2013 Toyota Avalon First Drive Results With Senior Test Drive Comments By Marty Bernstein +Video
METAMORPHIS OF THE NEW
2013 TOYOTA AVALON SEDAN
by Marty Bernstein
The Auto Channel
Going to test drive the new 2013 Toyota Avalon, if you’re expecting just a few minor changes in one of Toyota’s favorite vehicles … forget it! This is a totally new 2013 Avalon. It is nothing like the previous iterations which were seldom more than minor nip and tuck updates and refinements of a fine car. It was the ultimate Toyota luxury sedan for those who did not care to drive a Lexus which is also a Toyota brand.
It is the most American Avalon, built entirely in Kentucky, and designed in Toyota’s design and technology centers in California and Michigan. This new Avalon represents Toyota’s future design language and direction, a change for the usually more staid and reserved company. It’s the shape of Toyota’s to come to paraphrase the ads. The general manager of the Toyota division told auto writers during the recent introduction, “The point of the new Avalon is to show the market that ‘Toyota is back!” that’s their business response to the recent disastrous tsunami which hurt the company seriously, but even more it is a significant move from sedate to sleek and smart, a vehicle that offers a wider generational appeal to a larger market of potential buyers. They won’t or should not be disappointed either.
Driving the new Avalon was the really big surprise. It’s more agile, more nimble and more responsive than previous generations. The ride is firm and sporty compared to land cruiser languid. It is a better Avalon. Naturally, Toyota has added a Hybrid version as befits the leader in innovative powertrains.
The gas-powered Avalon features a powerful, all-aluminum 3.5-liter V6 engine mated to a conventional six-speed automatic transmission. Avalon Hybrid is equipped with a modified version of the 2.5-liter Hybrid Synergy Drive system that also propels the Camry Hybrid.
It’s on sale now at Toyota dealers everywhere. Take a look. Take a test drive. You will be pleasantly surprised. The pricing for the four different Avalon versions is detailed below:
Model Avalon Gas Avalon Hybrid XLE $30,990 XLE Premium $33,195 $35,555 XLE Touring $35,500 $37,250 Limited $39,650 $41,400
Senior Test Drive Comments For Those Of A Certain Age
If you’re one of the countless thousands who have purchased an Avalon since it was introduced in 1995 the new model will be a lot different. Gone is the softer handing, lighter steering, and braking. The new Avalon is sportier, has firmer ride, is a drivers’ car with quick and responsive steering and taut brakes. Ease of getting in and out of both the front and back seats remains. I did not drive the car at night so cannot comment about post sundown driving visibility – that will come when a longer test can be arranged as will other comments. What does remain is the Toyota’s reputation for reliability, dependability, reasonable gas mileage and value.