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2013 Toyota RAV4 EV Review

Toyota’s 2013 RAV4 EV is the automaker’s second go round of converting its small gasoline powered sport utility to an electric vehicle. From 1997 to 2003, 1,484 RAV4 EVs were leased or sold. Of those, Toyota says approximately 449 are still on the road.

This time, rather than develop the electric RAV4 on its own, Toyota joined forces with upstart Silicon Valley electric carmaker Tesla Motors to co-develop and co-engineer the latest all-electric RAV4.

Toyota was responsible for the vehicle’s design, ride and handling, safety systems and its human-machine interface. Tesla supplies the RAV’s electric drivetrain, including the battery and electric motor, which it shares with Tesla’s base Model S luxury sedan.

Developed in a remarkably short 22 months, production is completed at the RAV4’s plant in Ontario, Canada.

2013 Toyota RAV4 EV Action Front

Based on the 2012 RAV4 – not the all-new 2013 model – Toyota says only 2,600 units will be made, with production halting at the end of 2014.

The battery-powered RAV4 is available for sale only through select dealers in California’s major metro market areas of Los Angeles / Orange County, the San Francisco Bay Area, San Diego and Sacramento.

With a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $49,800 plus $845 destination charges, RAV4 EV customers have the option of a purchase or lease program. The vehicle is eligible for a $7,500 Federal Tax Credit and qualifies for California’s $2,500 rebate through the Clean Vehicle Rebate Program as well as that state’s white sticker program, allowing a single occupant to drive in HOV lanes.
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