Comparisons between the Toyota RAV4 variants directly The base price of the non-hybrid 2021 Toyota RAV4 is $26,150. Depending on whether you want a fully-loaded, top-shelf trim, the price ranges from $27,445 to $35,880. The RAV4 Hybrid has a lower starting price than many other hybrid and electric SUVs at $28,500.
In This Article...
What distinguishes the hybrid from the Toyota RAV4?
Engine: The 2.5L Toyota Hybrid System II engine in the RAV4 Hybrid has a combined net horsepower of 219, whilst the 2.5L four-cylinder in the RAV4 has 203 hp. The Hybrid gets 41 city/38 highway mpg, compared to the RAV4’s 28 city/35 highway mpg.
Since when did the RAV4 go hybrid?
What was happening in the market in 1996 when the RAV4 made its debut here? What made it so groundbreaking?
The RAV4 was created in a time when body-on-frame SUVs predominated; these vehicles were primarily truck-based at the time and were quite practical. They had poor fuel efficiency, were niche items, and had terrible roads. Therefore, a unibody SUV like the RAV4 was an absurd idea in its day. It was undoubtedly groundbreaking to think of a vehicle with the sophisticated driving characteristics of a car, the cargo capacity of a wagon, and the elevated seating position and high ground clearance of an SUV.
Vehicles like the Toyota 4Runner, Ford Explorer, or Jeep Grand Cherokee were used by consumers to define “SUV.” We entered the market with a product that was substantially lighter, smaller, and had a peculiar body shape at the time, so it was different for us. Nobody was really sure what to make of it.
The RAV4 revolutionized the SUV market. When did people begin to understand how much of an industry disruptor it would be?
The RAV4 came numerous options when it was introduced in the United States in 1996, including a two- or four-door model, a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. It was regarded with some skepticism because it stood out significantly from the competition. Not only were people unsure of what to think, but they were also unaware of the significant market shift that was about to occur.
Then, in 1997, Automobile Magazine named it the vehicle of the year. That’s actually when customers and other automakers began to pay attention and recognize that a transition to what is now known as the small SUV market was about to occur. By 2017, the RAV4 had surpassed the Camry in sales for the first time in company history, a position the Camry had long held. The RAV4 sold more units in 2019 than any other SUV in a single year.
What characteristics helped the RAV4 maintain its level of popularity?
We’ve had some pretty great sales over the past 25 years, and I believe there are a lot of reasons for that. Customers adore the fact that they can receive a higher seating position, the all-weather capabilities of an SUV, however yet not feeling as though they are driving something excessively large. Lower operating costs are possible since the fuel efficiency is considerably more similar to that of a sedan than a standard SUV. Additionally, the internal packaging is really effectiveit strikes an excellent balance between inside volume and external footprint.
It is made to handle everything, including driving in the city, the suburbs, or even engaging in some outdoor activity. For instance, in the situation we’re in right now, there are a lot more individuals that want to get outside and explore and drive off-road. That combination, in my opinion, appeals to everyone the most.
Clearly, the RAV4 has changed since it was first introduced 25 years ago. How has it changed over time?
Over the past 25 years, it has been a careful balancing act to find the ideal vehicle size, engine performance, fuel efficiency, styling, all-weather capability, and load capacity. Without a doubt, we’ve experimented over time. We rapidly came to the conclusion that a two-door SUV with a manual transmission would not be popular. At one point, we tried to add a third seat, but we found that people would rather have more cargo space.
In terms of achievements, powertrain innovation has persisted over the years. When we introduced the hybrid powertrain in the RAV4 in 2016, we pushed the envelope. The RAV4 has since seen success in the segment, and in 2020, the RAV4 Prime will be introduced. We continue to assess what works and make a few little experiments when consumers’ preferences shift. Although there have been some hiccups along the way, I believe we are on the right track.
Please describe the hybrid choices. Toyota has been developing hybrid vehicles for a long. What has changed since then?
The sector is still undergoing significant development today. The true nature of hybrids and plug-in hybrids is frequently misunderstood. Hybrid plays a significant role in our lineup, therefore it was crucial for us to get it right. Customers can choose a gas, hybrid, or plug-in hybrid powertrain on the present market, depending on what suits their lifestyle best. We must determine the best fit for each consumer because one size does not necessarily fit everyone.
We are now offering this car, which is enjoyable to drive, has excellent gas mileage, and is priced reasonably. Our belief that we have succeeded is demonstrated, in my opinion, by the fact that the RAV4 has surpassed all other hybrid vehicles in sales in the United States.
