2009 Toyota RAV4

Find Another Toyota RAV4
$21,500-$27,810
$20,103-$25,585
20 CITY / 27 HWY
Overall Quality
Overall Performance and Design
Predicted Reliability

Overview

What Changed for 2009:
  • Freshened exterior design details
  • New 4-cylinder engine
  • New seat fabric
  • Satellite radio available
  • New Sport Appearance package with 4-wheel drive (4WD) and V-6 engine
  • Active headrests for front seats
  • New features and Extra Value option packages for all trim levels
  • Four new color choices
Overview
In the mid-1990s, Toyota launched the RAV4, a compact SUV that brought a new genre into the automotive mainstream. The RAV4 wasn't the first such smaller and car-based SUV, but its success encouraged other major automakers to develop their own products and soon we had the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, Hyundai Santa Fe and so many others. The current RAV4 is the third generation of what now are known as CUVs, or simply \"crossovers.\" While they don't offer the same room as larger, truck-based SUVs, some provide three rows of seating and substantially better fuel economy.

The Toyota RAV4 gets a facelift for the 2009 model year. The cosmetic changes include a new grille, bumpers, fog lamp trim, tail lamp, even a new roof-mounted antenna. There also are cosmetic updates on the inside, including new fabric for the seats. More significant than such cosmetic changes is a new 4-cylinder engine that is both more powerful and more fuel-efficient than the engine it replaces. A V-6 engine is available. The RAV4 is available with either front-wheel drive (FWD) or 4WD.

Model Lineup
The RAV4 continues to be available in three trim levels: Base, Sport and Limited. Standard equipment includes air conditioning, cruise control, 6-way adjustable driver's seats and 4-way adjustment for the front passenger's seat, 10 beverage containers, power windows, three power outlets, tilt and telescoping steering wheel, dual glove box, AM/FM/CD audio system with mini-jack port, six airbags, anti-lock brakes, vehicle stability control and tire-pressure monitors. The Sport model gets 18-inch wheels, fender flares, power exterior mirrors, dark charcoal-color seat fabric and a sport-tuned suspension. The Limited model gets a body-color spare tire cover, chrome grille, dual-zone air conditioning, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and an audio system with an in-dash 6-disc CD changer. New for 2009, the RAV4 Limited comes with a Smart Key entry system that allows the driver to open the vehicle simply by carrying the key fob and grasping the door handle.

For 2009, RAV4s with 4WD and V-6 engines can be equipped with an optional Sport Appearance package that includes run-flat tires with no spare on the rear door; color-keyed and heated exterior mirrors with integrated turn signals; stainless-steel exhaust tip; chrome-accented shift knob; chromed interior door handles; 6-CD audio system; one year of satellite radio; and the availability of an exclusive exterior color: Elusive Blue Metallic. Each trim level also offers an Extra Value package that combines several popular stand-alone options but at a reduced price that ranges from $570 for the base model to $2000 for the Limited. Options include a JBL audio system, third-row seat, cargo cover, power moonroof and leather seating. Sport and Limited models can be equipped with a new low-cost navigation option.

Powertrain
For the 2009 model year, the Toyota RAV4 gets a new standard engine: a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder unit with a low-friction design for enhanced performance and fuel economy, Toyota claims. The engine provides 179 hp compared to 166 hp for the former 2.4-liter engine. The new engine is linked to a new 4-speed automatic transmission. The new powertrain is rated at 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway in RAV4s with FWD. Both figures represent a 1-mpg improvement over the less powerful engine. Fuel-economy figures with 4WD are 21 mpg city/27 mpg highway. While the highway number is unchanged, the city figure is a 2-mpg improvement over the lower-capacity engine. Also available is a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that provides 269 hp. This engine links to a 5-speed automatic transmission. This powertrain is rated at 19 mpg city/27 mpg highway with FWD and 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway with 4WD. All RAV4 powertrains receive Ultra Low Emission Vehicle II (ULEV II) certification.

