By Otsile Kadiege
Toyota has spruced up the RAV4 range with the addition of the new GR Sport model derivative. Like with other GR Sport models in Toyota’s stable the RAV4 GR Sport gets cosmetic updates and a tweaked suspension.
RAV4 GR Sport exterior
The GR Sport treatment makes a bold style statement with the addition of piano black wheel arch trims, side mouldings and back door garnish. To the front there are more prominent fog light bezels with the same black G-mesh pattern as the grille and new front spoilers – finished in dark silver on the hybrid model and, with a different design appropriate to the powertrain, gunmetal grey on the plug-in hybrid. Discreet GR badging on the front grille and back door signify the sportier grade.
The new RAV4 GR Sport is the first model to feature alloy wheels finished using a new, ultra-precise line-cutting technique. The 19-inch rims, fitted as standard, have a gloss black finish with fine bright machined pinstripe detailing that adds emphasis to their strong, five-double-spoke design.
RAV4 GR Sport interior
Inside, the RAV4 GR Sport gets sports front seats which are finished in a tactile, suede-effect upholstery with synthetic leather bolsters – materials that are free from animal products. The headrests are embossed black-on-black with the GR logo, while contrasts are struck with silver stitching on the seats, steering wheel, shift lever and gunmetal trim detailing on the doors and steering wheel. The GR logo is also featured on the floor mats and steering wheel.
The new models come as standard with the new multimedia system with 10.5-inch display and customisable 12.3-inch driver’s digital combimeter that are key elements in the RAV4 upgrade for the 2023 model year. Similarly, the Toyota T-Mate safety and driver assistance features include the additional functionality of the latest generation Toyota Safety Sense. The package includes the new Emergency Steering Assist system and enhanced Pre-Collision System.
In addition, all GR Sport models come with power adjustment for the front seats, together with memory settings for the driver’s seat, as well as panoramic view monitor as standard.
The sportier looks are complemented by further improvements to the suspension for the GR SPORT model. The new stiffer springs and shock absorber settings are expected to give the RAV4 GR SPORT a handling boost and offer a more engaging driving experience. Toyota is yet to share more details on the RAV4’s electrified powertrains, however we do know that they will be optionally paired with the brand’s electric intelligent all-wheel drive (AWD-i).
The new RAV4 Hybrid GR Sport and RAV4 Plug-in Hybrid GR Sport will be available in Europe in Q4 2022. Toyota South Africa is yet to announce local introduction.
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