Toyota has unveiled its new RAV4 EV, with the all-electric SUV making its debut at the 26th Electric Vehicle Symposium in Los Angeles. Built in collaboration with Tesla Motors, the vehicle has come about from announcement to completion in just 22 months.
The front-wheel drive vehicle features a Tesla designed and produced battery and electric powertrain, good for 154 hp at 2,800 rpm. Other numbers include a driving range of approximately 160 km and a charging time of approximately six hours on a 240V/40A charger.
The SUV has two distinctly different drive modes, Sport and Normal. In Sport mode, the vehicle reaches 0-100 km/h in just 7.0 seconds, with maximum speed being 160 km/h. Normal mode achieves 0-100 km/h in 8.6 seconds, and maximum speed of 137 km/h.
Exterior variations to distinguish the EV from the regular RAV4 include new exterior emblems on the front, rear and the front door panel, utilising the signature Toyota “environmental blue.”
There’s also LED low beam /halogen high beam projector headlights, with vertical LED daytime running lights that dim to parking lights. The rear combination lights are LEDs, accented by a unique light smoke outer lens.
Other changes include reworked exterior elements to help improve aerodynamics. Compared with the gas-powered version, the front bumper, upper and lower grill, side mirrors, rear spoiler, and under body design have all been redesigned to maximise air flow around the vehicle.
Meanwhile, interior elements include a unique “Neutron” fabric, woven with a subtle sheen and blue accent on the seat inserts and door trim, as well as an eight-inch capacitive touchscreen featuring navigation, telematics and EV drive information/settings designed specifically for the RAV4 EV.
And so you’re always aware of what mode you’re running, the dash display color illuminates red when the vehicle is operating in sport mode, and blue in normal driving mode.
In terms of space, total cargo capacity is equivalent to the conventional RAV4 – the company says that no interior space is lost inside the vehicle despite the EV components. The battery pack – which has an eight-year or 160,000 km warranty – is mounted low and to the centre of the vehicle, contributing to a more sedan-like ride.
The RAV4 EV is set to begin selling in the US in late summer this year, initially in four major California metropolitan markets including Sacramento, San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles/Orange County and San Diego. Toyota is planning to shift approximately 2,600 units over the next three years.