2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV

#48
in Midsize SUVs
2018 MODEL

$27,135 - $34,030

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Overview

Crossovers are meant to be fuel guzzlers but such is not the case with the 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybird. It gets and exceptional fuel economy of 32 mpg combined which none of its conventionally powered competitors can match. Along with Toyota's reliability reputation, the RAV4 Hybrid is one of the most driven vehicle in the segment.

The hybrid's 4-cylinder 2.5L engine combined with the electric motor churns out 194hp and 152 lb-ft of torque. It comes standard with all wheel drive which is a rarity in the class and uses a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Available in 4 trim variants, the RAV4 sees some great upgrades while going up the trim tree. The car is equipped with advanced safety and driver's aid features. Prices for this crossover SUV starts at $27,235.

See detailed review »

Pros

Generous boot space

Exceptional fuel economy

Lots of advanced safety and driver assistance features available as standard

Comfortable seating

Cons

Cabin build-quality doesn't feel premium

Leather seats not available (even in higher trims)

Vehicle trembles when gas kicks in

What's New?

New base trim (LE) now available

Ground clearance of SE increased by 0.4 inches


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$27135

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

5

top speed

101 mph

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

152 cu. in.

horsepower

150 hp @ 5700 rpm

torque

152 lb.-ft. @ 4400 rpm

transmission

cvt

chassis

brake rotors (f/r)

11.2 in. ventilated front disc/10.8 in. solid disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

104.7 in.

length

183.5 in.

width

72.6 in.

height

67.1 in.

curb weight

3925 lbs.

ground clearance

7 in.

capacity

passenger volume

100.7 cu ft.

cargo volume

35.6 cu ft.

towing capacity

1000 lbs.

payload capacity

1035 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

8.3 sec.

standing ¼-mile

16.4 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

34/32/30 mpg

highway range

444 mi.

highway range (evs/hybrids)

444 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 years/36000 miles

drivetrain warranty

5 years/60000 miles

corrosion warranty

5 years/unlimited

roadside assistance

No



Styles

 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in Silver Sky Metallic color  2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in Magnetic Gray Metallic color  2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in Galactic Aqua Mica color  2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in Electric Storm Blue color  2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in blizzard pearl color  2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV in Black Sand Pearl color
Silver Sky Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

6.9

Engine

8.0

Fuel Economy

7.8

Interior

6.1

Exterior

8.0

Driving

7.4

7.4

OVERALL RATING

Variant Name

MSRP


 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV LE

LE

Fuel: Regular unleaded, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$27,135

Configurations
LE 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Seating: 5 HP: 150-hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 152 lbs.-ft. @ 4,400 rpm MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(34/32/30)

 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV LE Plus Fleet

LE Plus Fleet

Fuel: Regular unleaded, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$27,910

Configurations
LE Plus Fleet 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Seating: 5 HP: 194 hp @ 5700 rpm
MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(34/32/30)

 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV XLE

XLE

Fuel: Regular unleaded, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$29,030

Configurations
XLE 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Seating: 5 HP: 150-hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 152 lbs.-ft. @ 4,400 rpm MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(34/32/30)

 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV SE

SE

Fuel: Regular unleaded, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$32,185

Configurations
SE 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Seating: 5 HP: 150-hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 152 lbs.-ft. @ 4,400 rpm MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(34/32/30)

 2018 Toyota RAV4 hybrid SUV Limited

Limited

Fuel: Regular unleaded, Transmission: Manual, Seats: 5

$34,030

Configurations
Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Seating: 5 HP: 150-hp @ 5,700 rpm
Torque: 152 lbs.-ft. @ 4,400 rpm MPG(City/Combined/Highway): MPG(34/32/30)

Expert Review


carhp editor October 6, 2018

7.4

Overall Rating


6.9/10
Features

 

8.0/10
Engine

 

7.8/10
Fuel Economy

 

6.1/10
Interior

 

8.0/10
Exterior

 
 
 
 

The hybrid’s 4-cylinder 2.5L engine combined with the electric motor churns out 194hp and 152 lb-ft of torque. It comes standard with all wheel drive which is a rarity in the class and uses a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Available in 4 trim variants, the RAV4 sees some great upgrades while going up the trim tree. The car is equipped with advanced safety and driver’s aid features. Prices for this crossover SUV starts at $27,235.

Features

6.9/10

The RAV comes in 4 trim levels, LE, XLE, SE and Limited. All the trims use a 170 hp 2.5L I-4 engine combined with 3, electric motors (650V) that run on a 244.8V nickel-metal hybrid battery to generate a combined horsepower of 194 hp.

