LA Auto Show: We Talk The Toyota RAV4, V6 Engines, And EVs With Toyota

Toyota Rav4 EV Photo courtesy of Toyota

I managed to catch Toyota’s Environmental Communications Manager, Jana Hartline, while her Rav4 EV was out being tested, and we had a lovely chat about Toyota’s plans for the future. As the full range vehicle manufacturer with the highest fleet MPG, they know a thing or two about building efficient vehicles.

Here’s the full interview, straight from the show floor.

There were a few things not in the video interview that I thought also bore mentioning. For example, Toyota knows how to pick their partners, as their partnership with Tesla has resulted in the exceptional Rav4 EV. I also asked Jana why the V6 motor being discontinued for the new Rav4.

We had an interesting discussion about this off camera, as my photographer had driven us to the show in her brand new 4 cylinder Mazda SUV. It appears across the industry there’s a move toward putting smaller motors into the small SUV’s like the Rav4. Kat explained she’d bought hers because she needed the storage space of an SUV, liked the height, but wanted better MPG. Apparently, she’s not alone, and had many 4-cylinder SUV’s to choose from. So Toyota’s discontinuation of the V6 RAV4 was right in line with the rest of the industry.

Check out my whole interview for more discussion on Toyota’s sustainable future.



Susanna Schick

Susanna is passionate about anything fast and electric. As long as it's only got two wheels. She covers electric motorcycle racing events, test rides electric motorcycles, and interviews industry leaders. Occasionally she deigns to cover automobile events in Los Angeles for us as well. However, she dreams of a day when Los Angeles' streets resemble the two-wheeled paradise she discovered living in Barcelona and will not rest until she's converted the masses to two-wheeled bliss.