Petrol-electric Corolla, RAV4 hit South African roads, more to follow

Toyota christened the automotive phrase ‘Hybrid’. To identify a dual-source powertrain combining a traditional internal combustion gasoline engine with a high-current electric motor. It debuted that technology in the Prius back in ’97. That car has gone on to define what a Hybrid is. Now Toyota is on a major Hybrid drive. It’s introducing its tried, tested and loved petrol-electric tech to its mainstream model ranges, starting right now with Corolla and RAV4.

Corolla Runs 1200km on a 43 litre tank

With global motoring rapidly shifting to a New Energy Vehicle era, woke customers seek ever more advanced driving solutions. And that’s exactly what Toyota is committing to, as it targets zero emissions by 2050. It starts right here. As the worlds biggest carmaker starts rolling Hybrid variants out across most on its South African ranges. And this is just the beginning.

These all-new Hybrid variants of two of Toyota South Africa’s most popular passenger cars are a first for the country. They combine all the virtues of their combustion kin. But the new Corolla and RAV4 Hybrids bring the added performance and fuel efficiency of Toyota’s proven system. The Corolla Hybrid brings 3.5 l/100 km average fuel consumption and just 81 g/km average fuel consumption. In other words, 1200 km on a single 43-litre fuel tank of petrol.

The Corolla Hybrid is based on the slick 11th-generation sedan. It features Toyota’s latest generation 2ZR-FXE Atkinson-cycle 1.8-litre four-cylinder nicked straight out of the Prius. It’s boosted by Toyota’s advanced latest-generation lighter and more compact electric motor. And a 28% denser, quicker dynamic charging and lower cost battery. The electric motor contributes 53 kW and 163 Nm. To boost overall system output to 90 kW and drive the front wheels via a CVT gearbox.

RAV4 has a Bigger 2.5-litre Engine

The RAV4 Hybrid meanwhile pinches its punchy larger 131 kW 221 Nm 2.5-litre Atkinson cycle A25A-FXS engine from the Lexus ES. It shares its CVT with an 88kW 202 Nm electric motor and the Corolla’s battery pack. To muster 4.7 l/100 km at a remarkable 107 g/km CO2.

Available in mid-tier Xs spec only for now, Corolla Hybrid combines comfort and convenience Hybrid’s more pragmatism. That means auto LED DRL head and taillights, keyless entry, power heated wing mirrors. And 15-inch alloys with energy-saving 195-65-R15 tyres. Add cruise and climate control, reverse camera, power windows, leather multifunction steering wheel. And touchscreen controlled Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, bluetooth and USB six speaker audio infotainment.

The RAV4 adds tweaked GX trim rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone climate control, three 12 volt outlets. And a full driver support system and more to the Corolla’s spec. Both cars get Toyota’s 3-year/100,000 km warranty backed by a 8-year or 195,000 km Hybrid battery warranty. And a six-service or 90 000 km service plan at 15,000 km or annual intervals. Service and warranty plan extensions are available at any of Toyota’s 220 SA dealerships.

Government New Energy Vehicle Support Coming

Both cars are priced most competitively in anticipation of future government support on New Energy Vehicles. The Corolla Xs CVT Hybrid sells at a most attainable R419K. And the RAV4 GX Hybrid CVT goes for R555K.

As they say, this is just the beginning. Toyota is going the Hybrid route in pursuit of its ultimate zero emissions target. These two cars will soon be joined by the all-new Corolla Cross Hybrid. Before the technology rolls out further throughout the range. Watch this space…

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