The American buyer has spoken.
It's been 25 years since the Toyota RAV4 first went on sale in America. To celebrate, Toyota introduced a new value-focused SE Hybrid trim for the 2022 model year as part of the current model's mid-cycle facelift. Despite stiff competition in the crowded compact SUV segment, the RAV4 continues to outsell its rivals thanks to its affordable asking price, practicality, and off-roading capability.
In the first three quarters of 2021, Toyota has sold 313,447 RAV4s in the US, making it the fourth most popular car in America behind the Ford F-150, Ram 1500, and Chevrolet Silverado. For the 2021 model year, the Toyota RAV4 was also the bestselling vehicle for ethnic minority consumers.
As part of the Diversity Volume Leadership Awards, the RAV4 was awarded the "top overall ethnic vehicle" by IHS Markit and the National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers, as reported by Automotive News. The awards are based on IHS Markit data of more than 13 million new-vehicle registrations between October 2020 and September 2021. Combined, Toyota and Lexus won 10 segment awards.
The Toyota Camry was recognized as the most popular midsize sedan for ethnic minorities, while the Tacoma was the most popular midsize pickup. The Lexus NX was also awarded in the compact luxury utility vehicle class. Tesla earned four awards, while Stellantis and General Motors picked up three awards respectively. Ford, Honda, and Nissan also won an award each.
"Our country's population continues to become more multiracial and diverse," said Jeff Buchanan, vice president of sales operations for Toyota North America, while accepting the RAV4 award. "The multiracial population has increased 276% over just the past 10 years. Here at Toyota, we consistently focus on the needs of our diverse customers."
While some automakers are trying to appeal more to younger buyers with state-of-the-art tech and digital shopping experiences, Marc Bland, chief automotive diversity officer for IHS Markit, thinks automakers need to tailor campaigns for ethnic minorities, citing the popularity of pickups with African American buyers. "The initial goal of the DVL Awards was to create awareness within the US auto industry of the top vehicles purchased by ethnic consumers," said Bland. "We're honored to recognize these top models and their respective manufacturers in support of their efforts to reach increasingly diverse consumer groups."