2019 Toyota Avalon Review: Breathing Life Into a Sedan Segment

The 2019 Toyota Avalon is a answer to a renouned doubt from a 20th century: What is a best vast family sedan for gentle driving? All-new for a 2019 indication year and shipping in May, a Avalon provides gentle transport for 4 or five, higher customary reserve equipment, and Apple CarPlay, a initial Toyota so equipped. If we wish mileage and cost both in a low 40s, a hybrid chronicle is usually $1,000 some-more than a allied V6 gasoline Avalon and we remove no case space to a battery.

Toyota is one-upping a foe by creation not usually Toyota Safety Sense (TSS-P) standard, with a adaptive journey control and line depart warning, though also putting blind mark showing on all Avalons. Combine that with smartwatch connectivity, Amazon Alexa compatibility, and 5 USB jacks, and you’ve got a automobile appealing to younger, tech-savvy buyers. It is an glorious automobile in a timorous sedan marketplace that is now 65-35 in preference of SUVs, crossovers, and pickups.

Toyota Avalon on a Road

I tested 2019 Toyota Avalons during Toyota’s press expostulate in San Diego in late April, afterwards followed adult with a integrate days comparison-driving a effusive fourth-generation Avalon in a San Francisco Bay area. There are 4 2019 Avalon trim lines: dual for comfort, a XLE and Limited; and dual for handling, a XSE and Touring. All have 3.5-liter, 301-hp V6 engines with eight-speed automatics, and all though a Touring offer a $1,000 hybrid choice of a 2.5-liter, 176-hp four-cylinder engine with a nickel-metal hydride battery, 215 net hp, and a invariably non-static transmission. All models are front-drive. Toyota says an AWD Avalon is not available…”for now.”

The Mode symbol on a console behind a change push controls stifle response, adaptive non-static suspension, energy steering, HVAC, sound cancellation, and engine sound encouragement (synthesized in-cockpit vroom-vroom sounds). Hybrid cars also have an EV mode to force a automobile to electric mode if energy is available.

Toyota Avalon mode control.

The $43,095 Touring feels and sounds like a competition sedan, during slightest when we go to a console’s handling-mode controls (photo right) and punch a console’s Sport symbol twice to rivet Sport-plus. The engine and delivery and stifle remap for quicker performance, a adaptive cessation singular to a Touring stiffens, a steering response stiffens, in-cabin sound termination turns off, and engine sounds are piped into a cabin by a 14-speaker JBL sound system. The result: You’re not utterly in a Lexus GS F, though you’re also not profitable 85 vast for a privilege.

Were we a Millennial buyer, a good thing about a Avalon Touring is, when you’ve got a in-laws on board, we can put a a automobile behind in Normal mode. The adaptive cessation afterwards earnings to a rarely agreeable default setting, and a active sound termination serve diminishes outward noises. At a same time, in a Touring, a active cessation is always prepared to understanding with astonishing bumps, readjusting each 20 milliseconds (1/50 second). So a Touring in many ways provides a best of both worlds. There’s also an Eco mode, Normal, and Custom. Eco eases some-more kindly onto a stifle and upshifts progressing for some-more mpg. Fuel economy is rated during 22 mpg city, 31 mpg highway, 25 mpg altogether for a Touring, Limited and XSE gas engines; a entrance XLE is 22/32/26.

On 3 conflicting 2019 Avalons we drove, a electronic parking brake, required for full-range ACC, grabbed and hold during around 3 mph, bringing a automobile to a too-quick halt. Not scary; usually not smooth. (Toyota records we were pulling not-fully-final prolongation cars.) A 2019 Toyota Corolla we gathering a same week with a electronic parking stop came to a ideally well-spoken stop.

I also gathering a Limited Hybrid with even nicer pleated leather upholstery than on a Touring. The hybrid engine is rougher, noisier and reduction powerful. But fuel economy is illusory for a 3,638- to 3,715-pound car: 43/43/43 for a Limited and HSE Hybrid, 43/44/44 for a XLE Hybrid, or 72 percent softened than a gasoline version. That’s some-more than adequate to accommodate a EPA’s now-abandoned 54 mpg 2025 rules, given 54 EPA miles with several concessions and credits roughly equals 36 genuine universe miles per gallon. The Hybrid models have Auto Glide Control, that lets a Avalon decelerate slower than normal, Toyota says, “contributing to softened fuel economy by shortening a magnitude of re-acceleration.” That’s a conflicting of electric vehicles and plug-in variety that typically go to some-more forceful braking when off-throttle to maximize regeneration.

The bottom line on float and doing is that a Avalon is glorious for daily driving. Even with a Touring in Sport+ mode, this is not an autocross car. With winter tires a Avalon will be a glorious automobile in snow, and all-wheel-drive will assistance sales in northern states if and when AWD arrives.

