Toyota has unveiled a seven-seat version of its RAV4 soft-roader for the USA
14 November 2005

TOYOTA HAS USED the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) motor show in Las Vegas to unveil a long-wheelbase version of its RAV4 off-roader.

The new model joins the short-wheelbase version of the Land Rover Freelander rival, which made its debut at the Frankfurt motor show in September. A Toyota spokesperson said there were currently no plans to bring it to the UK, but with the demise of the seven-seat Previa it could neatly slot into the European line-up. It would also give Toyota the only small seven-seat 4x4 on sale in Europe.

With the wheelbase extended by 100mm over its smaller sibling to 2659mm, there’s enough space in the rear for a third row of seats. The optional rear seat row can be stowed in the floor when not in use.

Engine options include a 2.4-litre four-cylinder with 166bhp and a 3.5-litre V6 with 269bhp, both running Toyota’s VVT-i (variable valve timing) system. The former comes mated to an old-fashioned four-speed automatic, while the V6 uses a five-speed auto.

Our Verdict

Toyota RAV4

Likeable Toyota RAV4 4x4 grows and matures but loses originality and still falls short of the class’s highest dynamic standards

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