2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV Consumer Reviews - 64 Car Reviews | Edmunds
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2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV - Consumer Reviews

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The Best All-Around Compact SUV on the Market
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jeb Buchman
on

Vehicle

2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)


Review

I've owned the RAV4 Hybrid Limited for about 6 months now (driven 15,000 miles) and, generally speaking, I am very impressed/satisfied with the car. If I drive the car "gently" in ECO Mode, I can average just over 40mpg (a combo of city and highway driving) and pass 500 miles on a single tank of gas (14.3 gallon tank). If I drive the car normally (i.e. without trying to maximize fuel efficiency and not in ECO Mode), I get around 35mpg. I rarely use the "Sport" mode, which alters the throttle mapping to make the car more responsive to pressing the accelerator. "EV" Mode allows you to drive at speeds under 25mpg with the gas engine off, only using the hybrid motor (provided there is ample charge left in the battery). In my experience, on a fully charged battery, you can go about a half mile in "EV" Mode on flat terrain before the battery drains and the internal combustion engine kicks in. The car gets better mileage in city driving than it does cruising on a highway.

The seats are comfortable over long trips, and the heated front seats work well. The driver's seat is power-adjustable, with two memory buttons. The auto-dimming rearview mirror also has garage door remote buttons built into it at the bottom of the mirror. The Navigation System and climate controls are intuitive/easy to learn, and are easy to reach from the driver's seat without having to take your eyes off the road. But, if direct sunlight hits the Navigation screen, you can't see the screen. My iPhone was very simple to setup via bluetooth. The multi-info display, which is in between the speedometer and energy gauge, is customizable to display things like mpg stats, distance you can drive before needing to refuel, real-time hybrid system graphics, a digital compass, audio system info, and other information.

For a Hybrid SUV, acceleration is outstanding, either from a stand-still or from a moving start. The car is plenty quick enough to pass an automobile on a two-lane highway with ease. The added power and torque from the electric motors makes the engine feel like a relatively strong 6 cylinder rather than a typical 4 cylinder...although when you jump on the gas pedal, you will feel/hear the high-revving RPMs typical of CVT transmissions in a hybrid. The hybrid system does an excellent job balancing the use of the electric motors to supplement the engine, and the regenerative braking system significantly helps recharge the battery when stopping or slowing down. The car almost always shuts off the engine when at a stop, unless the car is warming up or if the battery is drained. The air conditioner gets its power from the battery, not the engine, so the A/C can run while the engine is off at stop lights.

There is ample room in the backseat for two average-sized adults, and the hybrid battery "hump" in the rear cargo space doesn't rob you of much storage area at all. The JBL audio system is very good for a car in this price range...better than I expected. The headlights and fog lights work great...I am pleased with how well I can see the road at night. The car also has an "auto high-beam" feature which means you can leave the bright lights on, and the car will automatically dim them when it senses a car in front of you.

The Dynamic Cruise Control works well...you can choose from 3 settings to determine how far you want the car in front of you to be, and the cruise control will adjust speed to remain at that distance behind the other car. Windshield wipers work as expected, although I do wish there was an option for "rain-sensing" automatic wipers.

The only significant negative characteristic of the car is cornering capability: If you try to drive this car hard around corners, the suspension has trouble hugging the road; it feels like you have an elephant tied to the roof. The overall handling characteristics (including steering and braking) of the RAV4 Hybrid are comfortable, predictable, and safe, but not in any way "sporty"...there is a noticeable lack of "feel" between you and the road. If you don't try to push the car hard around corners, it handles just fine.

The All Wheel Drive system is basically a dedicated electric motor to power the rear wheels. When the car anticipates front wheel slippage, the rear motor kicks in and sends power to the rear wheels for added traction. The internal combustion engine is not connected to the rear wheels; the gas engine can only power the front wheels. In my experience, the AWD system does a good job adding traction when needed in slippery conditions, like on a snow covered road, or when accelerating from a stop on a slippery hill...but I wouldn't recommend using this AWD system for off-road driving.

In 15,000 miles of driving, I have yet to experience a single problem with the car.


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Hybrid New-Be
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Greg
on

Vehicle

2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)


Review

Surprised with acceleration in sport mode. Mileage usually 31 mpg range. Parking assists work well and know my next car will have them too. JBL premium sound system is a plus. So far I like the vehicle. Only complaint is when the back seats are folded down the floor does not lay flat due the the placement of the battery.


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My First Hybrid
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Wayne
on

Vehicle

2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)


Review

Easy to drive, easy to get in and out, quieter than previous RAV 4 models. It gets roughly 30.5 mpg driving in the metro San Diego, California area. I did a round trip from San Diego to Houston and got about 31.5 mpg overall. One thing that is not so good is the angle of the infotainment system screen. It's angled so that light from the front and side windows reflects onto the screen basically making it difficult to see the GPS or camera systems when the sun is out. A very poor design feature in an otherwise almost perfect SUV hybrid. I tried anti-glare glass screens and it doesn't help. Also, there should be an audible beep for the blind spot monitoring when you signal and there is a car in your blind spot. Most all other cars have this, but Toyota decided not to put that feature in for some odd, unknown reason. Fix these two issues and you have a near perfect hybrid SUV.


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Extremely Happy With MY New RAV4 Hybrid
1 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By John Vaglia
on

Vehicle

2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV XLE 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)


Review

Great Vehicle and love driving it.


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Holy cow! Love this car.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Sweet teas
on

Vehicle

2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SUV Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)


Review

Finally fuel economy on an SUV. Thank you,Toyota. Hitting the brakes for the first ride home from the dealership was a little freaky, the sound on the electric engine is rather cool and takes a little getting used to. Slight hesitation in the acceleration but no biggie, the ride is still very smooth. Still trying to figure out all the gadgets, Eco vs. sport, etc...be careful with cruise control...the cameras on the car will pick up the vehicle in front of you and decelerate for you. Smart vehicle needs a smart driver, lol!


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