How to Lift Your RAV4

If you’re looking to add a little bit of height and style to your RAV4, a suspension lift may be a great option! A lift kit can make a big difference in the look, feel, and capability of your vehicle.

However, this is not a simple modification, so you might be intimidated by the idea. We’ll make sure you’re informed about the process so you can decide if it’s a good option for your situation.

In this article, we’ll give you an overview of the installation process, discuss costs, show photo examples, and explain everything else you need to know about lifting your RAV4.

lifted white rav4 with offroad tires

Can You Lift a RAV4?

Yes, you can lift a Toyota RAV4! There are plenty of people who have done this. We’ll show photo examples later in this article.

Lift kits are available for all RAV4 models, including the RAV4 Hybrid and Prime.

Installation Process

For most people, it will be best for a professional to install your lift kit. You may not have the tools or expertise to perform a correct (and safe) installation yourself.

However, if you’re familiar with vehicle suspension (and have the necessary tools), let’s do this!

Before starting the installation process:

  • Read all the instructions that came with your kit
  • Make sure your kit isn’t missing any parts
  • Make sure you have all the tools on hand that are necessary to complete the job

The specific steps will vary depending on a few different factors, such as your model year, vehicle trim, and lift kit brand, but here are some general instructions for installing a lift kit on a RAV4.

Here is a summary of the steps to install a lift kit on a Toyota RAV4:

  1. Disconnect the battery
  2. Loosen the strut bolts under the hood
  3. Suspend the vehicle on a lift and remove the wheels
  4. Install the front strut spacers on the OEM struts,
  5. Install the front cradle spacers
  6. Install the rear cradle support bracket spacers
  7. Lower the control arms and remove the springs
  8. Install the spacers on the springs, then reinstall the springs
  9. Reinstall the wheels and enjoy your lifted RAV4!

Remember, all lift kits are different. Your exact lift kit steps may be a bit different.


On average, the cost of lifting a Toyota RAV4 is between $650 and $1,500. You can expect the parts to cost between $400 and $1,000, and the labor to cost between $250 and $500.

The cost depends on a few different factors:

  • Model year. Different model years and trims may have different costs.
  • Quality of the kit. Higher-quality kits will have a higher price tag.
  • Labor rate. The mechanic’s hourly rate will have a significant effect on the cost.

Although you won’t be changing your model year to accommodate a cheaper lift kit, you can save costs by evaluating the other factors.

The quality of the kit could make a significant difference in price, which you should consider. However, we generally find that spending more on high-quality RAV4 parts is worth it. Think about how long you need the lift kit to last and how harsh the conditions will be when you are using it.

Reducing the labor cost is the best way to save money on a RAV4 lift. We recommend calling at least three automotive shops for quotes, as their rates can vary quite a bit. Perhaps you can even eliminate the labor cost by doing it yourself or with a knowledgeable friend.

Photo Examples

If you’re still unsure about lifting your RAV4, some visual examples may help you decide if a lift is right for you.

Check out these lifted RAV4 photos to see the difference that a suspension lift can make!

Pros and Cons

Now that you know it’s possible to lift a RAV4, let’s talk about the benefits of doing so (and the drawbacks).

Along with our own thoughts on lifting a RAV4, we also spoke with auto mechanic John Lin of JB Motor Works for his professional insight.


Lin explains that “the main reason customers choose to install lift kits on their RAV4 is for enhanced ground clearance. This allows them to tackle off-road terrains effectively, reducing the potential for undercarriage damages.”

This is, by far, the most beneficial reason for lifting a RAV4. However, there are some other benefits to consider.

He continues, say that “the lifted stature also enables bigger tire fitment, again boosting off-road capabilities. The lift also gives the RAV4 a more rugged, aggressive look that many owners enjoy.”

Lifting your RAV4 not only provides the ground clearance necessary for off-roading but also opens up a wide possibility for modifications. It also simply looks cool!


There are some important drawbacks to consider when lifting your suspension.

