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2020 Toyota RAV4 Out Now & Driving Impressions / 2.5L RM215K+ 2L RM196K+

The RAV4 is back in town and it’s all grown up. Definitely a lot larger and more chiseled than before. Also stronger now, with its new 207ps VVT-iE 2.5L engine and more decent 8 speed automatic option.

This bigger RAV4 is built on Toyota’s new global platform, the TNGA base which is known for good driving dynamics via a rigid chassis derived from a robust shell. It’s the same cutting edge platform that underpins the new Camry.

So models wise, 2 options:

  • 2.5 litre (A25A-FKS) / 207ps / 243nm / 8 speed auto / paddle shifters / RM215,665 +
  • 2.0 litre (M20A-FKS) 123ps / 207nm / 7 speed CVT / paddle shifters / RM196,436 +

First impressions on the new 2.5L RAV4

First things first, the cockpit. Visually, the mix of black faux leather textured surface with stitching on the 3 dimensional dashboard and doors help to improve the ambiance, adding a sense of industrial chic into an otherwise modest interior configuration of the RAV4.

Driver’s side seating position wise, has good all round electric adjustability, with decent range and functions, also memory. I was able to dial in that perfect height and tilt, but it’s not until the sun emerged from the gloomy afternoon test drive that I realised how cool my bottom felt, then noticed the RAV4 has adjustable seat blowers, a total must have for Malaysian motoring.

Overall NVH is good, like the average Alphard but more importantly no noticeable body shake, which is a big plus point for a car of this stature. Ride is in fact well tuned, comfortable mostly, has decent suspension travel and a nice firm, except for the occasional rocking motion on certain low speed roads. Drives great on bad roads as well, suspension feels well damped and able to block out any sense of harshness. All in all, as a car based SUV, it just drives better than the usual Fortuner or similar truck-based versions.

Power wise, the 200 ish hp 2.5L new TNGA Dynamic Force generation engine feels more than decent for the RAV4, actually has superb engine response, loves to rev, also noticeably smoother and torquier than the average 2.4L Toyota 4 cylinder engines before its time. It’s a brilliant engine to be honest, even manages to shine through the bulky SUV.

The 8 speed automatic transmission feels direct, quick, smooth and matches the engine well. Paddle shifters are a nice addition to the naturally dynamic gearbox. Downshifts via paddles however will induce a small jerk.

The RAV4 comes with autonomous driving features like Dynamic Cruise Control and Lane Tracing. DCC is pretty self explanatory, where it can track and follow the car in front. LTA however, claims to smoothen lane tracking effort with improved prediction and better detection of road edges.

As tested on the highway with clear road markings and at varying speeds, the ricocheting effect between left and right road markings seem to persist. But was mostly able to keep itself in lane as intended, still largely dependable as whole for basic autonomous driving, just closer to the edge.

ixeo

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ixeo

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Good car, and because it is a good car, UMW Toyota feel that they can price it ridiculously. Bravo.

I will buy a CRV or Forester over this any day and save the balance of money. Or don’t need the space buy a CX-5.

This car isn’t good enough to pay a premium for it, unless money doesn’t mean anything to you. Then buy the Toyota Harrier from UMW Toyota.
 
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Izso

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Izso

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The pricing is a little insane considering it's not got a hold of the mini SUV market
 
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Good car, and because it is a good car, UMW Toyota feel that they can price it ridiculously. Bravo.

I will buy a CRV or Forester over this any day and save the balance of money. Or don’t need the space buy a CX-5.

This car isn’t good enough to pay a premium for it, unless money doesn’t mean anything to you. Then buy the Toyota Harrier from UMW Toyota.
Or even a VW tiguan ;)
 
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Tom

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Tom

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Good car, and because it is a good car, UMW Toyota feel that they can price it ridiculously. Bravo.

I will buy a CRV or Forester over this any day and save the balance of money. Or don’t need the space buy a CX-5.

This car isn’t good enough to pay a premium for it, unless money doesn’t mean anything to you. Then buy the Toyota Harrier from UMW Toyota.
not an easy bento to swallow, but for the record, It actually drives better than it looks
 

vr2turbo

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vr2turbo

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Bound to have some who wants something different, and with extra moolah will still buy even though in the 200k region.....
 

leinnz

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leinnz

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everyone has their own taste. may just get a recond/2nd lexus for this.
 

ixeo

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ixeo

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Or even a VW tiguan ;)
I am not sure. Comparing a VW in Malaysia to a Toyota, haha. Assuming your girlfriend is a typical Chinese, her father will think you're an idiot for buying a VW, and give you thumbs up for a Toyota, even this ridiculously priced RAV4. Not convinced with VW MY after sales support, I'd rather roll my dice with something else (notice my alternate recommendations are all Japanese makes).

not an easy bento to swallow, but for the record, It actually drives better than it looks
No doubt, it has been getting raves from media all over the world. And Toyota make reliable cars, that's a fact. If I needed a dependable workhorse myself above all else, I WILL get a Toyota. With a dated proven powertrain.

Bound to have some who wants something different, and with extra moolah will still buy even though in the 200k region.....
Well, they should buy the Toyota Harrier. If they are buying it to be "special" or "different" or "uncommon" can try the FJ Cruiser. If that's too old can buy the Renault Koleos, that's a very uncommon car. Want to be a unicorn, a Citreon C3. But neither French marques has the resale value for the Toyota.

everyone has their own taste. may just get a recond/2nd lexus for this.
Yup, it's their money, if they feel happy spending ridiculous amounts of money for it, by all means. I'm not one to stop anyone, but relative to its peers in its segment it is priced at a premium. So you're really paying extra because of the Toyota badge.
 
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200k for a Toyota and for a non-premium model not known for it's feel/function/form.... they should have called it something else and say it was a replacement for the Rav-4 then maybe it's more justifiable.