Road Trip - - ROAD READY -

The mod­ern SUV has be­come the quin­tes­sen­tial multi-pur­pose ve­hi­cle. Liv­ing up to the Sports Utility Ve­hi­cle moniker, and in re­ac­tion to a host of new SUV mod­els be­ing in­tro­duced lo­cally, the Toy­ota RAV4 (the model that started the SUV craze) has re­cently re­ceived a spec­i­fi­ca­tion touch-up.

With a host of com­fort and con­ve­nience fea­tures, seat­ing for five, and a myr­iad of cuphold­ers and stor­age com­part­ments, long-dis­tance trips have now been made even more re­lax­ing, es­pe­cially with the fit­ment of cruise con­trol to all RAV4 GX de­riv­a­tives.

The sys­tem can be op­er­ated eas­ily from the multi-func­tion steer­ing mounted switchgear, while the tac­tile feel of the steer­ing wheel has been bol­stered with the in­clu­sion of leather up­hol­stery. On the ex­te­rior front, a new metal­lic red hue has been added to the colour pal­ette.

The model line-up re­mains un­touched with a choice of three en­gine con­fig­u­ra­tions and two spec lev­els; GX and VX. Buy­ers can opt for a 2.0-litre 4-cylin­der unit pro­duc­ing 107 kw and 187 Nm, avail­able in ei­ther 6-speed man­ual or self-shift­ing Con­tin­u­ously Vari­able Trans­mis­sion (CVT), while diesel fans can ac­quire the 2.2-litre de­riv­a­tive, serv­ing up 110 kw and 340 Nm. The line-up is rounded off by a 2.5-litre petrol auto de­riv­a­tive, de­liv­er­ing 132 kw and a healthy 233 Nm of torque.

Pric­ing ranges from R374,500 for the 2.0 GX man­ual, R387,200 for the 2.0 GX CVT, R552,400 for the 2.2D VX auto, and R518,200 for the 2.5 VX auto, all with a 3-year/100 000 km war­ranty and a 5-year/90 000 km ser­vice plan.

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