2019 Toyota RAV4 100% adventure


2019 Toyota RAV4 100% adventure

By Rory Daley
Observer writer

Friday, January 17, 2020

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The current generation Toyota RAV4 has gone down a path quite different than class rivals. Rather than be all things to all buyers, Toyota has endowed its best-selling sport utility vehicle with the base elements that allows its trim levels to skew either to those wanting on-road comfort or off-road ruggedness. This can be best seen in the new RAV4 Adventure AWD.

Already plumbing deep into the company's off-roading heritage, the 2019 RAV4 made a shape change, giving it a front fascia that resembles its pickup sibling, the Tacoma. Gone are the futuristic lights and soft curves. The RAV4 is now masculine and angular. In Adventure trim, the machismo and brand history go through the roof. The two-tone floating roof design is reminiscent of the original Land Cruisers of old and the recently discontinued FJ Cruiser 4x4. Draped in the brilliant blue flame colour and sat on matte black 19-inch wheels, the overall appearance screams off-road me.

Keyless entry gives access to one of the finest Toyota interiors. Everything that isn't wrapped in orange stitched leather is covered in soft-touch material. The available space and quality of the inside is magnified by whatever light is flooding through the moonroof. From the powered, heated and ventilated, front bucket seats, all the major controls, like dual climate control, are easy to reach not that one would need to do much as most vehicle operations are automated and can be set and forgotten. Creature comforts, such as wireless charging, blend well with the RAV4's multitude of storage solutions. Rear passengers don't want for much either. A powered liftgate makes trunk access simple. Further cubic inches of hauling space can be add by dropping the split rear seats.

The 8-inch Entune 3.0 infotainment touchscreen runs the 11 speaker JBL audio system and connectivity. Large, clear shortcut buttons offer quick paths to important operations otherwise it can be operated via the steering mounted buttons, or via specific voice commands. A seven-inch screen in the instrument binnacle pulls double duty, feeding both driver and mirrored infotainment data as wanted.

If the rugged exterior and comfortable interior don't get you, then the driving experience will. The RAV4 doles out some impressive technology. Despite the larger wheels, things are very quiet inside insulating occupants from only the largest impacts, even then they're just heard and never felt as the suspension soaks up all surface imperfections. The 2.5-litre four-cylinder motor and CVT transmission work best with a smooth driving style, but in SPORT mode the transmission shows that it's not just programmed to save fuel and wakes up the higher reaches of the engine's powerband. With manual controls the RAV4 is an easy drive, never taxing its operator over short or long distances. Those more trusting can hand over driving duties to the vehicle itself, as the RAV4 Adventure comes with Toyota Safety Sense 2.0. The suite of six electronic tools has two that basically automate vehicle operation, Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control and Lane Tracing Assist. Team them with the Auto Hold parking brake and other than having to touch the steering wheel from time to time and pay enough attention to the lane markers, the RAV4 will accelerate, steer and stop in traffic.

The combination of tech, convenience, on-and off-road ability in the 2019 Toyota RAV4 Adventure AWD makes it just as suitable for the daily grind of a family hauler and just as great for those who want to take the occasional path less taken.


MODEL: 2019 Toyota RAV4 Adventure AWD

ENGINE: 2.5-litre, four cylinder — 203bhp/184lb-ft

DRIVETRAIN: six-speed automatic transmission/ all-wheel drive

SUMMARY: Impressive interior, styling, technology off-road and on-road ability.

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