Toyota RAV4 Prime vs Hyundai Tucson Plug-in – AgriNews | Jobs Reply


Since its debut in the 2021 model year, the Toyota RAV4 Prime has served as a benchmark for what a small SUV with a plug-in hybrid powertrain can be. It’s efficient, quick and almost as practical as the regular RAV4.

But now SUV buyers have another choice to consider: the Hyundai Tucson PHEV. It, too, offers improved performance and efficiency over the standard gas-only Tucson.

Both models are ideal for SUV buyers looking to dip their toes in the electric vehicle waters before diving in fully.

A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, or PHEV, lets you sample what it’s like to drive and charge an electric car, without the fear of being stranded.

They can drive short distances on electric power and then seamlessly switch to gasoline power.

So, which plug-in SUV is the best bang for your buck? The experts at Edmunds compared the RAV4 Prime and Tucson PHEV to find out which is the better buy.

Performance and fuel economy

The Toyota RAV4 Prime has standard all-wheel drive and a plug-in hybrid powertrain that produces an impressive 302 horsepower.

The Hyundai Tucson Plug-in also has standard all-wheel drive, but total power is lower: 261 ponies.

This deficiency was borne out at the Edmunds test track where the RAV4 Prime was able to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5.6 seconds, a full 2 ​​seconds ahead of the Tucson Plug-in’s 7.6-second time.

Unfortunately, the Toyota’s performance credentials end with its acceleration, as there’s no sign of athletic handling capabilities. Edmunds notes that the Tucson PHEV is more responsive and relatively nimble for an SUV.

The RAV4 Prime has an EPA-estimated all-electric range of 42 miles and then 38 mpg in combined city/highway driving once it switches to regular hybrid operation. The Tucson Plug-in is slightly less than a fuel miser, but still relatively efficient.

According to the EPA, the Hyundai can travel up to 33 miles on battery power alone and gets 35 mpg combined.

On Edmunds’ real-world testing route, a RAV4 managed to drive 48 miles in Prime EV mode, beating its EPA estimate by 6 miles. The Tucson Plug-in came in at 29 miles below its battery-only estimate.

Winner: RAV4 Prime

Interior and Tech

If you’re looking for a comfortable, modern cabin to relax on your drive, don’t be disappointed with a plug-in hybrid SUV. Both the RAV4 Prime and Tucson Plug-in are spacious and loaded with technology.

The Toyota’s interior design is more conventional, with a traditional-looking dashboard and free-standing touchscreen located atop the center stack.

The Tucson’s design is a little more adventurous, with a contoured dash that flows into the door panels, a wide integrated central screen and a unique horizontal-spoke steering wheel.

Both electrified SUVs feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, but only the Hyundai can connect to your phone wirelessly. However, you lose wireless capabilities when you upgrade to the larger 10.25-inch touchscreen.

While the Tucson’s central media and climate control panel looks slick with its touch-sensitive buttons, it can be difficult to navigate without taking your eyes off the road.

This is less of an issue in the RAV4 as it uses mostly physical buttons and knobs for controls.

It’s a close race, but the Tucson wins by a hair thanks to its slightly better user experience and more generous standard feature list.

Winner: Tucson Plug-in

Price and value

Like other Hyundais, the Tucson Plug-in is positioned as a valuable player among its competitors. As such, its $36,695 starting price with destination charge undercuts the RAV4 Prime by nearly $4,900.

For that lower price, you get the same standard advanced safety features as the RAV4, including forward collision mitigation, lane keeping assist, blind-spot warning and adaptive cruise control, plus some extras like safe exit assist and driver attention alert.

Because both vehicles are not manufactured in North America, they are no longer eligible for federal tax credits due to final assembly requirements mandated by the Inflation Reduction Act.

It’s also worth noting that both plug-in hybrid SUVs have month-long waiting lists, so if you want one now, you might have to pay a hefty dealer markup.

Winner: Tucson Plug-in

Edmonds says: These two PHEVs are closely matched. The RAV4 is probably the best choice for buyers who want the maximum EV range, but the Hyundai Tucson Plug-in’s lower price, advanced technology and comparable space make it the best choice for most EV-curious car buyers.



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