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If you already know that you want a hybrid RAV4, the only thing left to do is choose the trim and features. To help you decide, I’ll look at two popular models, determining the differences between the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid LE vs. XLE trims.
To break it down, I look at the interior, exterior, and features between the two. By the end, you should be able to determine which one is best for you.
To get started, let’s evaluate the measurements of both RAV4 models. Notice that they are quite similar.
- Wheelbase: 105.9”
- Overall length/width: 180.9”/73.0”
- Height: 67.0”
- Track (front/rear): 63.0”/63.7”
The exterior color is also a top consideration. You can’t always get the same colors with each trim level. When looking at the Toyota RAV4 colors, I see the three following options available with both trims.
- Ice Cap
- Midnight Black Metallic
- Ruby Flare Pearl
Other than those options, you can choose these four colors with the Hybrid XLE model:
- Lunar Rock
- Magnetic Gray Metallic
- Silver Sky Metallic
In regards to the exterior features, there are other similarities that both trims include. Here’s the list of the top similar features.
- 17” 5-spoke Light Gray alloy wheels
- LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
- Active grille shutters
- Privacy glass
- Low-profile black roof rails
- Dual chrome-tipped exhaust
- LED taillights
- Integrated LED fog lights
Both models include an intermittent rear window wiper. However, the Hybrid LE includes intermittent windshield wipers, while the XLE comes with variable intermittent windshield wipers.
Additionally, the Hybrid LE includes black power outside mirrors with a folding feature. In contrast, the XLE model has color-keyed heated power outside mirrors that integrate the turn signal and blind spot warning indicators.
You won’t notice differences in the interior cabin dimensions of the RAV4 Hybrid LE vs. XLE models. Here’s what the ratings are:
- Seating capacity: 5
- Cargo length behind rear seat: 40.0”
- Cargo minimum/maximum width: 39.4”/59.0”
- Cargo minimum/maximum height: 34.5”/36.6”
- EPA interior volume: 136.4 cubic feet
- EPA passenger volume: 98.9 cubic feet
- Headroom with moonroof: 37.7”/39.5”
- Legroom: 41.0”/37.8”
- Shoulder room: 57.8”/56.4”
- Hip room: 54.3”/47.7”
The only difference in measurement is the cargo volume, although it’s minimal. Both trims offer a total of 69.8 cubic feet for storage space, but the Hybrid LE has 37.6 cubic feet in the rear, while the XLE is rated for 37.5 cubic feet. It’s unlikely you’ll ever notice the difference.
Moving onto the comfort features, there are even more similarities. Both models include these features:
- Rear liftgate window defogger
- 4-way front passenger seat
- Height-adjustable rear cargo area deck board
- Cargo area deckside-mounted storage net
- 4 cup holders
- Four bottle holders
- Power windows
- 60/40-split fold-flat rear seat
- Day/night rearview mirror
- Dual-zone automatic climate control system
The first major difference comes down to the driver’s seat. Inside the Hybrid LE, it’s a 6-way power-adjustable seat, while the XLE features an 8-way power-adjustable seat with lumbar support. There’s also a tonneau cover for the cargo area in the XLE that doesn’t come with the LE.
The final interior difference is with the interior door handle design. The Hybrid LE includes black handles, while the XLE features silver.
Safety and Technology
You want a high-tech cabin, and both RAV4s include the basics. Before touching on the differences, let’s look at the similarities.
- One 12V/120W auxiliary power outlet
- Digital speedometer
- Wireless Apple CarPlay®
- Android Auto™
- 6-speaker stereo system
- 7” digital Multi-Information
- 8” Audio Multimedia display
The only difference between these two is the number of USB ports. You get three USB ports with the Hybrid LE, while the XLE has five.
Safety equipment is another area that’s very similar. Both RAV4 Hybrid models include the following:
- Eight airbags
- Tire Pressure Monitor System (TPMS)
- Hill Start Assist Control (HAC)
- Backup camera, including dynamic gridlines
- Trailer-Sway Control (TSC)
These two models also include the Star Safety System™. The features included in this package are as follows:
- Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
- Brake Assist (BA)
- Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)
- Smart Stop Technology® (SST)
- Anti-lock Brake System (ABS)
- Traction Control (TRAC)
What makes the RAV4 such a safe SUV? It has a lot to do with the Toyota Safety Sense™ 2.5 (TSS 2.5) system included in both Hybrid models. Here’s the equipment that comes in this package.
- Lane Departure Alert w/Steering Assist (LDA w/SA)
- Pre-Collision System w/Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD)
- Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC)
- Road Sign Assist (RSA)
- Automatic High Beams (AHB)
- Lane Tracing Assist (LTA)
The only safety difference is that the Hybrid XLE includes Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert (RCTA).
Price and Value
The 2023 RAV4 price increases may be alarming to some people, but they aren’t as high as I would have expected. Still, there’s a difference between the two trims.
- Hybrid LE: $30,225
- Hybrid XLE: $31,735
That’s a difference of $1,510 between the two models. At such a small price difference, no one expects a lot of added features.
Here are the main differences highlighted.
- 6-way vs. 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat
- Black vs. silver interior door handles
- Intermittent vs. variable intermittent windshield wipers
- Black power outside mirrors vs. color-keyed heated power outside mirrors with integrated turn signal and blind spot warning indicators
Anything else that’s different doesn’t greatly impact the price.
Should You Buy the RAV4 Hybrid LE or XLE?
The differences between the RAV4 Hybrid LE and XLE are minimal. For most people, the differences won’t even be noticed. Aside from a few styling differences and a more comfortable driver’s seat, you may not think the equipment is worth the added cost.
However, if you plan to add any of those features separately, you may do better upgrading to the XLE trim. You can also find some additional equipment available to add to the XLE if you are looking for something a little more.
I suggest visiting a local dealership. Once you test drive both models, you’ll better understand the differences. Hopefully, this hands-on experience will help you choose between the two.
Which Hybrid Model Suits You Best?
You can’t go wrong with either RAV4 Hybrid SUV. They both have the same performance specs and provide a similar drive.
You know you are doing your part for the environment with these SUVs. Not only that, but you save time visiting the gas station because of the superior efficiency. All of the features and equipment that come with it are just bonuses on top of these perks.