The RAV4 has just been updated back in April this year and a new model is ready to be released on the European market. The 2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid EU-Version has been rumored for a long time now and it seems that the intriguing hybrid will be ready to go on sale until the end of this year. The car is based on the updated version of the RAV4 and it includes the usual exterior and interior changes as well as the same engine as the US version of the hybrid.
This is a gamble for Toyota because even though it is a very efficient unit, most people in Europe usually prefer diesel engines due to their ease of use and great fuel consumption on the highway.
Under the Hood
Under the hood of the 2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid EU-Version there is a single engine choice, a 2.5 liter naturally aspirated Atkinson cycle inline 4 petrol engine which is then mated to a CVT gearbox. The electric motor is integrated into the gearbox so it can provide extra torque or it can even allow the car to run on electricity alone. The all wheel drive version is a bit more different because it gets an extra 50 kW electric motor on the rear axle which not only improves traction on ice and slippery surfaces, but it also increases the towing rating to over 3,600 pounds.
In any case though, the car will provide up to 197 horsepower and well over 400 N*m of torque when the electric motors are running. Thanks to the electric motors, Toyota said that the RAV4 will be able to use only 4.9 liters of fuel for each 100 kilometers and it will trump its petrol powered competitors with only 115g/km of CO2. The drawback is the higher price tag of the car and the higher displacement petrol engine which may be prove to be troublesome in certain European countries.
The great part about it is that the car is based on the same platform as the facelifted RAV4 which means that the rigidity has been greatly improved and even though it drives better, it can still offer one of the best rides in its class. The suspension system has also been improved in order to be more capable on the road and also to allow the RAV4 to go on unpaved roads or even on dirt without any issues.
Design – Inside & Outside view
The design of the 2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid EU-Version is something special and it has to be the best looking crossover to come from the Japanese manufacturer. The front end is edgy with the right amount of aggressive features and the entire car looks muscular, just like a crossover should. The hybrid does add a few new changes over the base model such as bigger 19 inch rims wrapped in low rolling resistance tires, hybrid badges on the front fenders and on the tailgate as well as LED lights in the front and at the back for improved efficiency.
The interior also does away with the usual 4.2 inch screen in the favor of a much better 7 inch unit. The upholstery is made out of a really nice material which imitates leather while the accents inside the cabin are made from aluminum, so it does feel premium.
2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid EU-Version Price
However, the hybrid does come with a few nice features which could prove to be very successful in Europe. The price has not been set just yet but many people expect the car to go for well over 30,000 euros or the equivalent of roughly $33,500 for the base model.
This is quite a high price, especially when at this price point there are diesel versions of a few other premium crossovers such as the BMW X3 and even the Audi Q5.
The biggest rivals are Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid and Ford C-Max.