February 27, 2024

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

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Photo credit: Emmet White

Picture credit score: Emmet White

Just before conditions like crossover and subcompact cornered the sport-utility-automobile marketplace, cars like the first-era Toyota RAV4 were being merely smaller sized SUVs. Instead of today’s nostalgic novelty, a two-doorway SUV was the less costly and extra fuel-effective alternative at the time. This edition of the RAV4 requirements no convoluted definition of crossover, considering it dubbed the now-widespread chassis design.

Photo credit: Emmet White

Photo credit rating: Emmet White

Geared up with a 2.-liter 4-cylinder cranking out 120 horses and 125 lb-ft of torque, the 1st-generation RAV4 (together with Honda’s CR-V) is generally considered of as underpowered. Weighing in at only 2469 kilos, the power-to-excess weight ratio was comparable to a Mazda Miata from the identical yr. Sitting squarely on 215-mm section tires gave the micro SUV a absolutely sure footing and influenced off-street hopeful builders several years soon after its release. Not to point out, the 1997 RAV4 was EPA-estimated to attain 30 mpg on the freeway.

Photo credit: Emmet White

Picture credit score: Emmet White

Wonderful mileage was just a person of lots of attractions for the recent proprietor, who procured the automobile in Colorado and moved to Brooklyn soon following. In a nod to the international iterations each model goes by means of, this RAV4 wears decals from the 1995 12 months model offered in the Netherlands. Acknowledged as the “pleasurable cruiser” overseas, it can be not tough to fully grasp how one thing as very simple as a RAV4 has become noteworthy in a sea of rising window traces and third-row seating. Road-parked in the Clinton Hill neighborhood, this RAV4 has remained immaculate, at least for now.

Photo credit: Emmet White

Photo credit rating: Emmet White

With bulbous grey plastic bumpers and locking alloy wheels, what is the worst that could happen? Besides, the true price of this pristine Radwood specimen lies within. The cloth seats welcome drivers and travellers alike with a sample that can only be explained as just one aspect 90s bus seat and a person component notorious “Jazz” pattern wax paper cup. For this Brooklynite, nostalgia life on with every single mile.

Photo credit: Emmet White

Photo credit: Emmet White

It is really not likely we’ll see a seat pattern as Millenial-satisfying once again, though the Chevy Bolt‘s hatchback seats and the notorious VW GTI plaid trim make up the distinction. This original RAV4 experienced a wheelbase of only 86.6 inches—a significantly cry from the recent one (stretched to 105.9 inches). Present day compact crossovers and SUVs do their best to recreate the performance and driving dynamics of vehicles like the first RAV4, and they are unable to for all the appropriate good reasons pertaining to pedestrian safety and purchaser demand for space. That’s all alright, but can we at minimum carry back the spare tire?

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