The 2019 Avalon has a 9-inch core smoke-stack display. The dinky last-generation arrangement lacked a Map button; a approach Map earnings for 2019. This is a initial Toyota with Apple CarPlay (but still no Android Auto).

Infotainment Is Vastly Improved

Toyota nailed it with a Avalon infotainment system, starting with an accessible high-mounted, 9-inch core smoke-stack display, surpassed in distance usually by a few reward cars that are 10 to 12 inches diagonal. There are 8 smallish, chromed approach entrance buttons — Home, Menu, Audio, Map, Seek, Track, Phone, and Apps — and volume and tune/scroll knobs. The HVAC controls are separate, next a core vents for reduced confusion, with their possess tiny display.

With a Avalon, Toyota now supports Apple CarPlay. Toyota had concerns Apple would brag a approach into a dashboards (my words, not Toyota’s), though business have pronounced they wish CarPlay, so Apple is relenting. But: Toyota continues to work with Ford on Smart Device Link, an choice phone to automobile tie that could do such things as avoid CarPlay and put Google Maps or, softened yet, Waze on a vast screen. As for Android Auto, Toyota pronounced it’s committed to all standards and, during a same time wants to be certain they’re secure. Translation: They’re disturbed about Android.

The Avalon is Alexa-enabled and there is smartwatch connectivity. Translation: If we have Alexa during home and we have a Toyota Remote Connect service, we can send a same kinds of commands to a automobile that we can from Toyota’s smartphone app such as comfortable adult a car, close a doors, or check a fuel level. Conversely, from a automobile we can spin on a residence lights or holder adult a heat. You can perform many of a functions from a smartwatch as well.

All trim lines have 5 USB jacks. Imagine that: seating for 5 passengers, charging for 5 passengers. Qi wireless charging is customary solely on a XLE trim where it’s optional.

The core of a instrument row is a 7-inch multi-information arrangement (LCD) that can uncover phone, audio, navigation, and outing discriminate information. The Limited and Touring get a 10-inch head-up arrangement (HUD) that can uncover speedometer, speed limit, journey control speed, TSS-P indicators, audio, phone outward temperature, and hybrid complement information. That 10-inch figure refers to a viewed arrangement distance as a engineer focuses on it; progressing HUDs were 5 to 7 inches. The arrangement was indeed vast and a next-turn indicators were helpful, though we saw some-more information in a HUD on BMWs such as a X3, and Genesis and Mazda embody HUD blind mark warnings that will be beheld progressing than side-mirror indicators.

The bottom audio complement includes Entune 3.0 (Entune is a powerful tenure for Toyota infotainment) Audio Plus. It includes 8 speakers, CarPlay, navigation around a Scout app (three years free), satellite radio, and Toyota Connected Services. TCS is Toyota’s aspirant to GM OnStar reduction a familiar two-syllable name. It comprises 3 years of Safety Connect (emergency pile-up notification, engineer puncture presentation by pulling a button, relapse assist) and Service Connect (reaching out to a play to set adult service; remember alerts); 6 months of Remote Connect (remote lock/unlock, engine start/stop, find park vehicle); and 6 months or 2GB of giveaway information download that you’ll use prolonged before a 6 months are up. Best of all, TCS uses Verizon cellular, that gives some-more coverage in border areas. If you’re a Verizon Wireless customer, a on-board modem is effectively one some-more device on your monthly bill.

A JBL ascent for both XLEs and a Hybrid (only) XSE is a 14-speaker package with Clari-Fi, that improves a peculiarity of low-bit-rate digital music. A identical ascent for a sporty XSE adds active sound control and engine sound enhancements.

Toyota’s whiplash damage alleviation (WIL) front chair complement allows an occupant’s physique to penetrate over into a seatback during a behind impact.

Class Leader in Safety

Among medium-to-large family sedans, a 2019 Avalon stands out for a active reserve facilities given it creates Toyota Safety Sense P customary along with blind mark showing and behind cranky trade alert. TSS-P is on most of a Toyota line: a pre-collision complement of brazen collision warning and puncture braking along with walking detection, adaptive journey control, adaptive journey control, and automobile high beams. We’re watchful for a initial automaker to mix a front/side reserve facilities of TSS-P with a rear/rear side facilities of blind mark showing and RCTA.

These facilities are critical to a youngest and oldest drivers, and a Avalon really skews toward a AARP demographic. The telematics-based Safety Connect complement calls for assistance automatically in an accident, or we can press a symbol to serve assistance after a breakdown.

Toyota goes to bigger grilles, as does vast hermit Lexus. Grille styles are somewhat conflicting on Avalon hybrid (here) and gasoline models.

