Toyota RAV4 Prime Engine Specs and Performance

Before you determine if the Toyota RAV4 Prime is right for you, it’s vital to look at all of the specifications. I encourage drivers to start by examining the Toyota RAV4 Prime engine specs and performance features to ensure it meets your needs. 

In this guide, I cover the basics of the RAV4 Prime engine configuration. I will show you how the engine works and reveal how fast it goes. I also look at the environmental benefits of this plug-in hybrid, further demonstrating its value. 

toyota rav4 hybrid engine

Powertrain Overview

The Toyota RAV4 Prime is a plug-in hybrid vehicle. It utilizes what’s known as a series-parallel hybrid system, allowing it to drive the wheels with electric motors and a gas engine. Because it contains a special battery, it can run strictly on electric power for a short period.

The RAV4 Prime has three electric motors. Two are in the front and one in the rear to aid the engine. With the help of the electric motors, the gas engine gets increased efficiency. 

The battery can be recharged at a public station or with your home equipment. It also recharges while driving thanks to the engine power and regenerative braking.

Learn more about how the RAV4 Prime works here.


Engine Specs

The Toyota RAV4 Prime has a 2.5-liter Dynamic Force 4-cylinder gas engine. This gas motor is rated for 177 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 165 lb-ft of torque at 3,600 rpm. It’s also rated to provide 302 combined net horsepower with the electric motors.

As stated, there are three electric motors on the RAV4 Prime, with two in the front and one in the rear. The front power output is 179 horsepower and 199 lb-ft of torque, while the rear provides 53 horsepower and 89 lb-ft of torque.

Power is stored in the 355.2-volt lithium-ion battery. This setup includes a 6.6kW onboard charger for maximum convenience.

Plus, the engine pairs with electric on-demand all-wheel-drive. This configuration ensures better traction, even when the road surfaces are slippery, or the terrain is rough. 

The emission rating of the RAV4 Prime is listed as a Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV). I will discuss what this means in a minute. 



How does this unique configuration turn into maximum performance?

With the help of the electric motors, the RAV4 Prime can outperform the other RAV4 models head-to-head. The motors combined with the gas engine are how you achieve its top performance levels.

For example, the RAV4 Prime has a 0 to 60 mph time of just 5.7 seconds. Considering this is an SUV we are talking about, that’s pretty impressive. It also boasts a 120 mph top speed. 

According to CarHP, the Toyota RAV4 Prime is the third-fastest vehicle in the lineup, coming in behind the Supra models. Here are the most powerful five based on 0-60 mph times and top speeds. 

  • 2022 Toyota GR Supra A91-CF: 3.9 seconds/155 mph
  • 2022 Toyota GR Supra 2.0: 5.0 seconds/155 mph
  • 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime: 5.7 seconds/120 mph
  • 2022 Toyota Camry TRD: 5.8 seconds/135 mph
  • 2022 Toyota GR86: 6.1 seconds/134 mph

For the RAV4 Prime to be listed up there with the Supra says a lot about the performance of this SUV. Toyota spared nothing when it came to creating this plug-in hybrid model. 

Finally, while looking at performance, it’s also important to evaluate the RAV4 Prime mpg ratings. According to the EPA, this PHEV earns 94 MPGe, so it’s also powerful and efficient. 


Prime vs. Other RAV4 Models

The Toyota RAV4, RAV4 Hybrid, and RAV4 Prime have much in common.

These three SUVs all include the same dimensions and overall style. I also believe that each one is versatile and offers a variety of top-notch features. 

Although they share similar engines, the configuration differences between the models result in much different performance. The standard RAV4 comes equipped with a gas-powered engine, and no electric motors. In comparison, the RAV4 Hybrid has electric motors, a battery, and a gas engine, while the RAV4 Prime has a larger battery and can be plugged in for even more capability.

With these three different configurations, the engine output is rated differently. The standard RAV4 has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine rated for 203 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. In comparison, the RAV4 Hybrid contains a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine with two electric motors to produce 219 combined horsepower and 163 lb-ft of torque.

The gas-powered RAV4 comes standard with front-wheel drive, while all-wheel drive is an option. However, the RAV4 Hybrid and Prime models only come with all-wheel drive.

On top of that, there’s a difference in the transmission between the three. While the RAV4 has an eight-speed automatic transmission, both the Hybrid and the Prime include an eCVT.

One of the biggest differences is the fuel economy rating. The RAV4 earns 27/35 mpg with the LE configuration. RAV4 Hybrid models are rated at 41/38 mpg, while the RAV4 Prime provides up to 94 MPGe.

Finally, I discussed how fast the RAV4 Prime was above. Sadly, neither the RAV4 nor the hybrid model can compete with that time. Both of these models are rated for an eight-second 0-60 mph time. 

To learn more about the engine specs of the Toyota RAV4 and the RAV4 Hybrid, I recommend referencing the manufacturer’s website. 

Environmental Benefits

Toyota says the RAV4 Prime is a “SULEV”, but what does this mean?

SULEV stands for “Super Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle.” These vehicles are ninety percent cleaner than the average for the model year. They emit lower levels of carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, hydrocarbons, and other matter than standard vehicles.

SULEV is considered a step up from the ULEV, or Ultra Low Emission Vehicle. 

The United States Environmental Protection Agency designated this term. The first SULEV was a 2001 Nissan Sentra, but an interest in greener energy created a fast-paced movement towards better vehicles. In the coming years, I expect that most of the Toyota lineup will fit into this classification. 



It’s not just the engine specifications that make the RAV4 Prime a winner. This PHEV looks stylish, provides a roomy cabin, and has the latest tech innovations. It continues to be highly desired, even though it’s hard to get. 

I may be partial, but I find it hard for many other PHEVs to compete against the RAV4 Prime. Hopefully, you feel the same way after reading the engine specs of this RAV4 model.

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