In Europe the Toyota RAV4 has always set benchmarks in the compact sports utility vehicle segment, delivering sophisticated levels of driving performance, quality, passenger comfort and equipment. The car's Integrated Active Drive System delivers enhanced driving control, safer road holding and stability. D-4D diesel and VVT-i petrol engines offer responsiveness and performance. Now, with the introduction of high power, low emissions Toyota Optimal Drive technology, Toyota RAV4 is destined to continue its very successful history.
The current Toyota RAV4 is the third generation of a model that is recognised as one of the best sellers in Europe and a worldwide success for Toyota. At launch, in 1994, the RAV4 established the popularity of compact sports utility vehicles and Toyota has now sold nearly one million units of this model in Europe alone.
With the 2009 Toyota RAV4, Toyota continues to challenge expectations and conventions. Stylish design innovations include new front and rear bumpers, chrome-plated front grille, exclusive alloy wheels, new interior fabric and enhanced interior finish. The unique Toyota RAV4 body shape, fused with advanced technology, enhanced performance and new levels of comfort, continues to redefine the SUV driving experience.
Toyota Optimal Drive: Maximise power, Minimise CO2 emissions & fuel consumption
Increasingly, sports utility vehicles are facing pressure to improve their environmental performance. Leading the way forward, the 2009 Toyota RAV4 will benefit from Toyota Optimal Drive, a range of technologies introduced at the 2008 Paris Motor Show to strengthen Toyota's lead in sustainable mobility.
2009 Toyota RAV4 EU Version
Having established leadership with Hybrid Synergy Drive®, Toyota introduced Toyota Optimal Drive for its petrol and diesel powertrains. The concept is simple - maximise performance, while minimising CO2 emissions and fuel consumption. Toyota Optimal Drive is designed to:
For Toyota Optimal Drive, engineers have chosen to innovate and develop new technologies, rather than just downsize or detune existing technology. Built on the company's legendary "Kaizen" tradition of constant optimisation, Toyota has improved combustion efficiency, lowered powertrain weight and reduced friction in order to create new engines that produce more power, yet, at the same time, are more efficient and economical.
Leading-edge petrol, diesel and transmission technology
Toyota's new Toyota Optimal Drive concept will be available on most new models launched from the 2008 Paris Motor Show onwards. For 2009 RAV4 this means breakthrough petrol and diesel engine technologies as well as fuel-saving transmissions:
Lower CO2 emissions and fuel consumption from powerful new 2.0-litre Valvematic petrol engine
The 2009 Toyota RAV4 will now be offered with an advanced new 2.0-litre Valvematic engine, which also comes with either a new 6-speed manual transmission or the brand-new Multidrive S transmission. Its improved performance gives 158 DIN hp (116kW), an increase of 5% compared to the outgoing 2.0 litre VVT-i, 198 Nm torque at 4000 rpm and class-leading CO2 emissions that start at 177 g/km (Multidrive S transmission, 4WD).
In addition, as a customer option in some markets, a Toyota RAV4 2WD version with 2.0-litre Valvematic engine powering just the front wheels is being introduced. Ideal for those who do not need full 4WD capability, its CO2 emissions will start at just 174 g/km (6-speed manual transmission).
Innovative Valvematic technology
Valvematic is an innovative development of Toyota's proven Variable Valve Timing intelligent (VVT-i) integrating a new mechanism that continually adjusts the intake valves in order to better control air flow. This advanced technology helps improve fuel efficiency and CO2 emission levels, as well as power, torque and engine response.
Compared to conventional engines that control air intake using a throttle valve, Valvematic adjusts the volume of air that enters the combustion chamber by continuously controlling the valve lift and timing. This ensures optimal performance based on the engine's speed, thus helping the Toyota RAV4 to achieve both high fuel efficiency and dynamic performance. Valvematic opens the valve only as much as necessary to the specific load condition, and thus increases the fuel injection speed for optimal combustion.
The Valvematic technology leads to four tangible benefits:
New Multidrive S transmission
Multidrive S is a highly-advanced Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). While conventional automatic or manual transmissions use multiple sets of gears and a clutch to achieve different gear ratios, Toyota's Multidrive S delivers an infinite number of ratios using two cone-shaped pulleys and a high-strength v-shaped steel belt. With this arrangement Multidrive S changes ratios smoothly and seamlessly, almost eliminating traditional shift shock.
