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#1 Old 11-23-2012, 01:40 PM
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2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Review



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Toyota’s flagship sedan gets amped up
by Craig Cole

Toyota is the undisputed hybrid champ. Its Prius line is a household name, with buyers across the country fighting to purchase them like the last batch of Twinkies. But the company offers more economical automotive alternatives than just Prii. There’s an amped-up Highlander crossover as well as an electrified version of the ever-popular Camry. In an effort to leave no sliver of the market uncovered, the company is launching yet another hybrid with the 2013 Avalon.

This flagship sedan signals a bold, new direction for Toyota as the Japanese juggernaut is starting to deliver more passionate vehicles. The latest Avalon goes after younger buyers that want, in the words of Joel Fukumoto, a Product Education Manager at the University of Toyota, “less of a car that you ride in and more of a car that you drive.”

CURB APPEAL

“You always want the feeling of the sketch to be put in the real product,” said Miljan Jevremovic, Exterior Designer at Toyota and beaming father of the new, fourth-generation Avalon. He’s responsible for the initial drawing that became the basis of the car’s design.

Previous versions of the Avalon were about as exciting as a podiatrist’s waiting room. Breaking with this tradition, the 2013 model is strikingly similar to Jeremovic’s drawing. His idea survived the arduous product-development gauntlet making it from pen and paper to steel and stampings. He describes his initial illustration as “loose and fun;” it was something he quickly created at the end of a long day. The fact that his sketch got chosen out of hundreds of other drawings is a monumental achievement for a designer in his mid 20s. The fact that the company went with such a decisive look for the car is no less significant.
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#2 Old 11-25-2012, 01:17 AM
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That looks great from that angle. Still not a fan of the huge lower grill but it looks less offensive from this angle. Other than that I love the lines, much improved over all other Avalons IMO. I've never liked any of the previous gens.

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#3 Old 11-25-2012, 08:02 AM
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I saw a load of these being trucked down the highway the other day. I really like the front-end. In fact, I think it's the best looking part of the exterior.

The only thing I think Toyota should have done is tweek the power for marketing reasons. The 2.7 AR could have easily been adopted to the hybrid system...given that it's nothing more than a slightly punched version of the 2.5 AR. That would have given the Avalon a tad more power. The 2GR V6 already puts out over 270 HP in the Lexus line, so bumping the power would've been easy.

My point is....if someone drops $40K on an Avalon, they may want their car to have "more power" than their neighbor's $25K Camry. Just my opinion.

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#4 Old 11-25-2012, 11:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Billiam View Post
I saw a load of these being trucked down the highway the other day. I really like the front-end. In fact, I think it's the best looking part of the exterior.

The only thing I think Toyota should have done is tweek the power for marketing reasons. The 2.7 AR could have easily been adopted to the hybrid system...given that it's nothing more than a slightly punched version of the 2.5 AR. That would have given the Avalon a tad more power. The 2GR V6 already puts out over 270 HP in the Lexus line, so bumping the power would've been easy.

My point is....if someone drops $40K on an Avalon, they may want their car to have "more power" than their neighbor's $25K Camry. Just my opinion.
But most people know they're both Camrys

The Avalon suprisingly doesn't weigh that much more than the camry so thats probably why they stuck the same powertrain in it, plus its cheaper that way.
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#5 Old 11-25-2012, 02:29 PM
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But most people know they're both Camrys
Maybe around here they do. But the average consumer probably as no clue of the mechanical similarities.

It does seem that the actual platforms have begun to move away from one another some though. The new ES dumps the Camry platform for the new Avalon's in hopes of gaining a bit of size.

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#6 Old 11-25-2012, 04:44 PM
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Its nice to see a hybrid version not uglified. It still looks good. Yes I agree this Avalon has more character lines which is and isn't saying much but its nice. Partial to the front but overall nice looking car. Of course i have to see it in person to see it really pop.

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#7 Old 11-26-2012, 01:44 AM
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The front end in real life videos of the Avalon moving around and of the car in general looks great. I was weary of it from certain angles in the press shots, but it takes on a completely different character in real life. This is easily the best Toyota brand sedan for the US market in at least 8 years. It completely overshadows the Camry.

Also interesting to note, and kind of funny, but the Avalon V6 gets 1 MPG better highway than the Camry V6 does; 31 vs 30 HWY.

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#8 Old 02-21-2013, 02:53 PM
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CR: 2013 Toyota Avalon offers a luxurious cabin, but not a Lexus ride

http://autos.yahoo.com/news/2013-toy...183000176.html
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2013 Toyota Avalon offers a luxurious cabin, but not a Lexus ride

In redesigning the large Avalon sedan for 2013, Toyota spiced up the proven recipe by mixing in a bit more Lexus-like cabin luxury. But it didn't get the dynamic flavor quite right.

Always packaged and marketed as a sedan for older drivers, Avalons were known for a spacious interiors, a comfortable ride, and pampering amenities. For 2013, Toyota sought to broaden the Avalon's appeal, creating a bit more engaging driving experience and some of the latest cockpit technologies. (See our sedan buying guide.)

