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More photos, info: New RAV4

2005-09-21 08:55

Toyota first launched the RAV4 in Europe in 1994 and it made its South Africa debut soon after that.

According to Toyota the third generation Toyota RAV4 will take SUV driving performance to a new level - thanks to its powerful engines and hi-tech drive train that features Toyota's new Integrated Active Drive System.

Interior quality and passenger comfort have been improved and the vehicle offers more space too.

The third generation RAV4 is also RAV4 is 145 mm longer than the model it replaces, with a significantly increased wheelbase (+70 mm) and rear overhang.

This allows greatly improved passenger comfort, with the couple distance between front and rear seats increased by 55 mm. There is also more shoulder space thanks to the car's increased width (by 80 mm).

The latest RAV4 features enhanced active safety through the high technology Integrated Active Drive System handling and safety package and according to Toyota the The VSC+ is a world first in this segment.

In most other vehicles the anti-lock braking (ABS), traction control (TRC), vehicle stability control (VSC) and Electric Power Steering (EPS) operate independently of each other.

Toyota's VSC+ integrates these functions via the high-speed CAN communications and adds the Active Torque Control 4WD system. This interaction of all systems allows for real-time control that corresponds to driver operation and vehicle behaviour, resulting in enhanced running, turning and stopping performance.

The VSC+ works with the electric power steering (EPS) to add steering torque assistance to the conventional stability control system. It anticipates the occurrence of understeer or oversteer and assists the driver by making the correct steering action easier and an incorrect action more difficult.

It also allows a better control when braking or accelerating on road surfaces with different traction characteristics under the left and right wheels, by providing additional steering torque to compensate for differences in left-right drive force.

In addition, the interconnection with the Active Torque Control 4WD system allows the cooperation of VSC with the drive torque distribution. This results in minimizing any over-steering or under-steering reaction when acceleration on a slippery road surface.

An Active Torque Control 4WD system continuously monitors and controls the torque transfer between front and rear wheels. The system allows the vehicle to switch continuously between front wheel drive and four-wheel drive mode.

The conventional centre differential is removed and the electronic sensors monitor information from throttle angle, engine torque and speed, gear ratio, vehicle speed and steering angle. Using values calculated from the sensors, the Active Torque Control 4WD system selects one of the three control modes by switching torque from front to rear.

In addition, the driver has the possibility to lock the torque distribution to the 55:45 ratio by the 4WD LOCK mode switch.

Other standard control systems are hill-start assist control (HAC) which prevents the vehicle from rolling back on steep inclines and down hill assist control (DAC) which assists the driver by controlling wheel speed during steep descents (available with A/T only).

Front and rear suspensions have been completely redesigned to enhance stability and passenger comfort.

The front suspension utilises McPherson struts that have been completely re-designed from the lower arm to the coil springs and shock absorbers.

The rear suspension utilises a newly developed trailing type double wishbone suspension which offers improved vehicle stability by achieving lateral under-steering during cornering. and, because the shock absorber of the rear suspension has been positioned diagonally, luggage space width has been increased by 230 mm


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