Multidrive S delivers assuring performance:
For a more exhilarating ride, the driver has simply to push the "sport" button next to the gearshift. This mode will select a more responsive and power-maximising ratio that better corresponds with the driver's intention.
For an even more active driving feel, the Multidrive S features a sequential manual 7-speed mode. The gear selection is either performed by the gearshift lever or the paddle-shifts located on each side of the steering wheel.
Drivers can also use the paddle-shifts to temporarily override the automatic mode. This means that you are still in D-mode, but when preparing to overtake for example, you can override the D-mode temporarily to prepare for coming conditions. The transmission goes back to the automatic mode by pressing the "+-paddle" for more than 1 second; when driving at a constant speed; when accelerating constantly for more than a specified period of time; or when the vehicle is fully stopped.
For driving in hilly regions an "uphill" or "downhill" control logic has been developed that will select the best ratios from the Multidrive S. When driving uphill the ratio will be selected to reduce the amount of shifting, and when driving downhill ratios will be selected to make optimum use of engine braking.
New 6-speed manual transmission for 2.0-litre Valvematic engine
By fitting a wider gear ratio range to this brand-new gearbox, engine speed has been reduced, which leads to better fuel economy and, with this, lower CO2 (2009 Toyota RAV4 petrol engine now features a 6-speed gearbox instead of 5-speed). Fuel economy was also improved by reducing friction and drag in the transaxle. Here engineers added an oil separator to decrease the oil stir amount as well as specifying low friction bearings and low viscosity oil.
Much engineering effort has gone into improving the shift feeling of the new gearbox, and it is now one of the smoothest in the compact sports utility vehicle segment.
Despite now having six gears, the gearbox is extremely compact. For the synchronizing system Toyota engineers adopted a high capacity synchronizer, decreased the module of the teeth and added a separate chamfer (one for synchronizing and one for engaging).
Increased output and reduced CO2 emissions and fuel consumption from 2.2-litre D-4D diesel engine
Another example of Toyota Optimal Drive can be seen on the RAV4's improved 2.2-litre D-4D engine. Here, the challenge was to develop an engine that delivers excellent performance and low CO2 and fuel consumption.
The 2.2-litre D-4D has been re-engineered to deliver more torque at lower speed leading to lower emissions, and now meets Euro V standards when equipped with DPF. The D-4D engine has been upgraded with new piezo injectors and offers an incredible common-rail pressure at 2000 bar.
This diesel engine is quieter with improved noise and vibration levels. The engine noise increase when accelerating is now linear, giving a far better subjective power impression to driver and passengers.
The 2.2-litre D-4D 150 offers a well-balanced proposition of power and economy. Power output is up by 10% to 150 DIN hp (110kW) and torque has been increased on this engine by nearly 10% to 340 Nm between 2000 and 2800 rpm. In addition, its wide torque range means maximum torque is available in most driving conditions, without the need for frequent gear changes. Its CO2 emission level starts for the manual transmission version at class-leading 154 g/km when equipped with Oxydation Catalytic Converter (CCo) and at 159 g/km when fitted with Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF).
One of the secrets to the great efficiency of the 2.2 D-4D engines is the advanced piezoelectric technology. Piezoelectric injectors can inject larger volumes of fuel and are twice as fast as solenoid injectors. Toyota's piezoelectric common-rail system produces the highest injection pressure among systems of this type - 2000 bar - an increase of 300 bar compared to the previous 2.2-litre D-4D 135. This state-of-the-art system is a central factor in achieving class-leading levels of power, torque and high fuel efﬁciency. In addition, it puts Toyota RAV4 at the top of the segment in terms of low NVH.
New 6-speed automatic transmission on 2.2-litre D-4D 150
A brand-new 6-speed automatic transmission is offered on the 2.2 D-4D 150. It provides a fast, smooth shift response while maintaining an impressive level of comfort by eliminating harsh shift shocks. It also incorporates a sport mode that, when switched on, selects a more aggressive shift pattern, using the AI-SHIFT Control (Artificial Intelligence Shift Control).
