Community Lounge, Introductions and General Discussion Discussion, 2011 Toyota Avalon in General Discussion; I have to say, Toyota finally got the Avalon right.. It really is basically a Lexus. I haven't taken the ...
I have to say, Toyota finally got the Avalon right.. It really is basically a Lexus. I haven't taken the car for a test drive (I only sat in it at the Chicago Auto Show) but I have to imagine it's a very smooth, quiet and comfortable car to drive. The leather doesn't feel cheap - which ruined the experience for me in every other Avalon. It actually feels expensive inside. For a car that's not supposed to attract a lot of attention - I think it looks pretty good. This car certainly raises the bar for it's class and will surely have the next Lexus ES working very hard to improve...
They had a new one at the New York show last April. It had the word "PROTOTYPE" slathered across its windshield. They shouldn't have bothered. It looks almost exactly the same as the one it replaced. And while the interior may be better, the dash and upper door plastics still screamed cheap in a way GM hasn't lately...
That interior does scream "Cheap" plastic! Toyota demographics are for people 50+ years old. Those pics easily show that.
They have become so conservative with everything they make nowadays. I remember how cool the old Supra's used to be, all the crap the company spits out, is a bunch crud for people that don't even like cars. It's totally obvious the people working for Toyota, don't care about styling or trying to appeal to a younger audience.
If anything the Kia Optima looks a lot better than any Toyo at the moment.
Honda isnt the same anymore either, but there designs beat out Toyota that's for sure. My favorite Honda's, are the Accords from the early 90's, the 94 Accord is my favorite, they were the last really cool sporty looking Accords, with a high quality interior. Those cars never had any problems, one of the most reliable Honda's ever made.
I don't get all the talk about Hondas having high quality interiors. My son had a brand new '97 Accord with cloth seating. It was put together decently, but the materials were certainly nothing to get excited about. Lots of plastic. The design was ergo metrically good (I got stuck driving the Honda occasionally while he spent a year at Edinburgh University, so I am pretty familiar with the car. I like Hondas in general and feel they delivered a good car for the money, although used prices for Hondas are insane. He didn't have any problems with this car, but he only had it for three years.
Our family has a 2000 Avalon, its been a great car. Has 200k on it right now, mom and dad still trust it enough to take on 1000 mile road trips. They were also looking at the Lexus ES300 when they bought this thing, at that time the Avalon was a much better car for the $$$. A lot more space, and the interior quality was pretty much on par with the Lexus, you just didn't get the fancy wood trim or gauges. Plus it was like $7500 cheaper at that time. If you can get over the boring styling and lack of low end torque, its actually a great driving, comfortable, well built car. Way better than a Buick Park Ave or LeSabre of similar vintage IMO.
As for the 2005+ models, I feel the interior got really chintzy on those with all that horrible silver painted plastic that Toyota loves to put in all their newer cars(the old cars had high quality black plastic or fake wood, no silver crap) If you could get over that, the 2005+ are great cars as well, the v6 in those straight up hauls the mail. 0-60 in 6.0 seconds, quarter mile in 14.6@99mph.
The new 2011 isn't really "new". Tweaked interior, different front and rear facia styling, that's about it. Doors, roofline, etc are all the same, along with the chassis, engine, etc. Haven't sat inside one yet, so I'm still witholding judgement as to if they actually fixed the silver plastic plauge of the last model.