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Why Adding Android Auto to 2020 Toyota RAV4 Makes Compelling Sense

The Toyota RAV4 is one of the best-selling vehicles in the entire country. While it was completely redesigned in 2019, it is still missing the popular Android Auto. Will the 2020 RAV4 include it?


In a world where everything is becoming more and more distracting for drivers, it is essential to provide resources to actually lessen the burden on people when performing basic functions while behind the wheel.

Both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay assist drivers with these functions. I use Apple CarPlay every day in my 2018 Camry and my life has been made very simple while driving because of CarPlay.

The 2020 Toyota models that will feature Android Auto

Up until 2019, one of the main critiques for Toyota vehicles was the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. These popular applications make it simple for drivers to make and accept phone calls, to operate navigation functions, to play music, and to send and receive text messages.

Toyota began incorporating Apple CarPlay into many of its models for the 2019 model year, and has announced it will add Android Auto to 4 of its 2020 models thus far.

Receiving Android Auto, along with Apple CarPlay, will be the 2020 Tundra, 2020 Sequoia, 2020 4Runner and 2020 Tacoma.

The 2020 RAV4 makes sense

When the 2019 RAV4 was redesigned, most customers were thrilled with its new sportier styling, improved horsepower, all-new technology and safety features, and a host of other surprises you might not have expected.

Apple CarPlay was one of those features that made iPhone owners thrilled, as it allowed them to bring the world closer to them, with a fraction of the previous distractions they faced while driving.

Compare all 2019 RAV4 Hybrids in my video review and click to subscribe to Torque News Youtube channel for daily automotive news analysis.

Although the addition of Android Auto has not been announced, I feel it would make sense on many levels. This would help establish 2020 RAV4 as a leader in multimedia technology, as well as providing drivers with a safer, more convenient way to stay connected with less distraction.

I spoke with a Toyota representative, and while they said they are aware of the suggestions to add Android Auto, they were not yet able to discuss any news about the 2020 RAV4. We should have an announcement either way within about a month or so I would guess.

Could Toyota retrofit Android Auto for the RAV4?

While not likely to add Android Auto to the previous year 2019 RAV4, Toyota has set a precedent for retrofitting applications to models that did not have them. The 2018 Camry was a highly successful redesign and did not come out with Apple CarPlay, but it was added to the 2019 Camry. Toyota recently released a software update to add the wildly popular CarPlay to both the 2018 Camry and the 2018 Sienna as well.

2019 Toyota RAV4 XLE Premium Interior Apple CarplayTime for your thoughts on RAV4

If the RAV4 does add Android Auto for the 2020 model year, would Toyota consider retrofitting 2019 already-purchased RAV4 vehicles with this application?

Only time will tell.

Do you own a 2019 RAV4 and do you use Apple CarPlay? How do you like it and what functions do you use it for most? Would you use Android Auto if it was added to the RAV4?

Thanks for reading everyone. See you next story where I am discussing the biggest 2020 Toyota 4Runner pros and cons.

Bookmark Jeff Teague's Toyota News and Reviews at Torque News Toyota. You can reach Jeff on Facebook and Instagram. Twitter @toyotajeff1 and tweet him tips for new stories. Jeff also shares Toyota news videos on his Youtube Channel at ToyotaJeff1.


Tom (not verified)    August 14, 2019 - 7:57PM

Totally agree with all your statements, especially on the safety side of things. I've grown so accustomed to using AA and Google Assistant while driving that it's become a habit. Everytime I want to use Google Maps or another AA feature, I now find myself grabbing my phone and thinking, "This isn't safe." And that's when I'm stopped.

Even a compromise of simply adding a "projection" feature would be an improvement. Google maps is so much better and free.

It would be awesome to see a retrofit on the 2019 RAV. Looking at this from a software perspective, automakers will have to start treating their infotainment systems as consumer electronics and provide regular patch/feature upgrades like our phones, tablets and computers.

Great article, fingers crossed!

David (not verified)    January 19, 2020 - 6:48PM

In reply to by Tom (not verified)

My dealer told me Android Auto was coming in November when I bought my Toyota in September. They lied. If Toyota doesn't resolve this, it is the last Toyota I will own. Between that and the gas pump shutting off with 5 gallons still left to fill in the tank in my 2019 RAV4 Hybrid, they have lost me as a future customer.

