Third-Row Seating In The Toyota RAV4

The Toyota RAV4 may be your best option if you’re seeking an SUV with three rows of seating.

Most recent RAV4 models don’t come with third-row seating, but some older models do.

Third-Row Seating in the Toyota RAV4

You’ll find out which RAV4 models offer it in this quick guide, as well as alternative choices if you decide it’s not for you.

The 3rd Row Is Available

There is no third row of seating in the modern Toyota RAV4. There are, however, some RAV4s from 2006 to 2012 that have 3rd-row seats that can accommodate up to 7 people.

Including the driver, all recent RAV4 models accommodate up to 5 passengers. There is also no third row option available with Toyota.

You should consider purchasing another Toyota model if you want a third row. This article will discuss Toyota’s other vehicle models in more detail.

Advantages and Disadvantages

You might think that third-row seats are a great addition to your RAV4, but there are both advantages and disadvantages.

RAV4s can accommodate more passengers, which is an obvious benefit. Your passengers will only be able to fit in the 3rd row if they are small enough.

There is no additional interior space available for the extra seats in RAV4s with third-row seating. In the 3rd row, this leads to limited seating space as well as sacrificed cargo space.

Many adults report being uncomfortable in third-row seats on their RAV4 with factory seating. In order to have more seating, you might not want to buy an old or heavily used RAV4 model unless you have children.

Third-Row Seats Aftermarket

RAV4 buyers have asked whether they can add third-row seating after they purchase the vehicle. Is it possible to install “aftermarket” products that are not Toyota-made but installed after the vehicle has been purchased?

Third-row seats are not compatible with your Toyota RAV4 and should not be installed. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), this used to be possible, but now it is considered unsafe.

Third-Row Seats Aftermarket

This press release from the NHTSA, published in April 2020, warned drivers against purchasing aftermarket benches because they aren’t certified by the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. It is strongly recommended that consumers avoid installing or purchasing these seats as they are frequently used for children.  

Concerns For Safety

Cars that are not designed for third-row seating are fitted with aftermarket seats.

Third-row seats made from aftermarket parts are unsafe for the following reasons:

  • There may be a problem with the seat’s attachment to the vehicle
  • There is a possibility that the seats do not meet the safety requirements for seatbelts
  • There may be safety issues with the construction and specifications of the seats
  • A third-row seat cannot be accommodated by the vehicle’s suspension

There was a company called “Little Passenger Seats, Inc.” that supplied aftermarket third-row seating for Toyota RAV4s in the past. As a result of the above reasons, the NHTSA has determined that the products manufactured by this company are unsafe.

Drivers using these products should cease using them immediately, according to the Department of Transportation. Due to the fact that these seats are usually marketed and used for children, these warnings should be heeded.   

Also Consider The Following Options

Your search is likely to have been unsuccessful if you were looking for a RAV4 with third-row seating or seating for seven. The RAV4 is best suited for four or five people, but you may be able to meet your needs with another Toyota vehicle.

Also Consider The Following Options

Here are three Toyota models with third-row seating to consider!

Toyota Highlander

Compared to the RAV4 and Sequoia, the Toyota Highlander is bigger.

There are three rows of seating in all new Highlanders. This is a great option for those who need extra seats (up to 8 people!). As a result, it takes up some additional space, but isn’t as cumbersome to drive as the Sequoia.

Third-row seats are typically considered “kids only” due to their tightness. Additionally, the third-row seat has below-average cargo space, so you might have to use those seats as part of a storage space if you’re hauling anything or anyone.

In addition to the Toyota Highlander, Hyundai Palisade, Mazda CX-9, and Jeep Grand Cherokee L are some of its top competitors.

Toyota Sequoia

Seating for the third row is standard on all new Sequoias. You can choose between a seven- or eight-seat configuration in this three-row SUV.

If you’d like your passengers to have more space to spread out, you can trade in a bench seat for captain’s chairs. With the additional row, you won’t lose much space because of the vehicle’s large cargo area.

As a result of its V8 engine, the Sequoia has a great deal of power as well. If you’re looking for a vehicle that can tow boats or trailers. There is no better option than this. Technology and fuel economy are the two areas where the Sequoia struggles most. Gas mileage isn’t great for the Sequoia because of its size and power.

Neither the technology nor the engine are great, but the all-new 2023 Sequoia will address this issue. This model hasn’t had a significant update since more than a decade ago, so we’re happy to see it finally get a refresh.

The Toyota Sequoia is primarily rivaled by the Ford Expedition, Chevrolet Tahoe, Nissan Armada, and GMC Yukon.

Toyota 4Runner

Third row seats are not standard in the Toyota 4Runner, but they are available as options. You can choose from a variety of configurations to find the setup that works best for you. The following models are available with third-row seating:

  • 2022 Toyota 4Runner SR5
  • 2022 Toyota 4Runner SR5 Premium
  • 2022 Toyota 4Runner Limited

In addition, your 4Runner’s cargo space will be significantly reduced if you add a third row. If you regularly move luggage or gear, this should be taken into consideration.

In addition to the Toyota 4Runner, the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Land Rover Defender are two of its top competitors.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is third-row seating available in all Toyota RAV4 models?

There are no standard third-row seats in the Toyota RAV4; only select trim levels are equipped with third-row seating.

How many passengers can the Toyota RAV4 accommodate with third-row seating?

Toyota’s RAV4 offers comfortable seating for seven passengers with the third row.

Can the third-row seats be folded down for extra cargo space?

In most Toyota RAV4 models, the third row seats can be folded, making it possible to increase cargo capacity.

Are there any safety features specifically designed for third-row passengers?

It is important to note that the Toyota RAV4 is equipped with advanced safety features, however, third-row passengers may have different considerations depending on the model and trim level.

Does adding third-row seating affect fuel efficiency?

Fuel efficiency may be slightly affected by adding third-row seating due to additional weight and aerodynamic changes, but the difference is typically negligible in everyday driving.


The Toyota RAV4 with third row seats is hard to find, since the company no longer produces them. Between 2006 and 2012, these were only found on early SUV models.

To upgrade the seating capacity to seven people in your RAV4, you shouldn’t install aftermarket seats today because of safety concerns.

You can choose from other Toyota SUVs to meet your third-row seating needs, including the Highlander, Sequoia, and 4Runner.

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