Safety
For the 2009 model year, the RAV4 adds active headrests for the front seats to its list of safety features. Active headrests are designed to mitigate whiplash forces should a vehicle be struck from behind. Also new for 2009, Sport and Limited models can be equipped with an integrated backup camera that projects on a portion of the interior rearview mirror. All RAV4s come with 3-point safety belts and adjustable headrests for all seating positions. Front, side and curtain air bags also are standard, as are anti-lock brakes, traction control, and vehicle stability control, all part of the Star Safety System that Toyota builds into all of its utility vehicles.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2009 Toyota RAV4 receives 5 stars (the agency's highest rating) in frontal crash testing for the driver and 4 stars for the front passenger, as well as 5-star side-impact scores for both front- and rear-seat occupants. The RAV4 receives 4 stars for rollover resistance. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the 2008 RAV4 its highest (\"Good\") rating, and the 2009 model should be identical in terms of crash protection.

Advertisement

J.D. Power Ratings

Initial Quality Study (IQS) by Category
Body & Interior Quality - Mechanical?
Overall Quality - Design?
Body & Interior Quality - Design?
Overall Quality - Mechanical?
Powertrain Quality - Design?
Features & Accessories Quality - Design?
Powertrain Quality - Mechanical?
Overall Quality?
Features & Accessories Quality - Mechanical?
Automotive Performance Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study by Category
Performance?
Comfort?
Overall Performance and Design?
Features and Instrument Panel?
Style?
Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) by Category
Feature and Accessory Dependability?
Powertrain Dependability?
Body and Interior Dependability?
Overall Dependability?

Power Circle Scoring Legend:

