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Hello Fellow Avalon Owners,

I am writing to you to ask for a small –but very important--favor.

We all have something in common: We all looked at various cars and decided that the Toyota Avalon was the car we wanted only to find out (too late) after buying it that the front seats were soooo uncomfortable during long rides (especially driver’s side!). Many of us (my husband and myself included) did not notice the lack of adequate padding during our test drives, as the lack of padding does not show up until you have driven the car for at least 45 minutes or more.

Now we feel stuck, with no where to turn. We’re frustrated, as we’ve spent our hard earned dollars on this car, only to be sorely disappointed by the seats.

So today, my husband called Toyota and registered the seat complaint, establishing a formal case number with Toyota. The Toyota phone rep stated that new cases are reviewed on a monthly basis. If there are “sufficient numbers” of similar complaints on a common problem, Toyota will then create a Special Service Campaign to rectify the problem.

This is where I need a small favor. If you have not yet contacted Toyota and gotten a formal case number for your Avalon seat issue, I am asking that you do so ASAP. It only takes a few minutes. The more us that report this problem, and do it quickly, the better! If Toyota sees several of these complaints all happening at once, we have a much better shot at getting our beautiful cars fixed so that we can enjoy them the way we thought we would!!! There’s obviously no guarantee, but if we do nothing, then Toyota will never know they have problem. Can you help???

I have included the Toyota contact info below from their web site. When you call, they will likely ask you for your vehicle identification number (VIN), which is the quickest way for them to identify you and your Avalon. If you don’t have this, they can still identify you and your car, it will just take a bit longer.

CustomerExperienceCenter

Phone: 800-331-4331
Fax: 310-468-7814
Mon - Fri, 5:00 am - 6:00 pm PST
Sat, 7:00 am - 4:00 pm PST

Or send correspondence to:
Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
19001 South Western Ave.
Dept. WC11
Torrance, CA 90501

 

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2011 Avalon
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Discussion Starter #22
Good work, Cathy. I am on board and will contact Toyota tomorrow to establish my case number.
 

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'13 TAH & '10 FJC
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Cathy,

I would love to help; however, after reading about some people's complaints regarding the '11 Avy Ltd seats, I kept trying to get mine to be uncomfortable; however, neither my wife nor I have noticed it at all. Maybe it is an inconsistent issue?

Ours are comfortable for long trips, without question.

Maybe they changed something as ours was an early build?:confused: (We also got Michelin tires and we noticed that the later builds got Bridgestones....)
 

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Could it be that they take out some of the paddings so that the heat or air could get distributed to the seat cover, then to the driver faster? Trading a little comfort on padding for comfort in temperature. Lose one to gain another? But anyway, I'd love to have more padding instead of the hard feeling. Temp can gain up once the car warm/cool up/down. But the seat won't get any more comfortable over time. Ten years down the road when the padding start to wear down, we'll be sitting on metal tubes and leather cover only. So, I'll file a complaint too. Not looking to get any benefit out of this, but hopefully Toyota would take better note when building future cars.
 

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Every Toyota
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I'm really suprised as the Avalon has been a GODSEND for my back. Coming from my BMW 5 Series, this car has to have the most comfortable seat I have ever sat on. I've driven just about every car made, this is more of a seat that you sit on than in but I love it. I honestly could not find any bar problem even on a drive to Florida couple weeks ago. And I'm pretty picky about seats too, as a rule of thumb I wont drive in a Honda because of the hard seats. Or the Matrix which has a weird seating position I cant handle.
 

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^Complete opposite for me.

I would says its the driver's seat that is uncomfortable. Passenger is a little better, and rear seats are fine. Nothing special.
 

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Cathy, I took your suggestion and registered a complaint today. I have had my 2011 base Avalon for 3 weeks now and I do not enjoy driving it. My coccyx and butt start hurting almost instantaneously when I get behind the wheel. I think there are a few things going on. There is definitely a problem in the seat back where it meets the seat cushion. It does not taper in like other car seats, but rather has excessive padding. Perhaps that is an attempt to shield the metal bar that others have mentioned. Also, the seat back has inadequate padding. That makes it flat and hard without the lumbar support and just down right painful with it on. Lastly, the seat cushion is too flat and hard. I, like everyone else, missed all this on my test drive.
 

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2013 Corolla
2013 Corolla
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I just took my 2nd 2000 mile trip in the 4 mos that I have the car and I gotta say I had no discomfort whatsoever. I have the 06 limited with heated/cooled seats and I weigh 240lb.
 

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'07 Avalon Limited
'07 Avalon Ltd
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I just took my 2nd 2000 mile trip in the 4 mos that I have the car and I gotta say I had no discomfort whatsoever. I have the 06 limited with heated/cooled seats and I weigh 240lb.
How many miles on your car?
 

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Avalon Driver Seat Discomfort

I got 2011 Avalon base last November during the Thanksgiving Day sale.
Now the current mileage is about 5000. The seat in the Avalon is rather firm, which is good for support but initial feeling is not so cushy.

