2019 Toyota Rav4 vs. 2019 Chevrolet Trax

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Rav4 has a standard Pre-Collision System, which uses forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Trax has a collision warning system without the crash-mitigating brake feature that could reduce stopping distances.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Rav4 (except LE) offers optional Rear Cross-Traffic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Trax doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Rav4 Limited offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Trax only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the Rav4 and the Trax have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and its standard front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Rav4 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 167 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Trax was not even a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

The Rav4’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Trax’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Rav4 for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Chevrolet only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the Trax.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Chevrolet is ranked fourth.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Chevrolet is ranked 23rd.

Engine

The Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 65 more horsepower (203 vs. 138) and 36 lbs.-ft. more torque (184 vs. 148) than the Trax’s 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Toyota Rav4 is faster than the Chevrolet Trax:

 

Rav4

Trax

Zero to 60 MPH

8.2 sec

10.1 sec

Quarter Mile

16.4 sec

17.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

87 MPH

78.2 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Rav4 gets better fuel mileage than the Trax:

 

 

 

MPG

Rav4

 

FWD

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

26 city/35 hwy

 

AWD

LE 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

27 city/34 hwy

 

 

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/33 hwy

Trax

 

FWD

1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

26 city/31 hwy

 

AWD

1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

24 city/29 hwy

Transmission

An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Toyota Rav4, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Trax.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Rav4’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Trax:

 

Rav4

Trax

Front Rotors

12 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.1 inches

9” drums

Opt Rear Rotors

10.6 inches

The Toyota Rav4 has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Rear drums are standard on the Trax. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.

The Rav4 stops shorter than the Trax:

 

Rav4

Trax

 

70 to 0 MPH

161 feet

169 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Rav4 has larger standard tires than the Trax (225/65R17 vs. 205/70R16). The Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Trax (235/55R19 vs. 215/55R18).

The Rav4 LE/XLE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 65 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Trax’s standard 70 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Rav4 LE/XLE has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Trax. The Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels optional on the Trax.

Suspension and Handling

For superior ride and handling, the Toyota Rav4 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Chevrolet Trax has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The Rav4 has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Rav4 flat and controlled during cornering. The Trax’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Rav4’s wheelbase is 5.3 inches longer than on the Trax (105.9 inches vs. 100.6 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Rav4 is 2.1 inches wider in the front and 2.8 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Trax.

The Rav4’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (58% to 42%) than the Trax’s (60.7% to 39.3%). This gives the Rav4 more stable handling and braking.

The Rav4 Adventure handles at .84 G’s, while the Trax LT AWD pulls only .72 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Rav4 Adventure executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.7 seconds quicker than the Trax LT AWD (27.5 seconds @ .62 average G’s vs. 29.2 seconds @ .56 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Rav4 LE/XLE’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Trax’s (36.1 feet vs. 36.7 feet).

For greater off-road capability the Rav4 LE/XLE has a 2.2 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Trax (8.4 vs. 6.2 inches), allowing the Rav4 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s minimum ground clearance is 2.4 inches higher than on the Trax (8.6 vs. 6.2 inches).

Chassis

The front grille of the Rav4 Adventure/Limited uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Trax doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Rav4 has 6.1 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Trax (98.9 vs. 92.8).

The Rav4 has .2 inches more front legroom, 2.6 inches more front hip room, 3.7 inches more front shoulder room, .7 inches more rear headroom, 2.1 inches more rear legroom and 3.6 inches more rear shoulder room than the Trax.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Rav4’s rear seats recline. The Trax’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Rav4 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Trax with its rear seat up (37.6 vs. 18.7 cubic feet). The Rav4 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Trax with its rear seat folded (69.8 vs. 48.4 cubic feet).

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Rav4 (except LE) offers an optional power cargo door, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button or, optionally on the Rav4 Limited, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Trax doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

The Rav4 has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Trax has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

When different drivers share the Rav4 (except LE/XLE/Adventure), the optional memory seats make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Trax doesn’t offer memory seats.

The Rav4’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Trax’s passenger windows don’t close automatically.

The Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Trax’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Rav4 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Trax doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited has standard extendable sun visors. The Trax doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Both the Rav4 and the Trax offer available heated front seats. The Rav4 Limited also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Trax.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Rav4 Adventure/Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Trax doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Rav4 XLE AWD/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Trax doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Trax doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

The Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Trax doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

Both the Rav4 and the Trax offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Trax doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Rav4 has a standard Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Trax doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Rav4’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The Trax’s available navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

With standard voice command, the Rav4 offers the driver hands free control of the radio and the navigation computer by simply speaking. The Trax doesn’t offer a voice control system.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. The Trax doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) for the front seat. The Trax doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Recommendations

The Toyota Rav4 outsold the Chevrolet Trax by almost five to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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