Is the RAV4 Hybrid Better Than the Non-Hybrid Version?

Toyota was one of the original leaders in the hybrid car market after introducing its first Prius model back in 2001. Since then, the Japanese based carmaker has gone on to electrify many of its models, including the RAV4. The hybridized version of the RAV4 has been extremely popular this year due to its fuel efficiency and performance capability. You might even want to seriously consider getting the RAV4 Hybrid over the non-hybrid version. 

For the first time, the RAV4 Hybrid outsold the traditional gas-powered version

Toyota RAV4 Hybrid compact SUV on display at Brussels Expo
The 2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

The RAV4 has been extremely popular since it was first released in the 1990s and is now the top-selling crossover SUV in the country. Sales for the RAV4 have more than doubled in the last decade, which is impressive. But what’s even more remarkable at this point is that for the first time in its existence, the RAV4 Hybrid actually outsold the non-electric variant as AutoNews reports. This past June, there were 17,051 RAV4 hybrids sold and the 17,042 nonhybrids sold. 

While there was only a narrow margin between hybrid RAV4s and the non-hybrid one’s sales figures, it’s still a big deal. These figures show that consumers are gravitating more toward hybrid or all-electric models . It also shows that and that they are willing to pay more for fuel efficiency. Toyota’s RAV4 Hybrid sales have increased by 78 percent, despite Toyota’s recent troubles related to COVID-19. 

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What Toyota has learned from this 

Toyota has shared that it wants to expand its hybrid vehicle sales. In order to achieve this, the carmaker has competitively priced its RAV4 Hybrid to win over more buyers. The success of the RAV4 Hybrid will likely influence how Toyota plans to electrify its pickup truck models

“We’re learning a lot, as a brand, about how do we market hybrids, so certain vehicles are going to be marketed a certain way, and with RAV4, it’s more about the performance and the overall package,” explained Andrew Gilleland, vice president of sales for the Toyota division.


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2020 RAV4 vs. 2020 RAV4 Hybrid 

The RAV4 and its hybrid counterpart are both good, family-friendly options. Deciding between these two choices can seem tricky at first, but we are here to help. The RAV4 Hybrid features a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that’s paired with two electric motors. This hybritized model  generates 219-horsepower and 206 lb-ft. With the RAV4’s regular gas engine, you get a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 203 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque.

Many buyers have gravitated toward the hybrid RAV4s because they offer more horsepower and torque which makes for a livelier driving experience.  Of course, fuel economy is the main selling feature. The RAV4 Hybrid  has a fuel economy rating of 40 mpg overall and the gas engine gets a combined 28 mpg.  

What’s also worth mentioning is that the RAV4 Hybrid comes standard with all-wheel-drive while the regular RAV4 does not. The RAV4 starts at $25,950 and the hybrid version starts at $28,350. We’d say that potential fuel savings and enhanced performance makes the RAV4 hybrid an increasingly attractive buy.