Thus far, we have slightly mixed feelings about the success of this approach. We're currently testing two Limited models, a V6 and a hybrid. Both priced over $40,000. By now, we've logged hundreds of miles and our impressions are still solidifying, as the sedans begin their formal testing.

While trying to make the car sportier to drive, Toyota didn't get the balance quite right. The steering is no longer super light, nor the ride floaty. But the handling isn't good enough that you'd want to hustle the car down twisty roads. Worse yet, the ride is harsh and abrupt with the 18-inch wheels. We favor the 17-inchers on our hybrid model. Dynamically, the Avalon is sending mixed signals.

But there is much to like about this sedan. In fact, the interior has stepped it up, with rich materials and fine design touches. There's lots of room inside and you get a comfortable cabin for transporting full-fledged adults. Bluetooth connectivity and touch-screen interface may add some tech appeal, but we could do without the trendy flush buttons for some controls.

There is much to like about the redesigned Avalon, but thus far, our testers are wishing for a bit more suspension refinement. Score one for Lexus luxury but it's penalized for a very un-Lexuslike ride.

CR hates cars with low profile tires it seems.
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#9 Old 02-21-2013, 04:34 PM
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Proven recipe? CR seems to think there was nothing wrong with the previous Avalons and that this car is selling in the same league as Camrys and Corollas. The Avalon team knows full well this car is their absolute last chance at this segment. Sticking with the same demographic, being the elderly, would've ensured this car would've been axed.

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#10 Old 02-21-2013, 05:02 PM
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2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Review

I rented a 13 from work over the weekend and I loved it and let my grandparents and parents drive it. All were impressed by it and the grandparents have a 10 Limited and didn't say anything about the ride being worse, nor did I think it was. Toyota has a huge winner with this car. The old models slow sales are proof the market changed.


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#11 Old 02-21-2013, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 84Cressida View Post
I rented a 13 from work over the weekend and I loved it and let my grandparents and parents drive it. All were impressed by it and the grandparents have a 10 Limited and didn't say anything about the ride being worse, nor did I think it was. Toyota has a huge winner with this car. The old models slow sales are proof the market changed.


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Are they planning on switching out of their 10 to this gen? Plus ride comfort is generally an area Toyota doesn't really get wrong. Every modern Toyota I've driven has been pretty good from the lowly Yaris to the ES have been really soft, a bit too soft in some cases. Heck I found even the FRS to be a pleasant ride on comfort, whereas I still find my sister's Civic uncomfortable and a ride in an RSX headache inducing. If this was a Honda or Chrysler product I'm a bit more inclined to believe about bad ride.

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#12 Old 02-21-2013, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 84Cressida View Post
I rented a 13 from work over the weekend and I loved it and let my grandparents and parents drive it. All were impressed by it and the grandparents have a 10 Limited and didn't say anything about the ride being worse, nor did I think it was. Toyota has a huge winner with this car. The old models slow sales are proof the market changed.
what trim levels are you renting at the E?
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#13 Old 02-22-2013, 03:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jegan_V View Post
Are they planning on switching out of their 10 to this gen? Plus ride comfort is generally an area Toyota doesn't really get wrong. Every modern Toyota I've driven has been pretty good from the lowly Yaris to the ES have been really soft, a bit too soft in some cases. Heck I found even the FRS to be a pleasant ride on comfort, whereas I still find my sister's Civic uncomfortable and a ride in an RSX headache inducing. If this was a Honda or Chrysler product I'm a bit more inclined to believe about bad ride.
Their '10 only has 27,000 miles on it and they usually keep a car 7 years or so, so barring anything happen to this one it will be awhile before they get a 4th Gen.

I agree that smoothness is a trait Toyota has always done well. I thought the car was very smooth and comfortable. Perhaps the suspension is ever so slightly stiffer, but it may just be me trying to perceive it as such simply because everyone has said it's stiffer than the Gen 3. My grandparents didn't notice any difference and my dad said it drives better than his Camry. This is a smooth car no matter how it's sliced, so those who think it's now suddenly a freight train really are over-exaggerating. I also noticed body roll is significantly better. Steering feel wasn't too bad either, I want to try a Limited with the bigger wheels and the sport mode to see the differences.

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#14 Old 02-22-2013, 03:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by got-rice View Post
what trim levels are you renting at the E?
This was an XLE, which is the base model. Toyota almost never sends higher trim levels other than the base to rental fleets. Camry SE and Corolla S occasionally along with their LE models is about it. The XLE Avalon has standard leather, heated seats, display audio and is pretty nicely equipped. About the only thing I wished it had was Entune and backup camera (my grandma REALLY needs that on her '10), but I used the BT Audio pretty much the entire time and loved it.

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#15 Old 02-22-2013, 07:53 AM
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The New Avalon: A roomier and more reliable Ford Fusion.

They could've made the base price lower if it comes with cloth seats and I'm sure most people wouldn't complain.
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