After back-to-back Japan Car of the Year (JCOTY) victories from Mazda (2015 and 2016) and Volvo (2017 and 2018) in the last four years, we now see a changing of the guard as the Toyota RAV4 wins the coveted title for 2019.
Toyota’s famous crossover garners 436 points in total, edging out no less than the Mazda 3 and the BMW 3-Series by a huge margin: The former gets 328 points while the latter has 290. The Toyota Corolla takes fourth place, with the Jaguar I-PACE following closely in fifth.
Bagging the JCOTY award is a big deal in and of itself, and beating other big-name brands and impressive models makes it all the more impressive. According to the JCOTY committee, the RAV4 has been awarded the win for its capable powertrain and versatile drivetrain options, plus the spacious cabin as an added bonus. In addition, the RAV4 is noted for having a data-communication module as standard while maintaining a reasonable price.
In our market, the RAV4 is powered by a 2.5-liter in-line-four gasoline engine that generates 203hp and 243Nm. All variants come with an eight-speed automatic transmission and only a 4x2 drivetrain.
What do you think? Would you take the Toyota RAV4 over the likes of the Mazda 3 and the BMW 3-Series?