The car is available only in AWD with a 6-speed automatic transmission. Halogen headlamps, dual-zone automatic climate control, and roof rails are some of the standard features of the LE trim. Upgrading to higher trims would get you premium features like a sunroof, heated front seats, and a bigger, 7-inch display.

Trims LE XLE SE Limited
MSRP $27,235 $29,130 $32,285 $34,130
Features
  • 17-inch alloy wheels
  • Automatic headlights
  • Heated mirrors
  • Integrated blind-spot mirrors 
  • Rear privacy glass
  • Roof rails
  • Keyless ignition and entry
  • A rearview camera
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • A height-adjustable driver seat
  • A 60/40-split folding and reclining second-row seat.
  • Foglights
  • A sunroof
  • An upgraded rearview camera
  • A leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Entune Audio Plus with Connected Navigation package that includes satellite radio, HD radio, Siri Eyes Free and a Scout GPS smartphone-based navigation system
  • Heated front seats with eight-way power adjustment for the driver is optional
  • Sportier suspension tuning
  • 18-inch wheels
  • Special exterior styling
  • Blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert systems
  • Automatic LED headlights, LED running lights and taillights
  • A height-adjustable power liftgate
  • An eight-way power driver seat with lumbar adjustment
  • Heated front seats and SofTex vinyl upholstery
  • Limited reverts to the XLE’s styling and suspension tuning but includes the SE’s other upgrades
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Chrome exterior trim
  • Driver-seat memory functions
  • An auto-dimming mirror
  • Entune Premium Audio with Integrated Navigation and App Suite that includes a 7-inch higher-resolution touchscreen, a variety of smartphone apps and an integrated hard-drive-based Toyota navigation system
  • A hands-free liftgate is a stand-alone option.

We Recommend

We recommend going for the XLE trim which is priced at $29,130. By spending just about a couple of thousands more, you’ll get a sunroof, HD radio, and navigation. Heated front seats and eight-way power adjustable driver seat can be availed as a part of an optional package.

Engine

8.0/10

“The 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid only has one powertrain option. It has ample power for daily driving, and it gets the outstanding fuel economy you want from a hybrid vehicle. The ride is generally smooth and handling is poised, but several competitors are more nimble”-Cars.usnews.com

Engine and Transmission

All the trims use the same setup. The vehicle is powered by a 150hp 2.5L I-4 engine and three motors that use a 244.8V battery. The motor powering the front wheels is of 105kW, whereas a 50kW motor powers the rear wheels. Together, this setup generates 194hp and 152lb-ft of torque.

The SUV has a fast power delivery. The engine and motors work well to make this heavy SUV feel energetic. However, the car quivers when the gas kicks in. The rivals have better torque figures. Lexus NX 300 Hybrid has the best engine in the lot that generates 235hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.

Models Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
MSRP $24,235 $35,985 $24,595 $24,150
Engine 2.5L 4-Cylinder Atkinson Cycle 2.0L 16V DOHC 4-Cylinder 2.0L inline 4- cylinder, 16V, Turbocharged,TSI 2.4L Inline 4
Transmission CVT Automatic 6-Speed Automatic 8-Speed Automatic CVT Automatic
Power 194 hp 235 hp 184 hp 184 hp
Torque 152 lb-ft 258 lb-ft 221 lb-ft 180 lb-ft

Acceleration

The vehicle accelerates well. It takes 8.3 seconds to hit 60 mph on the speedometer and finishes a quarter mile drag in 17.0 seconds. However, with that being said, the rivals offer better acceleration. Owing to its mightier engine, the Lexus NX 300 Hybrid accelerates the best among its rivals. The Lexus reaches a quarter mile in 15.3 seconds and takes 7.2 seconds to from 0-60mph.

Models Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
0-60 MPH 8.3 sec 7.2 sec 8.5 sec 7.5 sec
Quarter mile 17.0 sec 15.3 sec 16.2 sec 15.8 sec
Engine 2.5L 2.0L 2.0L 2.4L
Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year) 5.5 7.1 7.4 6.3

Ride and Handling

The vehicle has a composed handling although it is not as agile as its rivals but the presence of an all-wheel-drive system gives the SUV a better grip on the road making the handling of the car stable which gives a smooth driving experience.

The car has less amount of body lean, giving it a composed feel while taking sharp turns and making it suitable for driving on imperfect roads. The steering is a bit stiff but maneuvering and parking the car feels easy and comfortable.

