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Honda and Toyota both made their reputations in America thanks to amazing reliability. Both of these companies’ brands are synonymous with long-lasting SUVs and cars. But when we’re buying a new SUV, especially one as expensive as a new CR-V or a RAV4, we want to make sure it’s going to get us to work, school, and on road trips without many worries. Honda’s CR-V and Toyota’s RAV4 are both very similar, from price to capability, so is one more reliable than the other?

What are the major differences between a Toyota RAV4 and a Honda CR-V?

Both of the SUVs seat five comfortably, have all-wheel drive as an option, are about the same size, and come with tons of family-friendly safety tech. The two are very similar. The 2023 Toyota RAV4 starts at about $29,000 and was last all-new in 2019, which means that it’s getting a bit old compared to the all-new CR-V. That redesign is certainly helping the CR-V trend this summer.

For 2023, the RAV4 gets a new, larger, touchscreen and some cool versions, like the TRD Off-Road package. But every RAV4 (that’s not a hybrid) gets a somewhat drone-like 203-horsepower four-cylinder that gets a combined 28 mpg. The Honda CR-V is all-new for 2023 and it now has a more aggressive look that makes it look a bit tougher and a cabin that looks modern with high-quality materials. Its standard engine is a 190-horsepower four-cylinder, while its upgraded engine has 204 horsepower. The CR-V starts at about $33,000 and overall, it’s known for its nice ride, and good fuel economy. It earns 28 mpg city, and 34 mpg highway.

What does J.D. Power say about CR-V and Toyota RAV4 reliability?

Dashboard and front seats in new 2023 Honda CR-V crossover SUV, highlighting how much a fully loaded one costs
2023 Honda CR-V | Honda

According to J.D. Power, The CR-V is more reliable, but just barely. J.D. Power doesn’t just test vehicles to arrive at its scores, it asks owners to submit their experiences with defects, malfunctions design flaws and more. When it comes to the 2022 CR-V, J.D. Power gives it a Quality and Reliability score of 82 out of 100. Overall, it ranks No. 6 in the compact SUV category. The 2022 Toyota RAV4 gets a reliability score of 81, but due to a better resale score, it comes in at No. 5 for compact SUVs at J.D. Power.

What does Repair Pal say?

The black interior in the 2022 Toyota RAV4.
2022 Toyota RAV4 | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

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The website Repair Pal also gives reliability ratings, but they’re based on annual repair costs for a vehicle. Overall, the RAV4 has a 4.0-star rating of excellent, while the CR-V gets 4.5 stars out of five. Repair Pal estimates that the RAV4 will cost about $429 in annual repairs. The Honda CR-V will cost about $407 annually.

Repair Pal says that, while both are extremely reliable SUVs, a typical CR-V may see the shop slightly more often than a RAV4, but the repairs will be more minor.

How do other experts rank the CR-V and RAV4?

The 2022 CR-V ranks first in the U.S. News rankings of compact SUVs, and second in the crossover category. Overall, U.S. News gives it a rating of 8.8. The 2022 RAV4 is close at U.S. News, earning a rating of 8.1. However, this is a competitive segment and that means it doesn’t rank nearly as high as the 2022 CR-V. The 2022 RAV4 ranks No. 8 for compact SUVs and comes in way down at No. 27 in the crossover SUVs category. The Hyundai Tucson Hybrid came in first.