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Our family just came back from a trip to British Columbia [from Northern California] and put a couple thousand miles on the car, a 2008. I did most of the driving and found that my right thigh would start to get uncomfortable after a few hours. I would use cruise when I could and try to stretch my leg and put it in different positions to alleviate the pain, which helped, but we got stuck in traffic for a couple hours near Seattle and I was unable to use this maneuver and the pain forced me to have to pull into rest stops and stretch repeatedly. I don't know if this is a related issue to the previous comments, but it is a concern with me.
While I think the seats are OK in this car, they don't slide back as far as I would like [I'm 5"11"] and are definitely not as good as the seats in my Saab.
 

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Our family just came back from a trip to British Columbia [from Northern California] and put a couple thousand miles on the car, a 2008. I did most of the driving and found that my right thigh would start to get uncomfortable after a few hours. I would use cruise when I could and try to stretch my leg and put it in different positions to alleviate the pain, which helped, but we got stuck in traffic for a couple hours near Seattle and I was unable to use this maneuver and the pain forced me to have to pull into rest stops and stretch repeatedly. I don't know if this is a related issue to the previous comments, but it is a concern with me.
While I think the seats are OK in this car, they don't slide back as far as I would like [I'm 5"11"] and are definitely not as good as the seats in my Saab.
What kind of shoes were you wearing? I have found that wearing cross training shoes causes my right thigh to cramp after a while and also causes a little lower back pain. I started wearing moccasin style shoes with no heels and never have that problem when wearing them. As far as the seat position, if I let my seat all the way back, I would have a hard time reaching the pedals and I'm 5' 10".
 

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Actually, I was wearing either low NB tennis shoes or Crocs [which I would remove while driving and] The driver specific shoes or moccasins sound interesting, but not an intuitive answer, but I might consider it for the next long drive if I find some at a good price
 

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Actually, I was wearing either low NB tennis shoes or Crocs [which I would remove while driving and] The driver specific shoes or moccasins sound interesting, but not an intuitive answer, but I might consider it for the next long drive if I find some at a good price
I come from the school of improvise, adapt and overcome. I overcame the discomfort by switching shoes. It works well for me. Driving without shoes is uncomfortable for me but not as bad as shoes with thick heels are. These are the ones I wear.

http://www.menswearhouse.com/shop/p_l.b.-evans-tan-slippers_12001_700000444_12751_700070913_-1_700000444_____noSpecialSizes
 

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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.
The fan in the cushion of the seat can be removed as I have built about 100,000 of those seats.

For those feeling something around your lower back well it could be a couple different things, which sadly neither can be removed. If you look at the image below one thing could be the lower unit/paddle for the active headrest. The other option which is my best guess is the bar right below the lower unit. The foam that wraps around that bar is not very thick to begin with but it could also be that the foam is not fully covering that bar. Extra padding can be added in that area without taking your car back to the dealer. If anyone wants to know how to do it just ask and I can explain it for you.

 

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Added padding

Toyota has determined that the seat is "as designed" and there is nothing they can recommend. Judging by that diagram kindly provided by Cardinals1970 my pain originates from the bar across the bottom of the seat near the backrest - the bar with (what looks like) three small black arrows. On Friday I had an auto upholsterer add several layers of padding (which does void the warranty according to my discussions with Toyota). I drove home and it does appear a little softer, however, I try to drive as little as possible at the moment and will need to heal before I can make a judgment. A couple of weeks ago my doctor ordered an XRAY which showed no issues at all. Last week I underwent an MRI and await the result to determine if I may have developed ischial tuberosity bursitis (which would account for the ongoing discomfort). For almost 7 years I drove an Acura TL, same driving habits 4+ hours every day and, never ever any discomfort.
 

