Toyota is working with satellite-television provider DirecTV on hyper-targeting TV advertising for the automaker's RAV4 electric vehicle in an effort to more efficiently boost sales for the limited-volume model, Bloomberg News reports. DirecTV run RAV4 EV ads specifically in the Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco, where the SUV is sold, and may further be able to hone in on potential buyers based on information from credit cards and other sources of subscriber data. The broadcaster will be able to target such ads at about 12 million customers. DirecTV controls about two minutes per hour of airtime on 46 cable channels, or about one-seventh of what networks control per hour.

Toyota has been looking to sell more RAV4 EVs, recently cutting monthly lease rates for those lucky enough to sign on during certain dates to $299 a month, or half the standard monthly rate of $599. The model can go as far as 100 miles on a single charge and has a drivetrain and battery designed by Model S maker Tesla Motors. The SUV retails for $49,800. Through August, Toyota sold just 748 RAV4 EVs. Check out Autoblog's Quick Spin of the RAV4 EV here.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 7 Comments
      noevfud
      • 1 Year Ago
      They sure are wasting money as they should sell them all in time. Just take the ad money and apply it to more rebates, they are selling at a decent pace and I could not help but get one in place of my LEAF.
      paulwesterberg
      • 1 Year Ago
      If Toyota would expand the sales region beyond California they would not need to advertise at all.
        brotherkenny4
        • 1 Year Ago
        @paulwesterberg
        I am totally befuddled by Toyotas actions on the plug-ins. They developed the Prius, a risky high upfront dollar vehicle with huge development costs and which was not profitable for many years, and yet they apparently buy into the "EVs are just for compliance" mantra of all the rest of the antiquated car companies. What give? Anyone have a theory? And don't give me the standard "range anxiety", "no charging infrastructure" "cost too much" bull tweed, that the minions of oil and wealth spew prolifically out into the consumer control media. We know how cost/price and technology improve when a market gets to a critical size.
          Michael Walsh
          • 2 Days Ago
          @brotherkenny4
          But Spec, we all know conventional hybrids ARE passe. Toyota seem to be the only ones who can't come to grips with that. Although I suppose there is still a limited market with apartment dwellers with inconvenient or no places to plug in.
          Spec
          • 2 Days Ago
          @brotherkenny4
          The answer is in your question. Now that the Prius is finally a popular and profitable car line they want to milk it instead quickly jumping into a new unprofitable and not very popular yet market. If they were to jump with two feet into EVs, that could be perceived as a tacit admission that conventional hybrids are now passe.
        raktmn
        • 2 Days Ago
        @paulwesterberg
        It is purely a compliance car that they have announced they will cease producing after 3 years of limited small number production. In fact, they have announced the exact number they will build before they cease building them. Their problem is that they don't really want to sell very many, just enough to meet the part of the ZEV mandate that cannot be fulfilled by the plug-in Prius. So selling outside of California is completely out of the question. They have announced that they will be replacing the RAV4 EV with a fuel cell vehicle. To make it worse, if you read the RAV4 EV boards, it appears that Toyota doesn't seem to want to fix any of the known problems that owners complain about. They even sell/lease them without the latest software updates.
          raktmn
          • 2 Days Ago
          @raktmn
          I should revise the "outside of California" to "outside of any ZEV mandate states", because it looks like more states are going to adopt California's ZEV mandate program in the future.