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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Toyota Rav4 Prime have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW i3 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.
For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Toyota Rav4 Prime 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 i3 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.
The Rav4 Prime has a standard Secondary Collision Brake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The i3 doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Rav4 Prime XSE offers optional Rear Cross-Traffic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The i3 doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
The Rav4 Prime has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The i3 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.
The Rav4 Prime’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The i3 doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Rav4 Prime XSE offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The i3 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.
To help make backing safer, the Rav4 Prime’s 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 i3 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
Both the Rav4 Prime and the i3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
The Toyota Rav4 Prime weighs 926 to 1328 pounds more than the BMW i3. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
Toyota’s powertrain warranty covers the Rav4 Prime 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the i3. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the i3 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 Prime’s warranty.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 14 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 7th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota third in reliability. BMW is ranked 17th.
The Rav4 Prime’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 132 more horsepower (302 vs. 170) than the i3 REx’s standard electric motor. The Rav4 Prime’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 118 more horsepower (302 vs. 184) than the i3s’ standard electric motor.
On the EPA test cycle the Rav4 Prime running its gasoline engine gets better fuel mileage than the i3 running its gasoline engine (40 city/36 hwy vs. 30 city/31 hwy).
The Rav4 Prime has 12.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the i3 Range Extender (14.5 vs. 2.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
For better stopping power the Rav4 Prime’s brake rotors are larger than those on the i3:
For better traction, the Rav4 Prime has larger standard tires than the i3 (225/60R18 vs. 155/60R20). The Rav4 Prime XSE’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the i3 (235/55R19 vs. 175/55R20).
The Rav4 Prime SE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the i3’s standard 70 series front tires.
The Rav4 Prime has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the i3; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.
The Rav4 Prime has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Rav4 Prime flat and controlled during cornering. The i3’s suspension doesn’t offer stabilizer bars.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Rav4 Prime’s wheelbase is 4.7 inches longer than on the i3 (105.9 inches vs. 101.2 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Rav4 Prime is .7 inches wider in the front and 1.7 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the i3.
The Rav4 Prime has standard seating for 5 passengers; the i3 can only carry 4.
The Rav4 Prime has 15.3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the i3 (98.9 vs. 83.6).
The Rav4 Prime has .5 inches more front legroom, 4.2 inches more front shoulder room, 2.3 inches more rear headroom, 5.9 inches more rear legroom and 7.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the i3.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Rav4 Prime’s rear seats recline. The i3’s rear seats don’t recline.
The Rav4 Prime has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the i3 with its rear seat up (33.5 vs. 15.1 cubic feet). The Rav4 Prime has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the i3 with its rear seat folded (69.8 vs. 36.9 cubic feet).
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Rav4 Prime has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button or, optionally on the Rav4 Prime XSE, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The i3 doesn’t offer a power trunk.
The Rav4 Prime has a 2500 lbs. towing capacity. The i3 has no towing capacity.
The Rav4 Prime has a much higher standard payload capacity than the i3 (1295 vs. 814 lbs.).
The Rav4 Prime has a standard 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 i3 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
The Rav4 Prime’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children from operating them, but the driver can still raise and lower all of them with the lock engaged. BMW does not offer a locking feature on the i3’s standard power windows.
To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Rav4 Prime has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the i3 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Rav4 Prime detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The i3 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Rav4 Prime has standard extendable sun visors. The i3 doesn’t offer extendable visors.
Both the Rav4 Prime and the i3 have standard heated front seats. The Rav4 Prime also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the i3.
Optional air-conditioned seats in the Rav4 Prime XSE keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The i3 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Rav4 Prime’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The i3 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
The Rav4 Prime has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable and it can provide a boundary between children. The i3 doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.
The Rav4 Prime’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The i3 doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Rav4 Prime XSE/Limited offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The i3 doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
The Rav4 Prime XSE offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet in the cargo area, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The i3 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.
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