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Toyota has determined that the seat is "as designed" and there is nothing they can recommend. Judging by that diagram kindly provided by Cardinals1970 my pain originates from the bar across the bottom of the seat near the backrest - the bar with (what looks like) three small black arrows. On Friday I had an auto upholsterer add several layers of padding (which does void the warranty according to my discussions with Toyota). I drove home and it does appear a little softer, however, I try to drive as little as possible at the moment and will need to heal before I can make a judgment. A couple of weeks ago my doctor ordered an XRAY which showed no issues at all. Last week I underwent an MRI and await the result to determine if I may have developed ischial tuberosity bursitis (which would account for the ongoing discomfort). For almost 7 years I drove an Acura TL, same driving habits 4+ hours every day and, never ever any discomfort.
That bar is basically the main support bar and there is little to no padding around it. I am no longer with the seat company but hopefully there is more padding added in that area with the 2013 Avalon.
 

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Very uncomfortable driver seat

I attended the San Antonio Car Show this past weekend and was very disappointed by the driver seat in the 2013 Avalon. It was very flat, uncomfortable and needed more padding. Being at the car show I was able to compare the different seats in my lists of possible next vehicles. The Avalon was the worst, by far, compared to the Lexus ES300h, 2012 Toyota Camry, 2013 Ford Fusion, 2013 Nissan Altima and the 2013 Honda Accord. I currently drive a 2011 Lexus CT200h and the seat in that is very comfortable. I had great hope for the 2013 Avalon and was looking forward to that being my next vehicle but the uncomfortable seat is definitely a deal breaker. After doing some research I found that the problem has existed since as far back as 2008. It is ridiculous that Toyota hasn't address this problem on their flagship vehicle. The car otherwise is gorgeous. If the car had the ES 300h seat I would be all in but alas I have to continue my search. :disappoin By the way I am 6-3/270 but my wife said the same thing and she isn't nearly as big as me. :dunno: Both Avalons I sat in, at the car show, were Limited so I still have hope for the Touring and Premium seats.

Thanks to all the posters on this site and the wonderful info that is shared. A special thank you to cardinals1970 for all his valuable input.
 

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I am in a state of shock after reading this thread. I was planning on getting a new 2013 Limited when they arrive, but now I'm afraid. I have a very bad back, and need a lumbar support. I always keep my LS 430 with the lumbar support all the way forward. I am 6' 178 pounds. Biggest problem is everyone says they did not notice the problem on the test drive.
Cardinals, did Toyota change the seat in the 2013?
I don't want to be ripping apart the seats in a new car to make modifications.
All advice would be appreciated!!
 

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I am in a state of shock after reading this thread. I was planning on getting a new 2013 Limited when they arrive, but now I'm afraid. I have a very bad back, and need a lumbar support. I always keep my LS 430 with the lumbar support all the way forward. I am 6' 178 pounds. Biggest problem is everyone says they did not notice the problem on the test drive.
Cardinals, did Toyota change the seat in the 2013?
I don't want to be ripping apart the seats in a new car to make modifications.
All advice would be appreciated!!
Yes the seats are different in the '13 and I kind of like the seats personally but as with just like the '11 or '12 some of the seats feel softer than others as some seats that are cooled have more padding than non-cooled seats. Now I left the seat company last year so I can really speak on the construction of the seats for the '13 except some to me do feel softer than others. Now with my current job I am in about 70 different Camry's and Avalons every night.
 

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Albeit one shouldn't have to get a seat cushion after purchasing a brand new car, and not a top of the line car, but is it some of done on their older Avalons, and what is any feedback doing this?

- What style type or brand of seat cushion have you got?
- Does it work?
- What did it cost?

I'm pretty good in my '11 seat, but my wife isn't and she is in the passenger's seat:(

I'm finding myself considering a used LS 460 L, now comes decision time.

Of course I won't make this big a decision until driving the new Avalon (for as long a drive as I can do).

I've found several 2008 and 2009 LS 460 L's at the same price range, (And many more standard length models) so money wise it's ok, but now I'm going backwards 4 or 5 years to get a car that should be better. Sure doesn't seem to make much sense, but then again, what today does.

I guess there is always considering a ES, or something else altogether?

- Mercedes?
- BMW?
- Cadaliac?

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I don't like to pay $250 for an oil change which is why I wanted to stay away from Lexus, Mercedes & BMW. But if there really is an issue with the Avy seat I'll have to go check out the ES.
 

