A fully electric Toyota RAV4 is on its way, and 11 wants us to know it will be available to everyone. The automaker announced that recent reports stating the RAV4 EV will only be available to fleets are incorrect, confirming the plug-in SUV will in fact be available to the general public.
According to a short statement from the automaker, the RAV4 EV will arrive in the US market during 2012, along with another fully-electric plug-in, the tiny Scion iQ EV. Toyota says the RAV4 EV will be offered for sale to the general public, while the iQ EV will be the plug-in Toyota marketed specifically to fleet and car sharing programs.
"Toyota is the only manufacturer bringing two battery electric vehicles to the market in 2012," according to the automaker's statement. "We anticipate robust public interest in the RAV4 EV and are keen to inform consumers that their future vehicle options include a battery electric Toyota."
The all-electric RAV4 is the first vehicle to benefit from Toyota's recent acquisition of a $50 million stake in Tesla, well-known for producing the fully-electric, high-performance Tesla Roadster. The RAV4 EV will take advantage of Tesla's unique battery pack architecture, which combines dozens of laptop batteries to create one large battery pack.
While an example of the RAV4 EV was shown at last year's Los Angeles Auto Show, Toyota has yet to release many specifics about the SUV. According to early reports, prototypes utilized 660-pound battery packs and could travel up to 120 miles on a single charge, but the automaker hasn't announced further details about final production models. Pricing and availability are also still unknown.