This new automatic transmission also gives the exhilaration of sequential manual mode shifting. By moving into the M-position, the driver can change gear either by using the sequential shift of the gearshift lever or by using the paddle-shift on the steering wheel.
6-speed Sports Direct Shift is a newly developed M-mode control for the new 6-speed automatic transmission. The M-mode gives a more direct feeling and lock-up function is used from 2nd to 6th gears for as wide a range of gear ratios as possible. This allows a sporty drive similar to that of a manual transmission. For added driving fun and feel, the 6-speed Sports Direct Shift also features 'blipping.' Blipping is achieved by controlling the injected volume of diesel and hydraulically controlling the clutch engagement and disengagement. This greatly contributes to the extremely fast downshift time.
As on Multidrive S, drivers can also use the paddle-shifts to temporarily override the automatic mode and "uphill" or "downhill" control logic is also adopted for driving in hilly regions.
When the 2.2-litre D-4D 150 is combined with the 6-speed automatic transmission, it features Toyota's unique emissions control technology called Toyota D-CAT. It reduces Nitrogen Oxides (NOx), and particulate matters (PM) at the same time. CO2 emissions start at 186 g/km.
Proven 6-speed manual transmission for diesels
The 2009 Toyota RAV4 diesel D-4D engines can also be coupled with a 6-speed manual transmission that delivers smooth, quick and precise gear changes.
The transmission was developed to offer a very wide gear ratio range, which is only possible with a 6-speed conﬁguration and the adoption of a different length between the input shaft and each of the output shafts.
Exterior design refinements
The entire front bumper moulding has been redesigned to support the dynamic crossover SUV appeal of the vehicle, while a new chrome grille garnish and fog lamp integration add style and presence.
To the front, the 2009 Toyota RAV4 has a new headlamp design and the X-grade will come with darkened headlamp interior mouldings for a sportier and more sophisticated look.
The side indicators on the car have been removed from the fenders and integrated in the door mirrors, giving a cleaner and safer solution. The Toyota RAV4 2009's roof antenna will also be integrated more seamlessly into the overall design.
To the rear, a new rear light design will be adopted - with an exclusive version for the Toyota RAV4 X grade - projecting a larger area of transparent glass. The 2009 Toyota RAV4 will also receive a new rear bumper design, giving it a more integrated look, and the RAV4 X grade cars will have extra chrome garnish above the licence plate holder.
Rear privacy glass will be standard for UP2 grade upwards. And to give the 2009 RAV4 a more graceful crossover look, the version without the spare tyre on the rear door will already be available from the UP2 grade.
Four new colours and 2 new wheel designs
Four new exterior colours will be available on the Toyota RAV4: dark grey, sand, dark brown and dark blue replacing anthracite grey, desert dune, arctic green and dark blue mica.
The 2009 Toyota RAV4 will also be available with the following new wheels:
Interior design refinements
Inside, the 2009 Toyota RAV4 is now on offer with an attractive new colour, sand beige, to enhance its quality feeling. This will replace the previous light interior colour.
In addition, an attractive new grey metallic trim has been designed for the instrument panel, steering wheel, door panels and shift knob. The pattern on the fabric seats in the UP1 grade version has also been reworked.
A new steering wheel has been designed with integrated switches to control the audio system and Bluetooth.
The new Toyota RAV4 offers much more in the way of sophisticated equipment too. The audio system on the UP2 grade features a 6 CD-changer and Bluetooth connection for cellular phone. A Full-map touch-screen (6.5") navigation system with Bluetooth connectivity (cellular phone and audio streaming) and a rear parking camera is also available. For even more refinement, you can opt for the state-of-the-art Full-map touch-screen (6.5") navigation with Multimedia-pack. The Multimedia-pack adds a 10GB HDD music server.
For reversing comfort, the RAV4 X comes standard with a rear view mirror that also includes a small video screen. This automatically projects the rear view when reversing. When driving forwards, the video screen disappears and the mirror regains its conventional functionality. In models equipped with the Full-map touch-screen navigation, the rear view is projected on the touch-screen display.
The Toyota RAV4 already has high active and passive safety systems. On the latest version, however, the front seats are now fitted with Active Headrests. The Active Headrest supports the head in a collision by a forward and upward movement, and hence reduces whiplash injuries.