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Old 01-27-2015, 11:23 PM   #15
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One does need to be specific as to model, year and options.
To get a decent tow rating in the new Santa Fe you have to buy the 7 passenger model. Like Toyota and the RAV4, Hyundai has lowered tow ratings on some models. My buddy wants to replace his 2009 Santa Fe, but doesn't want the 7 passenger model. Too bad.
So, I would take recommendations on this site and others with a grain of salt, unless the poster specifies the year and model and options and country where it is sold.
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Old 01-27-2015, 11:44 PM   #16
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I had a problem with unintended acceleration one time before it was an issue.
I had just cleaned the interior of my Tacoma and installed the mats improperly.
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Old 01-28-2015, 12:35 AM   #17
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The Subaru Forester is a very close contender to the RAV4. I'm curious why the outback was written off? Many people here carry two sea kayaks on the roof.

The VW Passat 4motion I believe has a similar tow rating.

After going through a battle with a dealer on a lemon before. My only advice is do what's best for you. I had a bad experience and ended up walking away and cutting my losses, the losses were large but you sleep so well the first night.


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Old 01-28-2015, 12:48 AM   #18
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The Forester was never a contender with the pre 2013 RAV4 V6 Sport, with tow package. In 2013 Toyota dropped the V6 option and the 3,500 lbs / 350 tongue tow rating. Forester may now be a contender, but neither Subaru nor RAV4 is an option for my trailer.
Hyundai did the same with the Santa Fe, which is why it is important to know the year, model and optional equipment before making broad statements about what can tow what.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:01 AM   #19
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I was responding to the OP with a scamp 13, which falls within the foresters 2400lb capacity from before the most recent redesign.


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Old 01-28-2015, 01:09 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EcoHeliGuy View Post
from before the most recent redesign.
That's what I'm getting at. The way the specs change from model to model, year to year and options that may or may not be available.
As for the Outback, it has a 200 lb. tongue weight limit, which is a problem for some.

Personally, I don't want to replace my RAV4 with anything, and it's not because I love it. There is nothing out there that makes my heart beat enough to relieve the pain in my wallet.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:25 AM   #21
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Here's what I could find from Subaru site for 2015 Forester:

Trailer Hitch

Subaru hitches are engineered to the same rigorous standards as the rest of the Forester. Rated at 200 lbs. tongue weight, 1,500 lbs. towing capacity.
Also Available on: 2.5i Premium, 2.5i Limited, 2.5i Touring, 2.0XT Premium, 2.0XT Touring
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Old 01-28-2015, 06:36 AM   #22
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Thanks, all, weighing in.

Steve, I read about that case, and feel so badly for that poor guy. I know how it feels not to be believed when you are being blamed for something that you know you didn't cause.

Mike, there are about 105000 miles on my Rav. This issue did happen twice within a few months of me buying it last Spring. I had no idea at the time about all of this unanticipated acceleration stuff. I brought it to the dealership and they told me they couldn't find a problem but my transmission fluid needed changing, and maybe that would take care of it. After they changed the transmission fluid in August, it did not happen again until 10 days ago, on our way to the airport for a vacation. But the stories I have read online indicate that this is an intermittent problem for most people, not something that happens frequently. You just never know when it might spring up, though.

I can't afford a new car, and I would guess I will be looking at something in the 2010-2012 range. I will check tow capacity for any specific car I look at, thanks all for that input. I know on some it depends on engine size, model, and whether there is a specific tow package in place. It was like that with the Rav.

Daniel, would love a minivan but in the used market they are real expensive here, and especially the rare ones with AWD.

Carol, I would not buy a different model Toyota at this point. The trust is just not there. I could, maybe, be tempted to trade it in for another RAV of the same model so that I could use all my upgrades on the new car. I have new, expensive tires, a new roof rack, the hitch, and the brake controller all invested. The chance of another Rav having the same problem is probably statistically small. But, I don't think I am comfortable taking that chance. Would depend on how the dealer handles it, I think. I will consider the Mazda, though - - good call there. Volvos are out of my price range I think.

I ruled out Subies before I bought my Rav. I had three Subies in the past fail due to head gaskets. Loved the way they drove, that's why I kept subjecting myself to it, but I finally gave up on them. They came out with a new engine in the Outback in, I think, 2013, that would seem to hopefully solve this ongoing problem of theirs. But, they also inexplicably changed the roof rack in 2013 and it is now incompatible with long sea kayaks, and cannot be replaced with an OEM model without significant expense. The Forester just doesn't have enough tow capacity to make me comfortable. I don't like it to be close to my limit. So the Subies are out for me.

I have heard variable things about Grand Cherokee reliability. Anyone out there a long term Cherokee owner who can speak to this? I would also like to hear from GMC Terrain, Chevy Traverse and Ford Escape owners re: reliability, and what specific issues to look for or models to avoid in those cars when shopping, if people have that level of input to offer. For example, I think I have heard that Cherokees have issues with transmissions. Not sure if certain models avoid that problem. I will look at Consumer Reports but I know a lot of issues never make it into there. Will also check specific forums for those models, but I don't have lots of time before I will likely need to do something.

