Toyota has revealed today details on the 2011 Avalon, a model that comes with a distinctive new exterior style and a restyled interior rich with premium touch points and practical new technologies. For 2011, Avalon will be offered in two grades, Avalon and Avalon Limited.
The exterior gets a wider, more substantial grille, new headlamps, which combine multi-reflector halogen high beams with halogen or HID low beams and front fog lamps integrated into a trapezoidal front bumper. The interior also gets a new instrument panel and the steering wheel provides fingertip controls for Bluetooth hands-free phones, the audio system, climate control system and the vehicle information center.
Under the hood there is a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 268 HP at 6,200 rpm. For 2011, Avalon’s EPA ratings improve to 20 MPG in the city 29 MPG highway (compared to 19/28 before).
The 2011 Avalon comes equipped with leather-trimmed interior, eight-way power driver’s seat, back-up camera, dual zone automatic climate control with air filtration, moonroof and 17-inch alloy wheels.
Press release after the jump.
Toyota has introduced a redesigned Avalon for 2011, teaming its 268-HP V6 engine with a six-speed automatic transmission for high fuel efficiency (29 MPG EPA highway rating). Evoking a time when travel was sophisticated, elegant and comfortable, the new Avalon combines a distinctive new exterior style and a restyled interior rich with premium touch points and practical new technologies.
Dynamic, expressive lines distinguish the 2011 Avalon, which gains an infusion of comfort, safety and technology advancements to enrich the driving experience. Upgraded equipment and technology features, such as a available touch-screen navigation system with real-time traffic (requires subscription), and Bluetooth® hands-free phone capability with music streaming to the audio system, are among the improvements for the 2011 model. These enhance the car’s renowned blend of spaciousness, comfort and technology.
The 2011 Avalon is available in two grades, Avalon and Avalon Limited. Both are well equipped with leather-trimmed interior, eight-way power driver’s seat, back-up camera, dual zone automatic climate control with air filtration, moonroof and 17-inch alloy wheels. The Avalon Limited gains cooled leather trimmed seats, an eight-way passenger’s seat with lumbar support, driver’s seat cushion extension, rain-sensing windshield wipers and Smart Key. The Avalon grade can be upgraded with a JBL Synthesis sound system and heated front seats, and Navigation is optional for both grades.
“The Avalon has long been appreciated by smart, conscientious consumers who recognize quality materials and the beauty of detailed craftsmanship,” said Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager, Toyota Division, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. “The changes made for 2011 will allow us to build on our position in the premium large car segment. The competition does not stand still, and neither do we.”
Restyled at Calty Design Research in Newport Beach, Calif., the Avalon is assembled at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky (TMMK), a “zero landfill” facility that also assembles the Camry, Camry Hybrid and Venza. It was also developed at the Toyota Technical Center (TTC) in Ann Arbor, Mich.
Dynamic New Exterior
For 2011, Calty restyled Avalon to project an elegant, outgoing presence. A wider, more substantial grille ties into projector headlamps. These work with a broad, undisturbed front hood to suggest a lowered center of gravity and emphasize the Avalon’s wide stance. The new headlamps, which combine multi-reflector halogen high beams with halogen or HID low beams, use “light pipes” to create a signature night-time appearance. The front fog lamps, now integrated into a trapezoidal front bumper, provide wider illumination.
In profile, the 2011 Avalon is enhanced by additional use of chrome trim, redesigned rocker panels and glare-resistant outer mirrors with integrated turn signals. The Limited grade adds new 17-inch wheels with a 10-spoke design with mirror finish. Dual exhaust tailpipes are integrated into the cutaway trapezoid shape of the lower bumper for a modern image. Reshaped taillights reduce turbulence at the rear, helping also to reduce the car’s coefficient of drag. The new lights integrate stop, turn and side marker lighting functions in one combined lamp. LED light pipes with dark aluminized sides and both clear and red lenses project a modern appearance.
Spacious Interior Designed for Premium Comfort
The 2011 Avalon shows off a new contemporary style inside, as well. The new interior remains generously spacious and elegant, fitted with comfortable seating and thoughtfully integrated amenities. Coordinated colors and rich new wood-grain style materials convey the rich elegance of a luxury sedan. A new instrument panel incorporates visually attractive and easily readable Optitron gauges that use graduated white illumination with white pointers. These are set inside smoked lenses and deep chrome rings that add depth and a sense of luxury.
The steering wheel provides fingertip controls for Bluetooth hands-free phones, the audio system, climate control system and the vehicle information center.
