By the end of this write-up, in systematic Perry Mason fashion, I will certainly encourage you, the jury, that the brand-new Avalon makes the Lexus ES330 completely redundant. And that it's Toyota itself that did the killing!
Not that new, however better
2005 toyota Avalon for Sale
Base Price: $26,350 (XL) to $33,540 (Limited)
Engine: 3.5-liter V-6, 280 hp/260 lb-ft
Transmission: Five-speed automatic, front-wheel drive
Wheelbase: 111.0 in
Length x width x height: 197.2 in x 72.8 in x 58.5 in
Curb Weight: 3490 lb (XL) – 3600 lb (Limited)
Fuel economy (EPA city/hwy): 22/30
Safety features: Front and side dual-stage airbags, front and rear side curtain airbags, pre-tensioning seat belts, anti-lock brakes
Major standard features: Cruise control; AM/FM/CD player; trip computer; power windows; mirrors; and locks; dual-zone automatic climate control; remote keyless entry.
Warranty: Three years/ 36,000 miles
If any kind of components carryover from the previous Avalon to this new one, Toyota isn't heralding that. But generally layout it's still a front-drive sedan with a V6 as well as a transmission; it still uses a MacPherson strut suspension in advance and another set of struts in the back; and the standard framework is still unibody, derived (a minimum of distantly) from the Camry.
Almost every detail has been tweaked however. And also one of the most impressive of those details is the drivetrain.
The engine is a brand-new 3.5-liter, DOHC, 24-valve, all-aluminum V-6 that creates a thick 280-horsepower according to Toyota thanks to "VVT-i" variable valve-timing on both the exhaust and also intake sides, and a dual-stage variable manifold. Codenamed 2GR-FE, the Avalon's engine isn't really just Toyota's ubiquitous 3.3-liter V-6 punched bent on 3.5-liters but an advanced variation of the 1GR-FE 4.0-liter V-6 made use of in the 4Runner, Tacoma, and Tundra with 12-millimeters of stroke knocked off its crank. It's likewise one of the most powerful V-6 Toyota has ever before shoved under among its automobile's hoods-- though the twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six made use of in the 1997 Supra Turbo is still Toyota's most powerful 6 ever at 320-horsepower.
Matched to the brand-new V-6 is a five-speed automated transaxle showcasing comprehensive electronic controls including variable torque converter control and also a consecutive sporting activity setting-- its shifts can only be spotted by qualified technicians utilizing advanced magnetic resonance imaging.
The Avalon is a large cars and truck that weighs in between 3490 and also 3600 pounds depending upon trim level, so its moderate 22 mpg city, 30 mpg freeway EPA mileage ratings are reasonable. As a matter of fact those mileage rankings are up one mpg each from the Lexus ES330's.
The engine is creepy smooth, velvety in its power shipment, as well as dang near silent in operation while the transmission's ratios seem completely picked. If Toyota had bought up the world's dwindling supply of 1980 Oldsmobile Omegas as well as grown this sweet-natured drivetrain right into those rusting hunks it could possibly ... ah forget it, that joke was going nowhere. This is merely the most powerful, quietest as well as best drivetrain Toyota has actually ever before set up in a front-drive car and clearly above that in various other "near high-end" equipments. The Acura TL's 270-horsepower, 3.2-liter VTEC V6 as well as five-speed automatic may be extra eager to prance on an alley, however the Avalon isn't built for people who "prance." And the Lexus ES330's 3.3-liter V-6 isn't really quite as courteous and, at 225-horspower, no place near as effective.
Is bigger constantly much better?
Practically usually (the 2005 Corvette is a noteworthy exception) autos have the tendency to bloat in size with each prospering generation. The brand-new Avalon is no exception. The 2005 version's 111.0-inch wheelbase as well as 197.2-inch general length are respectively up 3.9- as well as 5.3-inches from the just-superseded generation. Fortunately that additionally repays with interior area and every substantial measurement other than front legroom (which is still well beyond appropriate) is up at the very least fractionally. Rear legroom is specifically generous. Nevertheless freight volume goes down 1.5-cubic feet for some reason and that's simply mystifying.
