Friday, July 12, 2024

Car and Driver: 2013 Toyota Avalon Tops Its Cruiser Competition

Last updated Thursday, August 1, 2013 08:00 ET

Fresh Style and Improved Handling Lift Premium Sedan in Comparo

Waterville, 08/01/2013 / SubmitMyPR /

Redesigned for the 2013 model year to attract younger buyers, the new Toyota Avalon sports a decidedly more athletic exterior. Looks can be deceiving, however, so Car and Driver recently put the Avalon to the test against five competitors to see which sedan offered the best combination of style, performance, features and comfort. The Avalon came out on top among its fellow highway cruisers, besting the Chevrolet Impala, Dodge Charger, Chrysler 300, Kia Cadenza and Hyundai Azera for the No. 1 spot.

Car and Driver editors rated each of the six large sedans in several categories, including powertrain, chassis, driving experience and vehicle specs. The Avalon led its competitors in six out of nine acceleration tests while earning perfect scores in powertrain flexibility, rear-seat comfort and trunk space, helping the model earn a grand total of 197 out of 240 points to take home the win. Testers lauded the Avalon's responsive steering feel and handling, its stylish new exterior and its modern, multi-layered dashboard when announcing the car's victory.

"The new Avalon has a sleeker design and a more engaging ride that make it more appealing to younger buyers than previous generations," said Jeff Leclerc, general sales manager of Central Maine Toyota, a Waterville, ME Toyota dealership. "But longtime fans of the sedan will find that the new generation still has the comfort and premium features they've come to expect from the Avalon."

The 2013 Toyota Avalon dons a more dynamic front end marked by a wide, two-tiered grille and narrower headlamps, while LED taillights and a dual exhaust carry over that bolder look to the rear. With an increased use of high-strength steel in its body structure, the 2013 Avalon weighs nearly 120 pounds less than its predecessor, and that increased rigidity results in smoother handling for drivers. The new generation continues to win over buyers at U.S. dealerships, with the Avalon selling nearly three times as many models in June as in the same month in 2012.

As part of its redesign of the Avalon, Toyota released its first-ever hybrid variant of the sedan, which improves combined city and highway fuel economy to 40 mpg, up from the gas-only model's 25 mpg. Pairing a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with two electric motors, the 2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid generates a total system output of 200 horsepower, while its interior features the same high-quality materials and elegant design found in the strictly gas-powered models.

"Toyota's addition of a hybrid variant highlights the fact that the automaker not only wanted to modernize the Avalon stylistically, but also technologically to achieve the impressive fuel efficiency that today's drivers demand," added Leclerc. "Regular commuters will save hundreds of dollars a year on fuel with the Avalon Hybrid, and they get to reap those savings with a car that now has a lot more personality out on the road."

About Central Maine Toyota:
A part of the Central Maine Motors Auto Group, Central Maine Toyota has served local drivers for years with the outstanding Toyota buying experience they deserve. Their diverse inventory of new and pre-owned vehicles, as well as their friendly, professional staff, has earned Central Maine Toyota a reputation for delivering unrivaled automotive sales and service. View their inventory in person at 15 Airport Rd. in Waterville, or online at www.cmtoy.com. They can also be reached by phone at 888-719-3168 and found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CentralMaineToyotaScion.