people are using their smart phones. It is also a V6 which was sort of nice. The 2012 has the awkwardly hinged rear hatch with a full sized tire on the outside. The 2013 will be more expensive, but the tire is inside, though it is not a full sized one and the hinge will be more conveniently set on the top.

I drive a mix of local/city driving with lots of regular longer drives.

Thanks in advance for all your feedback,

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 183,099
January 2005
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Posted: 1/28/2013 4:37:37 PM
They're both solid cars with great reputations. We test-drove the 2012s and I favored the CRV.

The '12 RAV4 was Consumer Reports' top pick of this category, and is a little less expensive. But I found the back seats VERY uncomfortable. It was like sitting on a padded block of wood. I also didn't like (at least in the 2012 version) that the iPod/USB charging station was in full view. I like to keep an old iPod in the car and don't want to have to hide it every time I park.

I was all set to buy the CRV when I decided to test drive that last car on our top list...the Subaru Outback, which is what we bought.

pearl-clutching nitpicker

PeaNut 201,774
April 2005
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Posted: 1/28/2013 4:39:44 PM
I had a RAV4 years ago and loved it. I liked the full-size spare on the back, btw.

When I bought my last car, I test-drove both the RAV4 and the CRV first. I thought the RAV4 seemed sturdier but more boring than the CRV, which was super cute but felt like a tin can. I ended up getting neither.

If I had to buy a new car tomorrow, I'd probably get another RAV4.

To the right, To the right

PeaNut 51,257
October 2002
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Posted: 1/28/2013 4:49:51 PM
Well, I have a 2013 CRV, and I love it, but I didn't test drive the RAV4, so I don't know how the RAV4 is in comparison.

We decided to get a CRV completely because they are so reliable, and when we drove it, we liked how it drove. Very smooth in our opinion.

JD Power gave the overall quality - mechanical of the 2011 CRV five stars.

JD Power


PeaNut 65,877
January 2003
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Posted: 1/28/2013 4:56:55 PM
We are also currently looking. I think both are good cars. I personally didn't like the 2013 RAV4 but liked the 2012 ones but there was no way I was going to pay just as much for an older model and I liked the CRV better anyway (I think at our dealership there was only maybe $500- $1000 difference between the 2012 and 2013 but figure it will make a difference later when I go to sell it since technically it will be a year older). I really liked the CRV much more than I thought and am trying to decide between it and the Chevy Equinox. I drove the Equinox and really liked it but haven't driven the CRV yet- road noise will be an issue for me. I haven't driven a 4 cylinder car in maybe 20 years and was afraid it wouldn't have enough power and was surprised it had plenty of pep getting on the freeway and on hills.

I am also going to go and look at Outbacks and trying to figure out if there is anything else I should look at.

To the right, To the right

PeaNut 51,257
October 2002
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Posted: 1/28/2013 5:22:57 PM

I asked my dh if he had noticed any excess road noise in the CRV, and he said no, that he thought it was quiet, and I felt the same.

I guess it depends on how sensitive you are to road noise.

Got Samoas?

PeaNut 70,391
February 2003
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Posted: 1/28/2013 5:32:48 PM
Is there a V6 option on the CRV? That's what I'd want if I were looking now.

I have an 05 Odyssey that I love. It's my first V6 and I adore that. It's easy to get out of the way when getting onto the interstate.

I also would want a nav system. The Honda one is good, and I think it's distracting to use the one ony phone while driving.
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Happy Happy Joy Joy Happy Happy Joy

PeaNut 178,445
November 2004
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Posted: 1/28/2013 6:05:13 PM
We have been looking at both cars. The thing I love
about the CRV is the release for the back seat.

Peace Out Girl Scout

PeaNut 80,420
April 2003
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:09:55 PM
I didn't drive the CRV, but last fall I was certain I was going to get a RAV4, then drove a Hyundai Tuscon and liked it better--that's what I ended up with--and I'm happy with it.


PeaNut 292,535
January 2007
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:25:52 PM
My mom had a similar question recently. She really liked the CRV and the RAV4. Really liked both, my stepdad encouraged her to test drive the Subaru Forrester. She LOVED the Forrester. In fact she loved it so much that they have had two. She loved her first one so much that when the newer model came out they traded it in and bought the newer model. Outstanding car.

I really love her Forrester and would love to purchase one when DH's car goes wheels up, but he absolutely refuses to drive an all wheel vehicle. It just isn't necessary for us. We will probably go with the CRV when the time comes. We have an Odyssey we adore and we will probably be a Honda family for many more years.



PeaNut 463,295
April 2010
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:37:52 PM
I adored our Rav4. It was an awesome car and if Sandy didn't drown him we'd still be driving the Rav. Get the 2012, you'll be happy. MIL drives a CRV. I like it, but I dont feel as comfortable driving it. It feels clunky and too big to me.

Captain K

PeaNut 247,594
February 2006
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:39:53 PM
Rav4 - the 2012. You'll get a much better deal on it now than the 2013 model.

I live for the applause applause applause...

PeaNut 526,154
October 2011
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Posted: 1/28/2013 7:54:11 PM
I like the CRV.
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I drank the whole fairy.

PeaNut 233,449
November 2005
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Posted: 1/28/2013 8:04:31 PM
I have a RAV with the v6 and I love love love this car. I also considered a crv but the RAV suited me better and I don't for a second regret it. It's now 5 years old with 90k on it and it's never had a serious repair.
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PeaNut 146,748
May 2004
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Posted: 1/28/2013 8:24:20 PM
I was in the same position a couple years ago - I went with the crv and don't regret it. the honda imho had more features that were standard.


PeaNut 283,357
November 2006
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Posted: 1/28/2013 8:36:09 PM
I almost bought a 2013 Rav4 just last week (the XLE). Loved it. So different from the 2012 models. It drove so nice! I ended up with a Camry though (which I love) because I drive a lot and the extra gas mileage makes a difference for me. I loved that Rav though!

I have said this on another thread, I'm a big Toyota fan. My new Camry makes number 7. I doubt I will ever drive something different!


PeaNut 268,368
July 2006
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Loc: North of Boston

Posted: 1/28/2013 9:30:56 PM
oops, lost my reply

I wish the CRV came in a V6. I did test the Crosstour, but I love being up high. I also have issues with my knees so bending can be difficult.

Thanks for all your input, it's such a big decision.



PeaNut 1,929
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Posted: 1/28/2013 10:33:13 PM
I have a new 2012 Toyota Limited RAV4 and love it! I bought it October/2012 and prior to that had a limited RAV4-2010. I love my RAV4 and also like the full sized tire on the back.


PeaNut 483,846
October 2010
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Posted: 1/28/2013 10:41:30 PM
We just bought a 2012 Rav4 Limited in November! We have really been pleased with it so far! It gets great gas mileage around town and on the interstate ! We're excited to take it on vacation this summer! It rides so smooth and it's very comfortable and my dd thinks the sunroof is cool lol! Good luck with your purchase!
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Packer Pea in the middle of Vikingland

PeaNut 81,645
April 2003
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Posted: 1/28/2013 10:42:27 PM
I don't have the CRV, we just got a 2013 Pilot. I had a Pilot before and wanted one again. I love Honda. I honestly don't think I am ever going to want a different brand.


PeaNut 39,382
May 2002
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:47:43 PM
I wanted a CRV. DH wanted a Pilot. We got a Pilot but wish we have gotten the CRV. I drive it not him. I would prefer better gas mileage. He wanted the xtra space.


PeaNut 371,428
April 2008
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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:12:31 PM
I drive a 2009 RAV-4 LTD and I love it. I would buy another one without thinking twice about it. I hate to hear they moved the spare inside. I like it outside so it doesn't take up interior room. I planned to buy a CRV until I test drove it. It felt flimsy and cheap and the seats were uncomfortable.

Happy Happy Joy Joy Happy Happy Joy

PeaNut 178,445
November 2004
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Loc: Northern California

Posted: 1/29/2013 9:19:12 PM
Be glad you have a spare tire. DS has a 2008 Ford Focus
and the first time he had a flat and went looking for
the spare he found out they don't come standard in some
cars any longer.

