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Gen 5 2019 Toyota RAV4 debuts at New York International Auto Show; 2.5L inline-4 and Toyota Hybrid System

Toyota introduced the fifth-generation RAV4 at the New York International Auto Show. Over the last five years, RAV4 sales volume has doubled; RAV4 currently ranks as the number-one-selling vehicle in the Toyota lineup, as well as the best-selling non-pickup-truck in the country.

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The new RAV4 offers two powertrains: the Dynamic Force 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder engine with VVT-iE mated to an 8-speed Direct-Shift Automatic Transmission, which motivates the five gas models; and the Dynamic Force 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder Toyota Hybrid System II (THS II) engine with Electronically-Controlled Continuously-Variable Transmission (ECVT), which activates the four hybrid models. (Earlier post.)

The engine utilizes high-speed combustion technology and a variable control system for greater thermal efficiency output, which reduces energy losses associated with exhaust and cooling systems and the movement of mechanical parts, among other factors. With a 40% thermal efficiency (41% for hybrids), the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine provides a highly responsive, yet fuel efficient driving experience. The Direct Shift-8AT transmission provides direct lock-up from gears two through eight to eliminate power loss from the torque converter, executing ideal smooth shifts.

The Toyota-first, Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Rear Driveline Disconnect enables drivers to steer the vehicle as intended, even atop the toughest of roads.

Standard on AWD-equipped Limited gas and Adventure grade models, Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Rear Driveline Disconnect can send 50% of engine torque to the rear wheels, plus distribute it to the left or right rear wheel for improved handling. When AWD isn’t required (on long stretches of highway, for example), RAV4 can achieve better fuel economy thanks to the Rear Driveline Disconnect system.

The disconnection features the world’s first ratchet-type dog clutches on both the front and rear wheel shafts. These clutches stop the driveshaft’s rotations, thus transmitting the driving force to the front wheels when AWD isn’t required, significantly reducing energy loss, improving fuel efficiency, and reducing rotational vibration making for a smoother ride.

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This all-new AWD system is one of three available on the all-new RAV4; it joins the AWD-i system available on hybrid grades and the (non-Dynamic Torque Vectoring) AWD system available on core gasoline grades.

When paired with the new All-Wheel Drive with Intelligence (AWD-i), RAV4 Hybrid increases the total torque to the rear wheels—which is electronically driven—by 30% compared to the current generation AWD-i system. By adopting a new control system that optimally distributes torque to the rear wheels based on the driving conditions, the new AWD-i system offers high off-road performance, handling, and ability.

Standard on all RAV4 Hybrid models, the Toyota Hybrid System II (THS II) works in sync with the 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine. When paired with its sport-tuned suspension having tauter shock absorbers and springs, the RAV4 XSE Hybrid is quickest—and best-handling—RAV4 in the lineup.

The implementation of the TNGA platform allows RAV4 to adopt the charisma of a bolder and tougher SUV, but in a package that is lower and wider. The longer wheelbase and wider front and rear tracks provide a stable, confident driving platform. For off-road prowess, the shorter front and rear overhangs will aid in RAV4’s ability to overcome rugged terrain.

The unibody chassis is 57% more rigid than the outgoing version. RAV4 incorporates an optimally tuned multi-link rear suspension, providing ideal damping for handling, minimum interior cabin noise, and the utmost ride comfort. Ground clearance has been increased by more than half an inch, yet RAV4 is able to achieve improved aerodynamics.

RAV4 Adventure. RAV4 Adventure is distinguishable among the other grades with its standard high-rise roof rails and large over-fenders. Inspired by Toyota’s off-road vehicle heritage, RAV4 Adventure grade has a more rugged exterior, thanks in part to its more aggressive grille, fog light surrounds, and unique wheel design. It answers the call designers had of Robust with its stout stance, standard Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Rear Driveline Disconnect, and a reliable and tough functionality that’s apt for any road.

Next Generation of Toyota Safety Sense (TSS). RAV4 comes standard with TSS 2.0, the second generation of Toyota Safety Sense (TSS). The updated safety package adds new active-safety technologies and capabilities that enhance protection.

  • Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD): Capability to detect a preceding vehicle or pedestrian in daytime or with better low-light recognition capabilities, or daytime bicyclist (new), and alert the driver (audible and visual warnings) and/or apply brakes to help mitigate or avoid the collision in certain cases (using Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Brake Assist (BA), and Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB)).

  • Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC): For highways/freeways only – an adaptive cruise control that functions at speeds between 0 to 110 mph and enables low-speed speed matching, stopping, and acceleration/deceleration relative to a preceding vehicle traveling at a slower speed. Speed, cut-in, and distance control enhanced, as well as Turn Signal Linked control added, for a more natural response.

  • Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA): Newly added to LDA w/SA is the capability, under some circumstances, to detect the road’s edge, in addition to the pre-existing capability to detect visible lane markers and the vehicle’s position in the lane. If unintentional lane deviation is detected, the system alerts the driver with audible and visual warnings. Steering Assist can provide small corrective steering inputs to help the driver prevent the vehicle from unintentionally leaving its lane.

  • Automatic High Beam (AHB): Capability to automatically activate and deactivate high beams based on driving environment and preceding vehicle’s lights.

  • (NEW) Lane Tracing Assist (LTA): For highways/freeways only and can be enabled when using DRCC – Capability to recognize white or yellow lane markings or the path of a preceding vehicle if lane markers are temporarily unavailable; to identify and actively track the center of the lane by providing steering assistance to the driver (hands-on, driver-assist system). Reduces driver burden and supports safe driving, especially in traffic congestion or long highway trips. The LTA system can be turned on/off.

  • (NEW) Road Sign Assist (RSA): Capability to identify certain Stop, Yield, Do Not Enter and Speed Limit signs and display a warning (visual and audible alerts). Alerts vary based on sign type and are displayed on the Multi-Information Display.

Eight airbags come standard on the 2019 RAV4, and so does Toyota’s Star Safety System, which includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), and Smart Stop Technology (SST). Available safety technologies include Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Bird’s Eye View Camera, Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS), and Rear Cross Traffic Braking (RCTB) system. RAV4 comes equipped with a standard backup camera and standard Electronic Parking Brake (EPB).

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