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2013 Toyota Avalon

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2013 Toyota Avalon Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 8.6

There was a time when large, comfortable sedans were about as ubiquitous as mobile phones. But the continued popularity of SUVs and a rather unfavorable association with the geriatric crowd has diminished the mainstream appeal of full-size sedans. The 2013 Toyota Avalon looks to change all that with a striking new design, responsive driving dynamics, and advanced, yet easy-to-use in-vehicle technology. And, for the first time ever, the Avalon nameplate offers a fuel-efficient hybrid variant alongside the standard V6 model. The Avalon required this significant overhaul to contend with such segment heavyweights as the Ford Taurus, Buick LaCrosse and Chrysler 300. All told, the 2013 Avalon represents a dramatic departure from its vanilla-flavored predecessors and deservedly holds down the spot as Toyota's flagship sedan.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you have always appreciated the practicality and comfort of a full-size sedan, but long for the handling characteristics and fuel efficiency of a mid-size, placing the 2013 Toyota Avalon at the top of your list would be a wise decision. Given its class-leading resale value and stellar record for reliability, the new Toyota Avalon is a smart buy for value-conscious shoppers.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If your tastes are more sporting in nature, the Nissan Maxima or the 365-horsepower Ford Taurus SHO might be a better fit.

What's New for 2013

The completely redesigned 2013 Avalon ushers in a new era of style and refinement for the Toyota brand. This latest iteration preserves the high levels of luxury and comfort that made the Avalons of yesteryear such a success, but adds a dose of athleticism and panache to the mix.

Driving the Avalon

Driving Impressions While its performance abilities may not leave you grinning from ear to ear, the 2013 Toyota Avalon delivers on its promise to provide a pleasantly sedate driving experience. The 4th-generation...

Avalon benefits from improved steering feel, sharper suspension tuning and additional chassis rigidity without compromising the trademark ride quality. This newfound dynamism is complemented by a driver-selectable sport mode that quickens upshifts and increases steering weight, though we feel outfitting the luxury-oriented Avalon with features like downshift rev-matching and paddle shifters is bit superfluous. Road- and wind-noise suppression, a staple of the Toyota Avalon, is better than ever. And as the abundance of glass suggests, outward visibility is good from most perspectives, affording the driver a commanding view of the road. While we enjoy the V6 model, the new Avalon Hybrid is the star player in the lineup. For a marginal price premium, the 2013 Avalon Hybrid offers plenty of power for everyday driving and up to 40 mpg combined city/highway – impressive figures for a full-size sedan.

CAPACITIVE TOUCH SWITCHES
Similar to your smartphone's touch-screen, capacitive touch switches react to minor changes in electrical current generated by contact with a finger. Unlike conventional buttons and knobs, capacitive touch switches are free of moving parts, which provide the Avalon with a clean, contemporary dash layout.

REAR CROSS TRAFFIC WARNING
Although properly adjusted mirrors negate the need for trendy blind-spot monitoring systems, this "safety" feature paved the way for a useful technology called Rear Cross Traffic Warning. When backing out of a parking space or driveway with limited visibility, the available cross-traffic system alerts the driver of an approaching vehicle with a warning signal and an indicator light.

2013 Toyota Avalon Details
Interior

The 2013 Toyota Avalon offers perhaps the finest cabin in its class, with first-rate materials, user-friendly controls and impressive fit and finish. The general design is the same regardless of trim level, which only sweetens the Avalon's attractive $31K starting price. Toyota's latest batch of infotainment options such as advanced voice recognition, mobile application integration and hard-drive-based navigation should appeal to tech-savvy buyers. And, unlike the Ford Taurus, the Avalon's capacitive touch switches for the audio and climate control functions are responsive and straightforward. On a sour note, the 2013 Avalon might be the only vehicle on the market in which the multi-information display features a higher resolution screen than the standard touch-screen. In terms of comfort, the front seats are more supportive than in years past, while rear seat passengers are treated to an abundance of legroom and headroom.

Exterior
2013 Toyota Avalon photo

The Avalon's masculine stance and sculpted bodywork were conceived by Toyota's Southern California-based Calty Design studio. The forward-raked C-pillar and sweeping roofline impart an almost coupe-like silhouette. Although it seems counterintuitive, this aggressive design actually improves rear-seat headroom. The headlights incorporate a pair of stylish square-shaped projector lenses, which Toyota calls Quadrabeams. This contemporary look is finished off with a set of 17-inch or optional 18-inch alloy wheels, LED taillights and dual chrome-tipped exhaust outlets.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2013 Toyota Avalon is offered in XLE, Premium, Touring and Limited trim levels with hybrid variants available in the latter three. In base form, the Avalon includes heated outside mirrors, leather-trimmed seats and steering wheel, smart key access and push button start, dual-zone climate control and a 6.1-inch touch-screen audio interface with an 8-speaker sound system. Premium models add a moonroof, rear backup camera and auto-dimming rearview mirror, while Touring trims include creature comforts like navigation, driver's seat memory control and Toyota's Entune infotainment system. Occupant protection consists of 10 airbags, a comprehensive suite of electronic stability aids, and front seats designed to help reduce the severity of whiplash-related injuries.

