Toyota Rav-4 Trail (2022): the Japanese is slumming

and bref

SUV hybrid
New finish
From €50,950

The current and fifth generation of Rav-4 is a world-class best-seller with a cruising speed of around 400,000 copies sold each year. Anxious not to upset a recipe that works very well, Toyota proceeds more to regular updates rather than a pure and hard restyling. Thus this year, the Rav-4 has seen its optics, its shield and its lighting evolve, but the main novelty concerns the introduction in the range of the Trail finish, hitherto reserved for the Japanese and North American markets.

The enlarged black grille is one of the elements specific to this Trail version.
The enlarged black grille is one of the elements specific to this Trail version.
As well as the raw plastic protections and the 19'' matte gray rims.
As well as the raw plastic protections and the 19” matte gray rims.

It is recognizable by its more “adventurous” design consisting of an enlarged black grille, specific protections (front and rear skids, wheel arches), 19″ matt gray rims and ground clearance raised by one centimeter. This equipment is added to an already generous list which includes the high-performance JBL audio system, the motorized tailgate and navigation as standard. The Rav-4 Trail is marketed from €50,950, or a few hundred euros below the high-end “Collection” finish.

The Toyota Rav-4 Trail is exclusively available with the 222 hp self-rechargeable hybrid engine in 4-wheel drive, priced at €50,950.
The Toyota Rav-4 Trail is exclusively available with the 222 hp self-rechargeable hybrid engine in 4-wheel drive, priced at €50,950.

In the passenger compartment, this finish stands out with LED interior lighting, quilted seats with orange stitching, a logo placed on the door sills and the arrival of USB C sockets. The design and on-board technology have taken a serious getting old compared to the competition and especially against the Korean tandem Hyundai Tucson/Kia Sportage. The multimedia screen is obsolete, the graphics are of poor quality but we must recognize that the whole works correctly. We advise you to wait until 2023, when the RAV-4 will be entitled to a significant technological update with the introduction of digital instrumentation and a 10.5 ” HD touch screen of the latest generation, which can be found in particular on board the latest productions of Lexus (member of the Toyota group).

The interior is enriched with quilted leather upholstery with orange stitching, LED ambient lighting and USB-C sockets in the rear.
The interior is enriched with quilted leather upholstery with orange stitching, LED ambient lighting and USB-C sockets in the rear.
In 2023, the Rav-4 will benefit from a major update which will bring a much more modern multimedia system.
In 2023, the Rav-4 will benefit from a major update which will bring a much more modern multimedia system.
The JBL Premium sound system, here as standard, is powerful.  It offers very pleasant deep bass.
The JBL Premium sound system, here as standard, is powerful. It offers very pleasant deep bass.

The perceived quality is generally satisfactory despite lower parts dressed in hard and low-end plastics. Shame. The Rav-4 always stands out as a good family vehicle, offering generous space in the rear seats and enough trunk volume to go on vacation with the family (580 litres). The opening of the motorized tailgate is wide and the loading surface is flat. Under the floor, you will find a compartment for a real spare wheel, occupied by a puncture repair kit and a tow hook.

The Rav-4 is built for the family, with plenty of room in the back.
The Rav-4 is built for the family, with plenty of room in the back.
And a well-sized trunk with 580 liters base.
And a well-sized trunk with 580 liters base.

This Trail variant is only offered with the non-rechargeable hybrid engine in 4-wheel drive version. The latter combines a 4-cylinder naturally aspirated 2.5 petrol engine and two electric motors placed on each axle. The set makes it possible to offer all-wheel drive and a cumulative power of 222 hp. This mechanic does not evolve. It retains its many qualities and concedes few faults.

The transition phases between thermal and electric are completely transparent for the driver who will drive most of the time in electric during urban and peri-urban journeys. Under these conditions, he will observe reduced fuel consumption close to the values ​​announced by the manufacturer. We recorded an average of 5.8 l/100 km during our test. An excellent score for a vehicle of this size. On main roads at stabilized speed, the latter will climb to 6.2 l / 100 km, which remains just as honorable.

All-wheel drive is provided by an electric motor on the rear axle.  This Trail version even has an electric limited-slip differential to improve traction in difficult conditions.
All-wheel drive is provided by an electric motor on the rear axle. This Trail version even has an electric limited-slip differential to improve traction in difficult conditions.
The continuously variable transmission (e-CVT) is reliable, inexpensive and docile in flowing driving.  On the other hand, during heavy acceleration a feeling of slippage is felt.
The continuously variable transmission (e-CVT) is reliable, inexpensive and docile in flowing driving. On the other hand, during heavy acceleration a feeling of slippage is felt.

This mechanism is silent and flexible to operate. The power reserve is sufficient to ensure in all situations but the 222 hp (cumulative) announced by the technical sheet are not perceptible at the wheel. During heavy acceleration, the continuously variable transmission (e-CVT) always generates a slip effect that can disconcert new users. The rest of the time this gearbox is docile, efficient and above all reliable.

It is possible to force 100% electric driving by pressing the “EV” button located near the gear lever. This does not exceed 3 kilometers. With CO2 emissions limited to 133 g/km, the Rav-4 Trail limits the amount of the ecological penalty to €170 in 2022.

A hybrid engine and a 4-wheel drive transmission

The additional electric motor placed on the rear axle brings a hint of additional power but above all allows an all-wheel drive which allows you to go skiing for example and at the same time justifies its adventurer look. The latter can switch up to 80% of the torque to the rear and 100% to the front and automatically adapts the torque ratio to the conditions encountered: wet ground, snow, mud, etc. “Trail” mode features an electric limited-slip differential, which brakes the freewheel and sends torque to the wheel on the ground to provide more traction in difficult conditions.

On the chassis side, the Rav-4 is considerate and easy to handle. Far from being a model of dynamism, the Japanese prefers a flowing conduct. Soft cushioning and careful soundproofing make it an excellent traveler.