|105.9||Passenger Space (cu.ft.)||98.9|
|75.8||Max Cargo Space (cu.ft.)||69.8|
|1,500||Max Towing Capacity (lbs)||1,500|
Honda and Toyota practically invented the popular class of vehicles known as crossovers. These small SUVs combine the roominess of a sport utility vehicle with the driving performance of a sedan in ways that your mom’s old station wagon could only dream of. With so many car buyers looking for a vehicle that does everything, it stands to reason that the SUV market is booming with new and improved options every year. Vehicles like the 2020 Honda CR-V vs 2020 Toyota RAV4 battle it out on the marketplace to prove that they can do everything a car and truck can in one sleek package.
Toyota debuted the RAV4 with the 1994 model year, and Honda followed two years later with the CR-V. Those two vehicles quickly started a trend of smaller SUVs with tons of room for passengers and belongings built on sedan platforms to improve the overall ride and handling. Both vehicles are now in their fifth generation and offer drivers a fantastic combination of creature comfort features, exceptional handling, high-quality safety systems, plenty of room for up to 5 passengers, and genuinely unmatched performance in the market today.
Every model of 2020 Honda CR-V comes with a great compliment of standard active safety features as part of the Honda Sensing Safety & Driver-Assistive Technologies, like a multi-angle rearview camera, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, road departure mitigation system, and a collision mitigation braking system. Similarly, Toyota includes these types of features on every 2020 RAV4 as part of the Toyota Safety Sense.
These two automakers are to be commended for making safety a standard even on their base models, unlike many others that save these for higher trim levels. Also, both the 2020 Honda CR-V and 2020 Toyota RAV4 come equipped with their manufacturers’ respective infotainment system with Bluetooth connectivity and an audio system on an easy-to-use color touchscreen.
Honda and Toyota are award-winning brands that promote an ideal of affordability, dependability, and safety in all of their vehicles. The 2020 Honda CR-V and the 2020 Toyota RAV4 are no exception when it comes to award-winning construction. However, some key differences between these two crossovers may sway you towards buying one compared with the other.
The 2020 Honda CR-V has a base MSRP of $25,1501 and comes in four trim levels. The CR-V LX comes with 17-inch alloy wheels and a 60/40 split rear seat. The EX adds a dual-zone automatic climate control system and a larger infotainment touchscreen for an MSRP of $27,660.1 The EX-L kicks things up with an MSRP of $30,150, and includes leather-trimmed seats, a power tailgate, and power-adjustable seats.1 The top-of-the-line CR-V is the Touring. It has larger 19-inch alloy wheels, a hands-free access power tailgate, a heated steering wheel, and wireless phone charging, all for the starting MSRP of $33,350.1
Toyota offers the 2020 RAV4 in six different trim levels, but at a higher overall price point than the 2020 Honda CR-V. The base model RAV4 LE has an MSRP of $25,950.3 The XLE adds 17-inch 5-spoke silver alloy wheels and integrated fog lamps for an MSRP of $27,245.3 The RAV4 XLE Premium has an MSRP of $29,950 and includes larger 19-inch multi-spoke super-chrome finished alloy wheels, a power tilt/slide moonroof, and SofTex-trimmed seats.3
The Adventure is an all-wheel drive standard and has a deck-mounted power outlet and 19-inch split 5-spoke alloy wheels with matte-black accents. This trim comes in at a starting price of $33,055.3 The top-of-the-line Limited includes a premium audio system for an MSRP of $34,480.3 There is also the RAV4 TRD Off-Road that has a higher MSRP than the Adventure, $35,280, with unique features designed to improve off-road performance for this vehicle.3 If you are looking for an affordable model, the Honda CR-V offers a better deal each time.
Both the 2020 Honda CR-V and 2020 Toyota RAV4 come with one standard engine. The CR-V features a 1.5T in-line 4-cylinder gas engine with a turbocharger. This engine utilizes its turbocharger to produce 190 hp and 179 lb-ft of torque. It also features Honda’s Eco Assist system to reduce emissions and improve fuel economy.