Braking

The brake pedals feel soft and the SUV brakes well, taking only 119ft o go from 60-0MPH, which is better than its rivals. The Volkswagen Tiguan S has the poorest braking in the lot as it takes 134ft to bring the car to a halt from 60 MPH.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
Brake(in) 11.6 11.7 13.4 11.1
Brake (in) 11.1 11.2 11.8 10.2
Curb weight(lbs) 3925 3940 3777 3307
60-0 MPH (ft.) 119 127 134 129

Fuel Economy

7.8/10

The car has an exceptional fuel economy. It outshines all of its rivals with an EPA rating of 34 MPG for the city, 30 MPG for highway and a combined mileage of 32 MPG. The Volkswagen Tiguan S has the lowest fuel economy and it is rated at 22 MPG in city, 27 MPG on the highway and has a combined rating of 24 MPG.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
MPG (city) 34 22 22 26
MPG (highway) 30 28 27 32
MPG (combined) 32 25 24 28

Interior

6.1/10

“The 2018 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid has a fairly attractive interior from a style standpoint, but the materials quality leaves room for improvement. There are hard plastics scattered throughout, giving the SUV a low-rent feel. Both rows of seats are roomy and supportive, and cargo space is better than in most rivals. There are lots of standard driver assistance features and an easy-to-use infotainment system” – Cars.usnews.com

Seating and Comfort

The RAV4 has a roomy and comfortable interior. However, the build quality of the cabin feels cheap due to the use of a lot of hard plastic. Rivals provide a more premium feeling interior. The buttons and knobs are fairly easy to access.

RAV4 seats five and has ample leg and headroom in both the rows. The base trim has fabric seats while the higher trim gets faux-leather upholstery. The seats have a superior contour support and multiple adjustments for extra comfort. Getting in and out of the car is easy due to the tall doors. The big windows of the car make sure you never miss a great view.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
Passenger capacity 5 5 7 5
Passenger Volume (ft cube) 100.7 71.6 123.9 105.9
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 39.8/57.3/42.6 38.2/57.3/42.8 39.6/57.0/40.2 40.1/57.9/41.3
Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 38.9/55.4/37.2 38.1/55.3/36.1 39.1/55.9/36.5 39.2/55.6/40.6
Third (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) N/A N/A 33.8/47.8/27.9 N/A

Infotainment System

The RAV4 is equipped with a pretty convenient and easy-to-use infotainment system. The interface of the system although feels a bit outdated. The base trim features a 6.1-inches display, whereas the higher trims are equipped with a larger, 7-inches screen. In addition to the touch display, the system also provides physical controls making it more convenient.

The infotainment system could have been better as it doesn’t have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The rivals offer a superior infotainment system but with that being said, the car comes loaded with advanced features like auxiliary audio input, voice recognition, and backup camera display.

Infotainment Features

  • Bluetooth
  • Navigation
  • USB port
  • HD radio
  • Siri Eyes Free
  • Satellite radio

Cargo Capacity

The car has a huge amount of cargo space. When the rear seats are not folded, the trunk has a volume of 35.6 cubic feet and with folded rear seats, you get a huge cargo space of 70.6 cubic feet The Honda CR V-LX provides a larger boot volume of 39.0 cubic feet behind the second row and 76.0 cubic feet with them folded.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
Behind 3ndRow(ft.cube) N/A N/A 12.0 N/A
Behind 2nd row (ft.cube) 35.6 17.7 33.0 39.0
Behind 1stRow(ft.cube) 70.6 53.7 65.7 76.0

Exterior

8.0/10

“A pinched front grille and narrow headlights give the RAV4 an avian look. From the side, its belt line swoops upward after the rear door to create a large rearmost roof rail that adds bulk but also cuts into visibility from the driver’s seat. It’s the RAV4’s rear that seems most disjointed. There’s almost a shelf created by its chunky taillights that jut outward above a bulging rear end”-The Car Connection 

Dimension and Weight

The SUV looks grand and opulent. The rear spoiler gives the car a sporty appeal. The roof rails come in handy to load bulky luggage. The large over fender flares and the rocker panel guards give the RAV4 a perfect adventure vehicle look. Heated mirrors, halogen projector beam headlights, and sunroof are some of the premium features that the car is equipped with.

