Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne

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Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-hybrid

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Wednesday morning, a good week ago, the alarm rings a little earlier than usual. For good reason, because it’s going to drive on the plan. Not only. Because this was actually only necessary to get from my home to Cologne. To Toyota, because these have been invited to get to know the Toyota RAV 4 plug-in hybrid. Trials also stood on the plan. But one by one. Because I want to take you with you and introduce you a little bit of the part time.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-toyota Electric car

In the beginning the comment that it was quasi a fast blind date with the plug-in hybrid. No meeting with depth or getting to know each other for a long time – the PHEV would have to stop by again for that. But it should still be enough for a first impression. If you have any questions after the article, just comment or send me an email. Will try to answer them if possible. to be answered by Toyota.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: clear focus on use as a company car

Passion has always been the drive for the really big things in life. This is also the case in the life of Peter Pichert, Toyota dealer from the very beginning, who opened the largest private Toyota museum outside of Japan in 1994 in Hartkirchen near Passau with over 100 milestones in model history. After the collector’s death in 2016, Toyota agreed with the Pichert family to take over the classics and has since presented all the highlights in the Toyota Collection at the company’s headquarters in Cologne. Which place could be better suited to present another highlight of your own company history? The Toyota RAV4 in its fifth generation and for the first time with a partially electric drive.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-rav4 Electric Car News.not

With a bit of drive-in cinema flair, you could take a seat in one of the ten PHEV SUVs to first listen to the press conference from your own vehicle and then explore the surrounding area of Cologne. At the beginning, Toyota first made it clear how to assess the development on the automotive market. The company is assuming the following distribution in the car market in 2026:

  • 18 percent vehicles with classic drive (combustion engine/diesel)

  • 60 percent vehicles with hybrid drives

  • 18 percent vehicles with plug-in hybrid drives

  • 4 percent vehicles with battery electric / hydrogen drive

One sees an advantage with plug-in hybrids, especially when the technical conditions and political regulations are in place, that PHEV are automatically set up to only drive purely electrically as soon as they enter the corresponding zero-emission zones. In order for corresponding part-time electric vehicles to actually prevail, politicians must support them with appropriate funding. Not just when purchasing.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-first Electric Car News.not

In the case of the RAV4 plug-in hybrid, Toyota benefits from the reduced company car tax for part-time electric vehicles, which is only set at a factor of 0.5. Indeed, this should be crucial for the success of the PHEV, since the car manufacturer plans to generate 60 to 70 percent of sales in the commercial sector. 2021 should be 3.000 PHEV (planning before Covid-19) are targeted, the first 300 pre-orders have been received since this was accepted in mid-July 2020. For classification, from the pure hybrid version one aims at a paragraph of 9.000 units. The official market launch itself will take place on April 19. September 2020.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-toyota Electric Car News.not

The RAV4 PHEV is available on the market in one trim level and two optional trim levels. If one assumes that the part-time electric vehicle will be used for 36 months and 10.000 km mileage per year is leased, according to Toyota, prices are 399 euros/month with the standard equipment, with the technology package it is 449 euros, with the style package 505 euros. The environmental bonus and innovation premium are already included.

Toyota RAV4 Plug-In Hybrid presents itself as the most powerful model ever with 225 kW/306 hp

Christian Sowa, Product Manager RAV4 PHEV, made it clear right at the beginning of the presentation of the PHEV SUV that this was the most powerful RAV4 of all time. But it is not only with its system output of 225 kW/ 306 hp that it is convincing. On paper, a locally emission-free range in city traffic of up to 98 kilometers (according to the WLTP test cycle in built-up areas) should be possible; according to the WLTP standard 75 km purely electrically. As was to be found out during the subsequent test drive.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-toyota Electric Car News.not

During the press conference, we were informed of consumption of 1.0 liters per 100 km according to the WLTP standard, as well as CO2 emissions of 22g/km. The CO2 emissions in the combined NEDC cycle are limited to 26 grams/kilometer, the corresponding average consumption to 1.2 liters/100 km – this is currently still shown in the vehicle’s technical data sheets.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-first Electric Car News.not

Sowa indicated that as a plug-in hybrid, the SUV benefits from the experience and phased approach that Toyota has accumulated in the development of two plug-in generations of the Prius. Nevertheless, the RAV4 has gained a little more as a part-time streamer. This relies on a more powerful motor, and the battery (18 kWh capacity) and the inverter are also larger. The system performance is indicated 225 kW / 306 hp, which is divided as follows:

  • 2.5 l VVT-i, petrol engine 136 kW (185 hp)

  • Electric motor in front 134 kW (182 hp)

  • Rear electric motor 40 kW (54 hp)

As a result, the RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid* outperforms the pure hybrid model by 38 percent and enables acceleration from zero to 100 km/h in 6.0 seconds – 2.1 seconds faster than the RAV4 Hybrid. This example also shows how much the drivability and agility of the drive train benefit: At 60 km/h, 50 percent more power is available. In pure electric mode, the RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid reaches 100 km/h from a standing start in 10 seconds. The purely electric top speed is 135 km/h.

