The compact SUV segment might be the hottest vehicle category presently. The United States features over a dozen competent models contending for consumers’ attention. Among them, the all-new 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime has quickly moved up the ranks. Along with plug-in hybrid technology, the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime offers a long list of advanced features—many of which other brands don’t offer.
Know as the RAV4 PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle), it shares the nondescript suffix of “Prime” with the Toyota Prius. Nevertheless, the RAV4 Prime seems to be a much more interesting PHEV than the Prius. Its battery is significantly larger, allowing it to travel up to 42 miles (67.59 km) on a single charge versus the Prius’ 25 miles (40.23 km). This feature gives the 2021 RAV4 Prime a lot of points for city drivers. However, there is even more to the Toyota RAV4 than that: it’s quicker than the Toyota Supra, a sports car.
A little about the 2021 Toyota Supra
The Supra was introduced by Toyota Motor Corporation in 1978. Since then, it has earned a formidable reputation among the racing community. In 2019, the fifth-generation (J29/DB) Toyota Supra was revealed at the North American International Auto Show. Based on the BMW Z4, Toyota designed the latest Supra in collaboration with Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW).
The 2021 Toyota Supra offers two BMW-sourced engine options: a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six engine or a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four. However, the 2.0-liter engine is only available in Japan and a few other select countries throughout Asia. The 3.0-liter Toyota Supra produces 335 to 382 hp with an eight-speed automatic transmission. According to driving tests, the 3.0-liter Supra can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds.
A little about the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime
When most people hear the term “compact SUV” or “SUV” period, speed and agility are the last things they expect. This holds especially true when those terms are mixed with “hybrid” or “battery-powered.” There are some battery-powered sports cars out there that defy reason in terms of speed, few imagined SUVs could ever compete.
The RAV4 Prime’s 177-hp engine and two permanent-magnet synchronous AC motor-generators produce 302 hp when combined.
Most consumers, however, aren’t likely to be thinking about how fast they can do the quarter-mile. Either way, for shoppers seeking to purchase an earth-friendly compact SUV, the 2021 Toyota RAV4 offers something for everyone.
Thanks to its 18.1-kilowatt battery, the Toyota RAV4 Prime gets around 42 mpg when driven in Electric Vehicle (EV) mode. Nonetheless, firing up its engine doesn’t do all that bad either; it has an EPA rating of 36 mpg in the city and 40 mph on the highway.
If you’re not impressed yet, then consider that the 2021 RAV4 Prime has a driving range of 600 miles (965.61 km)—quite impressive since it has a curb weight of 4,4000 pounds (19.96 t).
Car and Driver claims the Toyota RAV4 Prime is quicker than the Supra 2.0
Car and Driver published an article boasting the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime as quicker than the Supra 2.0. A decade ago, this type of claim—an SUV of any type being faster than a sports car—would’ve been laughable. But we now live in an era where automobile technology makes it possible. Today, a number of sporty SUVs rival or even surpass some high-performance sports cars.
The Hybrid Synergy Drive (HSD) system or the Toyota Hybrid System II is paired with a 177-hp 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle inline-four engine. According to Car and Driver, “[…] two permanent-magnet synchronous AC motor-generators that combine to generate 179 horsepower and 199 pound-feet of torque at the front axle […].”
Toyota fitted an additional 53-hp rear motor that allows for standard all-wheel drive. Rated at a combined 302 hp, the RAV4 Prime offers 83 hp more than the RAV4 Hybrid.
While the Toyota Supra 2.0 reaches 60 mph quicker, the RAV4 Prime beats it from 5 mph to 60 mph, 30 mph to 50 mph, and 50 mph to 70 mph. As for the RAV4 Hybrid, the 2021 RAV4 Prime goes from 0-60 mph nearly two seconds faster. It beats the hybrid model in the quarter-mile by 2.6 seconds and is nine mph faster. If buying the new 2021 Toyota RAV4 sounds like a great idea, you’d better be ready for some insane dealer markups, however.