While the previous two generations of Avalons were among the boxiest cars imaginable, the new one actually looks somewhat streamlined. The brand-new Avalon was styled in Newport Coastline, The golden state but continues most of the generic Toyota design aspects including the thick C-pillars seen on the Corolla and also Camry. It's a good-looking car even if it's not particularly unforgettable-- more Lyle Waggoner compared to Robert Redford.
Those exact same Toyota themes continue inside the cabin as well. The switches and controls all have that acquainted Toyota look as well as the decoration is limited. Nevertheless there are creative touches like the controller for the optional navigating system that emerges from its nest under the stereo when its needed and snuggles back in when its not.
All the instrumentation is simple to find, easy to review and also lit in "Optitron" glory. The seats typically aren't boldy reinforced, but they are very comfy. Past the called for front two-stage air bags, the Avalon comes side drape airbags for both the front as well as rear owners plus side air bags for the front guests. Any more air bags as well as the Avalon could be made use of as a flotation device.
New Avalons can be found in XL (well-appointed with towel upholstery), XLS (the XL with a nav system, moonroof, six-disc CD changer, and natural leather), Visiting (a sportier suspension, deck spoiler, and HID fronts lights) and also Minimal (crammed, consisting of a wood as well as natural leather wheel) trim degrees. None of their cabin design can be referred to as sparse, however all the petrochemical woodland products on display screen in the line-topping Limited are distracting. The most classy Avalon interior is the Visiting version that consists of leather wrappings around the shift knob, guiding wheel, as well as seats however is or else suppressed.
Whatever the trim level, the Avalon inside is at least as nice as the ES330's and also the Restricted (that includes a "Smart Key System" which allows the car to be started when the trick is simply in the driver's pocket) is much more thoroughly furnished. As well as the Avalon supplies something you can't get on the ES330-- even more area.
Drives like a Toyota
The Avalon is a machine constructed more for convenience compared to rate. The driving atmosphere is kind of like being in front of the most effective stereo sold at Circuit City; there are great deals of knobs as well as dials to play with if you like, but you're most likely best off just trusting what the designers built into the system at the factory in the first place. This is a vehicle that manages the information far better than you might yourself.
The floor-mounted shifter has a distinctive Mercedes-like gate that takes some willful thought to navigate despite the fact that it's actually just an electronic switch mechanism instead as well as not mechanically linked to the transaxle. Leave the shifting approximately the transmission nevertheless as well as the car accelerates with both dignity and also verve; this is a quick automobile yet not a boastful one.
While the XL comes on 16-inch wheels, the various other three models all utilize 17s with P215/55R17 all-season Michelins to connect with the sidewalk. The tires aren't loud, yet they're not extremely sticky either and the cornering limits on also the stiffer Touring version are small. The rack-and-pinion guiding isn't really especially quick, yet there's more feel and also comments on this brand-new car than the old one. It's not really sporty guiding as long as it is willing to confess that it's connected to an automobile that's moving.
Like the front-driver that it is, when the Avalon reaches its limits it transitions right into understeer. Yet it does not do so significantly as well as with the optional Car Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), and digital Brake Assist (BA) aboard it is difficult to get right into difficulty with an Avalon unless you actually intend it at some item as well as do not reflexively hit the brakes.
The Avalon ultimately drives a great deal like, well, a Lexus ES330 ... just bigger as well as much more effective.
Put together at the same Georgetown, Kentucky plant that churns out the Camry, there's nothing unique concerning the Avalon whatsoever. This is much more appealing cars and truck than the previous Avalon, but it's not a car that feels wedded to a motorist's soul like a BMW 3-Series. But true love can wander apart, while connections built on sensible and practical expectations are most likely to sustain.
Those practical assumptions start with the Avalon XL's keen base cost of $26,350 with the Touring at $28,600, XLS at $30,800 and the Restricted at $33,540. That's not cheap, but flawlessly according to the performance, comfort, and also utility of the Avalon.
So the Avalon drives at the very least as well as the Lexus ES330, has even more area, is much more powerful, gets better fuel gas mileage, and can be outfitted just as lavishly. And yet the Lexus lugs a $31,975 base price that's more than any Avalon except the Limited? That makes no sense. Due to the fact that the Avalon isn't just a much better auto compared to the ES330, it's a much better Lexus.