"I owned a 1999 Avalon and experienced a car traveling into my lane. It hit me head on. My car front end went from about 5 feet long to 2 feet long and the car was knocked off to a side road quit a distance. The emergency people thought that there was going to be major injuries by looking at the car. I was sadly informed that the car that hit me, that the driver will need to go through several reconstructive surgeries. The impressive thing was that my windshield only had a small crack in the bottom left corner, I had bruising from the seat belts and a small burn from the air bag and my son had a slight concussion. Pretty impressive so of course I would only purchase another Avalon because I feel safer."
"I have had an Avalon since 1995. I have always purchased a lease trade back in from the dealer. Always around 45,000 to 50,000 miles and at that age is like buying a new car. The Avalon is not what a youngster would buy, so usually an older person who would take car of the vehicle is the type of buyer for this great vehicle. I just found a 2008 Avalon Limited ( the top of the line) with 6,900 miles on the odometer.......fabulous find, and I love it. It rides as good as a Lexus or any Benz. If you like a bigger luxury type car with 29 miles to the gallon.......get one today. You won't be sorry if the one you get was cared for by the previous owner or a Toyota Certified Dealer."
"I bought this car used with 96000 miles. I have put 70000 miles on it and done nothing by maintenance. It is 11 yrs old and drives like a new car. It is dependable and solid car that is just starting to get broke in."
"Pro - huge back seat, huge trunk (2004 is the last year for the big trunk) Thoroughly reliable and trouble-free. Mileage is always over 23mpg.
1.This car EATS front brake rotors. They will warp after about 5000 miles of easy driving. I finally bought two extra front rotors and swap them out. (Keeps me from having to wait on the machine shop)
2. Throw out the acid-leaking battery before it slobbers all over your frame and radiator and eats holes in it. Buy an Optima SEALED AGM battery to fix the problem forever.
3. Wheel balance. I cannot for the life of me get the wheels balance properly. Not sure if I should blame the car or my local tire shops."
Pros: "Very comfortable, good on long trips, spacious"
Cons: "Not great on fuel, feels like a boat in the turns"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I had this car throughout college and it continues to perform well as a daily driver and for long trips. One of the best road trip sedans I have ever driven or ridden in. The back seat is very spacious, and it has a very roomy trunk. There was so much space in this car I would use it to move in and out of my dorm room in college. Granted, it was filled to the brim.
Repairs have been minimal, and the car has proved to be very reliable. I think it is a great alternative to the more expensive luxury sedans (such as Lexus), in that it has many great features at reasonable price. It will likely not have as many features as a Lexus, but if you don't mind missing out on some of the luxury then the Toyota Avalon is a great choice. The interior quality isn't bad at all, but it isn't particularly elegant. I must mention that I really enjoy the JBL audio system.
I cannot overstate how comfortable the seats are and the amount of room the car offers. There is ample elbow and head room. I am 6'3" and find there to be plenty of leg room as well. Even with my seat all the way back there is plenty of room in the back for the passengers. The suspension is very soft. This provides excellent ride comfort, but a lot of sway under tight cornering. Compared to smaller cars (such as a Toyota Corolla) the Avalon handles like a boat. However, it has a better turning radius than other large sedans. My Avalon also has an extremely strong parking brake.
Overall, it's a great value for money. I have found it to be reliable, comfortable, and spacious. Fuel economy isn't great, but it isn't terrible either. It is great for long trips and daily driving."
Pros: "Fantastically reliable, no unexpected failures"
Cons: "Absolutely, positively NONE"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Until 2002, I had almost owned nothing but GM's, Chevy's and Buicks and Chevy Pick Ups. Did some research on internet and talked with friends who owned other cars. Determined Toyota to be best buy and stopped by dealer.
Was impressed with Avalon and since it was for my wife and she liked it, we bought it. Had to replace battery once, one oxygen sensor, tires and have serviced regularly, including minor brake job. Absolutely no other problems ever. It never even acted like it didn't want to start. I am so satisfied, I bought a 2014 Avalon, just like it, same color even, plus other bells and whistles. We both love our TOYOTA. Selling the 2002 to my daughter after having 100,000 mile service. Dealing with Toyota (dealers) is much more pleasant than with all "American car" dealers. Plus, Toyota is made in America, so I don't feel guilty about buying foreign products."
"Cabin is roomy enough even if you're 2 meters tall, back seat is even sufficient for tall people. Upholstery is nice and has worn very well. Engine is powerful and responsive, and it handles well in all situations I've encountered. The audio system is wonderful, albeit now somewhat dated. No major maintenance problems, just a component here and there wearing out, maybe $1500 of repair costs outside of regular recommended maintenance over 11.5 years of ownership."
"I bought a new 2000 XLS in December 1999 after having ordered an Acura TL and found I couldn't get comfortable in the driver's seat. So: across the street to the Toyota dealer.
For the first few years, I looked for excuses to get rid of it: it seemed too geriatric, with the Buick Roadmaster ride, large fonts on the center display, etc. But, of course, as I got older while driving it, those features began to look better and better.
Seriously, the only flaws worth mentioning have to do with the overly soft suspension. If you have one of these, especially if you buy a low-mileage used one, I recommend you do what I did: Replace the shocks with stiffer, aftermarket ones, like KYB, upgrade all the suspension bushings, and upgrade both the size and quality of the tires. I've got a set of Continental W-rated M/S tires now that improve the handling tremendously; Michelin Exalto A/S, either H- or V- rated, are also excellent, and you can buy them at Costco, which means free rotation and rebalancing for life. Go at least one size over (I'm using 2 sizing), you won't regret it. Upgrade the brakes whenever you have a chance; at least, use Akebono brake pads.
What's worn out after 12 years and 130,000 miles? The catches on the center console and the sunglasses holder. The JBL stereo is good, but at some point, the rear deck speaker blew out, and the part alone is over $200 (it requires more than that in labor to install) so it's now just disconnected. Also, an oxygen sensor was expensive to replace and there are three more of them sitting there waiting to cost money.
But: It's fast, economical (although the trip computer is wildly optimistic about mileage), and very spacious and comfortable. The suspension upgrades have stopped it from wallowing on bumpy roads and leaning too much on turns, but the ride is still very smooth.
When I first got it, it was in spite of the exterior design; I though I was driving a great white whale! But now it looks like a classic -- simple, clean, and not too big compared, let's say, to the current Avalon. If this car were any better, it would be an ES350, but then my clients would think they were paying for my Lexus."
"I have owned 5 of them. This 2000 has 185000+miles. Use no oil, no leaks. Everything works except the JBL CD. No car can compete with Avalon for value or quality. I have spent less than $1000 on normal repairs on this vehicle. Still drives better than most new cars."