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2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime Video: Plug-In Hybrid Primed for Power, Practicality

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime

For anyone who mourns the passing of the V-6-powered Toyota RAV4 SUV in the early 2010s, its spiritual successor has arrived in the all-new Toyota RAV4 Prime, which we saw for the first time at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show. Now, “Prime” doesn’t stand, here, for free two-day shipping; actually, it stands for a 302-horsepower drivetrain courtesy of two electric motors. That’s approximately 48% more power than the RAV4’s standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder. And, once you charge up the battery that powers those motors, Toyota estimates the RAV4 Prime can get 39 miles of gas-free driving.

Related: 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime: Plug Into Performance With 302-HP Plug-In Hybrid

You may remember Prime as a plug-in variant of the Toyota Prius. And so it goes with the RAV4 Prime, which augments the RAV4 Hybrid with a little more torque from the 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine, as well as more powerful electric motors, one mounted to each axle to operate the standard all-wheel drive, which is similar to how the RAV4 Hybrid works.

The whole set up nets 302 hp, which is enough to hit 60 mph in a spiffy 5.8 seconds, Toyota says. That’s a full 2 seconds quicker than the RAV4 Hybrid. Those motors get their power from higher-capacity lithium-ion batteries, but Toyota did not specify exact capacity in terms of kilowatt hours.

The automaker estimates an all-electric range of 39 miles, which is mighty impressive if that actually comes out by EPA estimates, because the EPA rates the Prius Prime at just 25 miles of electric range. And the RAV4 Prime bests plug-in hybrid versions of SUVs like the Subaru Crosstrek and Mitsubishi Outlander by nearly double. The EPA, again, has yet to certify Toyota’s claim of 39 miles. But if the numbers match, or even come close to that, this is a big deal.

Find out more about the new RAV4 Prime by watching the video below.

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