The vehicle runs on 17-inch alloys which can be upgraded to 18-inches if you opt for the higher trims. The RAV4 weighs the second heaviest in the lot with a curb weight of 3925 lbs. It also has a decent ground clearance of 7.0 inches and a wheelbase of 104.7 inches. Honda CR V-LX has the best ground clearance (8.2 inches) among its competitors.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
curb weight(lbs) 3925 3940 3777 3307
Length(in) 183.5 182.6 185.1 180.6
Width(in) 72.6 73.6 72.4 73.0
Height(in) 67.1 64.8 66.3 66.1
Ground clearance(in) 7.0 6.9 7.9 8.2
Wheelbase(in) 104.7 104.7 109.8 104.7
Track width(in) F/R 61.8/61.8 62.2/62.2 62.2/61.8 63.0/63.7

Exterior Features

  • Sunroof
  • Halogen DRLs
  • Heated mirrors
  • Rear window defogger
  • Roof rails

Towing Capacity

The RAV4 can easily tow a mini camper with a towing capacity of1700lbs. However, many rivals offer a better towing capacity. For instance, Volkswagen Tiguan S, which has the best towing capacity in its class, can tow up to 2200lbs.

Model Toyota RAV4 LE Hybrid Lexus NX 300 Hybrid Volkswagen Tiguan S Honda CR V-LX
Capacity (lbs) 1700 2000 2200 1500
Drive Train AWD FWD FWD AWD
Power Train 2.5L 2.0L 2.0L 2.4L

Safety

The RAV4 is a durable SUV. The vehicle mostly scored well in crash test ratings. However, it scored a “poor” under the small overlap front driver side testing by the IIHS. The car has an overall rating of 5 stars in the NHTSA ratings.

The car has a 3-years/36,000 miles vehicle warranty and a powertrain warranty of 5-years/60,000 miles.

IIHS Rating

Crashworthiness
Small overlap front driver side Good
Small overlap front passenger side Poor
Moderate overlap front Good
Side Good
Roof strength Good
Head restraints & seats Good
Crash avoidance and mitigation
Frontal crash prevention Superior
Headlights Acceptable
LATCH Good

NHTSA Ratings

NHTSA Ratings
Overall Rating 5 Star
Overall Frontal Barrier Crash Rating 4 Star
Frontal Barrier Crash Rating Driver 4 Star
Frontal Barrier Crash Rating Passenger 4 Star
Overall Side Crash Rating 5 Star
Side Barrier Rating 5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Driver 5 Star
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat 5 Star
Side Pole Rating Driver Front Seat 5 Star
Combined Side Rating Front Seat 5 Star
Combined Side Rating Rear Seat 5 Star
Rollover Rating 4 Star

Safety Features

The car has an abundance of safety features. The car is equipped with Toyota Safety Sense which includes lane departure alert and pedestrian detection. Besides this, the RAV4 also has front and rear parking sonars, engine immobilizer, blind spot monitor and hill start assist control.

  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Anti-Slip Regulation (ASR), Electronic Differential Lock (EDL), and Engine Brake Assist (EBA)
  • Driver and front passenger front and side airbag supplemental restraint systems
  • Side Curtain Protection head airbags
  • LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) child seat anchor points
  • 3-point safety belts for all seating positions
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)

Competition

Toyota RAV4 Vs Lexus NX 300 Hybrid

The Lexus has a mightier, 235hp engine which accelerates better than the RAV4. The RAV4 leaves behind the Lexus in terms of braking, fuel economy and cargo space. Further, the RAV4 is $11,750 cheaper than the Lexus. All this makes RAV4 the better fit.

Toyota RAV4 Vs Volkswagen Tiguan S

The Volkswagen has a smaller engine (2.0L) but a better 8-speed automatic transmission option compared to the 6-speed automatic transmission of the RAV4. Tiguan also seats seven as compared to five in the Toyota and offers more cargo space. It although score poorly when it comes to fuel economy. Go for the Tiguan only if you want the extra seats.

Toyota RAV4 Vs Honda CR V-LX

The Honda has a superior acceleration and best-in-class boot volume but in terms of braking and fuel economy, it gets overshadowed by the RAV4. Further, the Honda has better handling. Go for the Honda if fuel economy is not an issue.

Final Verdict

The RAV4 is a large and comfortable car with a composed handling. The vehicle has enough power for daily use. Even though its infotainment system lacks features, it has an abundance of great safety features. It has an exceptional fuel economy and a large boot space. Further, the brand, Toyota is a reliable vehicle manufacturer. Buy this compact SUV if you want a comfortable and stable driving vehicle.

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