Martha, Berkeley, Calif.

The 2010 Toyota RAV4, 2009 Suzuki Grand Vitara and 2010 Nissan Cube all use swing-gates that open to the side. There are a few design characteristics that, in our opinion, make a swing-gate less desirable than the liftgate alternative, which opens upward.  

A swing-gate opens to the side, which takes up a lot of room behind the vehicle. If parked in close quarters, you may find the swing-gate doesn’t have enough room to fully open. Another problem is the way the door is hinged. If parked on a curb, a swing-gate that’s hinged on the passenger side, which includes the RAV4, Cube and Grand Vitara, will open toward the curb. This means unloading has to happen from the SUV’s street side.

Many other small SUVs like the 2010 Honda CR-V, 2010 Subaru Forester and 2010 Chevrolet Equinox use a liftgate-style rear door that opens upward. A liftgate may be unfriendly to some shorter owners because once the gate is opened the handle to close may be out of reach. In that case, the 2010 Equinox and 2010 Nissan Murano have an available power liftgate to solve that problem.

Learn more

Answered by Joe Bruzek on October 21, 2009 in Honda , Honda CR-V , Toyota , Toyota RAV4 | Permalink

Search Results Search Results for


See if your question has already been asked and answered

Thank You!

Your question has been successfully submitted to It will now be reviewed by our editors and we'll answer it soon if we think it's a useful question. You will be notified via e-mail when the answer is posted. tackles your questions about new cars and the car-buying process. Unfortunately we can't answer questions regarding:

  • Used cars.
  • Most aftermarket products.
  • Mechanical issues. You can visit our friends at Car Talk to discuss your mechanical problems.
Thanks for your interest.


Have our experts answer any of your questions about new cars.

Email us at

Maintenance Advice
Get answers from the
Car Talk Community