2019 Toyota Rav4 Hybrid vs. 2019 BMW X1

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Toyota Rav4 Hybrid are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X1 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Rav4 Hybrid (except LE) offers optional Rear Cross-Traffic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The X1 doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Rav4 Hybrid. But it costs extra on the X1.

The Rav4 Hybrid Limited offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The X1 only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Rav4 Hybrid’s optional blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The X1 doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

To help make backing safer, the Rav4 Hybrid’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The X1 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Rav4 Hybrid and the X1 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems and rearview cameras.

Warranty

Toyota’s powertrain warranty covers the Rav4 Hybrid 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the X1. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the X1 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 4 times as many Toyota dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Rav4 Hybrid’s warranty.

Reliability

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. BMW is ranked 8th.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Rav4 Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the X1 xDrive28i (41 city/37 hwy vs. 22 city/31 hwy).

Transmission

The Rav4 Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The X1 doesn’t offer a CVT.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Rav4 Hybrid is 1.5 inches wider in the front and 2.1 inches wider in the rear than on the X1.

For better maneuverability, the Rav4 Hybrid’s turning circle is 1.3 feet tighter than the X1’s (36.1 feet vs. 37.4 feet).

For greater off-road capability the Rav4 Hybrid has a greater minimum ground clearance than the X1 (8.1 vs. 7.2 inches), allowing the Rav4 Hybrid to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

The front grille of the Rav4 Hybrid uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The X1 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Rav4 Hybrid has .6 inches more front legroom, 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, .1 inches more rear headroom, .8 inches more rear legroom and 1.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the X1.

Cargo Capacity

The Rav4 Hybrid has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the X1 with its rear seat up (37.6 vs. 27.1 cubic feet). The Rav4 Hybrid has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the X1 with its rear seat folded (69.8 vs. 58.7 cubic feet).

Payload and Towing

The Rav4 Hybrid has a 1750 lbs. towing capacity. The X1 has no towing capacity.

The Rav4 Hybrid has a much higher standard payload capacity than the X1 (1210 vs. 899 lbs.).

The Rav4 Hybrid has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the X1 (1210 vs. 900 lbs.).

Ergonomics

The Rav4 Hybrid offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The X1 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Rav4 Hybrid has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the X1 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The X1’s optional cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The Rav4 Hybrid Limited’s optional adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.

Both the Rav4 Hybrid and the X1 offer available heated front seats. The Rav4 Hybrid Limited also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the X1.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Rav4 Hybrid Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The X1 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

Recommendations

The Toyota Rav4 outsold the BMW X1 by almost 15 to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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