Toyota RAV4 2019: Hybrid, more extensive and dynamic

Toyota RAV4 2019: Hybrid, more extensive and dynamic
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It has been 25 years since that first Toyota RAV4 arrived on the market opening the door to the popularization of the SUV segment, which today is still the fashion segment. Looking back, in this fifth generation that now comes to the market, evolution has been remarkable since its birth and has gone hand in hand with the path that has marked the Japanese brand in recent times: hybridization as holy and sign.

Launched three years ago, the upgrade of the fourth generation of the Toyota RAV4 was highlighted by including a hybrid engine, which has been clearly imposed on the market with respect to the combustion variant: according to the Japanese manufacturer, 95% of the RAV4 marketed in our country in 2018 were hybrids.

Thus, in its fifth generation the SUV is offered in the market only and exclusively in a hybrid option, definitively abandoning combustion without electric support. Something that does not catch us off guard, not in vain, 78% of the models that it commercializes all over the world are hybrids.

Toyota RAV4 2019

In this new release, the Toyota RAV4 also returns to a more SUV aesthetic and skills, something that had left slightly aside in its fourth generation. A bet in which they fully trust, so they intend to market 11,000 units of RAV4 2019 this year, which would mean reaching a market share of 10% of all models sold.

The figure does not seem preposterous, since today, the brand claims to have received about 1,000 orders of this new generation, so they are optimistic that they are more than likely to exceed the target.

The Toyota RAV4 arrives at the dealerships starting from 33,950 dollars in the front-wheel drive variant and 37,150 dollars in the 4×4. Deliveries are already available, although for all-wheel drive versions we will have to wait until May.

Toyota RAV4 2019

Thinking about life on board

Maximum efficiency and fewer emissions, added to better skills at the wheel, more power, more aggressive image, improved habitability and more technology at the service of security and connectivity. This is, broadly speaking, the letter of introduction of the fifth generation of the Toyota RAV4, a model designed by and for the market although it is manufactured in Japan.

Conceived on the new TNGA GA-K platform, which derives from that which houses the C-HR and the Prius, the Toyota RAV4 2019 reduces its length by 5 millimeters, but grows in width by 10 millimeters, as well as in battle, reaching the 2,960 millimeters (+30 mm). This translates into improved habitability in the case of the rear seats, with 960 millimeters of legroom in the rear bench.

Toyota RAV4 2019

It has also increased in capacity the trunk, which now cubes 580 liters, which is an increase of 79 liters compared to the outgoing generation. A lot has evolved the SUV in this aspect, if we compare it with its first generations …




4.600 mm (-5 mm)

4.605 mm


1,855 mm (+10 mm)

1,845 mm


1,685 mm (+10 mm)

1,675 mm


2,690 mm (+30 mm)

2,660 mm


190 mm (+15 mm)

175 mm


580 liters (+79 liters)

501 liters

In short, in this new release, Toyota has placed special emphasis on improving life on board. This is evident not only in its exterior and interior dimensions, but also in several of the elements found in the passenger compartment: more storage spaces, such as the one found on the glove compartment (designed for smartphones and with an anti-slip base), as well as under the center console or with the inclusion of two huge cup holders, which are added to the drawer of the armrest.

Comfort is also present, highlighting the heated steering wheel (always optional) or the heated seats (as standard from the Feel! Finish), as well as the intelligent interior rear-view mirror, which shows the recorded image by a camera located in the rear window, designed to maneuver, as well as to offer maximum visibility when there is an occupant in the rear middle seat.

Toyota RAV4 2019

Going back to the SUV essence

Aesthetically, the Toyota RAV4 2019 is more SUV, following the trail marked by the current SUV, with a more elongated nose, an imposing front, where the grill regains prominence, and a more aerodynamic and sporty imprint, with an image more muscular and visually lower looking despite being 10 mm taller. This is due to the fact that its center of gravity is smaller and that it has more aerodynamic lines, citing its CX at 0.32.

The brand wanted to rejuvenate the RAV4 in this fifth generation, which is revealed mainly in its Feel! Finish, which is what we have had the opportunity to try, which is offered only in two- tone options for the body with up to four combinations between the ones to choose.

Toyota RAV4 2019

In general, the design of the new RAV4 is much more attractive and sporty with respect to the outgoing model, which will surely help to consolidate it even more as one of the most important models of the Japanese family.

The Toyota RAV4 has eight colors for the body, two new in the RAV4 and one premiere throughout the Toyota range. In addition, it offers four two-tone combinations for the Feel finish!

Only hybrid, please

Moving on to the mechanical chapter, its hybrid mechanics are completely new, both in terms of the combustion engine and the electric one. Regarding the first, baptized as Dinamic Force, it remains a 2.5-liter Atkinson atmospheric cycle with four cylinders and direct injection, but boasts a longer race and operates with a higher compression ratio compared to its predecessor. The adjustment range of the intake and exhaust valves has also been optimized.

Toyota RAV4 2019

All this contributes to improve their numbers in terms of power and maximum torque, which translates into a better performance on the asphalt. The maximum torque of this new propeller is set at 221 Nm available between 3,600 and 5,200 laps compared to 206 Nm between 4,400 and 4,800 rpm of its predecessor.

On the other hand, working in conjunction with electrical mechanics, the power also increases, going from the total 197 hp of the previous one to 218 hp in the case of the front-wheel drive variant and to the 222 hp in that of the all- wheel drive.

Again, both tractions are available in the new Toyota RAV4, although the SUV premieres in the case of the 4×4 the new AWD-i, or intelligent all-wheel drive , which offers better dynamic qualities both on and off the road. This uses an additional electric motor associated with the rear axle, which increases the torque offered on the rear wheels by 30% and is managed by the AWD Integrated Management (AIM).

