Toyota's all-new 2013 RAV4 crossover utility vehicle (CUV) made its world debut today at the 2012 Los Angeles International Auto Show.
In addition to a new body design and structure and a new six-speed automatic transmission and AWD system, it features two-row seating for five, a host of available in-cabin technologies, eight standard airbags, and an array of standard features.
The new RAV4 will be available in three trim levels – LE, XLE, and Limited – beginning early next year. The RAV4 is built in Canada, at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canad (TMMC) plant in Woodbridge, Ontario.
The new RAV4’s design is more aerodynamic than its predecessor, with a sloping roofline and more sculpted front and rear fenders.
In a major break with its tradition, the side-hinged rear door is replaced with a more-conventional roof-hinged lift-gate with a space-saver spare tire stored under the cargo floor.
Inside, the RAV4’s features soft-touch accents and a driver-centric, asymmetrical instrument panel, with primary and secondary controls all within easy reach.
Steering wheels in all models have controls for audio, Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio, and a Multi-Information Display (MID).
All RAV4’s feature 60/40 split/fold second-row seats that recline several degrees, and the cargo area is deeper, larger and easier to access than in the previous generation model. With rear seats folded, Toyota says, the RAV4's cargo capacity is class-leading.
The only engine available is Toyota’s familiar 2.5-litre four-cylinder, rated at 176 horsepower and 172 lb-ft of torque. The optional V-6 offered in the current model will be discontinued.
A new six-speed transmission with overdrive fifth and sixth gears brings the RAV4 up to date with its competitors in the transmission department.
Front-wheel-drive models have estimated fuel efficiency ratings of 8.7L/100 km in the city and 6.4L/100km on the highway Estimated ratings for LE and XLE all-wheel-drive (AWD) models are 9.1L/100km in the city and 6.8L/100km on the highway.
A new driver-selectable Sport Mode that sharpens transmission shift timing, throttle response and steering assist, along with tweaks to the suspension and electric power steering, are said to provide a more dynamic driving experience.
AWD models features a Dynamic Torque Control system, with Auto, Lock and Sport settings, that automatically shifts from front-wheel drive to all-wheel-drive when accelerating or when sensors detect wheel slippage.
In Sport Mode, the AWD system also can apportion power based on input from the steering angle and yaw rate sensors of the Vehicle Stability Control system. When turning into and through a corner, power is sent to the rear wheels to maximize traction available at each of the four corners of the vehicle.
An available Blind Spot Monitor incorporates Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), which uses the Blind Spot Monitor radar sensors at the lower rear bodywork of the vehicle. The RCTA works at speeds between 0 and 15 mph and activates when the vehicle is in Reverse.
When backing up, it senses vehicles approaching from either direction and provides an audible warning combined with a flashing indicator in the appropriate outside mirror.
All 2013 RAV4s have eight standard airbags and what Toyota calls its Star Safety System, which includes Traction Control, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control, Brake Assist, an Anti-lock Braking System, and Smart Stop Technology.