New 2019 Toyota RAV4 Toughens Up With Rugged Looks

We kind of knew this was coming based on the more rugged-looking RAV4 Adventure upgrade Toyota rolled out last year. The theme seems to have been a precursor for the redesigned, more rugged in general looking all-new RAV4. (And yes, the Adventure trim will return for 2019.)

All-New 2019 Toyota RAV4

Toyota unveiled the fifth-generation of its currently best-selling vehicle in New York this week. It’s more chiseled and angled than the current one.  The whole new look, which is available with 19-inch wheels, is definitely more aggressive designed to present a stronger road presence. The sportiest model in the lineup will be an all-new Sporty XSE Hybrid that comes with a two-toned exterior.

Two Powertrains

There are two powertrain options. Gas-only models come with a 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder with VVT-iE mated to an 8-speed Direct-Shift Automatic Transmission. The other option is a 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder Toyota Hybrid System II (THS II) engine with Electronically-Controlled Continuously-Variable Transmission (ECVT).

The 2019 model rides on Toyota’s TNGA K Platform with Multi-Link Rear Suspension. The brand says its engineers worked for about four years to fine-tune every aspect of the new RAV4’s performance, handling stability and ride comfort.

All-Wheel Drive

Handling tough roads is a key theme here, as you may have already guessed from all the Adventure talk. To that end, the new RAV4 will offer Toyota-first, Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive with Rear Driveline Disconnect. (It will be standard on AWD-equipped Limited gas and Adventure grade models.) The system sends 50 percent of engine torque to the rear wheels, plus distributes it to the left or right rear wheel for improved handling.

Two other AWD systems are offered as well: the AWD-i system available on hybrid grades and the (non-Dynamic Torque Vectoring) AWD system available on core gas grades.

Multi-Terrain Select also comes standard on all AWD-equipped gas RAV4 models. It gives drivers the ability to maximize traction when driving through snow, mud, sand, or rocks.

Technology and Safety

In the cabin, you find a standard Entune 3.0 audio system with a 7-inch touchscreen. Upgrade to Entune 3.0 Audio Plus and you get an eight-inch touchscreen and Sirius XM Radio.  There are up to five USB ports available and an optional Qi wireless charging tray in the front.

Big audio news as well.  An available 800-watt JBL premium audio system will net you 11 speakers across 8 channels.

RAV4 comes standard with TSS 2.0, the second generation of Toyota Safety Sense (TSS).

The new RAV4 will begin arriving at dealerships at the end of 2018, with hybrid models to follow in early 2019.

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