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Poll Results: Most Toyota RAV4 Prime Buyers Paid About MSRP For Their Vehicle

A new poll conducted in the Toyota RAV4 Prime Facebook club reveals what most owners paid for their RAV4 Prime. Surprisingly, the big markups we hear so much about were very rare.

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We’ve all heard and seen the many horror stories about massive dealer markups over the past 18 months. Images of huge markups tacked onto the window stickers of popular models circulate like wildfire on social media and we all interpret those as the final sale prices of the vehicles in question for everyone. But what if that’s not actually true? In the case of one of America’s top-selling electrified crossovers, the Toyota RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid-electric vehicle (PHEV) a new poll suggests that most people pay MSRP or slightly more or less.

Poll screenshot of RAV4 Prime prices paid courtesy of Facebook and Jim R.

As you can see from the poll results, most shoppers who responded to the poll say that they paid MSRP. In other words, they paid the window sticker price without a markup or “market adjustment fee” by the dealer. Of the votes cast, this was overwhelmingly the top result.

Related Story: Huge Dealer Markups May Not Be What They Seem

The next largest pair of poll answers are Under MSRP and +$2K. If you add these to the MSRP grouping the remaining poll answers are basically a rounding error. Just a handful say they paid more than $2K above MSRP. One owner says they paid $20K over MSRP. We believe the respondent because we’ve seen secret shopper images showing a $20K markup on the RAV4 Prime by one California Toyota dealer.

The Toyota RAV4 Prime outsold the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Volkswagen ID.4, Hyundai IONIQ5, and Jaguar I-PACE in 2021. During the past year, the RAV4 Prime was at times the second fastest-selling new vehicle in America according to data mining conducted by iSeeCars. The only electrified crossover we are certain outsold the RAV4 Prime is the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. Unlike many electrified vehicles, Toyota did not restrict its sales to just the CARB-compliant ZEV states. Deliveries from dealers of new RAV4 Primes have happened in 35 of the 50 U.S. states. Our Toyota contact tells us that the RAV4 Prime, or its equal with a different name, has been sold in 40 countries globally since its introduction about 17 months ago.

Related Story
: Poll: Most Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Buyers Paid MSRP Or Less

We take polls like this one seriously when they are conducted in relatively large, well-run Facebook owner and fan clubs. Can they be wrong? Of course they can. They can also be right. With very very few automakers ever offering up average transaction prices by model, it is hard to fact-check such “data.” However, if you are a member of some of these clubs and participate in the many conversations, you quickly realize that the clubs are a fairly good barometer of what’s happening with the ownership experience.

Related Story: Poll: Nearly All Ford Mustang Mach-E Owners Paid MSRP or Less

Did you buy a RAV4 Prime this year? If you have not responded to the poll in the Facebook club, feel free to do so, or add a comment below. If you do comment, please tell us the state in which you purchased your R4P.

Image of Toyota RAV4 Prime by John Goreham. Poll screenshot courtesy of Facebook and Jim R.

John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. John's interest in EVs goes back to 1990 when he designed the thermal control system for an EV battery as part of an academic team. After earning his mechanical engineering degree, John completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers, in the semiconductor industry, and in biotech. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American news outlets and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on TikTok @ToknCars, on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin

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Mark Stevens (not verified)    January 14, 2022 - 4:16PM

One owner says they paid $20K over MSRP???

How pathetic. On a problem-prone RAV4. (edited for content. The commenter added a pair of insulting words)

DeanMcManis (not verified)    January 14, 2022 - 10:07PM

Edmunds (car reseller) says that the average price of the RAV4 Prime in the San Francisco Bay Area (CA) is $52K, and looking at available models for sale I see prices between $46K-$62K on their site. With a base MSRP of $40K. I wouldn't be surprised if Edmunds is the anomaly here, and northern CA prices are often higher than other areas. But I am surprised to see that some buyers are getting them for under MSRP.

John Goreham    January 15, 2022 - 11:38AM

In reply to by DeanMcManis (not verified)

Absolutely right. My perspective from being on the EV clubs for a good part of every day is that the California market is by far the most expensive. The demographics and culture are part of why that is, but I don't think it is a coincidence that the area of the country with the highest state and local EV price support also has the highest buy price for EVs. I'm not certain of how the RAV4 Prime fits into the High Occupancy Vehicle lane stickers in CA, but for sure that was a big part of the past EV and PHEV adoption there. It was a widely discussed topic as it evolved.

DeanMcManis (not verified)    January 19, 2022 - 5:47PM

In reply to by John Goreham

Interestingly, the CARB lists the RAV4 Prime as qualifying for the 2021 year for the HOV sticker, but not for 2022. Access to the HOV lane was one of the big deciding points for me getting my first PHEV in 2013, and having one for the past 7 years. My next daily driver (Aptera SEV) hopefully will not need HOV stickers (which expire), but I am going to have to wait until later in the year to find out for sure about it's autocycle classification. I do think that the RAV4 Prime's price will drop to MSRP once Toyota releases their bZ4X later this summer.

John (not verified)    January 18, 2022 - 3:28PM

I think most of the folks that own Rav4 Primes don't want to admit that they paid over MSRP. I know right now that if your serious about buying a Prime you have to go to California as they are getting most of the allocations. I've called 15 different dealers to try to get on a waiting list and they all want at least $5k over sticker with most asking $10k. The 1 exception is Ontario CA dealer but they will only sell to you if you live within 25 miles of the dealership.

Thomas (not verified)    January 19, 2022 - 8:34AM

I have placed a 1K deposit on a RAV4 XSE with all the packages, in Massachusetts. It arrived yesterday and I finally drove the car. Coming from an Audi, it didn’t seem as quiet.
Okay, here are the rough financials: $42K base price, $6.5K in options including dealer tacked on things I would not have purchased, $3K dealer markup, another $1700 in fees - buried within one - $290 for nitrogen filled tires, finally tax and licensing for a grand total of ~$57000. This number raises the total above the cut off for the $1500 MA tax incentives so really that adds to my total paid in a fashion. It still qualifies for the Fed tax incentive. I am on the fence.

DeanMcManis (not verified)    January 19, 2022 - 5:35PM

In reply to by Thomas (not verified)

I'd negotiate with the dealer to figure out some way to drop the price to get the MA tax incentives. I'd set that out as a cutoff for buying the car, especially since they seem to be tacking on $$ extras for profit.

Merlin Valencia (not verified)    January 22, 2022 - 5:56AM

I paid +$5k over msrp for a 2021 R4P SE. But I purchased through the California Clean Cars for All Program so I got $9500 grant + $1500 Clean Fuel Rewards + $1000 Clean Air Rebate (that I have collected) + the $7500 tax credit. Totally worth it! It has been an amazing vehicle!

Dave (not verified)    January 26, 2022 - 3:54PM

in Illinois. dealer had one and wanted 10k over sticker. No way ever going to 0au over sticker. never payed even sticker price in my life. there is a built in profit with sticker price so paying over that is just greed. if they want to screw there clients then I'll just buy different cars

Sarah Y (not verified)    March 16, 2022 - 1:13AM

I recently bought a new Rav4 prime XSE in Southern California and it was marked $19,000 over the Msrp price. I wanted to upgrade and trade in my old 2018 rav 4. I’m pretty sure I got duped but I really needed to change my car because I got a new job which required me to travel more.