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The Gold Coast news bureau of regional television network NBN has just taken delivery of two Toyota RAV4 vehicles to serve as news gatherers.

Jim Sullivan, NBN News Director, says that the three-door RAV4s offer news crews a versatile and flexible news vehicle that is easier to park and provides a “go-anywhere” alternative to the usual station wagons.

“The RAV4 is quite a youthful style of car that suits the Gold Coast lifestyle, while it offers us practical benefits in traffic, with all-wheel drive ability and with its convenience for parking.”

“We will still need a station wagon for occasions when we need to carry extra people, but we decided we would go with something a little different to the industry standard for our other two news vehicles.

The switch to Toyota’s compact All-Wheel Drive comes after a long tradition of using station wagons as news vehicles.

“Our camera people were always asking us to get full-sized four-wheel drives but we have tried to avoid them due to the usual higher running costs - now those news crews are very excited about the prospect of getting into the RAV4s,” Jim explains.

“We estimate the running costs of the RAV4s will end up being slightly in front of the station wagons.”

The modern cameras used by NBN record directly to disc, making the kit more compact, and the ability to shoot in low light removes the need for bulky lighting equipment.

“News equipment has become progressively more space efficient, opening up access to more compact vehicles like the RAV4s” says Jim.

“The RAV4s will be crewed by a journalist and camera operator so we will always use them in two-seater mode - therefore load space is not an issue, even with a cargo barrier fitted.”

“With the back seats folded down, boot space is lineball with a station wagon anyway.”

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Television network NBN's new Toyota RAV 4 news vehicles on the Gold Coast.