By Alex Leanse – MotorTrend
Straight to the trails in Toyota’s rally-inspired compact crossover.
You love exploring the great outdoors, but you need a proper vehicle to make it happen. Problem is, the overlanding rigs you see on Instagram are too big, too expensive, and too impractical for your everyday life. You’re in luck: The ruggedized compact crossover niche is blowing up like a campfire marshmallow. Entrants include the Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk, Jeep Compass Trailhawk, Jeep Renegade Trailhawk, the forthcoming Ford Bronco Sport, as well as two versions of the Toyota RAV4: the Adventure trim, and the TRD Off-Road. That’s right, two RAV4s.
The latest in Toyota’s range of trail-ready entries is based on its ultra-popular small SUV. The 2020 RAV4 TRD Off-Road shares its ride height, clearance angles, all-wheel-drive powertrain, and most features with the Adventure. Then what makes the TRD spec special? A “rally-inspired” suspension setup, wheels wrapped in proper off-road tires, and a few intention-signaling badges. Is it any more off-road ready than the Adventure? Even Toyota isn’t sure. So we made it our mission to find out.