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 465,849
April 2010
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Loc: Southern, CA

Posted: 1/29/2013 11:57:11 PM
I am considering a 2013 CRV with navi pkg

SO's parents bought the one you listed with these features. They really like it! It didn't sound loud to me at all when we rode in it. For his mom the choice was more cosmetic between the CRV and RAV4. She didn't like the spare tire look on the back of the RAV4.

Hap-Pea To Be Here

PeaNut 361,190
February 2008
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Posted: 1/30/2013 5:39:45 AM
I have a 2011 RAV4 and love it. Good gas mileage, enough room for both of us. I have the base model and want the Sport next time.

You can get a RAV without the back spare tire, I think it's on some of the Sport models.

Useless Information

PeaNut 249,087
February 2006
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Posted: 1/30/2013 5:48:02 AM
I have a '08 rav4 limited and love it. I have no complaints about the back seat as I found out they can be adjusted a little. When we're ready to, I think we'll get another one. DH loves his madza and thinks he'll get another one if he can find one he likes.


PeaNut 425,241
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Posted: 1/30/2013 7:59:00 AM
I test drove both this summer, liked them. I also liked the Mitsubishi Outlander and Kia Sportage.

I bought a Ford Escape.

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 465,849
April 2010
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Posted: 1/30/2013 8:38:19 AM
You can get a RAV without the back spare tire, I think it's on some of the Sport models.

Hmmm didn't know that. I will have to keep that in mind. She seems happy with the CRV. I think that Honda and Toyota both make a really good car.

Typical Liberal Pea

PeaNut 55,230
November 2002
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Posted: 1/30/2013 9:25:38 AM
I test drove both of them and thought the CVR rode MUCH rougher.....so I have a beautiful blue 2012 Toyota Rav4 that I bought in April, but we also love Toyotas too...my husband drives a Prius.

Eleven months later and I still love that car, love driving it, love looking at it...lol


PeaNut 273,602
August 2006
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Posted: 1/30/2013 10:10:24 AM
Hondas do have noisy interiors (comparing my Fit to my BF's Volvo, it's REALLY noticeable, lol!) but I would be hard-pressed to ever buy anything other than a Honda.

I have had three so far now (Civic coupe, CRV, and now my Fit) and I have never had anything go wrong with any of them. I got >150,000 miles out of my Civic and the same from my CRV- I do a LOT of driving and I'd probably still have the CRV if it got a little better gas mileage. My Fit has served me extremely well for about 75,000 miles so far, and I expect it to do so for at least another 75,000.


PeaNut 116,261
November 2003
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Posted: 1/30/2013 11:02:06 AM
We have a Rav4 and love it! It handles very nicely. Has a huge trunk space for a vehicle that size and plenty of leg room for our growing kids. Plus it gets good gas mileage. We've had it for 4 years and would definitely buy another one.

Helicopter Dog Mom

PeaNut 43,034
July 2002
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Posted: 1/30/2013 11:09:24 AM
I have an older CRV (2008) and DS bought a RAV4 last summer so 2012.
I am a loyal Honda customer so I'm completely happy with my CRV (my only complaint is no bluetooth in that old of a model). I don't notice road noise--probably because the music is always cranked. I'm on my 4th Honda and their reliability is what keeps me coming back.

DS did not upgrade to the highest level RAV4 so doesn't have heated leather seats which are a must for me. I think the ride in his car is a little stiffer than mine and feels bumpier to me. I liked the interior of the RAV4 better than any of the other similarly sized cars from other manufacturers that he test-drove--it feels more roomy and cushy.


PeaNut 575,419
December 2012
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Posted: 1/30/2013 11:10:13 AM
I have a 2011 Rav4 with the V6 and love it. I like the extra power when you pull out into traffic and when you pass on a 2 lane road. We test drove the CRV but I couldn't get the seat adjusted right for my long legs and arthritic hips. My hubbie was reading in the paper the other day that the 2013 RAV will not have the V6 as an option and that they have changed the horsepower for better fuel economy. I would think you might get a better deal on a 2012 since the 2013 RAV is a new design. I think that both the RAV and CRV are great cars and you really can't make a wrong choice.
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