First Drive: 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime Is Powerful and Luxurious
Plug-in hybrid SUV gives buyers a stepping-stone to taking the full electric leap
The 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid gives small-SUV buyers the ability to drive up to 42 miles on electric power. Unlike many hybrids, which are designed with fuel efficiency as the number one concern, performance is part of the RAV4 Prime’s game, too. Toyota claims it is the second-fastest model in its lineup, trailing only the Supra sports car in acceleration.
Consumer Reports members will find our detailed first drive impressions below, including what we like and what we don’t like so far.
The RAV4 Prime builds on the features of the regular RAV4 Hybrid, but brings more performance—with 302 horsepower on board, it’s the most powerful RAV4 ever. Toyota retuned the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, and endowed the Prime with a newly developed, high-capacity lithium-ion battery to power dual electric motors. All-wheel drive comes standard.
Prices for the RAV4 Prime start at $38,100 for the SE model and top off at $41,425 for the XSE.
What we rented: 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime XSE
Powertrain: 302-hp, 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid; continuously variable transmission; all-wheel drive
Destination fee: $1,120
Total cost: $42,545