Design and space do not suffer from partial electrification of the SUV

If we ignore the performance and range of the SUV, the issue of design and space plays an important role. It has been able to integrate the car manufacturer to integrate the plug-in hybrid system so sent to the vehicle that it remains practically without impact on the space offering in the interior, the space conditions in the luggage compartment or the volume of the omission of 55 liters large gasoline tanks. The consistently flat floor of the trunk alone has been raised by 35 millimeters. With a capacity of 520 liters, it is still one of the largest in the compact SUV segment.

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Let’s also briefly talk about the design of the part-time electric vehicle. There are only a few selected details that distinguish the PHEV from the hybrid RAV4, but definitely emphasize its sporty character. Toyota includes, for example, the bright metallic look of the lower spoiler lip and the trim strip above the license plate at the rear, dark chrome surrounds for the main headlights, the glossy black coating of the radiator grille and the black painted insert of the rear apron.

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Furthermore, the RAV4 plug-in hybrid rolls as standard on 18 inches large alloy wheels in the dark gray 5-spoke design to the customers. The style package includes black-painted 19-inch wheels with five twin spokes and wider tires as standard. Incidentally, these were also installed on my test vehicle and were quite convincing from a purely visual point of view. A 230-volt socket is also part of the standard equipment. As well as the latest multimedia system from Toyota. It enables the connection of smartphones via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A colored head-up display can also be purchased as an option.

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Electric Car News.not

Specifications of the Toyota RAV4 Plug-In Hybrid

Below I have listed the technical data (as of September 2020) of the Toyota plug-in hybrid for you to give you a first, quick overview. You have already found a lot of the data in the first sections.

drive RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid
System performance (KW / PS) 225/306
Emission Euro 6D
ENGINE 2.5 Hybrid Dynamic Force
Engine code A25A-FXS
Type Mature cylinder
fuel 95 octane or higher
Valve drive 16 valves, DOHC with
VVT-IE (inlet) and VVT-I (outlet)
Fuel system D-4S (combined suction pipe / direct injection)
Displacement (CM3) 2487
Bore x Hub (mm) 87.5 x 103.4
Compression ratio (: 1) 14.0: 1
Power (KW / PS at r / min) 136/185 at 6.000
Torque (Nm on rpm), internal combustion engine 227 out of 3.200 – 3.700
Hybrid battery Lithium-ion
number of cells 96
Nominal voltage (V) 355.2
Capacity (kWh) 18.1
On-board loader (kW) 6.6
Front / rear motor / generator 5nm / 4nm
Type Permanently excited synchronous motor
Max. Voltage (V) 650V
Max. Power (kW) Front / Heck 134/40
Max. Torque (NM) Front / Heck 270/121
System total performance 225 kW / 306 hp
transmission AWD-i
gear type planetary gear
translation front 3.412:1
Translation behind 10.781:1
Top speed (km/h) 180
Acceleration 0 – 100 km/h (s) 6
electr. Total range according to WLTP (km) 75
electr. Range according to WLTP in built-up areas (km) 98
Total 18″ & 19″ according to NEDC 1.2
According to WLTP total 18″ & 19″ 1
tank volume (l) 55
Total 18″ & 19″ according to NEDC 26
According to WLTP total 18″ & 19″ 22
landing gear RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid
front suspension MacPherson struts
Diameter stabilizer (mm) 25.4
rear suspension double wishbone
Diameter stabilizer (mm) 23.2
Steering – Gear Ratio (:1) 18″/19″ 14.3:1 / 14.4:1
Steering – Turns lock to lock 18″/19″ 2.76 / 2.65
Steering – Min. Turning circle wheel/body (m) 18″ 11.0 / 11.8
Steering – Min. Turning circle wheel/body (m) 19″ 11.4 / 12.2
Front brakes (mm) Ventilated discs (340)
Rear brakes (mm) Ventilated discs (317)
tires 225/60R18 – 235/55R19
length 4.600mm
broad 1.855mm
Height (with roof rails) 1.685-1.690mm
wheelbase 2.690mm
Front track width 18″/19″ 1.605 / 1.595mm
Rear track width 18″/19″ 1.625 / 1.615mm
overhang in front 925mm
rear overhang 985mm
Ground clearance 18″/19″ 180 / 190mm
Departure Angle (degrees) 17.5
Departure Angle (degrees) 20
CW value 0.32 to 0.33
Capacity (including underfloor storage compartment) 490 (520) liters
Rear seats folded down – up to the load compartment cover 1.168 liters
Rear seats folded – up to the roof 1.604 liters
curb weight min. 1. 910kg
curb weight max. 2. 000kg
maximum weight allowed 2. 510kg
trailer load braked 1. 500kg
trailer load unbraked 750kg

