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Newly designed 2019 RAV4 highlighted at Findlay Toyota

In a region of the nation dominated by outdoor recreation, the 2019 Toyota RAV4 has answered the call since arriving at Findlay Toyota in the Valley Automall.

Priced from about $25,500 and touting fuel ratings of about 26 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway, the new RAV4 boasts major updates that include a new chassis and a new look.

A crossover sport utility vehicle, the RAV4 debuted several months ago before its recent arrival at the dealership. Longer and wider than the 2018 RAV4, the vehicle is 57 percent stiffer and sits a half-inch higher than the previous model.

A peppy four-cylinder power plant produces 203 horsepower paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard front-wheel drive with two optional all-wheel-drive systems available.

The RAV4 offers five trim levels with LE, XLE, XLE Premium, Adventure and Limited packages.

A hybrid model is also available.

Among the high points available with the 2019 RAV4 is direct-shift eight-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission; three distinctive drive modes trailer RAV4’s driving dynamics; Entune 3.0 Audio Plus including six speakers; 8-inch touch screen; and hands-free phone capability and music.

Dealership fleet manager Charlie Thrash said the response to the new RAV4 has been very good.

“It’s been super strong,” said Thrash, a 55-year veteran of the car business. “Our customers want an SUV-type of vehicle without the size of a regular SUV. They want something comfortable that handles city driving as well as off-road.

“It’s been completely redesigned and includes all of the safety features that Toyota offers. A lot of people have owned a RAV4 before, so they know that they’re getting even more with the latest model.”

Dealership new car manager Kody Grady, a 20-year veteran of the car business, added that the new RAV4 has filled many needs for today’s car buyer.

“Toyota does its homework, and the new RAV4 is an example of that,” said Grady. “This particular vehicle gives you the utility of an SUV along with the amenities of a high-line sedan.”

Antwaun Bynum, who has been in the car business for nearly 14 years, actually played a big role in the addition of rear air conditioning in upgraded RAV4 models.

“I suggested to the Toyota design team that the RAV4 was in need of rear air, especially in the Southwest,” he said. “The team listened to me and the rear air has been a huge benefit.”

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