Toyota gives its RAV4 a facelift for late 2015 release

Toyota unveiled a facelifted version of its RAV4 mid-size SUV at the New York Motor Show; the changes to the car, however, go way beyond its exterior design. The big news is the addition of a hybrid powertrain for the first time, news that will boost the model's green credentials and overall appeal.

It will be the first in Toyota's lineup to be fitted with an all-wheel drive hybrid powertrain, although the technology is by no means unfamiliar to the creators of the ground-breaking Prius. Under the bonnet is a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine which is supported by electric motors that drive each axle. The system produces 198hp while also returning up to 54.3mpg with CO2 emissions of 121g/km. The 2016 RAV4 is expected to borrow the same CVT automatic gearbox from the Lexus NX300h as the drive system is also lifted from the luxury compact SUV.

Cosmetically, the model gets a sleeker aesthetic with features carried across from other recently updated Toyota cars. The most obvious change is to the car's face which falls in line with the likes of the facelifted Auris and Avensis. The grille is more refined, while the front bumper has also been revised.

toyota rav4 hybrid exterior

There are now full-LED headlamps and taillights too. Alloy wheels and a sporty rear spoiler remain to underline the SUV's ruggedness and athleticism, and the body is trimmed with a durable plastic moulding for times when the car ventures onto rougher terrain.

Motorists interested in the RAV4 only have to wait until December 2015 to place their order before first deliveries arrive at dealerships in early 2016. Those in Southport, Liverpool or Wirral should choose Johnsons Toyota for a competitive price and support from a team of experts. Contact your nearest site today to enquire about the RAV4 facelift.