Among the best
Better than most
About average
The rest
*Please note that JDPower.com Power Circle Ratings may not include all information used to determine J.D. Power awards. Learn more about how J.D. Power Ratings are calculated.
  • Name FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 21500.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 21500.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 21500.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23200.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23200.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23200.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24490.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24490.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24490.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 22/28
  • Name FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23535.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23535.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 23535.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25130.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25130.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Sport (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25130.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26410.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26410.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name Ltd (FWD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26410.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/27
  • Name 4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 22900.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name 4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 22900.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name 4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 22900.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24600.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24600.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24600.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25880.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25880.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr 4-cyl 4-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 25880.00 Engine 2.5L/152 City/Hwy MPG 21/27
  • Name 4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24935.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name 4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24935.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name 4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 24935.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26530.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26530.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Sport (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 26530.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (Natl)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 27810.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (GS)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 27810.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
  • Name Ltd (4WD 4dr V6 5-Spd AT (SE)) Transmission Automatic w/OD MSRP 27810.00 Engine 3.5L/211 City/Hwy MPG 19/26
INTERIOR
  • Fabric-trimmed 6-way driver & 4-way passenger bucket seats -inc: driver height adjustment, seatback pockets
  • Active front headrests
  • 60/40 split fabric-trimmed rear bench w/slide/recline function, 1-touch fold-flat lever, height-adjustable headrest, center armrest
  • Multi-function center console -inc: (2) illuminated cupholders, storage box, cell phone storage pocket
  • Tilt & telescoping steering wheel
  • Amber-illuminated Optitron instrument cluster -inc: speedometer, tachometer, fuel gauge, LCD odometer w/(2) tripmeters
  • Warning lights -inc: seatbelt disconnect, airbag, door-ajar, battery, oil pressure, brake, vehicle stability control, traction control, ABS, check engine, scheduled maintenance, low-fuel
  • Outside temp gauge
  • Pwr windows w/driver-side auto up/down & jam protection
  • Pwr door locks
  • Remote keyless entry
  • Cruise control w/brake deceleration feature
  • Remote hood & fuel filler door releases
  • Engine immobilizer
  • Air conditioning w/air filtration
  • Rear window defogger w/timer
  • (10) cup & bottle holders, illuminated front cup holders
  • (3) 12V auxiliary pwr outlets -inc: (2) front, (1) cargo area
  • Dual glove boxes w/upper box one-push open/close
  • Digital clock
  • Door panel storage pockets, bottle holders
  • Dual visor vanity mirrors w/sliding extensions, roof-mounted vanity light
  • Illuminated entry -inc: key illumination, interior light, front map light
  • Cargo area storage pockets in wheel housing w/(2) cupholders
  • Rear deck storage -inc: water-repellant foldable deck board
  • Leather-wrapped tilt & telescoping steering wheel w/audio controls
  • Pwr door locks w/Smart Entry system
  • Engine immobilizer w/anti-theft alarm system
  • Dual-zone automatic air conditioning w/air filtration, information display, micro dust/pollen removal capability
  • Interior footwell lighting
  • Leather-wrapped shift knob w/metallic insert
  • Tonneau cover w/cargo net
EXTERIOR
  • 16" steel wheels w/covers
  • P215/70R16 all-season tires
  • Full-size spare tire
  • Color-keyed bumpers
  • Rear bumper step w/black protector molding
  • Black grille
  • Color-keyed rear spoiler w/stop lamp
  • Aerodynamic multi-reflector halogen headlamps w/auto-off
  • LED rear lamps
  • High solar energy-absorbing glass
  • Rear privacy glass
  • Foldable pwr mirrors
  • Washer-linked variable intermittent windshield wipers
  • Intermittent rear wiper
  • Color-keyed rear door handle
  • Color-keyed combination hard & soft shell spare tire cover
  • Side-opening rear door w/hold-open feature
  • 18" 5-spoke aluminum wheels
  • P235/55R18 all-season tires
  • Unique rear spoiler
  • Black roof rails w/cross bars
  • Color-keyed fender flares
  • Aerodynamic multi-reflector halogen headlamps w/auto-off, blackout sport trim
  • Smoked headlamp bezels
  • Integrated fog lights
  • Color-keyed heated foldable pwr mirrors
  • Color-keyed door handles
  • 17" aluminum wheels
  • P225/65R17 all-season tires
  • Unique grille w/chrome accents
  • Aerodynamic multi-reflector halogen headlamps w/auto-on/off
  • Color-keyed heated pwr mirrors w/integrated turn signals
  • Color-keyed hard shell spare tire cover
MECHANICAL
  • 2.5L DOHC SFI 16-valve dual VVT-i 4-cyl engine
  • 4-speed ECT automatic transmission w/OD
  • Automatic limited-slip differential
  • Front wheel drive
  • Independent MacPherson strut front suspension
  • Double-wishbone rear suspension w/coil springs, trailing arms
  • Front & rear stabilizer bars
  • Electric pwr rack & pinion steering
  • Pwr vented front/solid rear disc brakes
  • Sport-tuned suspension
  • 3.5L DOHC SFI 24-valve dual VVT-i V6 engine
  • 5-speed ECT automatic transmission w/OD
  • Hill start assist control (HAC)
  • Downhill assist control (DAC)
  • Electronic on-demand 4-wheel drive w/manual lock switch
PACKAGE
    SAFETY
    • Anti-lock brake system (ABS) w/brake assist
    • Electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD)
    • Vehicle stability control (VSC)
    • Traction control (TRAC)
    • Side impact door beams
    • Front crumple zone
    • Driver & front passenger advanced airbag system w/occupant classification sensor
    • Driver & front passenger front seat-mounted side airbags
    • Front & 2nd row roll-sensing side curtain airbags
    • 3-point seat belts for all seating positions w/adjustable front seatbelt anchors, drivers emergency locking retractor (ELR) seatbelt, passengers automatic locking retractor (ALR) & emergency locking retractor (ELR) seatbelts
    • Child protector rear door locks
    • Child restraint system (CRS) top tether anchors for all rear seating
    • ISO-FIX child restraint system for outboard rear seating positions
    • Collapsible steering column
    • Soft energy-dissipating interior trim
    • Direct tire pressure monitor system
    ENTERTAINMENT
    • AM/FM stereo w/CD/MP3/WMA player -inc: (6) speakers, aux input jack
    • Roof-mounted antenna
    • AM/FM stereo w/6-disc in-dash CD changer -inc: MP3/WMA capability, aux input jack, (6) speakers
    • XM satellite radio

    The Latest New Car Previews, Buyer's guides, Articles and more from J.D. Power: