There's a wide variety of compact SUVs to choose from these days, and most of them can be had with a diesel engine, in Europe at least. Not the new Toyota RAV4, though, as the automaker has said goodbye to oil burners and is offering a petrol-electric hybdid instead.
This powertrain combines a 2.5-liter four-cylinder unit with an electric motor that put out a total of 218 PS (215 hp / 160 kW). The assembly comes with a CVT and front-wheel drive, but it can be specced with all-wheel drive for an extra buck, and average consumption still being a low 4.4 l/100 km (64.2 mpg UK / 53.5 mpg US).
Also Watch: 2019 Toyota RAV4 Reviews Are In – Is The Best-Selling SUV Back In Top Form?
Thanks to the revised exterior styling, with sharper lines and a striking grille, the 2019 RAV4 is more modern than its predecessor. The same can be said about the cabin, too, in which a number of materials might trick some into thinking that they’re sitting inside a premium model. Space at the front and back is very good, the big rear windows won’t make anyone feel claustrophobic and the boot can eat up a lot of luggage.
The steering is fairly accurate, but don’t be fooled into thinking that it’s sporty to drive, because Toyota’s engineers have focused on comfort instead. Thus, even in the 'Sport’ driving mode, nothing much changes, except for more noise coming into the cockpit.
So, is the new RAV4 Hybrid a better choice than equally frugal rival diesels? CarsIreland had a go in a well-equipped version and have the answer in the following video.