Toyota's next-generation RAV4 was unveiled at the LA Motor Show this week and the good news is that will make its South African debut in 2013.
The boldly redesigned RAV4 features a sophisticated, dynamic and strong exterior and a spacious, high-quality interior.
When it arrives in South Africa next year, expect the trend-setting mid-size SUV to offer improved dynamic performance*, greater refinement, smart packaging, outstanding convenience technologies and even better value for money. In a significant break with RAV4 heritage, the spare tyre will be placed under the cargo floor and the new tailgate is hinged at the roof.
Internationally, the newcomer bows in with three new fuel-efficient engines*. On the menu are two four-cylinder petrol engines as well as a brand new torquey, four-cylinder common-rail diesel.
All the engines for the next-generation RAV4 have impressive fuel economy and emissions performance. The new 2.2-litre turbo-diesel engine is a stand-out, with combined-cycle fuel economy dipping below 6.0 litres/100km and CO2 emissions below 150g/km when mated to a manual transmission. It has a strong, flat torque curve with more than 200Nm available from just above idle and a peak well in excess of 300Nm.
They incorporate Toyota's dual variable valve timing with intelligence (VVT-i) for high performance, good fuel economy, low emissions and smooth, quiet operation. All three engines are mated to six-speed manual transmissions as standard. The 2.2-litre diesel and 2.5-litre petrol engines can be specified with six-speed automatic transmissions while the 2.0-litre engine is available with Toyota's advanced MultiDrive Sport CVT with seven-speed sequential manual mode.
New RAV4 moves the goal posts further with driver-oriented improvements including an advanced all-wheel drive system, a better driving position, improved front and rear vision, and the safety of a more rigid body and seven airbags. An array of premium features on high-grade variants includes a power-operated tailgate, blind-spot monitor, rain-sensing wipers and electro-chromatic rear-view mirror.
*Please note that details of the South African engine and transmission line-up as well as spec levels will only be revealed closer to the launch date.