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Toyota Rav4

Toyota Rav4 (Japan, 2013-present)

Toyota > Rav4 > Gen.4
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Review


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Review

Toyota revealed the fourth generation RAV4 at the LA Auto Show. It keeps the four-cylinder engine from the previous generation but drops the old four-speed automatic transmission in favor of a six-speed automatic transmission. The V6 from the previous generation will not be in the new generation.

The new design is far more angular than the previous generation. The front grill has a slight V-shape. While in the rear, the hatch in hinged from the top for the first time as opposed to from the side like the previous ones.

Following current trends the new car is smaller than the one it replaces. It is two inches shorter, width is up 1.1in and wheelbase is the same.

The car uses more high strength steel than previous versions, which reduces weight. However, the fourth generation weighs roughly the same as the previous generation because Toyota added more sound deadening and insullation to make up the weight.

Inside, the interior is minimalist but attractive. The top trim will get two-tone leather but others will have cloth. A 6.1in touch screen is standard on all cars with a backup camera and Bluetooth. The cargo area is larger and deeper and holds 38.4ft³ (1087 liters) of space or 73.3ft³ (2076 liters) with the rear seats down.

The four-cylinder is Toyota's 2.5-liter unit with 176hp and 172lb-ft of torque. The new six-speed automatic has been optimized to keep revs low at highway speeds to increase fuel economy. It has both Sport and ECO modes to either improve fuel economy or sharpen throttle response.  Both fifth and sixth gear are overdrives. In the all-wheel drive version, the car is certified at 22mpg city and 29mpg highway, and the front-wheel driver version gets 24mpg city and 31mpg highway.

Other new technologies include torque vectoring all-wheel drive and electric power steering. The all-wheel drive system has three modes Auto, Lock and Sport. Auto is the standard mode and gives the front wheels priority. Lock Mode is for low speeds but forces the RAV4 into all-wheel drive mode. Sport Mode sends more power to the rear wheels.



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In 1933, with the help of the Japanese government stimulation, Kiichiro Toyoda decided to create an automobile division from its already established company of automatic looms and electric sewing machines. Their first production automobile, the Toyota Model AA, starts in 1936 and in the following year Kiichiro finally inaugurates Toyota Motor Company as an independent company.

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