RAV4--no more manual transmissions?

I'm contemplating buying another RAV4 (I've had 3 in a row, and I love them!), but after looking around online it appears they're no longer
made with manual transmissions. Can anyone confirm this? Since I HATE...loathe...despise...automatics, if that's all there is, I'll have to buy something other than a RAV4. In fact, after looking a bit at other Toyota SUVs, it looks like NONE of them comes with the option of manual transmissions, which means I'll have to break my almost quarter century loyalty to Toyota and buy another brand. :(
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Oh well...some people still like black & white TV and eight tracks too
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LOL. I have digital tv, hdtv, digital cable, hddvd, and a manual trans, with warn hubs, digital watch, and a broom to sweep the floor. I wonder where that leaves me! Not all that is new is good. Not all that is old is good either.
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Well I guess one could always buy a "porthole Pinto" (Let's see who remembers that one). It would make a nice addition to any collection.
I love those who claim that manual trannys give better control on marginal surfaces. I know the Moon is made of green cheese, too!

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Fuller Wrath wrote:

I love you too!
You're right... It's not the tranny, it's the clutch pedal that provides the control.

Actually, it's gray cheese.
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Fuller Wrath wrote:

(annoying top-posting corrected to make sense)
> Oh well...some people still like black & white TV and eight tracks too
Really? Well, I'm not one of them. I was the first person in my neighborhood to have a DSS dish when they first came out, the first to have a dedicated modem line in my house (in 1985), the first to have high-speed Internet, the first to have a monitored alarm system, etc. So I really don't see your point. I'm not sure what B&W TVs and 8-track tapes have to do with preferring control--and a feeling of actually DRIVING--in my vehicles. Perhaps you're one of those unfortunates who don't know how to drive a stick shift and, therefore, don't understand what you're missing. Whatever! Whether I'm driving in town or up in the mountains, I prefer a 4WD with a stick shift. But whatever floats your boat, I suppose.
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When I was shopping for a PreRunner, I was shocked to find that they all came equipped with a manual transmission. The standard Tacoma could be had with a manual transmission -- either engine -- but the PreRunner could only be bought with an automatic.
If you would consider a truck, the Tacoma V6 4WD can be bought with a manual trans.
I am not sure, but I _think_ the issue is smog rules and CAFE requirements. I would suggest that the automaker can control the driving environment/actions of the operator with an automatic more than they can with a manual. The automatic will try to shift either up or down when a particular set of conditioins exist, and when the vehicle is placed in D and left there, then the transmissiion makes many of the choices that a driver will make if he has a manual trans. Granted, the driver can override the settings that cause the automatic to shift gears, but if there are 1000 automatics running around, and 10 are being driven in an override mode, then 990 are delivering consumption figures that make the CAFE standards happy ...
Having said that, I can not explain why PreRunners get automatics and standard Tacomas can have a manual. As a consumer, I'd expect a manual trans in a PreRunner as the default, and an automatic in the plain Tacoma.
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Jeff Strickland wrote:

That's exactly what I've been thinking lately!
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Jeff Strickland wrote:

A little off topic, but back in the 70's, here in California, you couldn't buy a Chevy Nova (Chevy II) with a 6-cylinder and three-speed (the mileage king of the Chevy lineup), to meet California smog requirements, you had to have the 305 V8 and automatic transmission. I seem to remember the 6-banger with 3-on-the-tree did about 10 MPG better than the V8/Auto. So burning more gas probably resulted in about the same amount of pollution, but cost more.
Far out and right on!!! :>))
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Tom - Vista, CA

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Jeff Strickland wrote:

I started out with a Toyota truck--a 4-speed stick that I bought new in 1985 and drove for 14 blissfully trouble-free years. But I finally parted with it and bought the first of my three RAV4s when my latest pets--two Great Dane puppies--QUICKLY outgrew the front seat. Although I only have one of them left (unfortunately, Danes die young), a truck simply won't do, as I would NEVER let a dog ride in the bed of a truck, and the seats just don't work well for us. He needs the room the back of the RAV4 (or similar!) gives when the back seats are folded up. I like the RAV4 because although it is an SUV, its size is small enough that it's still very fuel-efficient, yet it gives me the interior room I need.
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I learned to drive in a stick shift and I am only 19. And I will not have it any other way.
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No I can drive a stick but I see no point in endless shifting. There's more to life than that. People who say it offers more control are speaking with testosterone rather than facts.
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Fuller Wrath wrote:

Oh, really?! Interesting, considering that--as a woman--I have no testosterone to speak of.
With that little detail out of the way, I'll reiterate that I prefer the feeling of control I get when driving a stick versus an automatic. By the way, I learned on an automatic and drove them almost exclusively for the first 10 years or so, before deciding to drive sticks exclusively. On the rare occasions since then when I've had to drive an automatic...I've really hated it. The difference in control has nothing to do with testosterone-fueled misinterpretations, it has to do with the engine, the clutch, the driver, the road conditions, etc. If you've driven vehicles with manual transmissions and DIDN'T see the improvement in control, perhaps that's a reflection of your own lack of understanding of, and ability to use, the transmission and clutch to your benefit.
As for endless shifting, what can I say? In general, there's little need for endless shifting. Today, driving up and down in the Hollywood Hills, I did of course have to up- and downshift a good deal, but on the freeway heading back to the San Gabriel Valley I was basically cruising along in 5th gear. Not a big deal, especially compared to the alternative.
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Please define that overused word "control" Can you not "control" shifting in an automatic? People who learned to drive on stick shifts need to move into the 21st century because in another few years they will be seen only in museums.
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Fuller Wrath wrote:

Of course you can.
For me, the control comes from the speed of engagement, and speed of torque appliaction, when a driver can control the clutch, not simply if I can shift myself. I can also control exactly when it shifts in either direction.
Maybe I haven't driven the right automatic, but all of the examples I've driven tend to thump from gear to gear when manually shifted.
In loose or snowy conditions, I can manually slip a clutch allowing torque to be introduced very gradually, so the tire never breaks loose. This sometimes includes starting in a higher gear, and slipping the clutch to just slightly move the vehicle. My 4x4 Tacoma can actually be moved with the starter, using a factory installed clutch bypass.
In slippery and performance conditions, and certain towing situations, I can downshift much more smoothly than any automatic I've ever driven. In these cases, smooth is king.
While not high on the customer request list for a manufacturer, a manual transmission can also be push or roll started with a dead battery. This can be handy if camping and using the battery, or for those of us who sometimes leave cars parked for extended periods of time without access to a battery maintainer.
The last, highly personal, reason is that I find myself slumping, leaning on the center console, eating, talking on the phone, etc... when I'm not shifting. When I'm driving a stick, I'm much more involved, properly positioned, etc... But that's just me. <G>
If you want to drive an automatic, that's great. Some of us would like the choice of a manual transmission, which is ~ also $600-800 cheaper than the automatic, when both are available.
All that said, I prefer the automatic for heavy traffic commuting, but I've positioned myself away from that situation as a lifestyle choice. <G> Even though I prefer stick shifts, I still like ABS, airbags, MP3 player interfaces, GPS units...
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B A R R Y wrote:

Thanks for doing such a great job of answering Wrath's question about control. You've saved me a lot of typing, and you've said it better than I probably could have. :)
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Fuller Wrath wrote:

Sounds like someone who has never driven in snow, and has never learned how to operate a manual shift. Without a proper understanding of how a manual shift works you will never understand the advantages.
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Battleax wrote:

That was precisely my point in one of my replies. Wrath SAYS that he (she?) has indeed driven vehicles with manual transmissions, but it seems clear from his comments that he doesn't understand how to make them work for him.
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Fuller Wrath wrote:

Barry has already done a great job of answering that, so I won't repeat what he said.

I guess you missed the part where I said that I learned to drive on an automatic, and drove automatics almost exclusively for the first 10 years or so. I didn't learn on a stick--that was a CHOICE I made later on. And I'll say, again, that if you actually knew how to use a manual transmission to your advantage, you wouldn't be here bashing them.
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Yawn. All you manual tranny people are going the way of the dinosaur. Happy days! Less congestion for the rest of us on the road.
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