Toyota RAV4 2019

Likewise, the Toyota RAV4 has four driving modes: Normal, Eco, Sport and EV, which is added in the case of the 4×4 version of the Trail, which uses a new control of automatic limited slip differential for ensure greater traction on surfaces with less grip. Finally, in the menu remains, however, the ever- changing CVT continuous variator, present in the two versions.

It’s still better in town, although it improves on the highway

Once the theory is known, touch on the practice. The day started with the Toyota RAV4 FWD in a route of about 160 kilometers that includes urban environment, fast roads and, mainly, conventional roads, with a more demanding layout. The new RAV4 moves perfectly in the city, where it appears more agile than its predecessor and giving priority especially to the electric motor.

Although it has an EV mode, that is, only the electric drive works, its autonomy in this case is set at only 2 kilometers, so it does not make much sense to activate it: the RAV4, like most self-reloading hybrids, is designed so that we let the thermal and electric motor combine automatically.

Toyota RAV4 2019

As soon as we enter fast roads and step on the accelerator, we immediately appreciate the increase in torque of the thermal engine, although the response of the pedal is still somewhat outdated due to the CVT change. However, that noise sensation has been reduced by giving more gas than we had in the previous generation.

It is also crucial to make the electric propeller, which is responsible for increasing the torque when requested at higher speeds than the outgoing model. In addition, the new system allows us to go ‘to sail’ even at speeds around 110 and 115 km / h, when the previous RAV4 cut it whenever it exceeded 80 km / h.

The steering is also more precise, since Toyota has improved the response of the electric power steering in this fifth generation, thanks to moving the assistance motor from the column to the rack. Thus, in the new model it is more sensitive and direct, improving the curve path.

The approved consumption of the Toyota RAV4 in mixed cycle is set at 4.5 or 4.6 l / 100 km (depending on whether it rides 17 or 18 inches) and when it arrives at the destination, what we get is 7.2 l / 100 km, although it is necessary to indicate that most of the route, we do it in conventional highway and in ascent, reason why it is normal that it is greater in this case.

Toyota RAV4 2019

And how about on off road terrain?

After trying the front drive variant, we went to the total. And the journey started off the asphalt, in a quite demanding layout for an SUV model, but not so much for an SUV. Activate the Trail mode, which ensures a better distribution of torque in the rear train and distributes it automatically as required by the situation.

On dry its behavior is more than correct to which it adds that its greater height with respect to the ground, 190 millimeters (+22 millimeters in comparison to the fourth generation) allows it to undertake uneven levels without touching the basses. But when we get to the mud, it begins to suffer the loss of traction although in this case it is more for the tires that it mounts than for the AWD-i system and the Trail mode.

And is that the new Toyota RAV4 has decided to opt for summer compounds in this new release leaving the All Season aside. A movement that is difficult to understand when the brand has clearly opted for the dynamic off-road improvement in this delivery. We remain, therefore, with the doubt of how it would have been his behavior on firm muddy with some tires marked with M + S (mud + snow).

Toyota RAV4 2019

When we return to the asphalt, we hardly notice differences compared to the front traction, although the route we do is on the highway and in the city and on dry, so we do not leave much room for the 4×4 traction to show its benefits. Where we do see changes in consumption, although the route is now downhill, so it requires less to the thermal propeller. We leave it at 5.9 l / 100 km, a figure that is closer to the official one, in the case of this 4.5 l / 100 km version.

In general, the Toyota RAV4 2019 is effectively better than its predecessor when it comes to dynamics, whether on the road and off the road, and the feeling it leaves us is that, effectively, it offers more enjoyment at the wheel.

Also, thanks to that lower center of gravity and the new architecture, it is much more stable and the driving position is very comfortable, giving the feeling that you have everything at hand and with a strong visibility compared to the fourth generation.

Toyota RAV4 2019

New driving assistance systems and more connectivity

Among the new benefits of the new Toyota RAV4 could not miss the assistance systems, which are integrated into the Toyota Safety Sense package that we already found in the fourth generation. However, this is now more complete thanks to the incorporation of new technologies: adaptive speed control with automatic braking function and the new pedestrian detector that adds nighttime function and detection of cyclists.

The first operates without problems in conditions of good visibility, but the radar and the front camera that it equips operates worse, for example, in a tunnel, where it does not detect a truck that precedes us and finishes abruptly stopping at the exit of it. It is true that the traffic was quite high when we decided to activate it: in the end this technology is designed for situations with less vehicle volume.

On the other hand, we find the improved pre-collision system with pedestrian detector, which is now able to operate in low visibility conditions, and which also detects cyclists (although in its case, only daytime). Fortunately, we do not check its effectiveness, since we do not find ourselves in any situation of risk in both cases.

Toyota RAV4 2019

The Safety Sense system is available as standard in any of the Toyota RAV4 finishes, and includes, in addition to the mentioned technologies, an unintentional lane change with steering assistance, traffic signal recognition, track maintenance and control system. Intelligent road lights.

The new RAV4 also has two screens, a new 4.2 inches TFT located in the instrument panel, which can be configured comfortably from the steering wheel to offer different information (consumption, browser, speed …) and varies its aesthetics depending on the selected driving mode, and a 7-inch one located in the center console from which the Toyota Touch 2 multimedia system or the GO Navigator is operated, which are only standard in the top end finish.

Also, in its fifth generation includes new services connected through the MyT app, which has navigation features such as Send To Car, as well as remote options such as ‘find my vehicle’, driving analytics and maintenance reminder. In addition, it has the Trip Summary system, which summarizes how efficient we have been driving in the last trip.

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