RAV4 Hybrid's 34/31/33 MPG ratings are a little disappointing to me -- was hoping for numbers closer to a magic 40. It's not dramatically better than what the Highlander Hybrid gets with V6 (28/27/27) or a gas-only RAV4 (24/31/26) but at least the "base" price stays under $30k, unlike the stratospheric Highlander Hybrid ($48k to start?? Seriously, Toyota??). Makes me wonder if the XLE trim levels are completely identical across gas and hybrid, saving differences in powertrain.This comparo interests me the most:
2016 RAV4 Pricing
Gas Model Drive Transmission Grade MSRP
RAV4 AWD A/T XLE $27,670
Hybrid Model Drive Transmission Grade MSRP
RAV4 AWD CVT XLE $28,370
The hybrid has my interest, but I likely won't be an early adopter--but glad to see such a small price difference.
My 09 RAV 4-banger gets 25 mpg overall, if the the hybrid gets 33 mpg, that means about 100-gallons difference per year (considering 10k-miles per year). It's not the only factor, but the meager $700 differential probably pays off in only 3 years or so. And once the inevitable gas price gouge returns, will be even better to be in a hybrid.
Will wait and see how the CVT plays out and if any improvements were made to smooth the ride and reduce cabin noise at least a little bit.
Though really, the RAV4 outgrew me in size and disappointed in quality and other ways. Other than the quirky but lovable styling of my 1997 (spartan in features) and that awesome V6 in my 2006 (damn that awful gas mileage), I loved my 2001 best. Maybe I'll love the C-HR but not if it continues to look so similar to a wacky Juke.