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Before you pre-order a Toyota RAV4 Prime, you want to know the differences between the two trim levels. The only way to ensure you get exactly what you want is to evaluate what’s available with each trim.
In this guide, we break down all of the differences, from the exterior of the RAV4 Prime to the cabin. By the end, you should be able to figure out which model is best for your lifestyle and your budget.
The Toyota RAV4 Prime features the same basic dimensions, no matter which trim level you choose. These measurements are:
- Length: 180.9”
- Width: 73.0”
- Wheelbase: 105.9”
- Track (front/rear): 63.0”/63.7”
The height is different depending on the trim. The SE measures 67.0” high, while the XSE is 67.2”. It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to spot the difference between the two.
Moving onto the Toyota RAV4 Prime colors, we also see a few differences.
Here are the color options for the Prime SE:
- Magnetic Grey Metallic
- Ice Cap
- Midnight Black Metallic
- Silver Sky Metallic
- Supersonic Red
Meanwhile, the RAV4 Prime XSE comes in these colors:
- Silver Sky Metallic with Midnight Black Metallic Roof
- Magnetic Grey Metallic with Midnight Black Metallic Roof
- Blueprint with Midnight Black Metallic Roof
- Supersonic Red with Midnight Black Metallic Roof
- Wind Chill Pearl with Midnight Black Metallic Roof
With the exterior features of the RAV4 Prime, we see several similarities. Whichever trim you choose, you receive the following:
- Low-profile black roof rails
- Roof-mounted color-keyed shark-fin antenna
- Privacy glass
- Acoustic noise-reducing glass on front side windows
- Height-adjustable power liftgate with jam protection
- Front lower spoiler (silver)
- LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
- Variable intermittent windshield wipers
- Intermittent rear wiper
- Color-keyed door handles, including touch-sensor lock/unlock for front doors
- Dual chrome-tipped exhaust
- Bi-LED projector headlights (low and high) with LED accent lights
- Automatic High Beams (AHB)
- LED taillights
That’s an extensive list of what’s the same. Now, let’s examine the differences between standard features.
- Wheels: 18” 5-spoke black sport alloy wheels (SE); 19” 5-spoke black sport alloy wheels (XSE)
- Moonroof: Power tilt/slide moonroof (XSE)
- Heated power outside mirrors: Color-keyed (SE); Black painted (XSE)
Additionally, the XSE comes standard with a red shock absorber design for added flare. Beyond that, there are some optional packages available that include more extensive features.
Inside the RAV4 Prime, we find some more similarities, including size.
Let’s start with the dimensions of the two trims.
- Cargo minimum/maximum height: 33.2”
- Cargo minimum/maximum width: 39.4”/59.0”
- Cargo length behind rear seat: 40.0”
- Cargo volume behind front/rear seat: 69.8 (cu. ft.)/33.5 (cu. ft.)
- EPA passenger volume: 98.9 (cu. ft.)
- EPA interior room: 136.4 (cu. ft.)
- Seating capacity: 5
- Hip room (front/rear): 54.3”/47.7”
- Shoulder room (front/rear): 57.8”/56.4”
- Leg room (front/rear): 41.0”/37.8”
- Headroom with moonroof: 37.7”/39.5”
The Toyota RAV4 Prime interior colors are slightly different between trim levels. Here are your options and availability:
- Black Fabric: SE
- Black Mixed Media: XSE
- Black SofTex: XSE with Weather Package and Premium Package
There are also some standard features in the SE and XSE trims. Here’s what they have in common.
- Heated front seats
- Rear liftgate defogger
- Shift lever with leather trim
- 4 cup holders/4 bottle holders
- Storage pockets in the front door
- 60/40-split fold-flat rear seats
- Tonneau cover for cargo area
Yet, there are a few interior differences between the SE and XSE. Here are the most notable.
- Climate control: Dual-zone (SE); Dual-zone with front center flow controls (XSE)
- Digital speedometer: 7” (SE); 12” (XSE)
You can choose to add various packages and optional equipment to change what’s included.
Safety and Technology
The basic safety features are included with both the Toyota RAV4 Prime SE and XSE. You get a variety of airbags and three-point seatbelts. Aside from that, there’s tons of standard technology included with both models.
The Toyota Safety Sense™ 2.5+ (TSS 2.5+) system comes standard on both trims and includes the following technologies:
- Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD)
- Automatic High Beams (AHB)
- Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA)
- Road Sign Assist (RSA)
- Lane Tracing Assist (LTA)
- Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC)
These trims also include the Star Safety System™. With this system, you receive the following:
- Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)
- Brake Assist (BA)
- Traction Control (TRAC)
- Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
- Anti-lock Brake System (ABS)
- Smart Stop Technology® (SST)
In addition, both trims include Trailer-Sway Control (TSC) and Hill Start Assist Control (HAC).
With a package upgrade, the XSE can also be equipped with a Panoramic View Monitor that includes a 360-degree Overhead View and Curb View, plus Front and Rear Parking Assist with Automatic Braking (PA w/AB).
Moving onto technology, both RAV4 Prime models include five USB ports, wireless Apple CarPlay®, and Android Auto™. The XSE comes further equipped with Qi-compatible wireless smartphone charger.
Here are the differences between the two:
- Audio Multimedia Display: 8” (SE); 10.5” (XSE)
- Stereo system: 6-speaker (SE); 11-speaker JBL® with amplifier and subwoofer (XSE)
With the Prime XSE, you can also choose an available head-up display.
Price and Value
There is a modest price difference between the two 2023 RAV4 Prime trim levels. Here’s the MSRP for each trim level.
- SE: $42,340
- XSE: $46,210
As you look through the added features of the XSE model, you’ll see why the price is nearly $4,000 more. It’s also important to consider that the price may vary depending on where you live. With RAV4 Prime availability being scarce, you could pay a lot more to get your hands on a new model.
Also, you should know that the RAV4 Prime no longer qualifies for a federal tax credit. This is a major deciding factor for some people when buying a RAV4 Prime, so be sure to keep this in mind.
Should You Buy the RAV4 Prime SE or XSE?
In the grand scheme of things, $4,000 isn’t much of a price difference, considering everything else that comes with the RAV4 Prime XSE. For many people, spending the extra money to gain all the added features makes sense. Still, there’s nothing wrong with choosing the SE if you want to save some money.
The only thing to consider before sticking with the base model is how many features you plan to add. Paying for additional packages and features may soon get you to the MSRP of the XSE. At this point, you may be better off paying extra and getting everything that’s available.
The other reason you may choose the XSE is for the unique paint colors and upgraded interior materials. Both upgrades provide a little extra style.
It’s Exciting to Customize a RAV4 Prime
If the time has come to get a RAV4 Prime, you want to get everything that matters to you. If you are in an area that’s having a hard time getting this plug-in hybrid model, you may not have that option. However, if you do, I say go for it.
Hopefully, you’ll drive your Toyota SUV for many years, so you want to be happy with it. Yet, nothing is disappointing about the base model with standard features, either.