Standard leather-trimmed front seats and seatbacks on the Avalon Limited are fitted with ventilation systems and an enlarged perforation area to help keep them cool. Thicker stitching on the seats provides a stylish accent to the interior design. For safety, active front headrests are also standard.
The rear seating area is configured to seat three passengers comfortably, with ample legroom and reclining rear seats that are unique in the segment. The rear headrests have also been reshaped and enlarged for better support, and a convenient flip-down center armrest provides storage when the middle seat position is not in use. A power rear sunshade, activated by a one-touch lever, filters direct sunlight coming through the rear window. The sunshade, which helps to protect rear seat passengers from unwanted light and heat, automatically retracts when the driver selects reverse gear.
The 2011 Avalon presents the driver and passengers with a comprehensive array of user technology for enhanced function and connectivity. New standard equipment includes Bluetooth hands-free phone and music streaming to the audio system from a compatible device, XM® satellite radio (with 90-day free trial subscription), and both USB and 1/8-inch auxiliary connections for iPod® and other audio devices. Each of the three available audio systems can control iPods seamlessly using switches located on the steering wheel and display track information.
Toyota’s latest DVD Navigation system has a newly adopted database and now has easier search and address input functionality. The navigation system also offers new displays for road icons and points of interest, and a keyboard screen arranged in the same way as a personal computer. The Avalon grade’s standard nine-speaker system offers excellent sound quality, while the Limited grade features a standard 12-speaker, 660-watt JBL Premium Synthesis audio system with enhanced two-coil sub-woofer. The JBL system uses a 12-channel digital amplifier to deliver exceptionally rich, full sound to all seats of the vehicle.
A rear-view monitor function is standard in the rear-view mirror or with the available navigation system. The rear-view-mirror image includes on-screen back-up guides that help the driver to back into parking spaces or driveways.
Performance and Efficiency Combined
With its combination of ample power and excellent fuel economy, Avalon offers one of the most compelling packages in the large sedan segment. The 2011 Avalon is powered by a 24-valve, dual-overhead cam 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 268 horsepower at 6,200 rpm. The engine is equipped with the dual VVT-i electronic valve-control system that ensures a broad powerband, while requiring less fuel and generating fewer emissions.
For 2011, Avalon’s EPA ratings improve to 20 MPG in the city 29 MPG highway (compared to 19/28 before), which is outstanding for the class and is better that some midsize six-cylinder models. The 2011 Avalon is certified as an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV).
The Avalon’s MacPherson strut coil spring independent suspension delivers a sophisticated blend of smooth ride quality and precise driving control. Rack-and-pinion steering combines with front-wheel-drive and optimized steering gear for an easy, natural handling feel.
Beyond the luxury of its spaciousness and obvious amenities, numerous details throughout the Avalon enhance the driving experience and passenger comfort. For example: The dual-zone climate control system has nine airflow modes for more precise control of the interior environment, and a clean-air filter removes dust and pollen. The vehicle doors use three stop positions instead of two for easier entrance and exit; a lockable glove box has a pneumatic-door damper and inner box illumination.
The front-console box features a sliding armrest that moves 4.7 inches front to rear to accommodate a wide range of driver positions; the elegantly stitched top is padded with a double density cushion material for softness. Inside the console box, there is a 12-volt outlet in addition to the USB and auxiliary audio terminals. The 2011 Avalon features a standard full-size spare tire on an alloy wheel — a rarity in any segment.
High Level of Standard Safety
The 2011 Avalon’s occupant-safety strategy includes use of extensively tested energy absorbing structures, protective side impact beams and overhead structure, advanced belt systems and active front headrests as standard equipment. Avalon also features a redesigned accelerator pedal assembly and a brake override system for 2011.
Seven airbags, including a front knee bag for the driver, and side curtain airbags for both rows, are also standard. Toyota ’s standard Star Safety System includes Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist and TRAC traction control system. TRAC and VSC functions can be disengaged if the driver needs to free the vehicle if stuck in mud or snow. Each wheel has its own pressure sensor to warn if tire pressure drops to critical levels, providing the driver with an early warning of a potential problem.
Color and Trim
The 2011 Avalon is available in nine exterior colors, including three new colors: Zephyr Blue Metallic, Cypress Pearl and Sizzling Crimson Mica. Additional colors include Cocoa Bean Metallic, Blizzard Pearl, Classic Silver Metallic, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Black, and Sandy Beach Metallic. Avalon grade offers three leather-trimmed interior colors: Ivory, Light Gray, and Black; the Limited grade offers Ivory, Light Gray and Black Bordeaux trims with accent-color trim on the vertical surfaces. Such a wide array of choices is more common in the luxury category.