Is This the Third-Gen RAV4 Battery Electric Vehicle? Toyota to Debut Three EVs This Year
Toyota announced today that the company will debut three new electric vehicles in the American market this year. These vehicles will augment the plug-in hybrid-electric Prius Prime and RAV4 Prime already on sale, as well as the Mirai hydrogen-fuel-cell- EV that is sort of on sale.
“We continue to be leaders in electrification that began with our pioneering introduction of the Prius nearly 25 years ago,” said Bob Carter, TMNA executive vice president of sales. “Toyota’s new electrified product offerings will give customers multiple choices of powertrain that best suits their needs.”
Don't Trust Your Eyes
Toyota included the above image which shows fans nothing. The image on the far right appears to be the existing RAV4 Prime introduced about a year ago. Or is it a new Gen-3 RAV4 BEV? All Toyota has said thus far is that the three new electrified models will be two BEVs and a PHEV. If that image is not a RAV4 BEV, then why did Toyota include it?
Toyota made no mention in its press release about its potentially game-changing solid-state batteries. If we get any news related to Toyota's solid-state batteries for electric vehicles it will be posted immediately.
PHEVs vs. BEVs
Toyota then launched into a very long explanation of why its studies show that plug-in hybrids offer equal environmental benefits to battery-electric vehicles. This is something that every PHEV owner already knows and every BEV EVangelist will never believe. What Toyota does not address is the fact that many EV owners don't consider saving the environment their main goal. For this segment of green vehicle buyers, the primary goal has shifted to moving away from liquid fuels entirely, regardless of the expense and regardless of the cost-benefit analysis for individual buyers.
“We believe the fastest way to lower greenhouse gases in the transportation sector is to offer drivers lower carbon choices that meet their needs,” said Gill Pratt, chief scientist of Toyota Motor Corporation and CEO of Toyota Research Institute. “At every price point and with multiple powertrains, we can put more people in cleaner automobiles across North America to have the greatest near-term impact on total carbon emissions.”
The RAV4 Prime PHEV launched last year and was immediately ridiculed by some BEV advocacy publications. The haters chose to pretend that Toyota's initial ramp-up of its new PHEV was unusually low in some way. This despite the RAV4 Prime's ramp-up in deliveries being among the fastest in EV history. Buyers are paying MSRP or even above for the hot new EV.
Related Story: Tesla’s US Deliveries Remain Nearly Flat As Toyota Hybrids Grow By 37%
Toyota's green vehicle fleet is also expanding rapidly through its new hybrid models. In the case of the Sienna and Venza, only a green powertrain is offered. Both have MPG ratings 30% above their peers in their segments.
Torque News will bring you all the Toyota green vehicle news as it develops.
John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. Following his engineering program, John also completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin