The Toyota RAV4 was recently spotted testing in India, which makes us wonder if the Japanese carmaker could be launching the SUV in our market. There were several reports earlier last year which claimed that Toyota was actually considering introducing the RAV4 in India sometime in mid-2021. The RAV4 is one of Toyota's more popular models in the global market, and is currently in its fifth-generation. It's a hybrid and its underpinned by Toyota's TNGA-K platform, the same that underpins the current-gen Toyota Camry.
This very test mule that was spotted testing on our roads can be seen wearing a badge on its front fender which, although not clearly visible in this image. likely says 'hybrid'. The insides of the Toyota logo on the tailgate also get a flue finish - another indicator of it being a hybrid. The Toyota RAV4 is a very distinct looking SUV, particularly at its face with its multitude of layers. It has a crossover-ish stance but still looks SUV enough, thanks to the flared wheel arches and the upright bonnet.
This image also gives us a little peak inside the cabin of the RAV4, where the edge of the freestanding touchscreen visible on the dashboard. On the inside, the RAV4 has a very likeable and conventional dashboard layout. The design is conservative and safe, certainly not as polarizing as the exterior. A large floating touchscreen takes center stage on the dashboard followed by a stack of controls for the HVAC down below. The center console, steering wheel and instrument cluster all have a very conventional design as well.
Internationally, the Toyota RAV4 is available with a range of powertrain options that include a petrol-only, a hybrid and plug-in hybrid engine options. Just like the spotted test mule, we expect it will be the hybrid engine that will make it to India. The RAV4 Hybrid is powered by a 2.5-litre, four-cylinder, Atkinson cycle petrol engine that's paired with an electric motor. In two-wheel drive configurations, this powertrain produces 218hp, while in four-wheel drive configuration, it produces 222hp.
Incidentally, this is the same powertrain that currently does duty on the Toyota Camry Hybrid in India. If Toyota is considering to bring the RAV4 to India, it will come to our country via the CBU route under the 2,500 unit import quota which will remove the need for homologation. However, on account of being a full import, prices could be in the region of INR 60 lakh (ex-showroom). That's rather steep given the size and positioning of the vehicle.