Since Toyota’s dive into the hybrid technology almost 15 years ago through the Prius line, the Japanese car manufacturing giant continued to expand their roster of cars running on dual technology for better fuel efficiency. This year, the newest automobile to be included in the hybrid lineup is the 2016 RAV4 Hybrid.
Released during this year’s New York City’s autoshow, the brand new RAV4 Hybrid is a variation of the solely gasoline run RAV4. Despite not having the banner car for its lineup, the RAV4 Hybrid is a distinct member of the latest releases from Toyota.
Armed with an overhauled look including new scooped door design, the vehicle has more space for the driver and front passenger. Likewise, the inside of the vehicle feels more spacious and comfortable. Toyota conducted a lot of researches on what the market wants as it finally added fine materials to the interior, opting to remove the plastic trim and replacing it with a fine looking gun metal one. The seats also go with the new feel of the car as they are encased with SofTex fabric in cinnamon and nutmeg colors.
Outside, sharpened rocker panels also tie in the front and rear bumpers creating a more flowing design from the face of the car to its back. With new colors like Silver Sky Metallic, Black Currant, and Electric Storm Blue, the car exudes modernity and luxury but with a fuel efficient engine.
Speaking of engine, the half-gasoline, half-electric engine is comprised of a 2.5 liter four cylinder gasoline engine and two electric motors situated in the front and back of the car. This will enable the car to generate up to 112 horsepower which will be distributed on all four wheels with the help of an electronically controlled continuously variable automatic transmission (ECVT).
In terms of road performance, the new hybrid has been getting favorable reviews from automobile journalists. Steve Purdy of “The Auto Channel” noted that the car steers gracefully, making it very easy to maneuver. “It felt almost like the effortless Buicks of old. As we get going, though, the steering effort felt more conventional with decent feedback and varying firmness depending on speed,” he wrote.
The all new 206 RAV4 Hybrid will retail at a starting price of $28,370 and is set to go head to head with Subaru’s XV Crosstek Hybrid.