Pros: "Fun to drive; roomy yet easy to park; responsive"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Have owned this car since 2003 (bought it used) and would buy another one today if I could. Original engine still has the power and response it did when we bought it! I plan to drive this car until it quits, but we're closing in on 200K and don't see any signs of major problems."
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."
"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."
Pros: "Great engine, runs smooth and picks up speed easy"
Cons: "bad shocks and paint chips easy"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I've bought this car in 2003, the only things i have done is oil change, new tires and brakes, however, i have never have had problems with the engine or transmission. I highly recommend buying a toyota. Best car ever and it has 98,000 miles and the engine picks up speed as if its NEW. This car is still going strong, runs better than alot of those new cars coming out. The 2 problems the car has is that the paint chips fairly easy, and the shocks are not that great. I had to replace them because i thought something was wrong with them, however, replacing them made no difference."