It’s like the Toyota RAV4 design engineers got together with a starting objective of making it as difficult as possible to mount anything. This is one of the more difficult vehicles to mount a phone or GPS. Forget about mounting a tablet.
Almost all of our go-to locations are impossible to use (but we still have some ideas so read on).
A photo of the interior of a Toyota RAV4 accompanies this article. Good news, it has a windshield that we can use a suction mount with. The vents on the sides are round. The ones in the middle are vertical. The top of the dashboard has a huge vent in the middle of it. The cup holders are strangely placed.
The best place to mount a phone or GPS is the windshield.
Our accompanying photo has the Arkon MegaGrip Suction Cup Windshield and Dash Mount deployed on the windshield. The cradle is pivoted into landscape mode. This suction mount features a vacuum locked suction assembly attached to a pivoting arm. The phone can swivel into any orientation.
The mount also comes with an adhesive disk that you can stick to the dash to turn the mount into a console mount. Due to the strangely placed vent at the top of the dash, you would likely need to place the adhesive disk to the far right. Probably not a good candidate due to the far reach. Therefore, we suggest avoiding the dash on the Toyota RAV4. Not the mounts fault, it’s just a bad location for mounting anything.
The same mount but for a Garmin GPS is the Arkon Windshield Dash Garmin Nuvi Suction Mount. I have recommended this one over the many years it has been available and have used it myself as well. It’s an excellent mount that comes with a 2-year warranty. It’s more rugged and longer than the Garmin mount you received in the box. Like the prior mount, this is a longer reach to the windshield so set it before the drive.
A vent mount is just not a good choice on a Toyota RAV4. Almost nothing works well on round vents, and there are very few that work well on vertical vents, so let’s move on.
The Toyota RAV4 CD player is in a good spot to support a smartphone or GPS. It’s near eye level and presents the device at a good spot to use it as a GPS. A good option is the Mpow CD Slot Mount for SmartPhones. Be sure to follow the included instructions for a secure fit. The included cradle opens to 3.4 inches and swivels into any orientation. Remove the cradle to expose a 17mm ball suitable for a Garmin GPS. This option might be best for states where mounting to a windshield is illegal.
The seat bolt is somewhat exposed on the Toyota RAV4. However it’s strangely shaped and there’s no apparent way to loosen it sufficiently with traditional tools so a seat bolt mount isn’t likely to work. Let’s keep moving.
There are two front seat cup holders in a Toyota RAV4. One is placed far back and not usable as a mounting point. Then there is one located way near the front. It’s located too close to the gear shift and emergency brake to be useful. So we’re recommending against using a cup holder mount on a Toyota RAV4.
So where does this leave us? The windshield and CD player are the best location to mount a phone or GPS in a Toyota RAV4. The dash is barely usable due to the placement of the large air vent. The vents themselves are poor choices due to shape and we can’t use the seat bolt. The Toyota RAV4 is a great SUV but just not so great when it comes to mounting devices.