Dan (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 1:16AM

You sir are spot on.
I was going to buy a 2019 RAV4 loaded hybrid if it had AA.
I decided to wait for the 2020 to see if it is offered.
If not I will go to another brand.
I read a lot of Toyota reviews and the comments on those reviews without fail have people moving to other brands because of the lack of AA.
I just don't understand why Toyota is willing to lose those sales.

Sanjiv Patel (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 3:46PM

In reply to by Dan (not verified)

Totally agree. I am in the market for a car, and unless Toyota adds Android Auto to 2019 RAV4 Hybrid model, I am looking at competitors, all of which offer both Car Play and Android Auto. I just don't understand why Toyota has taken this decision that is hurting their sales.

Chris (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 6:56AM

Toyota is dropping the ball on most of their models by leaving out Android and just now starting to include CarPlay in 2020. Prius Prime is looking quite a bit better in 2020 but no Android means many will just go find a different PHEV

Daniel (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 7:58AM

My wife bought the 2019 RAV4 and loves everything about it except that it does not come with Android Auto. The current interface between the can and her phone is so bad that she almost regrets buying it. We'll both be very disappointed if they do not retro fit the 2019 models.

Dan Murphy (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 8:33AM

Yes if the RAV4 added the Android auto in 2020 that would make my decision to buy 1 easy if not I will look elsewhere first ever car .

Mark (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 11:44AM

I've been talking to a local dealer about the RAV4 hybrid and my desire for AA. They recently told me the 2020 will have it. This dealer is part of a larger group that doesn't have a good reputation. But if they were going to lie to me I would think they'd say that 2020 won't have it to encourage me to buy a 2019 now instead of waiting.

Paul T (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 4:04PM

I i am just about to cancel my order for both a 2019 RAV4 and a 2019 Prius AWDe Tech for the sole fruatrating reason for lack of AA support. Going with a 2020 Outback and Crosstrek instead. Very frustrated I have had 4 Prius and wanted to stay with Toyota. I juat relocated and need two cars. After driving several rentals recently with Android Auto, I decided that it is must have feature and simply refuse to live with the stupid Entune system anymore. Enough waiting is enough.

John Goreham    August 15, 2019 - 7:25PM

I'm a big Toyota fan, and I have owned many including a Supra, Lexus IS 350C and an RX350. Still do own an '07 Highlander. I would not even shop for a Toyota that did not come with Android Auto, nor would I recommend one. Why would anyone want to own a vehicle not compatible with 4 out of 10 U.S. phones? Setting aside your own phone choice, the resale is impacted.

Robert M (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 8:16PM

Is there a car where it doesn't make 'compelling sense' to add android auto if it lacks it? If they haven't added it yet, they don't believe it to be in their economic interest. I don't think this article is factoring into the equation, even with the inane headline.

Gary M (not verified)    September 14, 2019 - 11:11AM

In reply to by Robert M (not verified)

Nothing whatsoever inane about the headline. "If they haven't added it yet, they don't believe it to be in their economic interest." Losing thousands of potential buyers probably isn't in their economic interest either, but market place realities are not always predictable. Toyota was clearly caught flatfooted here.

I'm a lifelong Toyota fan going back to my 1982 Celica. Still, I won't be replacing my 2017 RAV4 with another when it comes off lease this month. I have AA in my second car (18 Honda Civic) and once you get used to having it (or Apple Car Play) there's no going back. I could replace my Android with an iOS, but that's an expense I would have to incur for the sake of Toyota's shortsightedness. No thanks. There are enough competitive models to choose from that include Android Auto.

Dr. Jim (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 10:00PM

Not that it will ease any frustration for potential Toyota buyers, I believe the reason Toyota has been dragging their feet on these apps is solely due to privacy issues. These apps have been in vehicles for a few years now and the perception is that Toyota doesn't have the tech to do it or they are trying to save money. They have more than enough tech AND money. My understanding is that they would NOT sign an agreement with Apple or Android without certain protection for their customers no matter how many cars were not sold because of this. Other manufacturers may not have these protections in place. Even though the privacy notice and disciosures are extremely long (admittedly, I have not read them all the way through... tedium) I would guess there is a disclaimer in there that has an affect on your privacy. I am not an official Toyota spokesperson but I am well informed. I drank the Kool aid. I hope this info helps anyone considering buying another product even though they are loyal Toyota customers. You may want to read the fine print, there is a sentence in there somewhere that is not in the Toyota contract. I will try to get my hands on one and pass it on

Dan (not verified)    August 16, 2019 - 10:51AM

In reply to by Dr. Jim (not verified)

Then Toyota can add a disclaimer on the privacy issue. It should be my choice to use it or not but at least offer it.
I do agree with the previous poster that there is a money issue but the privacy "concern" on their end is just corporate spin.