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I don't like to pay $250 for an oil change which is why I wanted to stay away from Lexus, Mercedes & BMW. But if there really is an issue with the Avy seat I'll have to go check out the ES.
Which is why IF I was to get a Lexus, it would be a used one. Then I could bring it just about anywhere for an oil change, and we have 2 area shops, that opened from former Techs, and their cliam to fame is they don't charge the crazy prices for repairs.

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My Lexus has been trouble free. Only brakes, batteries, keys, alignment (they can't quite get it to the position in the manual). No drive train stuff whatsoever. Its been fabulous in that way. I think you would be fine getting one, however the mileage and age is important. Many boast about how many miles they have on their car but there is a lot of stuff which will need to be replaced and all of them are expensive. Lexus radio, front end only, $2000. Driver seat mechanism, $2000. Front brakes $350 for parts plus you have to replace the sensor, another $100. Here's another gotcha. Lexus withholds the specs on their replacement parts for a certain amount of time (?) so that no one can make after market replacements. The two trunk shocks wore out after about 3 years. Cost $175 a pair for the parts. I tried to find a generic replacement on line. No luck for the reason I mentioned. Eventually they open up their specs for others to build parts. You feel like you getting taken advantage of. My guy does routine maintenance but has to buy certain parts from Lexus.
 

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it seems like the more i drive my car (put 10,000 miles on since i started going back to school in august) the better my seat gets maybe its getting more broke in. I JUST WISH I HAD TILITING HEADRESTS!!!!! does the limited? if so im buying some off ebay and replaceing the ones i have!!
 

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I'm upgrading from a 2003 to 2009 Avalon.

The 2003 has a ton of miles and the seat's always been wonderful. The 2009 has just 50,000 but it starts hurting about 10 minutes into the ride and is downright painful after 1.5 hours.

It's a general pressure thing - not a heating bar or misplaced support metal. Just misplaced (and cheaper - and lacking) padding.

I still have both cars. I just did a visual comparison. WOW!!! The 2003 seat is like a race car's. It hugs the sides, has very well placed padding, and the headrest is very comfortable. Also; it's more solid. The 2009 is practically flat on the bottom and back areas, by comparison. And the foam seems cheaper. Like comparing a great feather pillow to a cheap imitation.

I just measured them and they're the same size. However the 2009 lacks back padding so the metal digs into the top of my shoulder blades when I stretch out. The 2003 is well padded and just fits like a glove.

The main pain is the seating surface because the design puts all the weight on my spine rather than getting the legs and buttox. It lacks support under the thighs in front

Further; it's more flimsy (wiggly).

I'm 6'4 and 235 lbs. I'm sure that's a big part of it (pardon the pun). But then, it wasn't on the 2003 (at all).

Anyway; I've visiting the leather guy tomorrow. I'll have both cars. I'll see if he can use seat-grade memory foam to build the seat out. If not; I'll see about exchanging seats. He's stripping them first so color is irrelevant.

My old car is nearly worthless so off-color seats in the front won't change the price much. That's what EBAY seat covers are for.

I hope Toyota does something about this. My wife's 2010 Lexus RX450 SUV has very comfortable seats. I think they've just gone cheap on Toyota Avalon Gen 3 - as compared with Gen 2.
 

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I'm past 16,000 miles on my 11 Avalon Limited now. I still don't have any discomfort even on long trips.
I'm at about the same mileage now as you were when your post was made. We appear to own identical versions of the Avalon. I've felt no discomfort at all yet either.
Perhaps it's a matter of seat foam wearing in with time or the size/weight of the driver. Time will tell I suppose, but so far, this is the most comfortable car I've ever owned.
 

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I'm at about the same mileage now as you were when your post was made. We appear to own identical versions of the Avalon. I've felt no discomfort at all yet either.
Perhaps it's a matter of seat foam wearing in with time or the size/weight of the driver. Time will tell I suppose, but so far, this is the most comfortable car I've ever owned.
I'm a little over 30,000 miles now and still no discomfort.
 
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