After several weeks of teasing, at least part of the mystery surrounding its previously unnamed "new model" was finally resolved as the wraps came off of the dramatically recast 2013 Toyota Avalon. Although Toyota was happy to tout details of the bold visual makeover that took it from relentlessly staid to impressively modern, the automaker was less forthcoming about the car's powertrain specs. For the moment, all Bob Carter, Group Vice President and General Manager, Toyota Division, Toyota Motor Sales, would say is that the 2013 Avalon will have a V6 engine and offer excellent mileage. A full download regarding that critical aspect of the vehicle is due later this spring. However, since the Avalon has historically shared key drivetrain elements with its Camry semi-sibling, it seems likely the V6 will be the same 268-horsepower 3.5-liter engine used in that vehicle. Whether it also means we'll finally get confirmation of a long-rumored Avalon Hybrid model joining the lineup remains to be seen.
As for confirmed facts, the 2013 Avalon was styled in the U.S. at the automaker's CALTY Design Research facility in Newport Beach, California, and its more emotional and dynamic qualities "effectively foreshadow the more compelling and passionate nature of future Toyota products." While retaining the same front-drive configuration and 111.0-inch wheelbase as the current Avalon, the 2013 model is bit shorter, lower and narrower as well as being over 100 pounds lighter.
Complementing far bolder basic lines with more expressive detailing, the exterior of the 2013 Avalon reflects a dramatic departure from the present model highlighted by shorter front/rear overhangs, a sweeping semi-fastback roof, lower beltline, well-flared fenderwells that house 17- and 18-inch wheel/tire fitments and major fascia remakes. Up front, the new design matches a more aggressive grille treatment with new square Double-eye PES (Projector Ellipsoid System) HID headlamps and LED daytime running lights. A similar level of graphic intensity is evident in the Avalon's rear styling that keys off of stylish LED combination taillamps and smartly integrates the car's dual exhaust outlets into its lower valence panel.
The Avalon has always been lauded for its exceptional interior spaciousness and the 2013 model modestly expands on that dimensional advantage while introducing a more premium look and feel that includes additional soft-touch surfaces, leather and smoked chrome-metallic accent trim bits and available ambient lighting. Acoustic glass and a variety of noise attenuation tricks make the 2013 Avalon's cabin even quieter while redesigned seats provide more comfort and support for their occupants. On the tech front, the Avalon will feature advanced capacitive touch switches and three color display screens that support the car's multi-information display, audio/navigation interface and climate control systems. All Avalon models will come with Toyota's Display Audio system that includes a 6.1-inch touch screen and offer a JBL Synthesis Premium Audio system, HDD Premium Navigation, dynamic radar cruise control, heated and cooled front seats, heated rear seats, and a three-zone air conditioning system as options.
Key safety standards on the 2013 Avalon include Toyota's Star Safety System (Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist, and Smart Stop Technology brake-override system) and 10 airbags while a Pre-collision, Blind Spot Monitoring system and Rear Cross Traffic Alert system (RCTA) will be optional. The 2013 Toyota Avalon will arrive in showrooms later this year. Pricing information will be released closer to the actual on-sale date.