Dan (not verified)    August 15, 2019 - 10:30PM

Nine of the ten replies will be lost customers for Toyota. I think this trend which is very widespread is what needs to fed into their economic interest.

Small SUV Shopper (not verified)    August 17, 2019 - 12:51PM

I've been shopping to replace my decade old SUV, and one of the primary reasons for me is to have upgraded technology. Not having Android Auto is a no-go for me! I'm highly interested in the TRD version of the upcoming 2020 RAV4, but I won't buy it without Android auto. With the current issues the CR-V is having with its mixing issues in the turbo engine, I think Toyota has an opportunity window here! If RAV4 had Android auto, like all of the major competitors, I think a lot of people would be looking at RAV4s, especially until they're sure the CRV's issues are fixed. It's a great time to take the opportunity to convert CRV fans to RAV4 fans!

Rod (not verified)    August 18, 2019 - 6:52PM

Android Auto is the one of two things that are making me consider the Mazda CX-5 over the RAV4. The other is a non-turbocharged engine. I can look part the non-turbo, but I won't on the Android Auto. Toyota, you have two years to resolve this or I'm going to be visiting the Mazda Dealership.

Diana Daniels (not verified)    August 21, 2019 - 8:23AM

I bought a 2018 CHR without AA and was lucky to find an after market unit with AA . I'm waiting to buy a RAV4 XSE because i want AA . Holding out for 2020 to see . Counting the days until they come out . Fingers crossed .

john (not verified)    August 21, 2019 - 6:31PM

I don't think I've posted to an article in 15 years. My Highlander is on last legs (at least for me) at 203,000 miles. Other car is a Rav4 with 160k. Both bought new with cash. I would buy a 19 or 20 Rav4 Hybrid TODAY, if it had AA. It's a deal breaker for me. If I don't read in the next week or two the 2020 Rav4 will be retrofitted with AA (which would be good enough) sometime in 2020, I'm getting an Outback, and second replacement car will be a Crosstrek or Forester. Toyota, if you didn't notice, that's completely leaving your brand.... and yes, AA is that important to me. Crazy.

turf (not verified)    August 26, 2019 - 11:18AM

Also looking at 2019 Rav4 and also not buying until AA is added or retrofitted. The only really bad things I read in the reviews about this car are the transmission on the non-hybrid models, and the crappy Entune radio. So, I would buy a hybrid anyway and not have to deal with the bad transmission, but there does not appear to be a way to mitigate the stereo situation. I also would have already owned one if not for the stereo! I love everything else about the car.

Chris Garsson (not verified)    August 27, 2019 - 4:16PM

Please keep us posted. I'm leaning toward a new RAV-4 to replace the one I've had and loved for 10 years, but it has to have Android Auto. I'm willing to wait to buy until the 2020 model is revealed, but it will be a deal breaker for me if AA isn't included.

Naresh S (not verified)    August 28, 2019 - 10:34PM

Bought a Tiguan since it had AA. Not supporting a AA is akin to a home builder not supporting Frigidaire. It no longer makes sense to impose an auto brand onto infotainment - that's a commodity via our phones. Imagine if an automaker just said the car requires either AA or CP instead of having to learn their proprietary system!

Jeff W (not verified)    September 7, 2019 - 10:13PM

I didn't buy the 2019 RAV4 Hybrid because it didn't have Android Auto. If it's not on the 2020 model, I will going with the Escape Hybrid. There's really no excuse not to include AA in this day and age.

Guigui (not verified)    September 9, 2019 - 1:16AM

Just get RAV4 after 3 years of Mondeo with AA . It is a great car but connectivity system sucs like Hell. I have the feeling to come back 10 years ago . Complex setup , high price apps, Voice control Ineffective. Toyota ensure to correct this + ensure to provide update for owners .

Leon W Baehre (not verified)    September 12, 2019 - 12:10PM

We bought our 2019 Toyota RAV4 hybrid in May 2019 with the promise that Toyota would be adding Android Auto in the near future. I was just in for the first service and the salesperson still is adamant that AA will be retrofitted. The service department didn't even know what AA is. Love the car, but sadly AA is missing.