2012 Toyota RAV4 price, starts at $22,650 MSRP image

Toyota, the Japanese automaker, on Monday said the new 2012 RAV4 Compact SUV will start at $22,650 for the entry level four-cylinder 2WD model with a four-speed automatic transmission. The Limited V6 4WD RAV4 with a five-speed automatic transmission will cost $28,650.

The new CR-V beats the 2012 Chevrolet Equinox ($23,450) and 2011 Toyota RAV4 ($22,475) on entry-level pricing, and it comes with standard features, such as a backup camera, that the others don’t get.

The 2012 model is $100 more compared to the old model, but Toyota said the RAV4 will receive a new standard audio system that’s equipped with hands-free phone capability, phone book access and music streaming via Bluetooth wireless technology.

In addition, an optional 6.1-inch touch-screen infotainment is available.

One of the distinct features of RAV4 is its third row of seats; it is one of the only 7-passenger vehicles in its class. This will be the case in 2012, as will be the side-hinged tailgate and the size and shape of the passenger doors.

The 2012 Honda CR-V goes on sale this week at dealerships.