Optional Equipment

Since the majority of feature content is tied to trim level, the 2013 Toyota Avalon offers only one option package. Available exclusively on Limited models, the Tech Package includes a pre-collision system that prepares the car for impact when it senses an impending crash, automatic high beams, and an adaptive cruise control system that maintains a pre-selected distance behind the vehicle ahead.

Under the Hood

The new Avalon gets its motivation from the carryover 3.5-liter V6 or a new Atkinson-cycle 4-cylinder hybrid powerplant – the same system used in the latest Camry Hybrid. The conventional mill churns out a healthy 268 horsepower through a 6-speed automatic gearbox, while the hybrid system sends its 200 horsepower to the front wheels via a gearless continuously variable transmission. To the dismay of those living in the Snow Belt, the Toyota Avalon does not offer all-wheel drive.

3.5-liter V6
268 horsepower @ 6,200 rpm
248 lb-ft of torque @ 4,700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/31 mpg

2.5-liter inline-4 hybrid
200 net hybrid system horsepower
Engine: 156 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpm
Battery: 199 lb-ft of torque @ 0-1,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 40/39 mpg

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2013 Toyota Avalon Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.5
Out of 10

Based on 133 Ratings for the 2013 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.5/10

Handling performance interior trim are excellent.

By on Sunday, March 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,800

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "A solid vehicle"

Cons: "Boring to drive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"Maneuvering is top flight. Performance is very good with smooth shifting and easy acceleration. Gas mileage in mixed driving is 24.5 mpg and highway is 30 + mph. The ride could be softer. the many safety features are great."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

Where's the quality?

By on Sunday, March 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 4,200

10 2.0
overall rating 2 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
2/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Quite and rides well"

Cons: "Factory defects, rattles and low end technology"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"In the initial purchase I returned the first Avalon within a day and exchanged it for a new one. It had a terrible rattle and the head of service said it was "structural" and they'd have to take the front of the car apart to find it. The second one has been in 4 times for another rattle that the dealership cannot find. The technology inside the car is not up to par for Toyota's flagship car. My previous car was a Honda Accord EX-L. The Accord had first rate technology that far exceeds the Avalon. The only thing I can say is that it's quieter and rides better than the Accord. Would definitely buy a Honda or Acura next time. I'm not sure why two Avalons in a row would have factory defects and rattles."

One of my favoriye cars.

By on Friday, March 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
Not Rated
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great car."

Cons: "No negatives"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Very reliable, great gas mileage (average mileage 42 mpg), quiet and pleasure to drive, adequate power, roomy and comfortable. Can travel over 600 miles on a tank of gasoline. Plush interior. Highly recommend. Uses regular gasoline. Reasonable price and many features."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

38 MPG, all the convenience features. Love it!

By on Monday, March 16, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Extremely comfortable car, very well laid out interior. Blind spot mirror and cross traffic alert is awesome. How does 38 miles per gallon sound? Plenty of power, this vehicle can get up and go, unlike many other hybrids. Compares favorably to the Lexus ES hybrid, same drive train. Doesn't corner like a BMW, but competent handling. Quiet, comfortable and over 500 miles to the tank of gas, how do you beat that?"

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Terrible Drive and Outdated Nav system

By on Wednesday, February 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,500

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"My car has 3500 miles on it and I have had it for 6 months. I HATE DRIVING IT! It has an awful stiff drive. Everything rattles! And the nav system is the worst I have ever seen. It is really small and is littered with writing all over it. Considering this car is for a much older person than myself, why is it so small???And what's up with the pea green all over the map?? It's a nice looking car on the outside. The passenger seat practically sits on the floor so long drives are not comfortable. Can't wait to get rid of it!!! For $38K you can do better!! Cheap quality leather too. Buy a Lexus for the same money. They are finished better. This is my third Toyota and it is my last! I had both a Prius and Corolla and both were solid cars."

8 people out of 17 found this review helpful

Great car with all the perks of more pricey cars.

By on Friday, January 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 12,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Luxury and sporty in one package."

Cons: "Would like a brighter inside trunk light."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Did much searching for a new car and after weighing all the facts chose Avalon. We enjoy the comfort and power this car has and combined with the good fuel economy [ 31 plus on recent trip ] makes for good value priced car. We also get many comments on how beautiful the car is."

31 people out of 53 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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