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We drive the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

by Ali Arsham
Tuesday, July 24, 2018

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Toyota Rav 4 Limited
Toyota Rev 4 Limited
The original compact crossover, the Toyota RAV4 has for two decades promised its owners an economical and adventurous SUV that could tackle anything.  The RAV4 has been upgraded many times since then and just like most vehicles, it has is larger, most comfortable, more expensive, more luxurious and more expensive but it still remains a good value.  You can even the RAV4 as a hybrid which is what we opted for.

Choosing the RAV4 Hybrid brings both added power and higher fuel efficiency, a sweet deal. Hybrid grades come equipped with an Toyota RAV 4 Limited. A second, independent electric motor drives the rear wheels when needed to help maintain optimal traction.
 
Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive sets the benchmark for seamless hybrid performance and efficiency these days. It is mostly transparent and you can’t feel it work and that is what most drivers like about it. 

The RAV4 Hybrid combines output from a 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine and a small high-torque electric motor through its unique transaxle. RAV4 Hybrid delivers 194 combined horsepower and is the quickest RAV4 you can buy and can do zero to 60 mph in 8.1 seconds.
 
The hybrid system varies power between the gas engine and electric motor, or combines both as needed, all seamlessly. Regenerative braking changes the electric motor to a generator that captures the kinetic energy of the still-turning wheels when the brake is applied, storing it in the nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) hybrid battery pack.

Choosing ECO mode optimizes throttle response and air conditioning output to help prioritize fuel economy. In EV mode, RAV4 Hybrid, under certain conditions, will run solely on the electric motor for up to 0.6 miles at speeds below approximately 25 mph.

Rear View
Rear View
Hybrid System Indicator and fuel consumption indicator helps coach the driver to operate the vehicle as economically as possible. All of that technology helps the RAV4 Hybrid get an EPA rating of 34 mpg city and 30 mpg highway.   

The RAV4 has certainly grown over its 22 years because everyone always wants more room. There’s ample room for five adults, including 35.6 cu. ft. of cargo capacity. With the 60/40 split rear seats folded, that space expands to 70.6 cu. ft.

The rear passengers will be very comfortable with all that room and can even recline their seat back up to 24 degrees for added passenger comfort.  Special attention was directed towards improving cabin quietness. Sound insulation materials in the rear cargo area, floor pan, and side and rear doors help reduce road noise and create a premium feel.

The front passengers are also greeted with a very airy cabin that feels much bigger than it is.  Large windows and light colors help give it an open feel and there are very nice touches such as the large shelf area in front of the front passenger for small items.

RAV4 prices start out at $24,660 for the LE 2WD model.  The Hybrid LE 4WD starts out at $27,385 and the top of the line Hybrid Limited will set you back a still reasonable $34,280.

The reason that the RAV4 has been a strong seller for over two decades has always been about value and with these prices Toyota still offers a lot of car for the money but now you get more luxury and comfort features as well.

Specifications

General Specs             

  • All Wheel Drive
  • Automatic Transmission
  •  34 City / 30 Hwy
  •  Sport Utility
  •  Hybrid Limited AWD (Natl)

Exterior       

Body

  • Body Style: Sport Utility

Dimensions

  • Wheelbase (in.): 104.7
  • Length, Overall (in.): 183.5
  • Width, Max w/o mirrors (in.): 72.6
  • Height, Overall (in.): 67.1

Doors & Windows

  • Rear Defrost
  • Privacy Glass
  • Power Windows

Exterior Features

  • Sun/Moon Roof
  • Sun/Moonroof
  • Running Boards (Optional)
  • Rear Spoiler

Measurements

  • Base Curb Weight (lbs.): 3950

Tires & Wheels

  • Tires - Front Performance
  • Tires - Rear Performance
  • Compact Spare Tire
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Chrome Wheels
  • Wheel Locks (Optional)

Towing

  • Maximum Trailering Capacity (lbs.): 1750

Interior

  • Interior
    Interior
    Convenience & Comfort
  • Back-Up Camera
  • Cruise Control
  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Vehicle Anti-Theft System
  • Fog Lamps
  • Auto-Off Headlights
  • Interior Cargo Shade (Optional)
  • Keyless Start
  • Luggage Rack
  • Rear Parking Aid
  • Power Liftgate
  • Hands-Free Liftgate (Optional)
  • Adjustable Steering Wheel
  • Steering Wheel Controls
  • Leather Wrapped Steering Wheel
  • Trip Computer
  • Remote Trunk Release
  • Universal Garage Door Opener
  • Intermittent Wipers
  • Variable Speed Intermittent Wipers
  • Keyless Entry
  • Power Door Locks
  • Electrochromic rearview mirror
  • Heated Mirrors
  • Mirror Memory
  • Power Mirrors
  • Driver Vanity Mirror
  • Passenger Vanity Mirror
  • Power Steering

Dimensions

  • Passenger Capacity: 5
  • Passenger Volume (cu. ft.): 100.7
  • Front Head Room (in.): 38.9
  • Front Leg Room (in.): 42.6
  • Front Shoulder Room (in.): 57.3
  • Front Hip Room (in.): 54.3
  • Second Head Room (in.): 38.9
  • Second Leg Room (in.): 37.2
  • Second Shoulder Room (in.): 55.4
  • Second Hip Room (in.): 48.9
  • Cargo Volume to Seat 1 (cu. ft.): 70.6
  • Cargo Volume to Seat 2 (cu. ft.): 35.6
  • Cargo Volume to Seat 3 (cu. ft.): 35.6

Entertainment

  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • HD Radio
  • MP3 Player
  • Satellite Radio
  • Premium Sound System (Optional)
  • Smart Device Integration

Heating & Cooling

  • Climate Control
  • Dual Zone A/C
  • A/C

Navigation & Communication

  • Navigation System
  • Wireless Cell Phone Hookup

Seats

  • Premium Synthetic Seats
  • Heated Front Seats
  • Driver Lumbar
  • Seat Memory
  • Power Driver Seat
  • Pass-Through Rear Seat
  • 2nd Row Bench Seat
  • Bucket Seats

Mechanical

Engine & Performance

  • Locking Rear Differential
  • All Wheel Drive
  • 4 Cylinder Engine
  • Engine Type: Gas/Electric I-4
  • Displacement: 2.5 L/152
  • Horsepower (Net @ RPM): 194 @ 5700
  • Torque (Net @ RPM): 152 @ 4400
  • Transmission: CVT w/OD
  • Turning diameter: 36.7

Fuel

  • Hybrid Fuel
  • EPA Fuel Economy Est - City (MPG): 34 (Est)
  • EPA Fuel Economy Est - Hwy (MPG): 30 (Est)
  • Fuel Tank Capacity, Approx (gal.): 14.8

Suspension

  • Suspension Type - Front: Strut
  • Suspension Type - Rear: Double Wishbone
  • Suspension Type - Front (Cont.): Strut
  • Suspension Type - Rear (Cont.): Double Wishbone

Transmission

  • Automatic
  • Automatic Transmission w/Manual Mode
  • Continuously Variable Trans

Safety

Airbags

  • Driver Air Bag
  • Passenger Air Bag
  • Front Head Air Bag
  • Rear Head Air Bag
  • Front Side Air Bag

Brakes

  • 4-Wheel ABS
  • 4-Wheel Disc Brakes

Safety Features

  • Brake Assist
  • Electronic Stability Control
  • Daytime Running Lights
  • Child Safety Locks
  • Integrated Turn Signal Mirrors
  • Traction Control
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Lane Keeping Assist
  • Cross-Traffic Alert

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