Toyota RAV4 Prime Is Quick Even In EV Mode

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Toyota's second-quickest model earns even more street cred.

The quickest model in Toyota's lineup is, obviously, the Supra. It can hit 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds with the six-cylinder engine or a respectable five seconds flat with the four-cylinder. But the second-quickest model in Toyota's lineup is actually a bit surprising.

With a 0-60 time of just 5.7 seconds, the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid is second only to the Supra. The RAV4 Prime combines a 176-horsepower 2.5-liter gas engine with electric motors for a combined 302 hp. Toyota does not specify exactly how much power the RAV4 Prime can produce when running on full EV mode but after a call with the carmaker, CarBuzz did learn an interesting fact about its acceleration figures.

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Speaking through a translator, Assistant Chief Engineer Miyaura Takeshi told us, "when the vehicle is in EV mode, the 0-60 is 9.2 seconds."

This may be pretty far off the pace of the acceleration time when using the gasoline engine and electric motors together but it is quicker than the Prius Prime (10.8 seconds) when it is using gasoline and electricity. In other words, the RAV4 Prime could win a drag race with the Prius Prime without even firing up its gasoline engine. Toyota has previously announced that the RAV4 Prime can travel up to 42 miles on EV range but during the call, we were given additional details on charging times.

"They range from 12 hours on 120-volts, 240-volts gives you a 4.5-hour time, and with the 6.6 kWh charger on the XSE Premium at 240-volts with 32 amps, you will be able to charge in 2.5 hours," said Young Kim, RAV4 Prime Product Planner.

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The RAV4 Prime is clearly the ultimate RAV4 variant but it is also the most expensive with a starting price of $38,100 for the SE trim or $41,425 for the XSE. This makes the Prime around $10,000 more expensive than the base RAV4 Hybrid but Toyota says it will be eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit in most states, putting the difference within just a few thousand dollars. But unlike Tesla, which often includes rebates and fuel savings into its online pricing, Toyota plans to be more upfront about the cost.

"For customers who purchase the RAV4 Prime, [the rebate] reduces the taxable income that they owe and the end of the year. It's a post-purchase incentive," explained Lindsay Lee, Toyota RAV4 Marketing. "We will have it on our website so customers can get more information about federal and local incentives and additionally, we will be including it as point-of-sale material but not necessarily our mass marketing."

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