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America’s best-selling SUV is a small Japanese SUV that has been around for decades. The most reliable small SUV is one of its main rivals. The Toyota RAV4 is one of the best-selling SUV nameplates ever made. The RAV4 has won the hearts of consumers across the world. The Honda CR-V is known for being incredibly dependable. It outlasts many of its competitors. Time for the ultimate showdown. It’s America’s best-selling SUV vs. the most reliable small SUV.

Toyota RAV4 vs. Honda CR-V: Affordability

A gray 2023 Honda CR-V (L), a white 2023 Toyota RAV4 (R).
The 2023 Honda CR-V (L), the 2023 Toyota RAV4 (R)

Affordability is one of the most important factors to consumers looking for a new or used SUV. If an SUV isn’t within a driver’s price range, it isn’t worth considering to many consumers. So, automakers carefully adjust prices year over year. Which automaker does it better, Toyota or Honda?

The 2023 Toyota RAV4 starts at $27,975. Its price increased by $1,000 for the 2023 model year. The RAV4’s price only increased by $625 for the 2022 model year.

The 2023 Honda CR-V starts at $28,410. Its price has increased by $1,610 since its redesign. The 2022 model year costs $1,450 more than the 2021 model year. Some could argue that the CR-V offers better standard features or more value at its higher price, but strictly from an affordability standpoint, the RAV4 is the victor. The slight price difference between the two small Japanese SUVs could be the difference in a consumer choosing the RAV4 over the Honda CR-V.

Toyota RAV4 vs. Honda CR-V: Longevity

A white 2023 Honda CR-V small SUV(L), a blue 2023 Toyota RAV4 small SUV (R).
2023 Honda CR-V (L), 2023 Toyota RAV4 (R)

Japanese small SUVs are known for outlasting many of their competitors. Models like the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, Subaru Forester, and Mazda CX-5 are incredibly reliable.

Longevity is important to many drivers because some want an SUV that lasts longer than the average new vehicle ownership period (8.4 years). The more years you get out of a vehicle, the more value it provides over time. Ideally, drivers should be able to get at least 10 years of ownership out of a brand-new SUV.

When well-maintained, the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V can last over 250,000 miles or over 17 years of ownership. That’s more than double the average new vehicle ownership period.

According to, the Honda CR-V is the most reliable compact SUV based on a study to find which vehicles are most likely to reach 200K miles. The CR-V is worth getting for drivers that want a small SUV that’s in it for the long haul.

America’s best-selling SUV vs. the most reliable small SUV

Now that we’ve established which small SUV has more attractive pricing and which small SUV lasts longer, which one should drivers choose? Well, this question is dependent on the driver, but there’s a reason that the Toyota RAV4 has been the most popular small SUV in the country for the last few years.

Drivers view the Toyota RAV4 as the most practical and affordable option in its vehicle segment (even though that isn’t the case anymore). The RAV4 may be slightly more expensive than newer nameplates, but its long history has made it a staple in its segment. The Toyota RAV4 is the quintessential small family SUV.

So, Toyota’s small SUV has a competitive edge over the Honda CR-V because it’s the top dog in its segment, but 2023 could change everything. The 2023 Honda CR-V offers some much-needed improvements on the nameplate, and it’s making the current RAV4 generation’s age very clear. If Toyota doesn’t redesign the RAV4 soon, it could lose market share to the new Honda CR-V.


The 2023 Toyota RAV4 Has 1 Major Downside