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Bought a new (to me) "Avalong"

1514 Views 37 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  Yamahog
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First time Toyota owner. Picked up this guy recently, XSE Hybrid w/ 20k miles. Was really in the market for a Camry XSE Hybrid, but 1) was having a really hard time locating one new and 2) used ones w/10-20k miles were selling well over MSRP. I pretty much got this Avalon close to what I was seeing the Camrys go for.

Considering I like the styling of the Avalon more and the added leg room in the back, I had to jump on it.

First impressions are great.

Only "nuances" are:
  • The temp gage doesn't sit in the center. Whatever, that's fine.
  • Fuel gage sits well past "F" when full. Whatever, that's fine.
  • Passenger front headlight has a "haze" to it when looking at it at the right angle. Really strange, but with the wee bit of digging I already did around here it sounds like this isn't uncommon.
  • Had a rattle in the car over larger bumps. I learned that it's the button on the center console. There is about a 1/16" of play in it that isn't spring loaded so when I go over a rougher surface on the road it rattles a bit. Not a big deal, I'm glad I know where it's coming from - I should be able to come up with a fix so the button has some dampening to it.
These are obviously pretty petty things - I've only been in the car for less than a week so not much to complain about.

Obviously love the styling, the fuel economy, and I am really looking forward to some peace of mind. My wife has a Prius and that thing is a marvel to me. It just goes...

My previous car was a CC so I'm also thrilled to have retained most (if not all) of the features I had in it. Plus, now I have lots of the bells and whistles that were absent in the CC as well. Only thing I miss are the rain-sensing wipers... I feel like all cars should have them. Good thing is I'll only be reminded of it when it's raining.
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Got through my first tank... lots of highway driving - averaged 45.4mpg according to my fill-up and the Trip ODO. The dash display should be pretty accurate too. I reset the integrated mpg counter a couple days ago and the mpgs have been climbing since. I had 46mpg on the readout before I cleared it, and am at 42.5mpg now so I expect it to average around 44mpg once I get more miles in.
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I will say that once the hybrid honeymoon phase is over and I'll probably see more around 41-43 to a tank. I've been really easy on it when in EV mode and have been capitalizing on coasting down the mountains without getting on the throttle.

That is all.
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Nice car. BTW I don't think I've ever owned a car where the temperature gauge wasn't slightly below the half mark.
I was always used to seeing it right at the center. It's a petty thing to even address. On my first drive home I was just wondering if the t-stat was opening earlier than a standard t-stat, but with only 20k it was highly unlikely. Not big deal, I've already gotten over it. :)

What year is it?
The early ones...had a problem with to hard seat...mostly fan box under driver's seat. Hope you enjoy it!.
'21

Beautiful car. Should bring you many miles of smiles.

It's funny how the market is. People get all caught up on particular models and overlook superior models that are right under their nose at a better value. If I could get an Avalon for about the same price as a Camry I would have jumped on it too.

As far as the rain sensing wipers go, I don't understand Toyota's decision to drop them in a car that already had them. A friend of mine had a 2006 Avalon that had the rain sensing wipers and he loved them. I would have thought by now they would be standard on all models except for maybe the entry level ones. Once you start mass producing something and including them on most of your vehicles, the production cost is very minimal. But nooooo. Toyota decided to hold them out like a carrot to try to get people to go for a Lexus. The thing they fail to realize is, most Toyota owners aren't interested in Lexus's. It's not worth the extra $10-15,000 to get the rain sensing wipers. And, Toyota people are mostly interested in low maintenance and repair costs, so they aren't going to opt for a car that increases those costs just because it has an "L" on it. Most Lexus buyers come from the BMW-Mercedes crowd that finally decide reliability is important afterall. And then there is the occasional Toyota buyer that get's one to feel the achievement of "I made it." But overall, the rain sensing wiper carrot falls dead on most of the Toyota crowd. We just have to learn to live without it. That's just my 2 cents. But I don't have a degree in marketing so what do I know about it.

Congratulations on your new ride!
It is pretty crazy to me considering the spread. When I first called about the car and made an appointment, the sales person reached back out and told me someone was looking at it. I thought this was a sales gimmick at first but after looking into it a bit deeper I think it was in fact a good deal (relatively speaking)

I did some research early and NADA did have some data that showed Camrys selling at a price point comparable to Avalons.

NADA for 21' Camry
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NADA for 21' Avalon
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Roughly a $700 spread between the two.

I think the other thing that might be contributing to the price disparity is the fact that Avalons are no more. I think some folks might be discouraged to buy something that is becoming obsolete? Maybe makes the Avalon seem old and dated?

Idk, but if I had to do it all over again I wouldn;t do anything different.

Congrats! I really like the grille and wheel colors on the XSE, and they match the silver body color really well.
Thanks! I'm stoked - really like the XSE styling as well. Even growing on me by the day.
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Not sure about "glare" but temp gauge and fuel gauge show normal. "Rattling button" is first ever. Pardon me, I just can't visualize a tiny piece of plastic having enough mass to cause any rattle. But yeah, sure. First TCH and TAHs had terrible plastic clips and Toyota even issued TSB kit to repair rattle everywhere for panels.
I'll have to take some pictures of it and share it, but the "glare" as you call it certainly is noticeable. The button does rattle, but even a picture won't convince that. The small things I latched on to in my first post will fade away. Since everything is so quiet and "new", it is too easy to pick out things that would normally go unseen. Especially since naturally I want to ensure I don't have a lemon (which I know I don't).

