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Review of the 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime: Impressive Design and Powerful Engine

Image Source: Boykov / Shutterstock

The 2022 Toyota RAV4 lives up to its reputation as a dependable and versatile vehicle, but the Prime model stands out by offering environmentally friendly features. When it comes to compact crossover SUV styling and features, the RAV4 hits the mark, although the interior space falls slightly short in some aspects. The Prime plug-in version shines, putting it in competition with models like the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, and Subaru Forester.

Toyota has made updates to both the exterior and interior of the RAV4. Notably, they now offer an SE Hybrid model with cloth upholstery, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, and a 6-speaker audio system. This model can be upgraded with features such as heated front seats, a sunroof, a power tailgate, and a larger 9.0-inch touchscreen. Enhanced headlights on select models improve safety ratings as well.

The RAV4 features rugged details and bold angles that contribute to its adventurous aesthetic. Drawing inspiration from the 4Runner and Tacoma, this stylish vehicle boasts a distinctive profile with a squat stance and angular design elements that come together harmoniously. The Prime model has its own unique grille and gloss-black bumper for added visual appeal.

The Prime version stands out with its substantial 18.1-kWh battery pack and electric motors that deliver an impressive 302 horsepower, making it one of Toyota’s fastest vehicles. With a 0-60 mph time of 5.7 seconds and a sportier suspension, the RAV4 Prime offers a thrilling driving experience. It can also operate in an EV-only mode for up to 42 miles of electric driving range, providing an eco-friendly option. The vehicle’s battery does add weight, impacting handling slightly, but overall, it offers a quiet and enjoyable ride. Users can expect an electric range of around 50 miles.

For optimal efficiency, the RAV4 Prime is a top choice. It offers up to 42 miles of electric-only driving and achieves an impressive 94 MPGe for overall efficiency, or 38 mpg combined with standard all-wheel drive.

In terms of safety, the IIHS awarded the RAV4 a Top Safety Pick for specific models with advanced headlights. Toyota has updated the headlights on certain models to improve safety ratings, with more data expected in the future. The NHTSA gives the RAV4 a five-star overall rating, although it received a four-star score for front-impact protection. Various safety features, including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, active lane control, and blind-spot monitors, enhance driver safety.

Inside the cabin, the RAV4 offers a well-thought-out design with a mix of materials. While some hard plastics can be found, the overall look is clean and modern. Higher trim levels feature synthetic leather upholstery, contrasting stitching, and advanced technology like a 9.0-inch touchscreen, maintaining a sophisticated yet functional interior design.

The cargo space in the RAV4 is practical, with numerous storage compartments for small items. The rear seats can be folded down to expand the cargo area from 31 to 63 cubic feet, although the Prime models have slightly less space due to larger battery packs. The optional sunroof may limit headroom, especially for taller individuals, but the driving position is comfortable for a range of body types.

Overall, the Toyota RAV4 offers good value, with the Prime model standing out for its performance and efficiency. While the Prime version may come with a higher price tag and limited availability, it offers a range of premium features and enhancements that elevate the driving experience.

The 2022 Toyota RAV4 strikes a balance between practicality and style, with the Prime model setting a new standard in the compact crossover segment. Whether in Hybrid or Prime form, the RAV4 delivers on Toyota’s reputation for quality, reliability, and fuel efficiency. The 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime stands out as a top choice in the competitive crossover market.

Image Source: Boykov / Shutterstock

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