2013 Toyota Avalon: Up Close

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The Toyota Camry was redesigned last year, so it makes sense that the Avalon would soon follow, as it's based on a stretched Camry platform. Toyota keeps telling us how beautiful the 2013 Avalon is, which is always a questionable move. Shouldn't the car speak for itself?

More 2012 New York Auto Show Coverage

It is, in fact, a nice-looking sedan, but I suspect many people will follow that sentiment with "for a Toyota." I'm not sure the large lower grille works with the small upper one. It looks a little like the inverse of the new 2013 Ford Fusion's grille, with a hint of Hyundai Elantra.

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The squared-off projector-beam-headlight lenses are a nice touch at a time when it seems everything's been done.

With electroluminescent screens and a leather-clad dashboard, the interior is sharp, easily passable as an older Lexus ... or maybe even a current one. Toyota says the Avalon is now technically a midsize rather than full-size car, but because the difference is in the tumblehome — that's how tightly the windows sweep inward as they approach the roof — it didn't feel much different to me. Perhaps three passengers abreast in the backseat would disagree.

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Though the Avalon show car still has a trusty touch-screen, I was crestfallen to see it surrounded by a capacitive panel rather than proper independent buttons. This marks the first appearance I've seen of this "advancement" in a Toyota, suggesting that yet another automaker has fallen into this trap.

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Fans of the current Avalon's reclining rear seats will be disappointed to hear that they don't do that anymore. Even worse, they don't fold forward to extend the trunk space. The trunk is larger than in the 2012, but once the reclining function is gone, I'd sure like to have the versatility of a folding backseat. Now you get neither.

Comments 

Market Researcher

Was really looking forward to the new Avalon. But I'm left feeling disappointed. It's now more mid-size.....? No reclining rear seats. The rear seats don't fold down. Looks like a bloated Camry... I'll either look to the previous gen that had its own style set apart from the camry or I'll be going to the competition.

Someone needs to make a real large-size sedan. Need something with the trunk size of the Taurus, Interior space of the old Avalon and fuel economy the new Impala is claiming.

sheth

for a toyota, this doesn't look half bad. I like it better than anything else they have on the market right now. Of course the full sized market it tougher than ever so it really doesnt stand out in any way as superior to Impala or Azera. I like this design more than the Hyundai though.

Jim Braun

They keep telling us the car is beautiful but I am not so sure. Fact is my eyes haven't seen a beautiful Toyota or Lexus (save the LS) for years. somehow Toyota design and the concept of ugly have entered into a unholy union. Furthermore, they have lowered the roof line as they have been doing in the Lexus brand for years in an effort to make the cars looks sleek but at the expense of entry/exit ease. As an owner of nothing but a Toyota or Lexus for the past 30 years I will be moving on with my next car.

Ed

Love it! Family sedan or not, milquetoast is a thing of the past. Even Buicks are stylized now. This was the appropriate answer to the high-style of Kia.

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