2021 Toyota RAV4 Review

March 5th, 2021 by

If you’re looking for a reliable and spacious mid-size SUV, look no further than the 2021 Toyota RAV4. Being stacked with standard safety features, high-end interior, and excellent fuel economy make this one a winner.

In this article, we’ll give you all the details so you can see for yourself how great owning a Toyota can be.

Toyota RAV4 Overview

For a mid-size SUV, the RAV4 shows off its unexpected tough exterior. The design was heavily influenced by other Toyota offerings — the 4Runner SUV and the Tacoma pickup truck.

But don’t let the tough exterior fool you. You’ll experience a smooth, car-like ride from the 2.5-liter four-cylinder motor. Combine that with an automatic eight-speed transmission, and you’re ready to hit the road in this four-door, five-passenger hatchback SUV.

The only real change from the 2020 RAV4 offerings is a change in paint color choices. Super White has been replaced with Blizzard Pearl. However, an addition has been made with the RAV4 Prime, a plug-in hybrid, joining the 2021 lineup.

Under the Hood

All 2021 Toyota RAV4 trims come equipped with a fuel-efficient 2.5-liter four-cylinder motor. This is paired with an automatic eight-speed transmission (with manual shifting mode).

Although the engine tends to be a little noisy during acceleration, the base model’s 203 horsepower gives you an overall smooth and quiet ride.


While the base trim, LE, offers only cloth seats and single-zone climate control, you’ll be impressed with the mid-level XLE Premium. This is where you’ll find faux-leather seats, a padded dashboard and center console, along with a faux-leather wrapped steering wheel.

Both front and rear seats provide plenty of legroom for a comfortable ride. Outer rear seats employ the LATCH system to keep car seats securely in place while the middle seat offers a tether anchor for the same purpose.

Plenty of cup holders and storage cubbies make hauling the family a bit more comfortable and convenient.


The 2021 Toyota RAV4 will meet and exceed your expectations with the many infotainment features that come standard. You’ll enjoy a 7-inch intuitive touchscreen display, 4GB LTE mobile hotspot, Apple Car Play, Android Auto capability, a USB port, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and a six-speaker stereo system.

Beginning with the XLE model, you’ll upgrade to an eight-inch touchscreen display, a navigation system, a wireless charging pad for smartphones, four additional USB ports, and an 11-speaker JBL premium audio system.

If you decide on a model without a navigation system, no problem. Toyota has you covered with a Scout GPS Link system. This system allows your smartphone to display maps and directions on your dashboard display screen.


The 2021 Toyota RAV4 has surprisingly impressive storage space. We don’t expect much from a mid-size SUV, but this one boasts a whopping 37-cubic foot of storage space with the back seats in place.

For even more cargo space, the rear seats fold almost completely flat revealing nearly 70-cubic feet of space. Whether you’re hauling groceries or luggage, you’ll have no problem fitting it all in the RAV4.


The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) named the 2021 Toyota RAV4 as a Top Safety Pick+. Meanwhile, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awarded it a five-star safety rating.

Standard Safety Features include:

  • Rearview Camera
  • Pedestrian Detection
  • Automatic Emergency Braking
  • Lane Keep Assist
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Forward Collision Warning
  • Standard Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Roadside Recognition
  • Lane Trace Assist (keeps the vehicle in the center of the lane)

Optional Advanced Safety Features you may consider adding are:

  • Blind Spot Monitoring
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
  • Rain-sensing Windshield Wipers
  • Front and Rear Parking Sensors
  • Surround-view Parking Camera System

When buying a Toyota RAV4, you can be confident that you’re choosing one of the safest vehicles on the road today.

Fuel Economy

No matter which trim you choose, the gas mileage on this mid-size SUV is impressive. The front-wheel-drive models boast highway mileage up to 35 miles per gallon while the all-wheel-drive models will average 32-33 miles per gallon on the highway.

Trim Options

The 2021 Toyota RAV4 offers a variety of trims with different features and prices to accommodate everyone’s taste and budget. Below is a list of trims and starting prices.

  • LE: $26,050
  • XLE: $27,345
  • XLE Premium: $30,050
  • Adventure: $33,155
  • Limited: $34,580
  • TRD Off-Road: $35,780

No matter which options you choose, the Toyota RAV4 is an affordable choice.

Hybrid Options

The RAV4 Hybrid options offer the same trim levels as the traditional line with slightly higher price points. The big talking point here is the RAV4 Prime. Its combination of gas and electric motors produces 302 horsepower, making it the most powerful RAV4 available.

Another noteworthy item about the Prime is that the U.S. government is offering $7500 in electric vehicle tax credits for qualified buyers. If you qualify for the credit, the purchase price decreases significantly making the Prime an excellent investment option.

Hybrid trim levels and pricing are listed below.

  • LE: $29,675
  • XLE: $30,970
  • XLE Premium: $33,825
  • XSE: $35,775
  • Limited: $38,355
  • Prime SE: $39,275
  • Prime XSE: $42,600

More fuel-efficient than its gas-powered counterpart, the hybrid RAV4 is estimated by the EPA to achieve a combined average of 40 miles per gallon. It’s also expected to be able to complete 42 miles on electricity alone.

Warranty & Maintenance

The 2021 Toyota RAV4 comes with a three-year or 36,000-mile limited warranty along with a five-year or 60,000-mile powertrain warranty. You’ll also receive complimentary maintenance through your local Toyota dealership for the first two years or 25,000 miles.

Take a Test Drive

If you’re considering a mid-size SUV purchase, take a closer look at the 2021 Toyota RAV4 deals available at Universal Toyota.

If you’re in the San Antonio area, contact the friendly and knowledgeable sales staff today to schedule a test drive. See how much fun owning a Toyota can be!

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