Find out if this car is the best match for you.
1997 RAV4

Consumer Reviews

1997 Toyota RAV4

$228 - $6,996  MSRP Range
1997 Toyota RAV4

Review Score

4.7 out of 5 stars

4.7

23 Reviews
96% of drivers recommend this car
Score Breakdown
4.3 out of 5 stars Comfort
4.7 out of 5 stars Value for the Money
4.3 out of 5 stars Interior Design
4.8 out of 5 stars Reliability
4.5 out of 5 stars Performance
4.4 out of 5 stars Exterior Styling

Have You Driven the 1997 Toyota RAV4?

Write Your Review
Write Your Review

What Drivers Are Saying

1 - 10 of 23 reviews

5 out of 5 stars

1997 rav 4 4x4 5 speed

by betsy from texas on Fri Nov 14 2014

I bought mine a year ago with 242000 miles I now have 262489 miles on it have not done any thing to it but put gas in it took it on a 3000 mile drive last winter no problem took it to the beach tried to get it stuck and couldn't well the same day I bought the 1997 I bought a 2001 both run like champs so I went out and got my son a car will not buy anything but a rav 4 got him a 1996 rav 4 with 214000 miles on it all I have to say is that's the only car I will buy from now on

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Outdoor sports (hiking, cycling, etc.)

Does recommend this car!!

11 out of 11 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

I'll will never give up one this one

by small cars fanatic from Cayey, Puerto Rico on Sun Mar 29 2009

First time I saw it I wanted one. My Baby car (2 doors) have been in a serious collisions(not my fault). I had it fixed, and I still have it. Its 12th year with me will be in June 2009.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

This is the best car I have ever owned

by My Toy from Syanford Kentucky on Mon May 31 2010

If something shouldhappend to this one I will have another one just like it Being from Ky. I have the blue one like the WILD CAT BLUE

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Work

Does recommend this car!!

7 out of 7 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Unbelievably reliable

by Cletus from California on Mon Apr 29 2013

I've had 2. One I bought new in 2000. Some drunk smashed into it in 2010. Totaled it. It was a completely reliable vehicle. I liked it so much I bought my 2-door '97 to replace it. It's still going strong, goes anywhere, excellent ground clearance. If a drunk totaled it today, I'd get another. Only complaint: after 16 years, some other new small suv's get better mileage...

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Super reliable workhorse w/ comfort

by RAV4 lover from Sacramento on Sat Jan 17 2009

I've owned my RAV4 for 6 years. It is awesome. Never had any major service problems. It is versatile, good for city driving, highways, and back roads. Toyota did a great job putting this one together. Super for a family.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Having fun

Does recommend this car!!

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Most Reliable Car I've Owned

by KLP from Brooklyn, NY on Tue Sep 16 2008

I have had my RAV4 for 11 years. I've taken good care of it (followed Toyota's recommended maintenance) and never had any problems. I love its size and reliability. I regularly get offers "if you ever decide to sell, let me know"! One negative, in this day and age, you need more than one cup holder, that's why it only gets 4 stars on interior design and features.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Does recommend this car!!

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Greatest car Toyota ever made

by juliaIL from Springfield IL on Thu Mar 08 2018

Have owned my 97 RAV4 for 21 years -- currently at 263,000 miles and it still runs beautifully. Have put so little money into it I hesitate to buy a new car -- besides, I don't like the styles now. They all look the same - mine still has that distinctive sporty look that I love. The only thing I need to do is get a new radio. And I keep hearing, "if you want to sell it, just let me know." Never!

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Incredible value and reliability!

by rav4now from Atlanta, GA on Sat Oct 27 2018

The styling, ground clearance, gas mileage, reliability and compact versatility make this the best car I have ever owned! I have put 325,000 miles on this car in 21 years and it's been great. Very few problems and easy to work on. Even better than the 4 Honda Civics I drove before this. The only disappointing aspect I can think of is that Toyota has started to discontinue making some of the parts.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Best car I ever had.

by minion from Michigian on Wed Jan 16 2008

I like the toyota Rav 4 because it is nimble and sporty and my sister likes it because of the fuel econimy. It protects the people in it really good. My brother wants one too. he thinks it would be nice to have a hybrid model. he really likes the space in it.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

5 out of 5 stars

Best Car I've Owned

by CMR from Las Cruces, NM on Sat Dec 20 2008

What can I say, I have had my RAV for 8 years and LOVE it. It's reliable and comfortable to drive. I'm only 5'2" tall so driving comfort is an issue for me in many vehicles - not this one. I've been at home from the first time I drove it. To be honest, the only negatives are: only one cup holder and there is a good bit of road noise. For me, these have been easy to live with and the positives far outweigh the negatives. The only reason I am selling mine is to get a larger vehicle that will fit car seats a little better. When my kids are past the car seat stage, I hope they are still making the RAV-4 because I would definitely buy another one.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?

Your feedback has been sent to Cars.com

Next
1 2 3

Our Take on the 1997 Toyota RAV4

Oftentimes, there is a particular charm to being small. When you attach four wheels to it, the facet takes on a special meaning.

Whether you can call the 1997 Toyota RAV4 sport utility vehicle "charming" is a matter of conjecture. Consumers Union calls it the "Best Small Sport-Utility Vehicle."

The RAV4 is a mini-SUV, as defined by its 86.6 inch-wheelbase and its 147.2 inch-overall length. That's really a small package, but what it lacks in size, the little Toyota makes up in versatility.

Currently, the RAV4 is the only sport-ute to feature four-wheel independent suspension, courtesy of the basic floor plan it shares with previous generation Toyota Celica and Camry passenger cars.

This... Read More