2020 Toyota Wildlander Is China’s RAV4 With Half A Lexus Spindle Grille

GAC-Toyota has just unveiled a new SUV model dubbed Wildlander, which can be easily identified as a restyled Toyota RAV4. However, the styling is significantly different, at both ends.

While nobody’s going to confuse the Wildlander with a Lexus, its front fascia does sort of feature half, if not 3/4 of a Spindle grille, like the ones we’re familiar with when it comes to the likes of the ES, UX, RX, NX, LC and so on.

According to Auto163, the Toyota Wildlander also features Matrix LED headlights, which are sleeker than the ones in the 2020 RAV4, re-positioned fog lights, a new bumper design, and brand new taillights as well (more horizontal) that occupy more space on the tailgate.

Buyers will be able to opt between two available powertrains. First, there is a 170 HP 2.0-liter naturally aspirated gasoline model and a 219 HP 2.5-liter hybrid version. The former will work alongside a CVT gearbox, while the hybrid will utilize an E-CVT setup with available ECO, Normal and Sport modes.

Should we make a bigger deal of the Spindle Grille?

Probably, yes, and for two reasons. First, it’s clear that Toyota feels as though Lexus visuals work just as well on their models – something that was evident from the design of the 2020 Toyota Avalon too. However, whether the RAV4 looks better with an incomplete Spindle grille as opposed to its current nose design, we’ll let you decide.

Another reason why this redesign needs to be addressed is because it may very well represent Toyota’s thinking with regards to what they’re going to do with the RAV4 when it comes to its global facelift, which is still at least a year or two away since the fifth-gen RAV4 was unveiled just last year.

Also read: 2021 Toyota RAV4 Plug-In Hybrid Teased, Debuts In Los Angeles

Sales for the new Toyota Wildlander are expected to commence before the end of this year.

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  • Matteo Tommasi

    For sure this is better than the turd is based on.

  • Kitty Pourquoi

    What’s with the duplicate pictures?

    • Joe

      Hybrid and non-hybrid models, based on the badging.

      • Kitty Pourquoi

        Ah yeah now I see it. Thanks.

  • Ben

    OMG! Its going into anaphylactic shock!

  • The front end doesn’t look cohesive with the rest of the vehicle.

  • JRP

    It looks like if the RAV4 had a previous model that needed a facelift.

    • Ben

      The RAV4 with the V6 was such a slept on vehicle. I’m surprised they’re not more popular in the used market. Would be a great vehicle for a college student or young professional.


    Chinese version= crap

  • Alduin

    Probably the USDM models face lift in several years. There’s too many sharp angles the same with what Hyundai did with the face lifted Elantra. Not a fan.

  • Roland Fairwater

    Taking the worst part of the Lexus NX (the front end) and using it to replace the best part of the new Rav4 (also the front end). Why this car exists is beyond me, but it’s not the first time a car has taken on a questionable alter ego for the Chinese market.

    If this is what the facelifted Rav4 looks like in a couple of years, it might be on par with the new Subaru Forester for hideousness.

    • Joe

      This car exists for one singular major reason: Toyota has 2 joint ventures in China. One is with Tianjin FAW, the other is with Guangzhou (GAC). This isn’t unusual either, as several large manufacturers have 2 or more JVs (Ford, Honda, Nissan, etc.).

      For some brands, their 2 JVs cover different sectors or brands. For example, Changan Ford is cars and crossovers while Jiangling Ford is 4x4s and vans. Shanghai VW has Skoda and VW, FAW-VW has Audi, Jetta and a mirrored VW lineup with plenty of differentiation (see models like the Tayron, Tharu, Lamando, etc).

      In the case of others though, the 2 JVs are essentially competing with each other and both want to offer the most competitive product, and so in most cases have to get by offering the same model as each other under different names. Often they’re restyled at least a bit, as is the case with the Dongfeng Honda CR-V and GAC Honda Breeze (a better example) and the example here, the FAW Toyota RAV4 and GAC Toyota Wildlander. In other lazier cases, they’re identical, such as the GAC Toyota C-HR and FAW Toyota Izoa, or use pre-existing different versions of the same model, like the FAW Toyota Corolla and the GAC Toyota Levin (which has the JDM Corolla’s nose instead). It’s often reported that both JVs get versions of the same model because if only one were to be favoured by receiving it, it would strain the partnership. Toyota’s JVs got by in the past with one offering the RAV4, and one offering the Highlander, but when RAV4 sales took off with the SUV boom but the Highlander’s didn’t, it left the other JV sour. It’s the same reason the Levin was added to counter-offer the Corolla.

  • Binbin90

    just like what Honda did with their CRV/Breeze. This looks okay-ish, not sure with the Wildlander name, also I think the Breeze looks better

  • MarketAndChurch

    That looks hideous, but it does Chinese, so I hope it does well over there.

  • AMG44

    Re tweaking the design for the Chinese taste

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