The top trim of the 2006 Toyota RAV4, the Limited V6 with 4WD, sells for $25,870, including destination – around $2,000 more than the 2006 Hyundai Tucson LX 4WD, but with almost 100 more horsepower.
Imagine the audacity of Toyota. With “domestic” auto plants closing left and right, with the competition struggling to equal the design and quality of Toyota’s previous model year vehicles, it comes out with a small SUV that almost offers the power and room of a mid-size SUV but at a price that would make an accountant choke. Try this on for size: an MSRP of $20,300 for the four-cylinder base model with front-wheel drive. That’ll get you an engine that makes 165 horsepower, ten more than the Honda CR-V equivalent, for about the same amount of money. For just a touch more than two grand, or $22,335, you can purchase a base version of the new V6 variant. This will give you 269 horsepower, around 100 more ponies than the CR-V – which comes only with a four-cylinder engine. All Toyota SUVs get the Star safety system, which includes Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), and an Antilock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA).
The 2006 Toyota RAV4 base model comes with P215/70 tires mounted on 16-inch steel wheels and a full-size spare tire, while the V6 variant adds an inch to the wheel and tire size. Also standard is a six-speaker stereo with a CD player, an auxiliary jack and MP3/WMA playback capability. The base RAV4 includes black-painted door handles and grille, power folding outside mirrors, cruise control with a brake deceleration feature, and fabric seats with six-way manual adjustment for the driver and four for the front passenger. Even the second-row seats get fore-aft and recline features, and they fold flat in a 60/40 split. All 2006 Toyota RAV4s get remote keyless entry, ten cupholders, power windows with one-touch auto down, three auxiliary power outlets, an outside temperature gauge, a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, and a tire pressure monitor. Other nifty standard features include illuminated front cupholders, auto-off headlamps, a dual glove box, and rear deck storage including a water-repellent and folding deck board. Available options on the base RAV4 include a six-disc in-dash CD changer, daytime running lights, black painted roof rails and cross bars, P225/65 R17 tires with either 17-inch five-spoke aluminum alloy wheels or 17-inch five-spoke steel wheels, a fabric-trimmed 50/50 split third-row seat, a cargo area tonneau cover with a multi-purpose cargo net and support poles, and a tow package for V6 models that increases towing capacity to 3,500 pounds. There’s a limited slip differential on the off-road models, and all RAV4s get Toyota’s 36-month/36,000-mile limited warranty. An additional 60-month/60,000 mile warranty covers the powertrain.
Moving up to the Sport model adds P235/55R18 tires with alloy wheels and a full-size spare tire, color-keyed door handles, fender flares, heated outside mirrors, black painted roof rails, fog lights, smoked headlamps, a sport-tuned suspension, dark charcoal fabric seats. and a partial hard spare tire cover. Prices for the RAV4 Sport range from $21,875 for the 2WD trim with a four-cylinder engine to $25,190 for the V6 with 4WD. Available features on the new Sport grade include a power tilt/slide moonroof, a six-disc CD changer with nine JBL speakers and a subwoofer, and steering wheel audio controls. Sport models cannot be equipped with the optional third-row seat.
The top trim, the RAV4 Limited, gets P225/65R17 tires with 17-inch six-spoke alloy wheels and a full-size steel-wheel spare, dual-zone air conditioning with air filtration and pollen removal, an in-dash six-disc CD changer, an engine immobilizer, interior footwell lighting, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, a leather-wrapped shift knob, an eight-way power driver’s seat with lumbar, a tonneau cover with cargo net and support poles (except for third-row versions), a full hard-shell spare tire cover, and a chrome grille. Options for the Limited include leather-trimmed seats, heated front seats, a rear seat DVD entertainment system with rear seat audio, and an exclusive Blizzard White Pearl exterior paint. The 2006 Toyota RAV4 Limited starts at $22,555 with a four-cylinder engine and 2WD. The 4WD Limited sells for $23,955, while the 2006 Toyota RAV4 Limited V6 with 4WD sells for $25,870 – around $2,000 more than a 2006 Hyundai Tucson LX 4WD, but with almost 100 more horsepower. More comparable in price, but very different in mission, would be the 2006 Nissan Xterra Off-Road with a 265-horsepower engine. The Xterra is priced slightly higher, at $26,050, and offers a rougher, trucky ride, but provides off-road capability that is worlds better than what’s offered in the RAV4. For shoppers who don’t need robust off-road capability, however, either the Base or Limited variant of the RAV4 should do the trick. And while the four-cylinder is a fine motor should you be in that market, it’s hard to argue against a V6 putting out that type of power.