The Toyota RAV 4 is based on the same platform as the Prius and Corolla, which means it is more of a city car than an off-roader. However, Toyota is trying hard to hook up the crossover with some off-road DNA. To ensure the current generation handles more dirt, mud and snow, Toyota has introduced a new trim, specifically dedicated to those looking to use their RAV 4 on rough terrain. Named the ” 2020 RAV4 TRD Off-Road “, the model, which is based on the Adventure trim, has been enhanced for easier and smooth handling in uneven surfaces.
2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road Exterior
I must admit that unlike regular Toyota vehicles, which are a bit bland, the RAV4 is attractive and exciting. At the front, the RAV4’s grille is bigger; it’s flanked by angular LED headlamps that stretch to the fenders. Its LED fog lights are mounted much higher than they are on regular models. At the bottom, Toyota has added a skid plate, which comes in handy in off-road terrains.
Like the Adventure trim, the RAV4 TRD Off-Road has a 8.6-inch ground clearance. However, the model comes with a longer wheelbase which although it enhances interior space, it results in a decreased break over angle meaning the model has a higher chance of scraping its belly compared to its siblings.
The crossover rides on 18-inch, lightweight TRD branded alloy wheels. The wheels, which are painted in black, are wrapped with Falken Wildpeak A/T Trail rubber. These all-terrain tires have a “Severe Snow” rating. The automaker has added a black casing on the side skirts and wheel arches to reduce damage on the vehicle when riding on uneven terrain.
At the rear, the taillights feature a boomerang shape, which makes them attractive. The rear bumper also has a black plastic casing that has slim reflectors on the upper side as well as a skid plate on the lower side. The crossover has two exhaust pipes, each on either side.
The 2020 RAV4 TRD Off-Road trim is available in Lunar Rock, Super White, Ruby Flare Pearl, and Midnight Black shades. The Army Green shade that is offered on TRD Pro models is however not available for the TRD Off-Road models.
The interior is almost identical to that of regular RAV 4 models. Its cabin still has the clean, well-laid look, which I think is commendable. Despite this being an off-road vehicle, I think most buyers will use it on the tarmac with occasional trips to the countryside. Thus, it is wise that Toyota did not go for a more hardcore cabin.
The only things Toyota has added compared to standard models are the red accenting in the cabin including on the center console. The seats are wrapped in sofTex material; they are comfortable and well-bolstered. Front seats are both heated and cooled.
You will find numerous TRD logos on the floor mats and headrests, which ensures none of your passengers mistakes the vehicle for a regular RAV 4.
The 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road will feature an 8.0-inch touch-screen infotainment system. Toyota has finally seen the light as the automaker is equipping its new vehicles with infotainment systems that feature Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, as well as the fairly new Amazon Alexa; I hope this model will also feature these apps. The vehicle also has 5 USB ports spread around the cabin.
Other features include keyless ignition, blind-spot monitors, dual-zone climate control system (automatic), as well as a hands-free automatic lift-gate.
For safety, it comes with the TSS 2.0 system that features Pedestrian Detection, Trailer Sway Control, Active Lane Control, Adaptive Cruise Control, Rear Cross Traffic Braking, and Automatic Emergency Braking.
For storage, the crossover offers 57 cubic feet of storage space.
Engine and performance
Unlike the TRD Pro iteration, the TRD Off-Road trim does not feature mechanical changes. It is powered by the same naturally aspirated 2.5 L, 4-cylinder engine that supplies 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. An 8-speed automatic transmission is used to channel the “juice” to all wheels. It comes with a Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD system that enables a 50/50 front-to-back split of power; this system can also send more power to particular wheels for better handling when needed. The crossover also comes with a Rear Driveline Disconnect that cuts power to the rear wheels when AWD is not required. The driver can choose between Sand, Mud, Dirt, Snow, and Rock drive modes depending on the surface.
The 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road, however, features a re-tuned suspension that has re-valved twin-tube shocks. The model is equipped with enhanced internal rebound springs as well as new bump stops. All these enhancements improve the crossover’s body control and enable it to tear into off-road terrains with ease.
It offers a towing capacity of up to 3,500 lbs.
Price and release date
Pricing is yet to be revealed but expects the model to command a price of $35,000 or more. Sales will start sometime later this year.