I'm just crazy. This passed Saturday me and my wife were going out to dinner and I refused to take the Avalon because she needed to put on some makeup and I refused to have it in the car. I'm still in my honeymoon phase.
Congratulations on the XSE Nightshade - I have the same exact car and color.
I must ask, does the "Nightshade" designation apply to the Hybrids? When I was digging, non-hybrids had the XSE Nightshade as a trim, but for Avalon Hybrid it was only "XSE".

Even the Camrys distinguish between the two as they have an XSE and an XSE Nightshade.

I've wondered so I don't say the wrong thing.
View attachment 410385

In 2021, the Avalon XSE Hybrid did not have a Nightshade option. Hence the chrome rear emblem, the chrome trim around the windows and the paint matching door handles.

I wanted a Nightshade Hybrid but that was only avaliable for the 2022 model rear. View attachment 410387
Ok that makes sense - thanks for clearing that up. I didn't think these were officially "Nightshade", though they do have much of the styling.
Got another fill-up in. I'm pretty close to my first tank, averaging 42.6mpg on the dash and 41.6mpg by math. Looks like I might not be seeing the 43-44 I was expecting. One thing that caught me off guard... when I had roughly a quarter tank left, I was estimating that I was going to see about 560mi to the tank. Then on my way home today I got the gas light which completely threw me off guard. I was sure I was going to get through the weekend (not much highway, just some puttering around town), but I didn't.

Then I realized on two mornings this week I let the car run in the morning to warm up. Today specifically, I got distracted and the car ran until what I presume is auto-off (10min?). Anyways, the morning starts aren't free so I think I lost some there. If I extrapolate the 12gal for the fill up to 13gal for the tank, it does bring me to 543mi to a tank... which is pretty close to my early estimate. The 20 or so miles I lost were likely due to the remote starts. Good thing is this week I spent more time driving "normally" as opposed to trying to squeeze out every last mpg. Not much of a difference between fill-ups. Still a pretty good average imo, though I always want moarr.
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I guess one nice thing is in my previous car, I had a 17gal tank, filled with 93 octane @ ~$3.79/gal for roughly $60 fill-ups @ 31mpg (approx. 496mi between fill-ups). With the Avalon, I have the same frequency between fill-ups @ ~500mi, but with $40 fill-ups @ 42mpg.

On my treks to work I average about 37ish on the dash, and on my treks home I average 57ish, and in many cases I have 60mpg pegged on the display. Considering this I was really hoping to see mid to high 40s for my route, but not the case. These trips back and forth make up about 75% of the gas in the tank too. Oh well. For an Avalon, it'll do.
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Also, you don't need 93 octane fuel for the avalon hybrid. It does fine with 87 octane where I live.
Yes sir. I put 87 in the Avalon. My post was pretty vague. The price break I get in gas now is not only in the increase in mpg but the drop from 93 to 87 octane also.

@turtlepoppin,

If your car is a 2022 Avalon Hybrid XSE Nightshade, I'm confused by the door handles and fin not being black and I'm not seeing "XSE" on the back of the car. 🤔

I didn't notice these details previously.
According to a previous post it isn't a Nightshade. Just an XSE, and I presume the car was de-badged by the previous owner. When they took the car in to "detail" it the dealer threw on their "Flow" badging... which I hate. I'm sure I could argued for it's removal since I didn't want any of that nonsense on the car.
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For me also, the lower octane that my Avalon uses (vs. the 93 my old Lexus guzzled) is huge. I just checked and it's a $0.90 / gallon difference.
Yea it's amazing what the spread is now a days between 87 and 93. About 15 years ago when I started driving, 87, 90, 93 were just a dime apart. And then there is diesel which is in it's own category now.
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Can anyone confirm what the color code is for my car, or where it is identified on the car? Thanks.

Edit: I'm leaning towards 1J9, Celestial Silver Metallic... But need confirmation.
Look at the tad in the driver's side door jam.

View attachment 412398
C/TR. IS COLOR and trim level
Ahh nice. Don't know how I missed that - I'm actually on touchupdirect to try and cover a couple rock chips on the front bumper!
Have another question someone might be able to help me out with. I'm having a hard time discerning what materials in the interior are real leather vs what is synthetic.

I know the steering wheel is real leather, and that the suede in the seats is synthetic. I believe the entire seat is made from synthetic materials actually. The center console, door cards, and the steering wheel are all quite soft, so I presume it's real leather. Can anyone confirm each of these bit so I can care for them accordingly?
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The seats are Leatherette/sueded microfiber. No leather
What about the balance of the parts?
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Since I tend to own my cars long term, I bit the bullet and paid for some PPF to protect the front end. Even over the last 4-5 weeks I managed to catch some rock chips on the front clip. As mentioned previously, she sees over 80mi a day, a good 40 of which is through a construction zone (and will be for the foreseeable future). My only regret is not doing it as soon as I received the car.

Not much to see with the pics, but I suppose that's a good thing! Got full coverage on the bumper, hood, fenders, headlights, and mirror caps.
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My plan is to source another grill while they're readily available. I guess that's the good thing about them, they take up such a big part of the fascia that I can swap it for a fresh one in the future if it gets beat up. The grill obviously doesn't have any PPF coverage.
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