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Practical new RAV4 fits Kiwi lifestyles

The latest version of Toyota's versatile RAV4 has arrived, showcasing a new look, a premium interior finish and sportier on-road dynamics.

Boasting a stylishly aggressive exterior, a significant up-shift in standard specification levels and an even roomier interior, the expanded RAV4 line-up builds on its solid reputation with Kiwi drivers as a versatile all-rounder.

With a five-star Euro NCAP and ANCAP safety rating and a more sophisticated active all-wheel drive system now available, the fourth generation model extends the sure-footed, go-anywhere practicality drivers have come to expect of the RAV4.

Toyota New Zealand General Manager of Sales and Operations, Steve Prangnell says, "Recreational, family and business users alike have enjoyed an almost 20-year relationship with the RAV4. There are now eight different models to choose from, so this capable SUV will suit a huge variety of different lifestyles and uses.

"The entire model has been thoroughly revised right across the range, with a new exterior look and a more refined interior. It offers drivers a much sportier on-road experience than ever before too, with an advanced adaptive all-wheel drive system and a gutsy new 2.5-litre engine option.

"Every RAV4 in the line-up comes packed with practical features and offers Kiwis' exceptional value for money," says Prangnell.

The 2013 RAV4 showcases a keenly aggressive stance that will hold broad appeal. A tough, durable resin finish around the base of the vehicle emphasises the RAV4's muscular new look and provides increased off-road protection.

Significant upgrades to the fourth generation RAV4 are more than skin deep, however. The RAV4's all-rounder pedigree rests on a combination of durability, versatility and interior space - key factors that have all been improved on for the 2013 model, to suit the diverse business and recreational usage the model traditionally sees.

Clever packaging sees the new RAV4 achieve an increase in passenger space, despite it being shorter, lower and narrower than its predecessor. Similarly, the RAV4's generous cargo space - a trademark feature of the model's practical small SUV blueprint over the preceding three generations - increases again, meaning that bulkier recreational items like bikes and camping gear can be stowed comfortably.

A huge array of convenience features like cargo hooks, hidden storage compartments, a standard tonneau cover and a separate cargo net (that slots away under the luggage area when not needed) come as standard with every RAV4. GXL and Limited models also boast stylish tinted privacy glass on the rear side windows and back door for extra sun protection and security.

In addition to the huge selection of standard features available across the extended line-up, RAV4 customers also have the ability to choose from a range of accessories designed to enhance the SUV's ability to fit into an array of different lifestyle uses.

Quality items are available through the Toyota dealer network, like polished stainless steel nudge bars with integrated driving light mounts, stainless steel side steps that ease access to the RAV4's accessory roof rack system, robust tow bars to take advantage of the RAV4's load-hauling abilities, and a durable boot liner designed to provide hardwearing protection.

Underlining further the RAV4's reputation for rugged practicality, Toyota's small SUV offering boasts maximum braked towing capacities of 800kg (2.0-litre petrol 2WD), 1500kg (2.5-litre petrol AWD) and 1800kg (2.2-litre turbo diesel AWD).

A removable tongue tow bar, trailer wiring harness and other towing components are available as part of the RAV4 extended accessory lineup.

Under the bonnet, three engine options give customers a greater degree of choice in matching a RAV4 to their lifestyle requirements. A 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine matched is joined by an economical 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel, along with a 2.5-litre Dual VVT-i four-cylinder petrol engine: a new addition to the engine line-up for the 2013 range.

With a reputation for providing a reassuring level of capability in a huge variety of challenging conditions, the fourth generation RAV4 also benefits from a newly redeveloped active all-wheel drive system.

Known as Dynamic Torque Control AWD, the system effortlessly enhances cornering and handling stability in a variety of situations, meaning the new RAV4 meets the sure-footed expectations of any lifestyle SUV driver.

The RAV4 also confidently meets the demands of a variety of lifestyle applications with an array of active and passive safety measures onboard, including seven airbags, ISOFIX child seat anchor points, Hill-start Assist Control, Downhill Assist Control (on AWD models), Anti-lock Brakes with Brake Assist, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, Vehicle Stability Control and Traction Control.

The all-new fourth generation RAV4 range is available at Toyota dealers now.