I had 02 Accord EX-V6, which had really uncomfortable seats, hence traded in for Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Jeep's cloth seat was so so kind, and the acceleration was painfully slow.

So, I traded in the Jeep for 2011 Avalon. After few hundred of miles, the seat comfort was not superb, but I figured the seat needed a break-in period.

Later, I figured out that I was sitting too low and too far from the pedals.
I increased the height of the seat for about 2 inches, roughly the same height as the front passenger's seat. Also moved the seat closer to the pedals that my right knee was about 3 inches from the lower dash board.

I even fiddled around with a digital torpedo to adjust the angle of the seat.
I found 15.2 degree was a good comfort angle for my specific body.

I really hate to go place where the valet parking is required since those valet guys always mess up my seat setting. My Avalon base does not have
the seat memory. The base model's seat is not ventilated; no fans, no underneath plumbing. But it is heated. I don't need that heating seat option since I am in California.

Also adjusting the steering wheel was another issue. I found out that my steering wheel was set too low and close to the dashboard instrument.

After all these attempts, comfort level has increased. However, I believe the seat needs more cushioning materials; maybe a layer of memory foams?

Another issue is that wearing different pants makes comfort level fluctuations. Wearing low rise jean or tight fitting pants deteriorates comfort level. Wearing the sweat pants ensues the best comfort level.


I am 5'8", 170 lbs.
 

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Yhese forums are great. I always join several related to the ccars I am considering well before making a purchase. I'll be sure to evaluate the seats on an extensive test drive. By two brief drives did not reveal any seat problems but now i will look just to be sure. I bought a new Beretta in '87 in my 20s and that seat was so bad I felt like my upper back/lower neck would explode. Never before or since have I experienced that with any car.
 

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Nothings better!
05 Avalon,2 4runners
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I’ve got a BMW 740i that was $40,000 more than the Avalon new and the only difference as far as luxury goes is the head rest is really soft in the Bimmer besides that the seat is actually a lot harder and much less comfortable than the Avalon’s. Kind of makes me wonder where that extra money went. (That was kind of off topic:rolleyes:)
 

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Yes but Bimmer offers the comfort seat option where the upper 1/4 of the seat cradles forward and supports the shoulders in ecstasy. i wish more manufacturers offered the shoulder support. The spine curves unlike the seatback which has a fixed angle, the only way to cradle the spine is to folloe the curve with the upper seat adjustment. Tilting the head rest forward is not adequate. This does not address a hard bottom.
 

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I feel your pain. I used to own a 2008 Toyota Camry and had the same issue. After 20min of driving I could feel a metal pole across my back. After some investigation I found out that this metal piece is inface the lumbar support bar. No matter how much to try to adjust it, it won't go back far enough. I took the car to a seat shop and he pulled the bar out for me and added extra padding. This stopped the issue you are talking about, however 2 weeks later i started getting lower back pain so I gave up on the car and ended up selling it. I have a 2006 corolla which does not have any lumbar support in the seat, I find it so much more comfortable than the camry / avalon seats.
 

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Painful seats

I am a 5'11" 190lb owner of a 2011 Avalon. It now has 15K miles and the last 3K miles has been a nightmare of discomfort. It took about 6 months of driving before the seat discomfort became obvious. In spite of all the controls, compressor and what not, I cannot make that seat comfortable. I have been to the doctor several times over the past two months with "sitting bone pain" and his answer is to prescribe pain medication. Finally it dawned on me that it could be my new car.... It now feels like permanent bruising. Right now (after my one hour commute) I really regret trading my TL for this Avalon.
 

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2011 Avalon Limited
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I am a 5'11" 190lb owner of a 2011 Avalon. It now has 15K miles and the last 3K miles has been a nightmare of discomfort. It took about 6 months of driving before the seat discomfort became obvious. In spite of all the controls, compressor and what not, I cannot make that seat comfortable. I have been to the doctor several times over the past two months with "sitting bone pain" and his answer is to prescribe pain medication. Finally it dawned on me that it could be my new car.... It now feels like permanent bruising. Right now (after my one hour commute) I really regret trading my TL for this Avalon.
I hope that doesn't happen to me. I'm 5'10" around 210. I have just over 10,000 miles on my 2011 so far. Heading out next month on another long road trip but not as long as my drive to Utah in may.
 

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I find comfort in my 07 is to have the seat far enough where my knee are barely bent. My knee is a little higher then my hips and the back is adjusted to where my elbows are a little bent when reaching for the steering wheel (might have to adjust the steering wheel too).
 

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Dealer to check the seats

The seat discomfort has become extreme so I contacted Toyota who will track the case. A local dealer will check the seats to confirm if they are operating as expected. I have been sitting on a 3" gel cushion for a month. My hope is that the seats are faulty or that somehow the cooling mechanism can be extracted as the alternative is to "take a bath" and buy a better fitting car.
 
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