Toyota’s wasting no time in strengthening its range for 2014, with a new RAV4 line-up leading the way. Higher specifications, new options and a new AWD version equipped with the popular 2.0-litre D-4D diesel engine make the headlines.
The latest improvements to RAV4 coincide with the run-up to the 20th anniversary of the world’s original recreational compact SUV. Its 1994 debut at the Geneva motor show marked the start of what’s become a vital market segment for major manufacturers worldwide.
Less than a year after Verso received the full makeover treatment, Toyota’s clever compact MPV is in for another significant upgrade with the introduction of a new 1.6-litre D-4D engine. The engine has been sourced from the BMW Group, but has undergone extensive re-engineering by Toyota to ensure it’s a perfect match for Verso.
Moving from showroom to motor show spotlight, Toyota took the Detroit motor show by storm with the FT-1 concept. Will it make production? No word yet, but the response from press and public was fantastic and it marked a great first 40 years of Calty, Toyota’s California design centre.
Remember when hybrid power was a novelty technology, powering the quirky looking Prius of the 1990s? Just how much times have changed can be witnessed in the news that Toyota has notched up six million hybrid vehicle sales. The landmark was passed at the end of December, and with many more Toyota and Lexus hybrids in the pipeline, we can expect the sales rate to accelerate.
While the UK has been soaked since Christmas, large parts of the USA have been in the grip of Arctic temperatures. The double-digit minus temperatures have proved no barrier to the smooth operation of Toyota’s new hydrogen fuel cell system, however, auguring well for its showroom debut next year.
If one thing kept Americans’ minds off the weather, it was the Superbowl. This year the prized TV ad slots during the game included a dream-team pairing of the new Toyota Highlander and The Muppets. What’s not to like?
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