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Toyota redesigns RAV4 for multiple terrains

Toyota redesigns RAV4 for multiple terrains

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Rasheed Bisiriyu and Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi

Toyota has redesigned its RAV4 for the 2019 edition with special features that will enable it to function in more difficult terrains than the original design.

The all-new Toyota RAV4 unveiled last week at the New York Auto Show, according to an online auto journal, MotorTrend, has become the first vehicle on the new Toyota New Global Architecture to get all-wheel drive.

RAV4 is the first compact crossover sport utility vehicle produced by Toyota Motor Corporation, which made its debut in Japan and Europe in 1994 and in North America in 1995.

The vehicle was said to have been designed for consumers wanting a vehicle that had most of the benefits of the SUVs such as increased cargo room, higher visibility and the option of full-time four-wheel drive, along with the manoeuvrability and fuel economy of a compact car.

RAV4 stands for Recreational Activity Vehicle. In most markets, the RAV4 is the only compact SUV or crossover available from Toyota. In other markets, it is the crossover counterpart of the Toyota FJ Cruiser, says

An online auto journal, notes that the new vehicle is a little bit shorter than its predecessor, but the switch to the TNGA platform has improved packaging and the wheelbase is actually 1.2 inches (3cm) longer than before.

The all-new fifth-generation RAV4, says Automotive News, is the latest of the vehicle that started the popular small crossover segment that continues to grow in popularity.

It says one striking feature of the new RAV4 is the Multi Terrain Select that can be engaged for maximum traction in snowy, muddy, sandy or rocky terrain while Hill Ascent Control is standard.

With torque vectoring, the vehicle comes in two powertrains of 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine mated to an eight-speed transmission and a 2.5-litre four-cylinder hybrid engine with continuously variable transmission that improves fuel efficiency.

Automotive News also notes that with the redesigned 2019 RAV4, Toyota has been able to develop something for everyone, including fans of competing crossovers from Jeep, Volkswagen, GMC and Ford, with more angular, truck-like styling and exterior that features a few familiar design touches such as trapezoidal wheel arches that have long been a signature of Jeep’s lineup.

The Group Vice President and General Manager, Toyota Motor North America, Jack Hollis, is quoted as saying, “We’ve got a RAV4 for whatever lifestyle your’re living, out in the wilderness of within city limits, if you can do it RAV4 will empower it.

“Now for the fifth generation, RAV4 is once again at the forefront, both for our brand and for this segment. For instance, the all-new Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Rear Driverline Disconnect, is a first for the segment and for Toyota, it doesn’t get much better than that.”


According to, the new Toyota RAV4, particularly in Adventure trim, has a newfound aggression and masculinity in its styling that is refreshing, adding that “for the first time, maybe ever, it looks like something you’d want to try and take off-road like its larger sibling, the body-on-frame 4Runner. Its exterior dimensions are almost identical to that of the Honda CR-V, with the exception of having a slightly longer wheelbase.”

Interior also states that the RAV4, now being built on Toyota’s TNGA architecture, underpins the new Camry, as it is a little roomier inside despite being slightly smaller on the outside.

The all-new fifth generation RAV4 delivers on Toyota’s promise to make adventure accessible, notes, recalling that at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, the company showed off the FT-AC, an off-road concept meant to invoke a sense of escape but that the new RAV4 was a spitting image of that aspiration design.

It adds that the new RAV4 has the same athletic, muscular appearance but has grown in size with a wheelbase 1.2 inches longer than the previous version; wider front and rear tracks that give it a nearly half-inch wider stance; and more elbow and legroom in the rear for passengers while the seats fold at a 60/40 split making way for large adventure-enhancing equipment such as surfboards, suitcases and camping gear. also reports the Hollis as giving a hint about what the future has in tow for the newly launched RAV4. For instance, while he does not rule out the idea of a seven-seat version of the crossover, it is unlikely to happen in the foreseeable future.

“I think RAV4 in its compactness holds a certain space. But I will say there is always room for growing SUV entries. So whether we decide to bring one in a seven-seater or something different, that is something that I will keep you waiting for those answers.”

He says Toyota already offers its fair share of seven-seat SUVs; so a three-row RAV4 is not exactly a high priority.

The report says for the time being, the fifth-generation compact crossover will be offered exclusively with five seats.

Hollis also hints that the new RAV4 may be further electrified beyond the already announced hybrid models scheduled to arrive in the United States early next year.

A report by says RAV4 currently ranks as the number-one-selling vehicle in the Toyota lineup, as well as the best-selling non-pickup truck in the US.

“Over the years, Toyota has listened to owners and dealers and it has paid off. Over the last five years, RAV4 volume has doubled, which speaks profoundly to the segment’s attractiveness and growth, and ultimately, RAV4’s popularity,” it states.

No matter the grade, every RAV4 is a winning choice, whether it is for a city exploration, a weekend trip to the countryside, or a jaunt on the trails, it adds.


The new RAV4 is equipped with Entune 3.0 multimedia including Wi-Fi Connect powered by Verizon, hands-free access to Amazon Alexa, and Apple CarPlay compatibility.

The standard Entune 3.0 audio system is said to house a 7-inch touchscreen that is perched atop the centre stack. Entune 3.0 Audio Plus adds an 8-inch touchscreen and Sirius XM Radio. Entune 3.0 Premium Audio enhances the multimedia system with embedded dynamic navigation to help drivers chart their course.

Enhancing onboard multimedia features, RAV4 can be had with up to five USB ports between the front and rear rows and an optional Qi wireless charging tray positioned at the front of the centre console.

Its multimedia setup is complemented by an all-new available JBL audio system. The next-generation premium audio setup incorporates enhanced system architecture, new speaker design, and an improved tuning process. The result is an all-access pass to the most intimate music concert, all from inside the new RAV4.

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