For starters, it will impact your handling. Lin explains that the lift will “raise the vehicle’s center of gravity, which might marginally increase the risk of rollover.” Although the risk is not severe, it is increased over the stock configuration.

It may also affect ride quality, especially if you’re using a low-quality lift kit.

You should also consider your warranty, as it may be voided after altering your suspension. However, oftentimes only the modified parts will be voided under the warranty, but not the entire warranty. Be sure to check with your Toyota dealership and read your warranty details.

Buying a Lift Kit

When you’re ready to buy your lift kit, there are a couple of different buying options available:

  • Amazon
  • eBay
  • Direct from manufacturer

The primary advantage of buying on Amazon and eBay is that you’ll find many options to choose from. Most popular brands are there, but there are also cheap, no-name brands that can offer an affordable alternative to more popular kits.

Buying from the manufacturer is great because you typically get better customer support. They may also offer special deals that you won’t find on third-party websites. However, you’ll need to know what brand you want to buy.

Wherever you choose to buy your lift kit, make sure you read reviews for the product and check the specifications to ensure that it fits your model year and trim level.

Pairing Tires With Your Lift

After lifting your RAV4, you may realize that you want bigger and more aggressive tires. Stock tires tend to look small and unappealing on any lifted vehicle.

When choosing new tires for your lifted RAV4, consider the following factors:

  • The terrain you’ll be driving on
  • The weather conditions in your area
  • Aggressiveness
  • Your budget

There are many great tires on the market for the RAV4 that would work well with a suspension lift, so take your time to do research on all of your options.

Expert Tips

Once your lift kit is installed, you’ll be excited to test it out in some real-world scenarios!

Here are some of the best ways to use your lifted RAV4 after installing this modification:

  • Forest roads and trails: If you’re lucky enough to live around some forest roads or dirt trails, those are the best ways to test out a lifted RAV4. This is always my favorite thing to do when I get the chance!
  • Road trips: The RAV4 is a great road-tripping car. I even spent 4 months in the past two years on the road with my RAV4! When you have a lift kit, you’ll be able to explore more remote areas during your trip since you won’t be held back by rough roads.
  • Winter driving: Since you have more ground clearance, you’ll be able to navigate deeper patches of snow since it won’t get stuck beneath your vehicle.

I hope these ideas inspire you to lift your RAV4 and start exploring!


Now that you’re all informed about lifting your RAV4, you’ll be ready to head into the wild and start exploring!

As we mentioned, it is possible to lift any RAV4 model, including the hybrid versions.

We gave you an overview of what the installation process looks like. This will help you decide if you need help from a shop or if you can do it yourself.

The cost to install a lift kit on a RAV4, including labor, is typically between $650 and $1,500. This depends on the parts you choose, your RAV4 trim/year, and mechanic hourly rates.

The primary advantages of a lift kit are better clearance for improved off-road capability and a better visual appearance. The downsides are the costs, raised center of gravity, and risk of voiding your warranty.

When it comes time to buy a RAV4 lift kit, we recommend buying it on Amazon, eBay, or directly from the manufacturer. We also listed some popular examples of lift kits to help kickstart your search.

If you have any questions or comments related to lifting a RAV4, please leave your comment below!

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  1. Cordero Garza says:

    Where would be a good place to go to get the torq engineering lift kit put on at

    1. Jonathan Buckley says:

      Truck/car accessory shops are usually good with these types of modifications.

      1. Cordero Garza says:

        Thank you for the info

  2. Researched and most kits do not compensate Shock absorber geometry or address camber and swaybar changes.

  3. Mark Gall says:

    Note that any car manufacturer selling cars new in the U.S. cannot invalidate an entire warranty due to installing non standard parts. If they could, installing a non factory oil filter would invalidate the entire car warranty; it does not.
    “Magnuson-Moss Warranty—Federal Trade Commission Improvement Act” is a Federal law, US Code, Title 15 § 2301, Public Law 93-637. President Gerald Ford signed it into law on January 4, 1975.”
    ““Simply using an aftermarket or recycled part does not void your warranty,” according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).”