2013 Toyota RAV4: A Driver’s Machine

By Durhl Caussey Created: February 24, 2013 Last Updated: February 24, 2013
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2013 Toyota RAV4 (Courtesy of Toyota)

2013 Toyota RAV4 (Courtesy of Toyota)

If you are looking for a sense of adventure, then the completely redesigned 2013 RAV4 is the vehicle for you. Toyota has sculpted a sleek exterior and filled the interior with soft, inviting materials.

The RAV4 is just the right size—not too big for driving around the city, but large enough to carry you fully loaded through the country. You will have plenty of room for your stuff and the latest technology to keep you connected.

The RAV4 comes in three trims: The LE model, XLE model, and the Limited model. Prices range from $23,300 to $27,010.

The LE model ($23,300) has more standard equipment (rear camera) than just about any other vehicle in its class. Seventeen-inch steel wheels with covers, ECO and sport modes, and air conditioning with cabin filters are some examples.

The XLE model starts at $24,900. Navigation will add an additional $2,500, but even with that factored in, the XLE is very competitive in price to more expensive, comparable vehicles.

Inside the XLE the French stitching accents add to the comfortable interior, along with 6-way adjustable driver’s seat with sport bolsters and power tilt/slide moonroof with sunshade.

The Limited is the premium model. It has all the features the other models have, as well as some exclusives such as larger 18-inch alloy wheels. The price is $27,010. AWD could add another $1,400 to the cost.

The RAV4 is just the right size—not too big for driving around the city, but large enough to carry you fully loaded through the country.

The standard 6.1-inch touch-screen and Multi-Information Display helps to create a welcoming interior. With the Smart Key fob you can lock and unlock the doors, raise the lift-gate with one touch and start the vehicle with the push of a button.

The Limited model is available with Display Audio with Navigation, Entune, 11 JBL Green Edge speakers in seven locations with a subwoofer, and Sirius XM radio with a 90-day complimentary trial. The leather-trimmed steering wheel incorporates audio, Bluetooth, and Multi-Information Display controls.

The Limited has a Programmable Power Rear Lift-gate with a height-adjustment feature. Just position the lift-gate to your ideal height, press and hold the button on the lift-gate, listen for the beeps, and you are done. Every time you open the lift-gate, it will rise to your custom height. The lift-gate has jam protection as well.

The RAV4 is flexible, with rear seat backs that easily fold flat for 73.4 cu. ft. of cargo space. The reclining second-row seat is easy to use. A simple handle is the ticket to first-class treatment for friends. They can recline the seat back and enjoy more than 37 inches of leg room.

Inside the RAV4 (Courtesy of Toyota)

Inside the RAV4 (Courtesy of Toyota)

RAV4 is every bit a driver’s machine. It is available with the all-new Dynamic Torque Control All-Wheel Drive System. It improves handling by distributing power from front to rear, and manages the vehicle’s braking system from side-to-side for maximum control on a variety of surfaces.

RAV4 has a standard 2.5L 4-cylinder DOHC engine that produces 176 hp along with 172 lb.-ft. of torque. The Dual Variable Valve Timing with intelligence technology makes the efficiency even more amazing.

It also has improved mileage capabilities, getting an estimated 24 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. Also helping mileage and performance is the 6-speed automatic, and the aerodynamics efficiency allows the sculpted sleek body to add even additional miles.

Every Toyota vehicle has limited warranty coverage. A 36-month/36,000 mile basic warranty covers all components other than normal wear and maintenance. Powertrain is covered for 60 month/ 60,000 miles. Rust-through is 60-month/unlimited.

For two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first, the new Toyota will be covered for all normal factory-scheduled service as well as 24-7 roadside assistance.

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or

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