2019 Toyota RAV4 Design 2.5 Petrol Hybrid 7 Day Test Drive Review Day 3 | First journey
After much excitement at Mountford HQ following the 'RAV4 Grand Reveal', it was time to take the New RAV4 Hybrid out on the road with the kids on a day out to town.
When we were all settled, the first thing that struck me was the size of the car. I am used to driving a large vehicle and the room inside is very generous. Not only that, but a very thoughtful cabin layout and plenty of storage makes it a very efficient and highly convenient space to spend time in.
The Toyota Safety Sense system proved a boon from the get-go, helping me to reverse out of my parking space with ease onto what can be a busy road, with plenty of pedestrians as well as vehicles and bicycles to be mindful of.
The 2.5 RAV4 hybrid certainly has some poke; I experienced very little lag when pulling out onto a larger A Road. It also felt safe and grounded – praise be to the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform.
RAV4 Hybrid Safety Sense
My youngest son, Valentine (6), said he preferred the RAV4 to our own car because of the interior layout and the fact that the ‘beeping’ (Toyota Safety Sense) didn’t overly-interrupt the music from the stereo.
Of course, it did, but not in a completely obtrusive and extremely loud way – many other vehicles I have travelled in have warning alarms that are just so alarming I think that they actually have the opposite effect of helping with road safety, making me jump out of my skin every time.
As well as ruining my overall driving experience.
RAV4 Hybrid storage and interior features
Going back to the topic of in-car storage and cubbies, there are plenty of handy areas for you to keep yourself organised. There is even a shelf (all shelves have rubber-studded tops to prevent items from sliding around during transit) above the passenger-side drawer and a smaller shelf located at the right of the steering wheel that is brilliant for resting your keys on.
The quality of trim is impressive, too. The ‘rubber’ theme continues with the door handles, control knobs and the CVT automatic transmission shift lever is leather capped.
RAV4 Hybrid visibility
Visibility is excellent; the fifth generation RAV4 is a vast improvement in this area to its predecessors.
Blind spots also kept to a minimum. I suspect that the new, larger windows and slimmer A-pillars have helped enormously with this, as has the placement of the door mirrors and an exceptional view of the rear via the parking camera that leaves out the headrests and pillars, giving you a crystal clear view of what’s behind you.
RAV4 Hybrid handling| Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA)
In my last long-term review for Farmer & Carlisle, I was impressed by how the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) affected the handling in the New Corolla Hybrid. I am even more impressed at the way in which it has totally transformed the RAV4 from a (sorry, Toyota) rather average car into a firm gripping, totally grounded and happy to take you anywhere SUV.
I feel that the use of TNGA is the real overhaul here – not the styling. The styling is obviously hugely transformational, but what is going on here is a whole lot more than good looks.
The 2019 RAV4 has a lower centre of gravity, making the most of overall weight distribution and its double wishbone rear suspension. It is genius: lower, yet with higher ground clearance. This is one SUV that doesn’t feel at all flighty; it sticks to the ground like glue.
2019 Toyota RAV4 Design 2.5 Petrol Hybrid 7 Day Test Drive Review Day 3 | First journey video review | Vlog
Check out my rather unflattering Vlog that accompanies this Day 3 (Day 2 Cont’d) review for some choice comedy moments that I probably should have left out – it does also better describes and demonstrates some of the points covered herein.
In my next feature, we will be venturing out onto the motorway, parking in a ‘dreaded-by-many’ multi-storey car park and having some Karaoke adventures.
Bring it on.
You can also, of course, find us on Google Business and watch out for our regular updates.
GREAT DEALS ON THE NEW TOYOTA RAV4 HYBRID SUV FROM FARMER AND CARLISLE LEICESTER & LOUGHBOROUGH
We also have a new RAV4 Hybrid available for test drive – find out more and enquire by clicking here or call us on 0116 285 2851 today!