2003 Toyota RAV4

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2003 Toyota RAV4
Available in 2 styles:  2003 Toyota RAV4 4dr AWD shown
Asking Price Range
$4,907–$10,831
Estimated MPG

22–25 city / 27–31 hwy

Average Ratings

Overall

4.1 out of 5

Comfort
Performance
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Reliability

14 out of 19 people recommended this car.


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Consumer Reviews

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    1-10 of 19 reviews

ECM Advice

by Tennessean gal from Smyrna, SC | November 15, 2014

I bought my 2003 Rav4 in 2005 with 25K on it (automatic transmission). I now have 180K on it. About a month ago, it started intermittently acting weird when shifting through the lower gears. Last week the check engine light came on. Did some research, found out about the ECM problem, called a local Toyota dealership, and was quoted a price of $1650. Did some more research and decided to send the ECM to a circuit board repair service in South Carolina. I had my car towed to my mechanic, who removed the ECM for me. I overnighted it on Tuesday evening. By Friday afternoon, it was back in TN in my car. My car is working fine now! It seems to have escaped transmission damage -- probably because I drove it less than one mile after the check engine light came on. The charge for the repair was $225, with a 1 year warranty! My total cost including overnight shipping, the towing of my car, a rental for a week, and my mechanic's labor charges: @ $575. I highly recommend that you research this approach to the ECM problem. (I would give the name of the company but it is apparently against the rules on this site. But if you google South Carolina circuit board ECM you'll find them).

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


2001-2003 RAV4 ECM trouble

by RAV4 Buyer from Cold Spring, NY | July 3, 2014

After I bought my 2003 RAV4 for from a Connecticut dealer "as is," I THEN found out about the notorious ECM problems for 2001-2003 RAV4s. Luckily this does not seem to be a transmission problem - though at first it sure felt like it, with a horrible "clunking" in reverse as soon as I got home - but even the ECM repair is not 100%. I still have some occasional hesitating or bumping in reverse. Cars.com probably won't print this review, but I'll never buy another 2001-2003 RAV4; they're more trouble than they're worth.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Transporting family
Does not recommend this car


4WD Economy Plus

by Economy Seeker from Marion, VA | April 24, 2014

I searched for over 2 months to find a reliable 4WD V4 vehicle in my price range. I finally found it in this little Toyota RAV4. I have only had it 3 weeks but so far, so good. I love the way it handles and look forward to driving it a long time!

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Longest Relationship I've Had So Far

by Rav4Lovr from San Francisco, CA | February 2, 2014

My Rav4 celebrated its 10th birthday last year and has over 225,000 miles. I vow to drive it til at least 300k if not more. It's been dependable, reliable, and economical. The only issue was that the ECU went out and had to replace it which cost about $1200. However Toyota was able to reimburse me since it went out before it hit 150k. Also I agree that it needs a little more power going up grades as I do catch myself saying, "Come on baby." Some perks include that this specific model doesn't have a belt but rather a chain so I am pleasantly surprised when auto technicians suggest replacing the belt before they even expect it. Also this model is compact enough for small parking spots but big enough to move almost everything in my house. Bottom line, love my car!

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Fun and Value

by Qualitylady from Columbus, OH | October 23, 2013

I have driven over 125,000 miles with no major problems. I have 195,000 miles on my RAV. Struts are the only major repair I have made.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Best car I ever owned

by Bekkalekka from TX | November 20, 2010

This is my second RAV4. My first was a 1997 and was totaled at 115K but ran beautiful. The only slight con is that I wish it had a little more power uphill when the A/C is on. I can hear the engine straining to keep up. But I live in TX were hills are rare anyway.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Love my RAV4 except bad ECM

by love my RAV4 EXCEPT bad ECM from Raleigh, NC | August 5, 2010

I love my RAV4, except the bad ECM. I had wonderful trips in my RAV4, used it to move (put the seats down and can be used to move many items), and was great on gas. Everything was great until the car was slow to change gears starting in 10/07. In 1/08, my car would jerk while trying to drive and became progressively worst. To the point that it was impossible to drive. Bad ECM, created transmission problems. Problem for many, can see at RAV4 World website.The TSB excerpt: Technical Service Bulletin is: TC002-06, Revised March 3, 2006. Do a search for the words TC002-06 RAV4, and you will find out about it and many complaints blogged.the ECM/ECU and possibly the transmission. Total cost is currently around $4800.00.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does not recommend this car


Reliable and fun!!!

by Jack from | May 28, 2010

My wife owned this vehicle for 2 years till someone hit her. It was totaled but she didn't have a scratch on her. The other persons insurance gave us more than what we paid for it brand new. She misses it though. It was a blast to drive and super reliable. Never had a problem with it. This will be one of the best vehicles Toyota has ever built. Highly recommend.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Best car I've owned

by bajanwannabee from Barbados | February 24, 2010

This car has been to the dealer once for a annoying stalling problem. Other than that it has been flawless. I do my own oil changes and so far one brake job. It's spent 4 years on the roads and climate of Europe and the last 3 years in the Caribbean. I have to remind myself that one day something is actually going to fail. I just jump in and drive.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Great Car!

by Satisfied from New York | February 18, 2010

I purchased my Toyota Rav4 new and have had it for 6 years now and have never had a problem. I recived regular oil changes every 3000 miles. The only parts that needed replacing were the tires and during regular yearly maintenance the brakes. It is a very reliable car and I would recommend it to everyone!

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for N/A
Does recommend this car



    1-10 of 19 reviews

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