4 Reasons Why the Toyota RAV4 Prime Is So Expensive

Why is the Toyota RAV4 Prime so expensive?

That’s a question every discerning driver is asking right now. If you are considering driving the PHEV, you want to know what causes the price to be higher than most vehicles.

The Toyota RAV4 Prime starts at $43,690 for the SE and $47,560 for the XSE. Adding extra options will increase the price. Additionally, there are MSRP markups driving prices even higher. 

In this guide, I cover the top four reasons for the higher RAV4 Prime price. This information can help you decide if the RAV4 Prime is for you.

1. It Uses Advanced Technology

rav4 prime hud

The new Toyota RAV4 Prime has a lot of high-tech equipment installed. It’s one of the main reasons that people desire the PHEV so much. 

The more technology that’s included, the higher the price will be. All of this equipment costs money to research and produce. 

Let’s examine some of the top available tech features that increase the price.

In-Cabin Technology

  • 10.5” multimedia display
  • 12.3” multi-information display
  • Head-up display
  • Up to five USB ports
  • The Qi-compatible wireless smartphone charging pad
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay®
  • Wireless Android Auto™
  • 800-watt JBL® Premium Audio system

Performance/Charging Technology

  • 6.6kW onboard charger
  • All-Wheel Drive (AWD) system

Safety Technology

  • Front and Rear Parking Assist with Automatic Braking (PA w/AB)
  • Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD)
  • Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC)
  • Automatic High Beams (AHB)
  • Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA)
  • Road Sign Assist (RSA)
  • Lane Tracing Assist (LTA)

While some of this technology is standard, other features need to be added. Each available feature you add increases the price. When speaking with a representative at a dealership, ask to see the spec sheet. This will bring to light all of the extras and what they’re for.


2. Demand Is High and Availability Is Low

toyota dealership sign

RAV4 Prime availability has become a real issue. If you live in certain regions, it’s challenging to get a RAV4 Prime. 

Some dealerships have markups because of supply issues. If you want a RAV4 Prime badly, you may have to pay extra for it. You should also be ready to wait a while for a RAV4 Prime.

Thankfully, this is becoming less of an issue in some areas, such as the northwestern part of the USA. I hope the supply continues to increase over the coming months.

3. Its Build Quality Is High

toyota rav4 prime side view

Toyota vehicles have enjoyed a long-standing reputation for being reliable. The vehicles also have a low cost of ownership, proving the build quality always remains high.

How long does a Toyota RAV4 last? With gas-powered models easily making it more than 200,000 miles, I expect the same from a well-maintained RAV4 Prime. 

When a car is built right, you must pay more for it. The alternative is to pay less for a vehicle that won’t last, but you’ll be car shopping again sooner than you wish. 

(Repair Pal)

4. It’s a Powerful Vehicle

toyota rav4 hybrid engine

You get much more horsepower from the Toyota RAV4 Prime than the other models. Just look at how they compare to one another.

  • RAV4: 203 horsepower 
  • RAV4 Hybrid: 219 combined horsepower
  • RAV4 Prime: 302 combined horsepower

At 302 combined horsepower, the Toyota RAV4 Prime is one of the automaker’s most powerful vehicles. Not only does this vehicle excel in the efficiency department, but it doesn’t lack any power. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Determining whether the RAV4 Prime is worth it is a personal decision. It could be right for you if you want maximum efficiency and don’t mind paying more. However, the inflated cost makes it less desirable for some people on a budget.

Based on current RAV4 Prime availability, you may not be able to find a wait list in your area. If you do, you may be required to put down a deposit on the plug-in hybrid. Call local dealerships to see what’s available near you. Your odds of getting one increase dramatically if you’re open to traveling to a dealership that has one in stock and being ready to buy quickly.

Because of new changes to the laws, there is no longer a federal Toyota RAV4 Prime tax credit. The RAV4 Hybrid doesn’t qualify, either. You may be able to find some local tax breaks, depending on where you live. 

Is It Time To Buy a Toyota RAV4 Prime?

If you are one of the lucky people with RAV4 Prime models available near you, it might be time to consider buying or leasing one. However, you must be prepared to pay a higher price tag.

Sit down and figure out your budget to see what works for you. Don’t forget to factor in the gas you won’t be buying, especially if you can travel mainly on electric power.

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One Comment

  1. JD Taylor says:

    It is a great car to drive, lots of space for luggage, leg room, spacious for pram and baby seat. We hired the car for a day to test drive. Certainly looking into it once baby is born