Refreshed 2016 Toyota RAV4 and New RAV4 Hybrid Make NY Debut



Toyota is rolling out an update for the 2016 RAV4 that includes a new design for the nose and tail, LED lighting all around and some very cool new cabin tech.

The Hybrid is a perfect demo platform for these new features because it will come in two loaded flavors, with the ‘trifecta’ of LEDs up front and LED brake lights as standard. These are likely optional on the cheaper, gas-powered trim lines.2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

In this new and far more appealing nose, the RAV4 runs LED foglamps, LED DRL’s forming a sharp accent line across the top of the headlamps, and LED low and high beams themselves. Very cool at this price point, as are the 3D LED brake lamps shown on this blue Hybrid Limited.

Inside, we have new active safety tech and a 360-degree camera system for easy parking and soft-roading, plus an updated Entune touchscreen audio and nav system.

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2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid LimitedNew York debut for Toyota's new RAV4 Hybrid-65063 New York debut for Toyota's new RAV4 Hybrid-65062 New York debut for Toyota's new RAV4 Hybrid-65061toyota_rav4_hybrid_10

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  • New 2016 RAV4 to Offer Eighth Hybrid in Toyota Lineup
  • More Horsepower, Higher MPG Than Conventional RAV4
  • Refreshed Exterior Styling and Updated Interior Across the RAV4 Lineup
  • New SE Grade Provides Sport-Tuned Suspension, Premium and Sportier Styling

NEW YORK, April 2, 2015 — There’s a new hybrid in town, and it’s called RAV4. Toyota has been the overwhelming gas-electric hybrid sales leader in the U.S. since 2000.  Now, 15 years after the first Prius was sold in the U.S., Toyota has unveiled its eighth hybrid offering as part of the refreshed 2016 RAV4. 

Launching this fall, the RAV4 Hybrid will be targeted towards young adventure-seeking couples looking for a vehicle that provides utility, versatility, capability and excellent fuel efficiency. 
Looks Great and Less Filling
Fewer fill-ups will become the norm with the addition of a new, fuel efficient RAV4 Hybrid.  Higher MPG comes without sacrifice as the RAV4 Hybrid will deliver more horsepower and better acceleration than the conventional RAV4.  

A no compromise vehicle, the RAV4 Hybrid will be offered in two premium grades:  XLE and Limited.  Both grades will be equipped with an Electronic On-Demand All-Wheel-Drive System with intelligence (AWD-i).  Also available will be unique 17-inch alloy wheels and six exterior colors (Super White, Blizzard Pearl, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Classic Silver Metallic, Black Sand Pearl and a new BLUE).

Making the Grade(s) With Refreshed Styling and New Technologies
The conventional gas version RAV4 will come in four grades: LE, XLE, Limited and the new SE.  Together with the new Hybrid XLE and Limited, all 2016 RAV4 models will feature refreshed exterior styling, providing a sleeker, more dynamic appearance.  It starts with a new, stronger looking front fascia with an available LED trifecta (Headlights, Daytime Running Lights and Hi-Lo Headlights).  The new styling extends along the lower rocker panel to the rear bumper for a flowing visual appeal.  A new rear bumper and lift gate with available LED taillights add a premium touch.  Additional new exterior features include front and rear silver skid plate garnishes on most models and a standard shark fin antenna.  An all-new wheel lineup and three new exterior paint colors (Silver Sky Metallic, Black Currant Metallic, and Electric Storm Blue) round out the exterior design.
Toyota listened to customer feedback and added more refinement and technology to the interior.  New features include:
  • Improved interior quality with more premium materials
  • Available 4.2-inch TFT multi-information display in a revised gauge cluster
  • Available 7-inch touch-sensitive display audio touch screen
  • Leather steering wheel (excluding LE)
  • Updated interior shifter and window/lock control bezel material
  • Revised cup holder design to accommodate tall mugs with handles
  • New sunglasses holder
  • Additional USB added to front and one 12V power outlet added to rear
  • New interior colors (Tan, Beige and on SE a Tan/Black combination)
  • Soft touch material on upper door panel and lower dash

Additional convenience technologies include front and rear parking sonar, available Smart Key, and a Homelink® garage door opener (standard on Limited grade).  The LE grade will have an available Scout cell phone based navigation system.  All RAV4 XLE, SE and Limited models will come standard with SiriusXM All-Access Radio with a 3-month complimentary trial. 

RAV4 will also offer a new Bird’s Eye View Monitor.  This Toyota-first technology utilizes four cameras that are mounted on the front, side mirrors and rear of the vehicle to give the driver a panoramic view of their surroundings.  The system offers drivers assistance when parallel parking, and when pulling in and out of parking spaces.  The Bird’s Eye View Monitor system also has an industry-first feature called Perimeter Scan, that gives drivers a live rotating 360 degree view of what is around the vehicle, helping them see objects that could be in the way.

RAV4 SE: Sporty Looks, Spirited Driving
The new SE grade features a sport-tuned suspension, providing a more dynamic and responsive driving experience.  The SE also adds premium convenience features and performance styling cues, inside and out.  Additional equipment and sporty design cues unique to the SE include:

  • 18-inch Alloy Wheels
  • LED Headlights and Taillights
  • SofTex Seats with power driver’s seat and contrast stitching (also on Limited)
  • Two interior colors (Black and Black/Tan)
  • Bumper and lower grille design
  • 4.2-inch color TFT multi-information display with a meter cluster, twin dials, red illumination and red pointer
  • Distinctive interior with Black headliner and gunmetal finish
  • Paddle shifters

The SE will also include an S-Code paint design consisting of three available upper exterior colors (Super White, Black Sand Pearl, and Electric Storm Blue) mated to a Classic Silver Metallic on the lower trim of the vehicle.2015_NYIAS_2016_Toyota_RAV4_Hybrid_007toyota_rav4_hybrid_16 toyota_rav4_hybrid_18 toyota_rav4_hybrid_17 toyota_rav4_hybrid_19 toyota_rav4_hybrid_20 toyota_rav4_hybrid_11
Toyota Safety That Makes Sense
The 2016 RAV4 will be among the first U.S. models with Toyota Safety Sense (TSS), a new multi-feature advanced safety package anchored by automated pre-collision braking.  TSS bundles cutting edge safety technologies including:

  • Pre-Collision System
  • Forward Collision Warning
  • Lane Departure Alert
  • Automatic High Beams
  • Pedestrian Pre-Collision System
  • Dynamic Radar Cruise Control

TSS will be standard on 2016 RAV4 Limited grades. 
Small SUV Utility Plus Hybrid MPG Equals $avings       
The RAV4 started the small SUV segment craze 20 years ago.  Five years later, Toyota introduced hybrids to the U.S market, raising the bar for high MPG at an affordable price.  Each has helped change the automotive landscape in the U.S.  The arrival of the 2016 RAV4 Hybrid will be a natural fit for young buyers seeking the winning combination of affordable SUV utility and the high MPG of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive. 


About The Author

Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of, an innovative and rapidly expanding automotive news magazine. He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank. Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)