This week we share our test results on the 2019 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, and how it stacks up compared to the standard RAV4. We also look at CR's exclusive survey on our member’s tire purchasing experiences, and discuss some of the most effective tire buying techniques. We end the episode with audience questions, including whether or not a car with dark paint gets hotter than a lighter one when left in the sun, the pros and cons of the various transmission systems available on the market, and if SUVs pose a greater risk of rollovers versus sedans.
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00:28 – CR Tire Purchasing Survey
06:18 – 2019 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid Test Results
10:14 – Question #1: Does a car with dark paint get hotter than a lighter one when left in the sun?
13:01 – Question #2: What are the pros and cons of the various transmission systems available on the market?
18:56 – Question #3: Do SUVs pose a greater risk of rollovers versus sedans?
Driving Forces Behind Tire Purchases Revealed in CR’s Exclusive Survey
Autos Tips: Tire Tread
Winter Driving Tips
2019 Toyota RAV4 Quick Drive
4K Review: 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Quick Drive
2015 Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon
2018 Ford Expedition Quick Drive
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6:39 Toyota’s Hybrids use eCVT, which is not the same as the conventional CVT (like in the Corolla), from what I understand. 🙂
nickolas I don’t understand why so many auto journalists still don’t know the difference between a cvt and an evct, they just don’t get it.
@Marcos Gazamanes I only found out because I was doing research on it, before I purchased the Rav4 Hybrid.
Mike: “At highway speeds, the AWD system doesn’t even work.”
Why would we need AWD if we’re already up to highway speeds? 🤔
Rob L. It would be best to have front and rear electric motors. Maybe even a motor for each wheel, like Rivian uses?
Actually I think the RAV4 Hybrid stops power to the rears at 25 mph.
Slushy snow, going around a bend in wet condition etc?
Yeah AWD isn’t going to magically give you any more control unless you floor it from a stop. What really matters is stability control, abs and rubber.
For example, the Nissan/Acura SH/AWD (super handling all wheel drive) at highway speeds can over-drive either or both of the rear wheels to aid the car when going through turns. So the front wheels are pulling while the rear wheels are pushing the car through turns: noticeably better. In the RAV4 hybrid, the rear wheels are activated only when front wheel slip is detected; this helps you get started when the front wheels are spinning with no traction as on snow, mud or ice; it works well for what is designed to do, but it is not intended for off-road rock-hopping.
I realize it can get tedious, but it’s important to clarify that the ecvt system in toyota hybrids is not the same thing as a typical cvt at all, and one of the factors that contributes significantly to toyota hybrid’s high reliability.
There’s an easy fix for loud droning in cars with CVTs: Ask the manufacturer to put in a low rpm mode. Or, use less throttle. Car reviewers need to stop complaining about the way cvts sound and accept that it’s just the noise ICE makes when operating at peak power/efficiency.
Artificial shifting in CVTs continue to be the dumbest thing in automotive history. Intentionally making acceleration less smooth is not something you should celebrate.
No. A CVT with those shift points is far better because it masks that obnoxious, constant drone under acceleration. If you actually like that, go back and drive a Dodge Caliber and then try and tell me it’s the superior type of CVT.
And AISIN made the transmission, not JATCO 😂
wow that hybrid rav4 uses 0-16w oil…
Many cars use that viscosity. 0W-8 is just around the corner.
Really should call that transmission on the hybrid rav4 an E-CVT
Only Toyota fanboys would be sensitive of the naming of a CVT. Enjoy your drone
Rav4 hybrid sales have stopped in australia due to braking issues. I have not experience anything with mine but the only thing I modified is to opt for the 19inch wheels instead of the standard 18inch with my limited hybrid. Now I am able to put all weather tires on and it runs fantastic.
CR person here did not know Hybrid RAV4 is eCVT?! (not CVT). Perhaps the auto captions was in error. But I am amazed at this error but it’s the pitfall of doing video talkin’. Always best to read all about the RAV in their print issue.
as a baby boomer who was avidly reading your auto pages from age 7 or so in the early 60s, I dimly recall some detailed critiquing of the various makers’ automatic transmissions in a specific dedicated section of the Auto Issue. Especially the quite significant differences between GM’s various ones before the Turbo HydraMatic came along in the mid 1960s… Oldsmobiles whose quadrants said “PNDSLR”, and so forth. Maybe you could have some fun rereading these ancient back issues and commenting now on how transmissions are different/same today? My nostalgic view of CR back then also seems to include that you only recommended the low trim line 4 door sedan version of most makes and models as the sensible choice long term. Zero attention was given to aesthetic considerations. No one guessed, if we had only bought and kept those 50s/60s glitzy convertibles garaged and out of the rust belt, they would have been easy enough to keep maintained and today would be worth on the order of up to $100,000…
The Rav 4 hybrid has an eCVT which uses planetary gears and electric motors. A CVT has no gears and uses pulleys and belt.
Big difference between an eCVT and a CVT. One has gears the other pulley and belt.
Toyota eCVTs have been very reliable. They also allow a high top gearing.
Regarding CVT and DCT transmissions, you glossed over two major problems with those transmissions. DCT trannsmissions have MAJOR workability issues. That is to say they do not work, and the car simply (read dangerously) stops. See FORD Motor Company and its almost decade long issues with DCT’s.
CVT’s especially made by NISSAN (but made for several other motor companies) have long term survivability(?) issues i.e. lasting to 100,000 miles – as others commented below. That is a reason motor companies are going back to regular (albeit improved) automatic transmissions.
Do you care to comment about these long term issues?
I was commenting on the question at 13:01 about CVT transmissions, not on the RAV4’S transmission which is electronic (E-CVT).
I think your freeway fuel economy cycle needs some work. It basically only reflects what hypermilers will get, which is useful information, but if you live in a hilly area or somewhere with poor weather it won’t be very representative. The newer transmissions, regenerative braking, etc. all mainly help in these scenarios, not cruising.
Stop! Repeat after me: eCVT — eCVT — eCVT. Different animal, different construction. Mechanically they are not even cousins. Please stop confusing people!
Look at the question at 13:01 about CVT transmissions, which is what I was commenting on. Yes it appears Ms. Stockberger misspoke “CVT” and when she / they should have clarified it’s an electronic transmission in most (?) hybrids.
I think Ryan was referring to torque fill when he was describing how the RAV4 Hybrid accelerated.
Push / Pull your valve stems and look for cracks.
How many moving parts in a 10 speed automatic transmission? More parts = more failures.
Guys, Rav4 hybrid have e-cvt (planetary gear). It’s not the regular cvt.
I’d never have a DCT. A friend narrowly avoided an accident when the Fusion she rented wouldn’t accelerate at an on ramp.
We drove a Rav 4 hybrid the other day, and were very disappointed at the ride-quality…very floaty and not of the same quality as our prius and sienna se.
imho the RAV4 Hybrid is different enough from the regular RAV4, especially the non-AWD version, that it warrants a separate review and write-up.
love you’re show!
When do you think the hybrid will have a full review and video review, because I am thinking of replacing my 6 year old 3 serious in Sept.or Nov.
Awesome job from a very long time CR Subscriber.