Sport Car

1997 Toyota RAV4 Puts the Sport in Sport-Utility-Vehicle

Ahead of terms like crossover and subcompact cornered the sport-utility-motor vehicle sector, automobiles like the to start with-technology Toyota RAV4 had been simply scaled-down SUVs. As a substitute of today’s nostalgic novelty, a two-doorway SUV was the much less expensive and additional fuel-successful selection at the time. This edition of the RAV4 wants no convoluted definition of crossover, contemplating it dubbed the now-prevalent chassis fashion.

1997 toyota rav4

Emmet White

Outfitted with a 2.-liter 4-cylinder cranking out 120 horses and 125 lb-ft of torque, the initially-generation RAV4 (alongside with Honda’s CR-V) is generally assumed of as underpowered. Weighing in at only 2469 pounds, the electric power-to-body weight ratio was identical to a Mazda Miata from the similar yr. Sitting squarely on 215-mm section tires gave the micro SUV a guaranteed footing and inspired off-street hopeful builders several years right after its launch. Not to point out, the 1997 RAV4 was EPA-approximated to obtain 30 mpg on the freeway.

1997 toyota rav4

Emmet White

Great mileage was just 1 of many sights for the present-day proprietor, who procured the vehicle in Colorado and moved to Brooklyn soon right after. In a nod to the international iterations each individual design goes by, this RAV4 wears decals from the 1995 12 months model sold in the Netherlands. Known as the “entertaining cruiser” abroad, it truly is not tricky to fully grasp how anything as easy as a RAV4 has develop into noteworthy in a sea of climbing window traces and 3rd-row seating. Street-parked in the Clinton Hill neighborhood, this RAV4 has remained immaculate, at least for now.

1997 toyota rav4

Emmet White

With bulbous gray plastic bumpers and locking alloy wheels, what is the worst that could transpire? Aside from, the authentic worth of this pristine Radwood specimen lies in just. The fabric seats welcome drivers and passengers alike with a sample that can only be explained as a person section 90s bus seat and a person aspect infamous “Jazz” sample wax paper cup. For this Brooklynite, nostalgia lives on with every single mile.

1997 toyota rav4

Emmet White

It truly is not likely we’ll see a seat pattern as Millenial-satisfying once more, however the Chevy Bolt’s hatchback seats and the notorious VW GTI plaid trim make up the difference. This unique RAV4 experienced a wheelbase of only 86.6 inches—a far cry from the existing one (stretched to 105.9 inches). Present day small crossovers and SUVs do their finest to recreate the performance and driving dynamics of automobiles like the primary RAV4, and they can’t for all the appropriate causes pertaining to pedestrian security and customer need for space. That is all ok, but can we at minimum deliver back the spare tire?

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