The ten year warranty on a Santa Fe sounds good to me right now. Glenn, how on earth was your friend held hostage for six months by a missing part? Would like to hear more about that.

And Glenn, thanks for keeping an open mind about this - - as a previously loyal Toyota owner, I would have a hard time believing it until it happened to me. This must be a relatively small percentage of Toyota owners experiencing this problem, or there would be far fewer on the roads. I would never encourage one to sell their car if they were not experiencing the problem. But I would suggest that people mentally prepare for what they would do in the situation of an unanticipated acceleration, because it happens suddenly, and can take you off guard. Switching to neutral seems to be the way to go.

Finally, this is not a floor mat issue. The floor mat recall was done on my car before I got it, and the mats lie very flat to the ground and do not bunch up at all. They were perfectly in place during all of these incidents, and are always perfectly in place -- they simply don't ever shift. I keep my car clean, and there is nothing rolling around on the floor on the driver side. This was not driver error. I think the fact that it has now happened to both of us while driving it, and that we are both very experienced, very good drivers with excellent driving records and no physical limitations, should help attest to that. I understand some people will be skeptical, I might have been, too. I will leave that part of the discussion at that, no sense repeatedly getting into it.

Thanks, all, for the help and input.
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Old 01-28-2015, 06:40 AM   #23
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Vicki,

We had a Honda CRV and towed 16 foot trailers all over North America for 7 years without a single drive line problem. We recently traded in our CRV after almost 250,000 miles for a Honda Odyssey, rated at 3500/350 pounds. It easily tows our Scamp 16, 2600/200 pounds.

The Odyssey is comfortable and huge, gets good mileage towing, and great mileage not towing. Reliability of the Odyssey is yet to be determined but we've owned a ton of Honda's and they've all been great.

We once had an early failure (though out of warranty) of the air conditioner on the CRV. We dropped Honda America a line and they replaced the entire AC system at no charge.
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Old 01-28-2015, 06:54 AM   #24
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Norm and Ginny, I would love an AWD Honda Odyssey, but it is simply not in my price range. I need the AWD here in the northeast, especially where we live in particular. I don't want to test the towing limits of the CRV, and the Pilot is simply bigger than I want, and also has a very high price on the used market around here. Love Hondas, loved my Element, but they don't seem to have a model that suits my needs unfortunately.
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Old 01-28-2015, 08:15 AM   #25
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Buy a Ford Escape .
It's capable, comfortable, reliable, and affordable.
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Old 01-28-2015, 08:40 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
...Personally, I don't want to replace my RAV4 with anything, and it's not because I love it. There is nothing out there that makes my heart beat enough to relieve the pain in my wallet.
Glenn, I think you need to consider buying a car that comes with a defibrillator.
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:09 AM   #27
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Personally, I wouldn't write off the Pilot. Decent, low-mileage units can be had for under $25K, and almost everything needed to tow is standard (hitch, wiring harness, brake controller port, tranny cooler). You just have to buy a pigtail that runs from the wiring harness to the bumper and a brake controller unit. As to size, it is big, but a relatively short wheelbase makes it surprisingly maneuverable. The Chevy Traverse you mentioned, while a good choice, is even bigger. Just my opinion, sounds like you have already decided against.

If budget were my primary consideration I think I'd be looking at Ford Escapes and Hyundai Santa Fes, in both cases the old body styles with V6s. Recent major redesigns means they are fairly good values on the used market. I haven't checked reliability data on either, but a good friend has an Escape V6 2WD and has had good service from it, though not towing.

I'm truly sorry to hear about your issues with the RAV4, but I would do the same thing in your situation (dump it and move on). In the end it's only money. I would still carefully document everything that's happened and every communication with Toyota and send letters to Toyota of America and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It should be documented, even if they won't acknowledge a problem now.

The biggest issue in my mind is the ethics of selling this vehicle. I'm surprised no one has raised the issue here yet. What does the FGRV community think?
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Old 01-28-2015, 10:45 AM   #28
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Thanks for the feedback re: Escapes. Will focus on those as well. Re: ethics of selling, I agree that is a serious issue. It is my hope that Toyota corporate will buy the car back from me if they can't fix it. I would never sell it to a private party. Worst case, i will trade it in to the dealership after fully documenting all issues in communications with them. I will also report it to the NTSB. My understanding is that Toyota corporate will be brought into the process by the dealership. But i will formalize communications with them as well.

I simply can't think of another way to proceed. I can't afford to junk the car and buy a new one. I don't have an extra $15,000 lying around. And if I fully document the issues and report it to the NTSB, and then trade it in to the same dealership doing the investigation, it is then their duty to deal with their product that they sold me in a legally and ethically sound manner. But I am curious what others think about that.
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