Chicago motor show - OK, it’s only for the North American market, but the 2018 Rav4 Adventure, shown for the first time at Chicago and on sale in the United States from September, is an interesting take on what can be done with what is actually quite a 'mild' crossover, given a little imagination and some aftermarket plastics.

The brief, says Toyota, was to give it a “sportier, take-me-anywhere attitude for the weekend”. So the Rav4 has black 18” rims on a mild suspension lift, black plastic wheel-arch and body trims, and blacked-out headlight surrounds, foglight housings and roof rails.

Inside, it has special trim panels, floor mats and sill plates, as well as a 120 volt power outlet in the cargo bay.

Mechanically, it’s bog standard, with the same 132kW / 233Nm 2.5-litre petrol four as in the local Rav4 VX, but with a six-speed auto transmission and either front-wheel or all-wheel drive.

It does however, come with the optional Tow Prep package, which comprises an upgraded radiator and coolers for oil and transmission fluid, the better to cope with the extra heat generated by towing of playtoys such as quads and jet-skis out to your favourite playgrounds.

IOL Motoring

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