11th Oct 2006, 14:25

My 1997 also keeps popping out of 5th gear. This has been fixed once already by a transmission shop with the Toyota Bulletin on the new parts, but went out again before 6 months. It's annoying and frustrating, and I am not happy with the Rav 4 at all. Other little things have gone wrong with it as well, needless to say I am extremely disappointed. My first Toyota and probably my last.

20th Oct 2006, 00:49

For all of you having problems with the transmission of your '97-'01 Rav4 (popping out of 5th gear like mine does), I would urge you all to call Toyota and file a concern. Their number in the U.S. is 800-331-4331. You will need your VIN#. For those of you who have already had it repaired, you can file a complaint with the NHTSA (a U.S. agency) citing faulty design. Their number is 888-327-4236. Perhaps if enough people call and complain Toyota might consider fixing them or reimbursing those who have already had theirs repaired. Good luck.

29th Sep 2010, 17:53

This happened to my RAV4 also (5th gear popped out). Not too expensive to sort as the repair can be done with the gearbox still in position. Big let down however. Very loveable car, excellent in the snow with good tyres. Most fun car I've owned, very versatile. Engine is bullet proof.

24th Nov 2010, 22:54

I'm getting rid of my second '97 Rav4.

The first one was slipping out of 5th, and my local mechanic tried to rebuild the transmission. Eight weeks later, I got the Rav back, and within two weeks it was slipping again. Then I started having to hold in 4th or it would slip out. 5th had completely left the building. Figuring I'd had bad luck, I stupidly bought another used '97 Rav4, with a stunning list of new parts. Within two weeks, you guessed it, it was slipping out of 5th. Meantime, I sold the original '97 Rav to a Toyota mechanic for $500, who explained the 5th gear problem was so common that it's impossible to find a used transmission because everyone's snapped them up. You can have 5th fixed, but it's just a matter of time before more problems arise. Best bet is to get a new transmission installed.

Unfortunately, he recommended I bail on this Rav altogether. Funny that when you search the "expert reviews," there's no mention of the apparently infamous transmission problems.

2nd Dec 2010, 06:09

Never had any problems with mine, it was a bullet proof bomb. It out handled most Land Rovers off road as well. Pity I had to sell it when I emigrated... but guess what, a Rav 4 will be the first car that I look at to buy... in Cambodia.

2nd Dec 2010, 18:26

People are waking up to the myth that Toyota builds quality vehicles. The headline in the automotive section of my newspaper today read "Toyota sales drop while other automakers rise". Ford sales were UP by 24.3% while Toyota sales were DOWN by 3.3%. In fact Toyota and tiny automaker Volvo were the ONLY major automakers that did not have an increase in sales. Many of our friends have already traded their problem-plagued Camrys for the top-ranked Fusion. Camry and Corolla sales are down by a whopping 25%.