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Toyota RAV4 Debuts at NY International Auto Show

Toyota RAV4 Debuts at NY International Auto Show

Toyota says that the new RAV4 is only "marginally" different in length compared with the old auto, but there has been 30mm added to the wheelbase and 10mm to the width of the vehicle, all in an effort to provide more space and comfort in the cabin for passengers.

With the debut of the 2019 Toyota RAV4, Toyota has thrown down the gauntlet to its competitors. It'll definitely be more appealing to a younger, family-focussed demographic.

The model's first top-to-bottom redesign in more than half a decade is coming for USA showrooms with updates the carmaker is betting will cement its lead in the surging small sport utility vehicle segment Toyota pioneered. For this all-new second-generation model, the "iM" suffix is gone, and henceforth, this five-door will be known simply as the Corolla Hatchback.

The originator of the sedan-based crossover is now in its fifth generation. This looks like a handsome SUV; one that has grown up from the days of being a shoebox, Geo Tracker-like cute-ute.

Off-road-oriented Adventure grades of the vehicle can get mocha-colored Softex and orange stitching. This is available only on black, blue, and a new of-the-land greenish hue called Lunar Rock. This top-of-the-line model is outfitted with 19-inch wheels and chrome accents to further distinguish its premium-ness.

And lo and behold, in a bit of a departure for Toyota, the Apple CarPlay app is standard equipment here.

Cabin-wise, standard gear includes an adjustable driver seat, a 7-inch info display and a digital display rear view mirror for extra field of vision. Sedans like Toyota's Camry, the top-selling vehicle in the market, are being snubbed by consumers opting for more spacious, higher-riding crossovers. There is Sirius XM satellite radio, satellite navigation, and an 8-inch display.

The RAV4 moves to the K variant of Toyota's New Global Architecture platform, allowing it to be lower and wider than its predecessor, and with shorter front and rear overhangs for improved off-road ability. There's the standard 2.5L four-cylinder that's mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission or if you want something a more fuel efficient you can get the RAV4 Hybrid with the same 2.5L four-cylinder that's mated to an electric motor and CVT. When Toyota says that its model is "new" they really mean it.

Driving dynamics are said to have improved as well, particularly with the XSE Hybrid, which Toyota claims is the best-handling of the RAV4 lineup. The regular petrol version can be bought with optional torque vectoring system that shifts power across rear axle. All gas AWD models also feature Toyota's Multi-Terrain Select system.

We'll have our chance to see if the 2019 Toyota RAV4 keeps its promises of all things to all people closer to its on-sale date toward the end of 2018, or early 2019 for Hybrid models.

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