The Toyota RAV4 Prime combines hot SUV performance and 37 miles of electric range.
A plug-in hybrid version of the Toyota RAV4 called the Toyota RAV4 Prime will join the RAV4 range next year, Toyota UK has confirmed.
Launched at the LA Motor Show, the RAV4 Prime will have 302hp and a longer electric-only range than many PHEVs. It will rival cars like the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, Peugeot 3008 Hybrid4 and the upcoming Ford Kuga PHEV when it reaches our shores in the second half of 2020.
The plug-in Prime model will use the same 2.5-litre petrol engine as the standard RAV4 hybrid, but with a more powerful electric motor and a higher capacity battery. Toyota is targeting a battery-only range of 37 miles and official CO2 emissions of 30g/km, which would be class-leading. The company is yet to reveal quoted fuel economy figures.
Combining the electric motor and petrol engine results in a total output of 302bhp, which is in the region of the power offered by the performance-focused Volkswagen T-Roc R. As a result, acceleration is similarly impressive, with the RAV4 Prime reaching 62mph in 6.2 seconds. Aside from the Toyota Supra, no other car in Toyota’s current UK line-up is as fast off the line.
The RAV4 plug-in hybrid gets Toyota’s electric four-wheel-drive system, which places a motor on each axle to power both sets of wheels. Regenerative braking is fitted to scoop up the energy usually wasted in braking, and you can control the degree of energy recovery using two paddles behind the steering wheel. You won’t be able to drive using just the accelerator like you can in some fully electric cars, but the car’s electric range can be topped up while on the move.
To complement its powerful performance, the Toyota RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid comes with sportier styling elements, including 18-inch alloy wheels, black trim, a new grille mesh design and a subtly tweaked body kit.
We’re yet to see UK techs and specs, but at the Los Angeles Motor Show it was revealed that cars destined for the American market will get power-adjustable and heated front seats, some leather upholstery and an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Amazon Alexa compatibility.
US models also get lots of hi-tech safety equipment, including adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, a pre-collision system and high-beam assistance.