Longer, Lower, Wider

The fifth-generation redesign creates a Avalon sleeker. The automobile is now 196 inches long, 73 inches wide, and 57 inches high — an in. longer, wider, and lower. The creates a behind chair about an in. reduce to keep headroom comparable. Weight is 3,560-3,638 pounds for a gasoline Avalon. The variety import about 75 pounds more.

The NiMH hybrid battery now fits underneath a behind chair along with a fuel tank, clarification both a unchanging automobile and a hybrid have a same 16 cubic feet of storage. Cabin volume is 104 cubic feet and a total, 120 cubic feet, means it’s a full-size automobile by a EPA clarification of 120 cubic feet or some-more including case volume.

The Avalon also has several styling cues (gimmicks to some). Toyota uses laser ablation on a lens aspect of a Limited and Touring headlamps and taillamps. That means a laser cuts divided some of a inside mirrored aspect to make a lenses demeanour some-more like a plain aspect when not illuminated. There are apart LED cornering lamps that also blur on and off when parking or subsidy adult during low speed. The Limited and Touring taillamps are energetic or what others would call sequential. An middle flare flashes on, and afterwards an outdoor flare lights up, sequentially indicating toward a instruction of a turn.

Last Generation Avalon: Aging though Fine for Passengers

The previous-generation Toyota Avalon Hybrid: a good automobile for a time.

The 2017 Avalon Limited Hybrid we gathering for comparison was beguiling on freeways and even on a Pacific Coast Highway, nonetheless not really engaging. People bought it for cunning and reliability, not sporting pretense. we averaged 41 mpg in a multiple of city and highway driving, 1 mph softened than a EPA total rating. The instrument row and 7-inch core smoke-stack arrangement are dated. It was annoying, in sequence to lift adult a navigation map, to have to press a Apps symbol and afterwards name navigation. we spent a lot of time in trade in and around San Francisco and was serve angry that a adaptive journey control cut out usually above 20 mph, where a 2019 Avalon is stop-and-go.

The fourth-gen Avalons will make for good, arguable used cars and/or affordably labelled new-car closeouts come May. They have a reserve basics, during slightest on my car: blind mark detection, line keep assist, adaptive journey control, and brazen collision warning. You’ll substantially grow sleepy of a automobile before we wear it out. You should be so propitious if it shows adult when we accost a Lyft or Uber.

Avalon sales appearance in 2000. Out given 1995, there have been new Avalons for indication years 2000, 2005, 2013 and now 2019.

Should You Buy?

The effusive 2013-2018 Avalon was an glorious vehicle, with sales half what they were 4 years ago, in a full-size-sedan class, along with a Chevrolet Impala, Kia Cadenza, Genesis G80 (formerly Hyundai Genesis), and Hyundai Azera (killed after a 2017 model; a few competence remain). The Ford Taurus and Chrysler 300 are also in a category, though reduction polished, as is a Nissan Maxima (but not utterly full-size). The 2019 Avalon leapfrogs a fourth-generation on comfort, ride, instrumentation, technology, sound (lack of), and fuel economy of a hybrid. The Impala was a choice for a vast sedan when it was new in 2014. Now it’s a new Avalon’s spin to lead. Still, shoppers should also test-drive (and test-sit) a Impala, Cadenza, and near-premium G80.

Drive a 2019 Avalon and if you’re a big-sedan person, you’ll be impressed. And we competence have 3 some-more questions: Why should we buy a Lexus GS instead of a Avalon, because should we buy a Avalon instead of a installed Toyota Camry, and because isn’t there an SUV chronicle of a Avalon? All good questions. Yes, a Avalon creates a glorious choice to a GS for thousands less. Yes, a installed Camry competence make a passable, somewhat smaller choice to a Avalon. And, no, we don’t know because there’s no Avalon crossover. A Toyota orator pronounced an Avalon-type SUV would some-more expected go in a Lexus lineup. The closest Lexus, a GX, is a complicated truck-based SUV (the Lexus RX is smaller). And a closest Toyota, a Highlander, is really nice, though even a high-end Highlander is a small bashful of Avalon-level quadruped comforts. We see an opening.

If reserve is important, or if you’re asked to suggest cars to others (that we competence not buy), all we need to know is this: Every Avalon they buy has all a reserve apparatus they need, on every 2019 Avalon sold: adaptive journey control, brazen collision warning, adaptive journey control, line keep support (all partial of TSS-P), and blind mark showing with behind cross-traffic alert. There’s no possibility a crony will event into a dealership and breeze adult sole a entrance trim line that lacks a reserve features. Especially if you’re recommending protected cars to an comparison primogenitor or relations who needs a reserve facilities — you’re in no precipitate to inherit, after all — a Toyota Avalon is a one to indicate to.

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