toyota rav4 2013

In the late 1990s, the
essentially created the Бcute-uteБ craze, dominating the new segment for years. Not anymore. Recent monthly sales reports show the top two spots usually occupied by the and the. is hoping its fourth-generation, which is slightly smaller than its predecessor but bears sharper styling and features a host of upgrades, will help fix the situation. Part of the original RAV4Бs charm was its diminutive footprint. The small was easy to maneuver and fairly fun to drive, yet still provided the high seating position and versatile interior Americans love so much about SUVs. Though it doesnБt go all the way back, the 2013 RAV4 does take a step toward its roots. While it retains its predecessorБs 104. 7-inch wheelbase, the 2013 RAV4 is 2 inches shorter overall than the outgoing model (179. 9 inches) and about an inch lower (65. 4 inches). One thing that grew, albeit slightly, is the width, which now sits at 72. 6 inches versus the 2012 modelБs 71. 5. The maximum passenger capacity drops from seven to five via the elimination of the third row. Under the hood, Toyota is no longer offering the 268-hp, 3. 5-liter V-6 that made the third-gen RAV4 so entertaining. Instead, the base 2. 5-liter four-cylinder essentially carries over, producing 176 hp and 172 lb-ft of torque (3 fewer horses than the outgoing model). Thankfully, Toyota finally ditched the dated four-speed automatic in favor of a new six-speed gearbox equipped with Eco and Sport modes. The automaker says the front-drive 2013 RAV4 is expected to receive a 24/31 mpg city/highway rating from the EPA, improving on the 22/28 mpg rating for the outgoing model. All-wheel-drive RAV4s should achieve 22/29 mpg, a 1 and 2 mpg improvement, respectively, over the third-gen. No word if Toyota will mimic the Escape by offering additional powertrain options or will stick to a single engine choice like the CR-V. Toyota says the new RAV4 will provide a Бmore dynamicБ driving experience, thanks to a retuned suspension and electric power steering.

Then thereБs the Sport Mode, which wakes up the car with sharper throttle response and revised steering tuning. In the БSБ mode, drivers can hear engine revs rise with a Бblip,Б not a feature weБd expect on a crossover. All-wheel-drive RAV4s in Sport Mode and in Lock Mode below about 25 mph can send up to 50 percent of the engineБs power to the rear wheels. Available in LE, XLE, and Limited trim levels, the starts in LE form with 17-inch steel wheels, a six-way manually adjustable driverБs seat, power side mirrors, power windows, eight airbags, Bluetooth, rearview camera, and 60/40 split/folding second-row seats. Upgrade to the 2013 XLE and youБll be riding on 17-inch alloy wheels and sitting in bucket seats with side bolstering. Given the success of the CamryБs SE trim, we wonder how much time will pass before the automaker to offers a RAV4 SE. At the top of the 2013 RAV4 lineup is the Limited model, which comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, programmable power liftgate, SofTex fabric with French stitching on the seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and an eight-way power-adjustable driverБs seat. The front seats of the RAV4 Limited are heated, and the driverБs seat has memory settings and power lumbar. WeБve already seen the SofTex material in other Toyota vehicles including the Prius and Tacoma. On the new RAV4, it covers the center armrest as well as parts of the door and dash panels. Along with a more modern center stack that features a standard 6. 1-inch touch screen, the SofTex gives the new crossover a slightly more upscale appeal, something definitely lacking on the outgoing model.

With the weight savings Toyota engineers found by using high-strength steel, the automaker added an acoustic windshield and additional sound-deadening materials. Check every option box and youБll have added a 576-watt, 11-speaker sound system with a navigation system, a blind-spot monitoring system, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert that operates when the vehicle is reversing at speeds below 15 mph. Current Toyota RAV4 owners may be pleased to know that the crossover no longer uses a side-hinged liftgate door. Open the conventional, roof-hinged tailgate and youБll find 38. 4 cubic feet of cargo space that expands to 73. 4 cubic feet with the second row folded down. With the rear seats in their upright position, thatБs 1. 2 cubic feet larger than the outgoing RAV4 and the current CR-V, and 4. 1 cubic feet more than the Escape. Towing capacity on the Toyota and is 1500 pounds, while the can tow up to 3500 pounds with the 2. 0-liter EcoBoost engine. Competitors like the Escape and CR-V may pose a threat to the RAV4Бs sales, but with updates to the crossoverБs interior, design, and transmission, Toyota may be ready to reclaim the sales crown in a segment it defined and has occupied for nearly 20 years. In just half a decade, crossover SUVs have become the go-to choice among car buyers. It's no accident; the full-size SUV craze of the late '90s and early 2000s addicted most American drivers to cavernous cargo spaces, elevated driving positions and eye-watering gasoline bills. The Toyota RAV4 was among the first models to downsize that addiction into a manageable package. With the redesigned 2013 Toyota RAV4, the fourth generation of the popular crossover, the automaker has given and also taken away.

Notably, the RAV4 no longer offers an optional V6. Although the burly six-cylinder could catapult the mild grocery getter to 60 mph in quick fashion, Toyota reports that the vast majority of buyers didn't want to pay the premium for it and stuck with the base four-cylinder engine. For 2013, the RAV4 comes with a four-cylinder only. Toyota's compact crossover also dispenses with a third-row seat, another option that the automaker says few shoppers deemed important. The 2013 Toyota RAV4 does, however, get a six-speed transmission to replace the old four-speed automatic. It improves fuel economy and makes the crossover more responsive during merging and passing maneuvers. Further, the RAV's styling is more sculpted and aggressive this year. Its physical dimensions have barely changed, though, as the old RAV4 already had plenty of interior room. One major upgrade is the debut of a roof-hinged liftgate, which replaces the old side-hinged gate that swung out to the right and hindered curbside loading. Even better, the spare tire is now housed under the cargo floor, rather than on the tailgate, so the latter isn't as heavy as in years past. Compact crossover SUVs are quickly replacing midsize sedans as the family car of choice, so this redesign of the 2013 Toyota RAV4 could not have come soon enough. The small crossover class is full of interesting choices, including the Honda CR-V, and Mazda CX-5. Compared to these models, the RAV4 strikes us as middle-of-the road: It has no major faults but also doesn't stand out for its style, performance or interior accommodations. But with its ample cargo capacity, improved fuel economy and agreeable ride quality, the new RAV4 is definitely one to try.

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