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Tesla Motors and Toyota Collaborate on the RAV4 EV

Toyota RAV4 EV

Pretty much everyone is familiar with or has seen a Toyota RAV4 on the road. The RAV4 is Toyota’s sporty sport utility vehicle. Well, it’s gone electric in a nod to the public’s demand for a sporty SUV that doesn’t need gas. Toyota has entered into a large contract with Tesla Motors, the guys that brought us the Tesla Roadster, the 200 mile per hour electric vehicle, and the Tesla S, the 100 mile per hour-plus all-electric luxury sports car.

Tesla Supplies the Workings for the RAV4

Toyota has contracted with Tesla Motors for Tesla to deliver all of the electronic innards of the new RAV4, slated for delivery to California dealerships this summer. As part of this contract, Tesla will supply Toyota with their ultra-high-end motors, power electronics, single-speed gearboxes, software, and their revolutionary and proprietary lithium-ion battery packs. All of these are very similar to the components found in the Tesla S sedan for this model year.

With the Tesla equipage, the RAV4 will be a beast unleashed. The power packs help the motors deliver an interesting 218 foot-pounds of torque in ‘Normal’ mode, but flip the switch to ‘Sport’ mode and you get a breathtaking 273 foot-pounds of torque, that lets the RAV4 accelerate from 0-60 in less the seven seconds. Top speeds for the Tesla-equipped RAV4 EV will be 85 MPH in ‘Normal’ mode and 100 in ‘Sport’ mode. Imagine, an everyday electric vehicle, costing around $50,000 capable of going 100 MPH!

One of the major complaints that people (mostly EV detractors) have with electric vehicles is limited range. That’s not going to be as much of an issue with the RAV4 EV. Normal range, playing with the torque a little, is about 100 miles, while slipping it into one of two eco-modes will deliver ranges of up to 170 miles.

Tesla supplies both high and low voltage (240 and 120 volt) charging capabilities with all of their systems. Using the high voltage, 240 volt, option, owners can quick charge their vehicles in just a couple of hours (4-5 hours for a full charge), while deep charging the lithium ion battery packs using the low, 120 volt, system takes about four hours. This new RAV4 will also come with an auxiliary/emergency charging cable that can be found in the rear storage area, for those times when you find yourself out on the road and needing a charge.

Toyota Supplies the Popular RAV4 Styling and Storage Capability

Unlike many all electric vehicles, the RAV4 doesn’t lose any of its interior spaciousness or storage capacity by being converted to all electric.  It will have a spacious 36.4 cubic feet of storage space.  Toyota has given this version of the RAV4 some radical new styling that looks great. It also has a lower center of gravity than most comparable SUVs on the road, and it also has the lowest coefficient of drag of any sport utility on the market today. This means it slips through the air much easier.

Toyota’s RAV4 EV delivers awesome versatility, great handling and “throttle” response, and is fun to drive. All while being absolutely zero emissions.

Interior styling is all 21st century, with optional nav center and full-featured audio system. The RAV4 EV also doesn’t lose any of its seating space with the conversion to EV, seating five adults comfortably.