The Toyota RAV4 EV was electric before electric was cool. Although never built in great numbers, the first generation was leased in California from 1997 to 2003 and eventually sold to some private owners after Toyota’s grand experiment ended with it.
Now, Toyota’s finally coming out with an encore, based on the current design of RAV4 crossovers. Developed under a $100 million partnership with electric startup Tesla, the new RAV4 EV is scheduled to make its debut May 7 at EVS26, the electric vehicle symposium held in Los Angeles, California. Los Angeles makes an ideal location for its debut for both the convention subject and because the Toyota RAV4 EV will likely be sold exclusively in California for its first few years.
Toyota first showed a prototype of the vehicle in 2010 (shown above), and we don’t expect it to differ drastically from what we’ve seen so far. But what we don’t know are the details. Will Toyota try to topple the first-gen RAV4 EV’s 120-mile range? Will it have any new technology? How much of an impact will the electric propulsion system developed by Tesla have on the overall design of the vehicle? And most importantly, how much will it cost?
So far, the only new image we have of the upcoming crossover is this teaser photo of the Toyota RAV4′s electric badging. It’s not much, but in a week, we’ll be able to provide you with plenty more details.