The 2020 Toyota RAV4 has a 2.5-liter Dynamic Force 4-cylinder DOHC with dual variable valve timing with intelligence. It can produce up to 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. All of the trims on the 2020 RAV4 except the base LE feature the stop and start engine system to reduce emissions and improve overall fuel economy.
The 2020 Honda CR-V pairs its engine with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) with Sport Mode. This replaces standard engine gear speeds with a transmission that continuously adjusts engine speed to driving conditions. In this way, a CVT will improve overall engine efficiency and performance. The 2020 Toyota RAV4 utilizes a direct shift 8-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission with intelligence and sequential shift mode. This is also a solid transmission that will give you control over your engine’s performance in a RAV4. However, it will not be as efficient as a CVT.
Both the 2020 CR-V and RAV4 provide solid fuel economy. The 2020 Honda CR-V with front-wheel drive will provide an EPA estimated 28 MPG in the city, 34 MPG on the highway, and a combined 30 MPG. If you opt for an all-wheel drivetrain on your CR-V, you will get an estimated 27 MPG in city driving, 32 MPG on the highway, and 29 MPG combined. 2
This is similar to the figures on the 2020 Toyota RAV4. A RAV4 with front-wheel drive will provide an estimated fuel economy of 28 MPG in the city, 35 MPG on the highway, and a combined 30 MPG.4 If the RAV4 is equipped with all-wheel drive, the figures will drop slightly to 27 MPG in city driving, 33 MPG in highway driving, and 29 MPG combined.4
The 2020 Honda CR-V has a wheelbase of 104.8 inches, giving it a relatively tight turning radius. It rides on a MacPherson strut front suspension and multi-link double-wishbone rear suspension. This provides a very soft ride, especially for rear-seat passengers. The 2020 Toyota RAV4 has a slightly longer wheelbase of 105.9 inches, giving it a little less maneuverability than the CR-V. The RAV4 also features independent MacPherson strut front suspension with a stabilizer bar and multi-link rear suspension with a stabilizer bar, giving it a smooth and comfortable ride as well.
Drivers will find that the CR-V and RAV4 with all-wheel drive provide greater traction in inclement weather, especially snow and ice. Both vehicles have a solid pickup, although the RAV4 with the start and stop technology can take a little work to get used to, as the engine shuts off when you stop at a traffic light and doesn’t restart until you release the brake. Also, both the 2020 Honda CR-V and 2020 Toyota RAV4 are rated to provide a maximum towing capacity of 1,500 pounds.
Even though it has a shorter overall wheelbase than the 2020 Toyota RAV4, the 2020 Honda CR-V provides more interior space for passengers. The CR-V has 105.9 cu.ft. of passenger space, compared to 98.9 cu.ft. in the RAV4. The front row of both vehicles is also reasonably comparable.
The CR-V provides 41.3 inches of legroom, 55.1 inches of hip room, 40.1 inches of headroom, and 57.9 inches of shoulder room to front row passengers, while the RAV4 has 41 inches of legroom, 54.3 inches of hip room, 37.7 inches of headroom, and 57.8 inches of shoulder room. As you can see, the only significant difference is the headroom, where the CR-V gives a full 2.4 inches more space for the driver and front-seat passenger.
The big difference between the two vehicles can be seen in the rear seat. The back row of seats on the Honda CR-V is more spacious than the Toyota RAV4. Where the RAV4 provides rear seat passengers with only 39.5 inches of headroom, 37.8 inches of legroom, 56.4 inches of shoulder room, and 47.7 inches of hip room, the CR-V gives folks in the rear seat a full 39.2 inches of headroom, 40.4 inches of legroom, 55.6 inches of shoulder room, and 49.5 inches of hip room. Your rear row passengers are going to appreciate those extra inches of legroom in the CR-V, especially on long road trips.
Both the 2020 Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 provide plenty of cargo space. However, just like with the passenger compartment, the CR-V delivers more cargo space than the RAV4 even though the RAV4 is a slightly larger crossover vehicle. The trunk in the CR-V has 39.2 cu.ft. of space for cargo that easily expands to 75.8 cu.ft. with the rear row of seats folded down. The RAV4 only provides 37.6 cu.ft. of space in its trunk that expands to 69.8 cu.ft. of space by folding down the rear seats.