There is no arguing that Toyota dominates the hybrid vehicle market, but with the electric vehicles still being established, the Japanese automaker has teamed up with California-based Tesla Motors to create the next generation of the Toyota Rav4 EV. Going on sale later this summer, the Toyota RAV4 EV will only be sold through "select California dealers" in metropolitan areas (Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Sacramento) with a starting MSRP of $49,800. Toyota is planning to build around 2,600 of the all-electric RAV4 EVs between 2012 and 2014. The RAV4 EV will be built alongside the gasoline version of the compact crossover at Toyota's Woodstock, Ontario, Canada assembly plant with the electric components supplied by Tesla from Palo Alto, Calif.
Not included in the price of the new Toyota RAV4 EV is the $7,500 federal tax credit and a $2,500 California tax credit for which buyers can qualify. Leviton is Toyota's approved supplier for electric vehicle equipment for both the Toyota Prius Plug-In and the 2012 Toyota RAV4 EV. All RAV4 EV models come with a 120-volt (Level 1) charging cable, but the new electric crossover can be charged in just six hours using Leviton's Level 2 (40 amp, 9.6 kw output) home charging station which starts "as low as" $1,590; a 30-amp charging station with 7.2 kw output is also available starting at $1,499. Toyota doesn't give an expected charge time using the Level 1 charging cable, but Leviton expects it to take more than 44 hours to recharge a fully depleted battery. For more information, visit leviton.com/toyota.
“We believe that the RAV4 EV will attract sophisticated early technology adopters, much like the first-generation Prius,” said Bill Fay, Toyota division group vice president and general manager. “It’s designed for consumers who prioritize the environment and appreciate performance. We look forward to seeing how the market responds."
Standard equipment on the 2012 Toyota RAV4 EV include an exclusive, aero-tuned exterior design that Toyota claims makes it the world's most aerodynamic SUV with a drag coefficient of just 0.30. This is a result of a reshaped front fascia, sculpted side mirrors, a rear spoiler and optimized under body design. Unlike the first generation of the Toyota RAV4 EV, the latest version will be easily distinguishable from the gasoline-powered models by its LED low beam headlights, LED daytime running lights and LED rear lights with smoked lenses. Customers can opt for the RAV4 EV painted in Blizzard Pearl, Shoreline Blue Pearl or Classic Silver Metallic while fleet customers are stuck with Super White. Inside, all Toyota RAV EV models get the Premium Intellitouch Navigation system, Toyota's Entune infotainment system and unique "Neutron" fabric accents on the seats and door trim.
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