Trucks & SUVs

Why the Toyota RAV4 Has Nicest Interior of Any SUV

The Toyota RAV4 was completely redesigned for the 2019 model year. It received a distinctive new grille design, new all-wheel-drive systems, and an upgraded engine. The RAV4 has now become the best-selling compact crossover SUV in the United States.

In addition to the fresh exterior styling, the Toyota RAV4’s interior was also improved. Toyota has switched out its previous subpar cabin materials for soft-touch surfaces and more appealing color schemes. The RAV4’s new interior looks so impressive that it made the “Top 10 Interiors” list from Ward’s Auto. Let’s take a look inside the Toyota RAV4 and see why it deserved this award.

Aesthetic appeal

Each Toyota RAV4 trim has a unique color scheme inside, setting it apart from other SUVs. In the Limited trim tested by Ward’s, the nice mix of dark and light gray colors really caught their eye. They also like the mocha-colored accents sprinkled throughout the cabin. Other trims have different colored accents, like the bright orange ones in the Adventure model.

Reviewers also liked the broken-triangle pattern placed in certain areas of the cabin and the abundance of geometric shapes. The RAV4’s interior is also quite functional thanks to multiple storage trays and a large center console. Cargo capacity is above average and the SUV’s low floor makes it easier to pack everything inside.

Comfortable seating

The Toyota RAV4 was also praised for its high-quality seats, especially in the pricier trims. Cloth upholstery is the standard material, plus six-way adjustability for the driver and four-way adjustability for the front-seat passenger. The seats are roomy enough for most adults in both the first and second rows.

In higher trims, drivers can opt for synthetic leather seats with more comfort options. These include heating, ventilation, and driver’s seat memory. A leather-wrapped steering wheel is available, which can also be heated. 

High-quality infotainment features

The Toyota RAV4’s infotainment interface is extremely intuitive and receptive to user inputs. Physical knobs for climate and volume controls are also integrated into the center stack. It comes with a nice variety of standard features, like Apple CarPlay, a Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth, and a USB port.

Ward’s Auto was also particularly impressed with the RAV4’s audio system. A six-speaker setup is standard, but the Limited trim sports an upgraded 11-speaker JBL audio system. Upgrades in other trims include wireless device charging, built-in navigation, satellite or HD radio, and more USB ports.

Excellent safety technology

Since SUVs are primarily used as family vehicles, the amount of safety features is a major selling point. The base Toyota RAV4 offers many advanced functions like forward collision warning, automatic high beams, pedestrian detection, and automatic emergency braking. Even more sophisticated features like driver drowsiness warning and traffic sign recognition are standard. At the LE’s price tag of $25,000, this is definitely an excellent value.

Higher trims have more features like parking sensors, rear-cross traffic alert, and blind-spot monitors. The rearview camera can also be upgraded to a 360-degree parking camera. Additionally, the RAV4 has great crash test scores from both the IIHS and NHTSA.

Is the 2020 RAV4 worth the hype?

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

Large passenger vehicles typically aren’t known for their luxe interiors, which is why the new Toyota RAV4 impressed critics. The RAV4 has also been praised for its excellent fuel economy. According to the EPA, 2020 models get an impressive 28 MPG in the city and 35 MPG on the highway.

The 2020 RAV4 has all the new interior components of the 2019 model, plus a few extra features. Android Auto is now standard, and there’s a new TRD off-roading trim. With its ergonomic interior and satisfying driving performance, we can definitely see why the RAV4 is so popular.