Test drive – Toyota RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid (2020): promises kept – Caradisiac.com

IN SHORT

Plug-in hybrid version

306 hp

From 52 650 €

Hybridization and Toyota is a story that lasts – since 1997 with the first Prius -. However, the Japanese electrification specialist has not really extended its know-how to plug-in hybrid technologies. Apart from a Prius Plug-in, which we have rarely seen in the streets … Ultimately, this arduous task falls to the RAV4, in a segment that is now well supplied with a Plug-in SUV. The imposing RAV4 in turn carries a battery with a rather generous capacity of 18.1 kWh, which can be recharged in 2.5 hours via the 6.6 kW on-board charger.

Test drive Toyota RAV4 Plug in Hybrid 2020 promises kept - Test drive - Toyota RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid (2020): promises kept - Caradisiac.com
With 18 kWh, the battery of the RAV4 is bigger than that of its competitors.
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There is little to recognize the hybrid version, apart from the more aggressive front bumper.

On the thermal side, the 2.5 gasoline Atkinson cycle wins a handful of horses (185 hp against 178 for the full hybrid version). It is supported by a first 134 kW electric unit (88 kW on the hybrid) on the front axle and a second 40 kW (power unchanged) on the rear axle. In total, the RAV4 Plug-in develops a comfortable output of 306 hp. But it now weighs a substantial two tonnes … In any case, dynamism is not the credo of this imposing SUV.

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In theory, the RAV4 plug-in hybrid takes advantage of its "big" battery to promise 75 km of 100% electric autonomy on a mixed route and even 98 in the city. An affirmation that we were able to verify during our test with nearly 80 km carried out without waking up the heat engine. A route combining town and secondary road sometimes taken at 90 km / h. Proof of the consumption contained in electricity (approximately 18 kWh / 100 km for a tall and very heavy vehicle). Sobriety is also of hybrid operation. The RAV4 keeps a minimum of watts to always offer its 306 hp and all-wheel drive. Even with forcing the pace, the on-board computer never went faster than 7.7 / 100 km. A very good value given the performance offered. The other good news is the successful soundproofing and the better-managed variable-speed automatic transmission, which better suppresses revving under strong acceleration.

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On board, no change, except for the buttons operating the driving modes.
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By default, the RAV4 Plug-in operates in 100% electric mode. One way to sell your greater autonomy.

Sober, finely tuned and keeping its promises, the Toyota RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid avoids many of the pitfalls that most of its rivals, becoming gluttons once their battery is dead. On the road, the RAV4 performs very well, even if the 306 hp is not the fastest … Anyway, the Japanese don't like to be rushed. The inertia behind it is noticeable, and its mass does not work in its favor. Light steering and not super direct, brake pedal a little soft … the RAV4 is appreciated for anything else. Comfortable, with ultra-soft cushioning, roomy and very well soundproofed, the RAV4 is a great traveler for families.

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Efficient but lackluster, the RAV4 prefers comfort to dynamism. Especially in this version weighing 2 tons.
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With nearly 80 km traveled in town and on a suburban route, the RAV4 keeps its promises.

Placed under the floor, the battery has no impact on the passenger compartment and its functions. Only the trunk loses a few cm in height (60 dm3), but retains an average volume of 520 dm3. This Plug-in hybrid version is recognizable by its more aggressive front bumper, its rims with specific design … and that's about it.

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The trunk loses 60 liters, but they retain a practical storage for the charging cable.
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The battery is placed under the floor and does not affect the space on board.

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