What lies ahead for crossovers in the future? What do you think the RAV4’s prospects are?
As a segment, the growth is still accelerating, and more businesses are entering the market. As is typical for Toyota, I believe we will advance as an industry pioneer and continue to change the world. I believe that crossovers will generally get greener, more technologically advanced, and offer more features. We are aware that the RAV4 will experience many wonderful developments in the future. In order to maintain our position as the best-selling car in its category, we’ll keep innovating and pushing the envelope in the market.
Does the RAV4 have a hybrid version?
A 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with two electric motors working in tandem produces 219 horsepower when used to power the RAV4 Hybrid. Standard all-wheel drive is used. Using a constantly variable automatic transmission, one of the electric motors drives the back wheels while the second motor and the gasoline engine power the front wheels (CVT). The RAV4 Hybrid is not only faster than the standard model, but also more efficient. In our hands, it completed a 60 mph time in 7.4 seconds compared to 8.0 seconds for the gas-only variant. In especially around town, where the electric motor’s gratifyingly immediate power delivery gives it an extra shove when taking off from a stop, drivers will feel that energy as well. The Prime model will give you even more performance if you request it. The RAV4 Prime accelerated to 60 mph in under 5.6 seconds during our tests. The handling and ride quality of the hybrid and Prime variants are both acceptable and pleasant, but don’t anticipate any impressive cornering performance.
The best RAV4 is, which one?
Here is a succinct explanation of the Toyota RAV4’s best and worst years: The 2009, 2010, 2016, 2017, and 2018 model years of the Toyota RAV4 are some of its best iterations. On the other hand, the 2002, 2007, 2008, 2013, and 2019 models should be avoided.
Is buying a hybrid worth it?
Savings: You will frequently save on fuel prices because hybrid vehicles help you save on gas. There are still other potential savings though! You’ll ultimately save more money because to the tax breaks that many jurisdictions provide to people who drive electric or hybrid cars.
Is the RAV4 Hybrid’s maintenance pricey?
In comparison to comparable compact SUVs, which have an average annual maintenance cost of $521, the Toyota RAV4 is relatively economical to maintain, costing only an average of $429.
It is also far less expensive to fix than the majority of the vehicles in the RepairPal database, which had an annual average repair cost of $652.
Additionally, the Camry Hybrid, Highlander Hybrid, and Lexus NX Hybrid all share an engine and powertrain with the RAV4 Hybrid, so parts should be widely available and reasonably priced.
Does the RAV4 Hybrid require charging?
The first Toyota RAV4 modified the traditional SUV formula to make it more portable and enjoyable to drive. The tiny SUV changed over time into something a little more subdued, but the most recent model has been able to recapture some of the original model’s flair. The Nissan Qashqai, Kia Sportage, Hyundai Tucson, and Honda CR-V are just a few examples of competitors, so Toyota had to step up its game with the RAV4, which is now available as a hybrid or plug-in hybrid, the former of which we’re focusing on today. The hybrid RAV4 is reasonably priced, has low operating costs, and requires no external power source to recharge.
The technology employed in the hybrid RAV4 has the advantage of using lost energy from the gasoline engine and brakes to power the battery; Toyota refers to this system as “self-charging” because it doesn’t require a plug-in. However, due to the battery’s size, you will only be able to drive for about a mile without producing any emissions. Instead, the battery serves to reduce the load on the gasoline engine and boost efficiency. With its larger battery and reduced company-car tax, the plug-in hybrid is preferable for longer electric range, but you’ll need a place to charge it overnight.
Uses ordinary gas the RAV4 Hybrid?
Hybrid vehicles do burn fuel. You can refuel your hybrid vehicle the same way you refueled your conventional gasoline vehicle if you’re the proud owner of one. Due to the fact that hybrid vehicles combine an internal combustion engine with an electric motor and battery, some of the power does need to come from fuel. Hybrids may, of course, also run entirely on electricity, but you’ll want to have gas on hand just in case.
Do Toyota RAV4 issues frequently arise?
Treat each one with caution even if this model year isn’t quite as awful as the others on the list. If you’re considering purchasing a model from this year, we advise thorough inspection. Numerous consumers have reported gearbox problems to Car Complaints, and the NHTSA has received hundreds of reports of fuel system faults. Although it might not apply to everyone, carefully review vehicle history reports.
Consumer Reports advises against purchasing the 2019 Toyota RAV4. With a dismal score of 2, reliability and owner satisfaction were rated equally. According to CR, the overall value, trunk space, road noise, and minor transmission problems are some of the greatest problem areas.