Since getting home from this year’s travels I have been very busy around the house getting many things done. My thoughts have been with vandwellers having linked up with two couples in MA. I took a short trip for a long weekend getaway in ME too.
Some time ago, I was asked to include the RAV4 and Highlander in my blog. The following is a reader of this blog’s question.
“I am interested in buying Rav4 or Highlander. Could you please compare these cars totally grade with your 3 cars ?
thanks a lot”
Below is the Toyota RAV4 I caught at an event.
Although I have never owned a RAV4 I have gone to the showroom many times to look at them. Why?
Answer: For all the things I love about the Prius and all the things I don’t like about the Prius. If I hadn’t my Tacoma or found a Fleet shell model I suspect I would be in a RAV4 today for my travels.
First, is ground clearance and the RAV4 gives me better ground clearance over my 2011 Prius and the newer Prius that is yet again a bit closer to the ground.
Look up Ruby, AZ on Google and see that I drive the road from Nogales to Ruby only to get there and couldn’t get over s cattle guard that had too large of a drop off on the other side. My Prius would have hung and gotten stuck on top of the guard.
Ruby Road is leftbto right at top of picture. The cattle guard is on Ruby Access Rd. (Brown rectangle) can only go over guard crossing.
So, follow the map from Ruby to Arivarca. A few miles north of Ruby the road crosses a wash. The water wasn’t high, but the ridges left in the road from moving water made it impassable for the Prius to continue to Arivarca
Above this is the section of Ruby Road on way to Arivarca with pin drops in both sides of the road Prius couldn’t get through without hanging on sandbars.
Fail! But the Prius does well in so many other ways but so does the RAV4. For me it has to be the hybrid RAV4 to fill in for the Prius and it does. Drawbacks of the RAV4? Yes. The current RAV4 hybrid has a battery bump to design around, but I can design compensat for that. Any other issues? Yes. The RAV4 hybrid is not true all wheel drive. After reviewing the design of the AWD it does not matter to me that the front wheels are powered by the engine and back are powered by the electric motor. Heck the Prius doesn’t have AWD
Now to the Highlander and yes the hybrid version.
Below is a Toyota Highlander picture I took from a Google search.
I owned an older non- hybrid highlander and although nice and more room, I don’t care. I’m good in my Prius for room and don’t need more at the cost of lower mpg that doesn’t make sense.
So, as you can tell. I have an opiolnion.
This year at the RTR I met up with my friend Susan from Oklahoma and her new RAV4 and installed a solar panel that I would be proud to have on my RAV4.
You can’t tell it’s there and you passively charge lithium battery so you don’t have to run the engine. Susan’s RAV4 is not hybrid and she gets all the solar she needs from 80 watts and can set up to charge her lithium battery when she drives if she wishes.
An additional testimony is directly from me as Susan followed me and my Tacoma with FWC camper up and down roads that were challenging. Yes this is true and I was sold on the RAV4 since I left Utah at the end of March.
Am I still a Prius guy. Yes I love my Prius but one day it will need replacing. The RAV4 is the only vehicle I would replace it with right now