Toyota RAV4 Prime experiences production shortage, report says

The plug-in hybrid is already getting people excited, but battery production issues may put a damper on that for many.

Kyle Hyatt Former news and features editor
Kyle Hyatt (he/him/his) hails originally from the Pacific Northwest, but has long called Los Angeles home. He's had a lifelong obsession with cars and motorcycles (both old and new).
Kyle Hyatt
2 min read
2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime

These hot-rod PHEVs are gonna be a little thin on the ground at first.

Craig Cole/Roadshow

is a much more exciting car than you might think -- it's the second-quickest car in Toyota's lineup and puts out over 300 horsepower. The RAV4 Prime is also pretty damned efficient, which our man Craig Cole recently found out. Those things combined and put into a crossover mean that the RAV4 Prime is destined for sales greatness, right?

Well, maybe not so much, but not because people aren't trying to buy them. See, according to a report published Friday by Car and Driver, Toyota is having supply problems. The Japanese carmaker originally planned to build 5,000 RAV4 Primes to the US during its initial production year. That's not a lot, given that the RAV4 typically sells in the hundreds of thousands per year, but it's looking like Toyota will struggle to produce even that many.

Why? Batteries, my friend. Toyota has encountered "unforeseen battery supply constraints," according to Toyota spokesperson Nicky Hamila. It's not entirely clear where in the supply chain the problem is, but what is clear is that many people considering a RAV4 Prime this year are going to be disappointed.

That's especially true if those folks live in non-Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) states. Toyota plans to shift the delivery of Primes to states like California to meet fleet emissions targets there. Plus, even if you do live in a ZEV state, there's no telling whether your dealer will try and mark its allotted Primes up to make a quick buck. It happens.

What we're trying to say is that if you were really hoping for a plug-in hybrid crossover to end up in your driveway this year, you're likely going to have to look elsewhere or just wait until next year.

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