Childre Nissan Compares 2015 Nissan XTERRA VS 2015 Toyota Rav4 Near Warner Robins, GA

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2015 Nissan XTERRA

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2015 Toyota Rav4

Safety Comparison

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Nissan Xterra are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Toyota Rav4 has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Xterra PRO-4X Automatic’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Rav4 doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

Both the Xterra and the Rav4 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available four-wheel drive.

The Nissan Xterra weighs 530 to 994 pounds more than the Toyota Rav4. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Engine Comparison

The Xterra’s 4.0 DOHC V6 produces 85 more horsepower (261 vs. 176) and 109 lbs.-ft. more torque (281 vs. 172) than the Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Nissan Xterra is faster than the Toyota Rav4 (automatics tested):



Zero to 30 MPH

3 sec

3.2 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.7 sec

9 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

5 sec

5.7 sec

Quarter Mile

16.1 sec

16.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

87 MPH

83.5 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Xterra has 5.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the Rav4 (21.1 vs. 15.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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



Front Rotors

11.65 inches

10.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.26 inches

11.2 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Xterra has larger tires than the Rav4 (265/70R16 vs. 225/65R17). The Xterra X/S’ tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Rav4 (265/70R16 vs. 235/55R18).

The Nissan Xterra’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Toyota Rav4 only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Xterra has a standard full size spare tire so your trip isn’t interrupted by a flat. A full size spare isn’t available on the Rav4, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which limits mileage and speed before replacement.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Xterra PRO-4X’s has front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Rav4’s suspension doesn’t offer front gas-charged shocks.

The Xterra has engine speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Rav4 doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Xterra’s wheelbase is 1.6 inches longer than on the Rav4 (106.3 inches vs. 104.7 inches).

The Xterra’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (51.6% to 48.4%) than the Rav4’s (58.4% to 41.6%). This gives the Xterra more stable handling and braking.

For greater off-road capability the Xterra has a 2.8 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Rav4 (9.1 vs. 6.3 inches), allowing the Xterra to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The Xterra PRO-4X’s minimum ground clearance is 3.2 inches higher than on the Rav4 (9.5 vs. 6.3 inches).

Passenger Space Comparison

The Xterra has .1 inches more front headroom, 1.6 inches more front hip room, 1 inch more front shoulder room, .4 inches more rear headroom and 2.9 inches more rear shoulder room than the Rav4.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the Xterra. The Rav4 doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Xterra’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Rav4 does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The Xterra’s variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The Rav4 LE’s standard fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent.

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Xterra owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Xterra will cost $15 to $1055 less than the Rav4 over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Xterra is less expensive to operate than the Rav4 because typical repairs cost much less on the Xterra than the Rav4, including $116 less for an alternator, $5 less for front brake pads, $77 less for a starter, $286 less for a fuel pump and $786 less for a timing belt/chain.

Recommendations Comparison

Motor Trend selected the Xterra as their 2006 Sport Utility of the Year. The Rav4 has never been chosen.

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