Tuesday, May 19, 2020

2020 Toyota Avalon Limited: The Brand's Fullsize Near -Luxury Sedan

Highlight: It’s the only non premium hybrid fullsize car available.

Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $44,180 (Base MSRP: $36,830)

Seating Capacity: 5

Standard Safety Features: airbags; ABS; a vehicle stability system; a traction control system; a pre-collision braking system with pedestrian protection; a radar activated cruise control system; an automatic brake hold feature; a blind spot monitor with a rear traffic alert system; a hill start assist system; and a tire pressure monitoring system

Standard Equipment (XLE): 17-inch wheels; an 8-speed automatic transmission; front wheel drive; driving modes: economy, normal and sport; dual exhaust chrome tips; a dual zone automatic climate control system; a 7-inch infotainment system; manually operated front seats; a push button ignition starter system; a keyless entry system; and an electric parking brake system

Standard Equipment (Limited): 18-inch wheels; an electric power assist steering system; dual zone automatic climate control system; a 7-inch infotainment screen; LED headlights and taillights; auto dimming exterior mirrors; electronic blind spot system; memory driver’s seat feature; a power sunroof; a premium JBL 14-speaker audio system; Sirius radio; HD radio; wireless smartphone charging; power front seats; heated rear seats; heated steering wheel; leather seats; a manually operated tilt/telescopic steering wheel; a heads up display system; genuine wood –interior trim; and ambient lighting through the cabin

Options: a 360-degree camera; and an intelligent clearance sonar with a rear cross-traffic braking system

Other Trim Level


Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: an AM/FM/CD with SiriusXM satellite radio

Bluetooth Connectivity: Standard

USB Connectivity: Standard

Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 3 years or 36,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 3.5-liter, 6-cylinder turbo/301-hp

Recommended Fuel: Regular

Standard Fuel Mileage: 22-city/31-hwy

What’s New: The fifth generation Avalon was restyled during the 2019 model year. A new TRD performance trim joins the line up for the 2020 model year.

Why: For buyers seeking a roomy, fuel-efficient, large, near-luxury sedan, the Avalon fits the bill. The Avalon is available as a gasoline or as a hybrid model in a variety of trims. As we noted during our 2019 test drive review, after reviewing an Avalon hybrid, the fuel-sipping car garnered the highest rated mileage in its class, a combined average of 40 MPG, according to The Avalon hybrid was great for both navigating the city and taking long distance road trips.

This model year the higher end Limited we reviewed was fueled by a gasoline engine. Just like its hybrid sibling, the Avalon gasoline model, which is available in a variety of driving modes, had the highest combined miles per gallon of all the models in the segment.

In addition to the fuel efficiency, upon entering the cabin, one will immediately notice a modern, contemporary appearance. From the driver-centric instrument panel to the 9-inch, iPad-like infotainment screen, which houses the audio, navigation and ventilation systems, to the easy-to-use systems, its easy to embrace the fresh looking, eye-appealing interior.

Moreover, depending upon the trim, one can outfit the near luxury family sedan with leather seats, a heads up display system, a JBL 1200 watt audio system and a 360-degree fullview camera.

Furthermore, Toyota’s safety sense package is available with such features as a blindspot lane changing system to a radar activated cruise control system. Yes, Toyota has thrown everything they possible can in the Avalon, making it relevant 25 years, after it was introduced. Prior to the Avalon, there was the Cressida. 

But: As we noted in our 2019 model review, the exterior styling is somewhat dated, when compared to the other vehicles in the fullsize segment, especially the athletically designed Maxima and the luxurious looking Kia Cadenza.

Furthermore, while the Avalon is now available in a performance-oriented TRD model, Chrysler and Dodge continues to excel in the performance lane, offering offer a variety of street legal 8-cylinder powertrains fueled with pounds of horsepower.

Lastly, android compatibility for smartphones still isn't available.

Verdict: With Ford and GM walking away from the non premium fullsize car segment, Toyota, as well as a handful of brands, has opted to stay in the game. In Toyota’s vehicle, one should expect a spacious, fuel efficient vehicle that provides the latest luxury and high tech safety features buyers in this segment are seeking. This is also the only fullsize car available as both a gasoline and a hybrid model too.

Also with consumers appetite for SUVs, crossovers and trucks, buyers in the large car segment should expect plenty of great deals.

Competition: 2020 Chrysler 300; 2020 Dodge Charger; 2020 Kia Cadenza; and 2020 Nissan Maxima

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