On the way around Cologne with the Toyota RAV4 PHEV

Let’s get away from the pure facts and towards the subjective impressions from a good two-hour drive, which entailed a distance of around 100 km. This was divided into two parts. Before the lunch break, exactly 75 kilometers were on the plan, we remember, this corresponds to the purely electric range according to WLTP. After midday, the remaining 25 kilometers were on the agenda before the part-time electric vehicle had to be parked again at the Toyota Classic Hall for charging.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-rav4 Electric Car News.not

As mentioned at the beginning, Toyota is convinced that PHEVs only make sense if they are charged accordingly and driven in pure electric mode. Especially downtown. It is therefore not surprising that the RAV4 plug-in hybrid always starts with an electric drive. This means the EV mode is activated automatically when the vehicle is started and retains priority even with higher power requests. Only when the purely electric range has been exhausted does the control automatically switch to the hybrid program.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-toyota Electric Car News.not

The driver can always change the driving mode with a corresponding button. By selecting the “Auto HV/EV mode”, the system automatically switches on the hybrid drive if, for example, additional motor power is required during heavy acceleration. The part-time electric vehicle then returns to purely electric mode. I was able to observe this flexible action of the PHEV during the test drive, especially on the country road and when accelerating on it. If the battery is running out, you can switch to the so-called charging mode. It should be mentioned here that there must be at least one kilometer of purely electric remaining range. Then the four-cylinder petrol engine uses the electric motors, which serve as a generator, to generate electricity to charge the battery – we are talking about a purely electric range of 50 km on 500 km driving in charging mode. Of course, proceeds to the loads of fuel consumption.

Electric car

Electric car

On the way we were in and around Cologne. At the beginning were a good 30 km on the highway on the plan. Here I went with my Phev on average about the 110 to 120 km / h. But have also accelerated in overtaking operations to 140 to 150 km / h, which happens to the RAV4 PHEV through its performance and sporting speech quickly quickly. Subsequently, the ride on the highway, surrounding villages and cities on the plan, before we arrived at our location for lunch. Of the approximately 75 km I could indeed electrically cover the 62 km. Definitely an announcement when considering the relatively high motorway content.

Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne-toyota Electric car

The 18 kWh battery of the partial circulator was not loaded in the one-hour lunch break. Therefore, “only” had to be driven with the combustion engine, which was clearly audible from then on. Previously, this was only switched on when there was a corresponding demand for power and was then lost in the noise jungle of other road users, especially on the motorway. The plug-in hybrid can be charged in the following ways:

Charging time 230 V socket, alternating current

7.5 hours

Schuko charging cable to a household socket with a 10 ampere fuse

  • Charging time Wallbox/ 6.6 kW charging station (230V), alternating current

    4.5 hours

    Via Type 2 charging cable, from 0 to 100 percent – single-phase

  • The charging options in Germany are limited primarily by the Unbalanced Load Ordinance. The RAV4 PHEV can, for example, be recharged to 100 percent at work with a corresponding wall box during working hours. It is therefore not surprising that Toyota recommends the combination of type 2 charging cable (mode 3) in conjunction with a wall box for the optimum charging speed.

    Electric Car News.not

    Electric Car News.not

    At the end of the test drive, I was able to say for myself that silent, locally emission-free gliding in everyday life with the SUV was definitely a pleasure. However, when “only” the combustion engine could be heard, it wasn’t that much fun anymore. Nevertheless, the part-time electric vehicle is definitely able to cover everyday distances purely electrically, which is definitely a good choice in connection with a well thought-out charging infrastructure. More details on the Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid will follow in a corresponding test and driving report if the car manufacturer makes a corresponding press vehicle available.

    Toyota invited people to get to know the Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid for the first time in Cologne and covered the travel expenses for this. However, this does not affect my honest opinion written here.

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    7 thoughts on “Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid: A first meeting in Cologne”

    1. Very nice car. But I doubt whether the stated conditions for business leasing are really attractive. 10.000 km is not much. I need e.g.b. at least. 20.000 km and that’s not much either, but it usually adds directly to the rate. I once had a Camry Hyprid offered. Conditions that are disproportionate to the purchase price and an additional high classification in the insurance. That’s going to be tough in the world of business leasing!?

    2. @Juergen
      People like you make sure that the traffic turnaround takes a long time.
      People like you, who can charge their BEV at home or at work, are not dependent on a public charging station.
      If you want average tenants to gradually get into electromobility, then you shouldn’t exclude the group of people who rely on public charging stations.

    3. Hardly anyone will ever have the time to charge an electric car with 220 volts outside. The PHEVs certainly don’t. They drive on with fuel. If these had a range of 150 km, in practice they would still reach the 1.5 l/100 km mixed consumption. But the RAV doesn’t. The pure E s can today with 400 volts at least. 11 KW load. And those with CCS direct current fast charging devices do not put any strain on the charging stations anyway, provided they drive away after charging. Not like some diesel drivers who park there.

    4. With the RAV4 PHEV it is at least the case that with an empty battery it is still relatively economical on the road compared to other vehicles of its size.


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