This is one Toyota Avalon that you need to buckle up for

A year after unveiling a tricked-out TRD version of the Avalon, Toyota is back at it with an even more radical setup for its resident full-size four-door sedan. It’s called the Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept, and it’s loaded to the brim with track-spec modifications that enhance every detail of the sedan.

From aerodynamic modifications to powertrain enhancements, the Avalon TRD Pro Concept has them all. It’s a fitting homage to TRD’s 40th anniversary, though it would probably be even cooler if Toyota has plans to produce it in some capacity. For now, we can enjoy the Avalon TRD Pro Concept for what it is: a glimpse into what a full-blown, track-spec Toyota Avalon could look like if it was left in the hands of TRD. Maybe someday we can also find out what it feels like to drive.

Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Exterior

  • Carbon fiber parts
  • Red paint finish with blacked-out parts and yellow trim
  • New front splitter
  • New side skirts
  • New rear diffuser
  • New rear spoiler
left right
The Avalon TRD Pro Concept looks like a proper racer with the predominantly red body paint mixed in with the black hood, yellow racing trim, and the preposterously large number of sponsor logos that helped bring this car to life.

You’ll also notice a few aerodynamic bits. The racy front splitter is connected to the sedan’s front bumper. The side skirts are easily visible, too. And yes, there’s a trunk spoiler in the back and a rear diffuser just below it. The black hood is also made from carbon fiber.

The presence of the carbon fiber hood establishes the weight reduction theme that makes the Avalon TRD Pro Concept such a unique vehicle.

The Avalon TRD Pro Concept also sits on a set of custom made 18-inch Lacks wheels with carbon fiber barrels and billet aluminum wheel faces. Not only do these materials make the concept look especially spicy, but they also provide weight savings of as much 15 pounds per wheel. The wheels are wrapped in 275/35R18 Goodyear Supercar 3R tires.

left right

Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Interior

  • Red stitching similar to last year’s Toyota Avalon TRD
  • No track-ready safety equipment
  • Stock, 8-way adjustable seats
  • Rear seats still intact
2019 Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept
- image 870756
The Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept is a track-spec performance car that should have track-ready interior safety equipment, but that isn't the case.

The interior of the Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept looks exactly like the interior of a standard Avalon, albeit with a few exclusive touches. The rear seating area, which you have expected to have been removed in favor of a roll bar or safety cage, remains in place. The center armrest is also visible in the photo while the two eight-way power-adjustable front seats are all dressed in fancy red-and-black TRD garb. If this setup looks familiar, it’s because we’ve already seen it from last year’s Toyota Avalon TRD presentation.

The red details in the Avalon TRD are similarly present in the Avalon TRD Pro Concept, riding down to the red stitching on the seats and steering wheel, possibly on the dash, gear lever, and floor mats, too.

The seatbelts are also red, which is an admittedly nice visual touch that breaks up the dominant black surfaces in the cabin.

2020 Toyota Avalon TRD and Camry TRD Interior
- image 805013

We don’t get a clean look at the Avalon TRD Pro Concept’s dashboard, but a standard nine-inch touchscreen should be part of the setup since it looks like Toyota didn’t deviate away from removing equipment that the concept sedan wouldn’t have needed. Space shouldn’t also be an issue with regards to the interior of the Avalon TRD Pro concept. The Avalon is known for being one of the most spacious full-size sedans in its class, and that reputation extends to the concept. 40 inches of legroom, for example, is available in the rear seating area. Some setups — the optional sunroof, for example — compromise sections of the headroom, but that’s par for the course when you want to avail of some premium options.

The Avalon also boasts a decent cargo room, amounting to 16 cubic feet of truck space. It’s not best-in-class by any stretch of the imagination, but it is spacious enough to fit a large load of groceries if you want to make a quick supermarket run after your time in the race track with the Avalon TRD Pro Concept.

Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Powertrain

  • Modified 3.5-liter V-6 engine
  • New DG-Spec cold air intake and three-inch exhaust
  • Improved output of 330 horsepower
  • Installation of Motion Control Suspension (MCS) coilovers
  • 150lbs lighter than standard Avalon
2019 Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Drivetrain
- image 869774
The first order of business was to massage the Avalon TRD Pro Concept’s 3.5-liter 2GR-FKS V-6 to deliver 330 horsepower.

Achieving that meant adding a DG-Spec cold air intake and a three-inch exhaust fabricated from Burns Stainless components into the powertrain setup. Likewise, Toyota also sourced the Tundra’s factory transmission cooler and added custom lines and an electric pump to accommodate the heat that the transmission will be subjected to when it’s on the track. The Avalon’s front grille was also opened to send more air to the cooler, ensuring that the latter doesn’t overheat when you’re setting some seriously quick lap times with the car.

2019 Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Drivetrain
- image 869773

To limit wheelspin, DG-Spec enlisted the help of long-term partner OS Giken in Japan. Together, they developed a custom Super-Lock limited-slip differential. All told, the 3.5-liter V-6 engine now produces a healthy 330 horsepower. That figure represents an increase of around 30 horsepower compared to the standard 300-horsepower Avalon.

More than just the upgrades made to the V-6 engine, Toyota, TRD, and DG-Spec also worked on improving the Avalon TRD Pro Concept’s suspension and the rest of the auxiliary components that make up the car’s entire mechanical bits. Once again, DG-Spec takes center stage in this regard. The tuner’s Motion Control Suspension (MCS) coilovers replace the factory units at each corner of the chassis.

The MCS coilovers come with remote reservoirs and three-way adjustability, ensuring the kind of on-track versatility the Avalon TRD Pro Concept needs to set blistering lap times.

Speaking of maximum on-track performance, the track-spec Avalon also benefits from a custom Super-Lock limited-slip differential that DG-Spec created in collaboration with one of its longtime partners-in-crime, Japan-based tuner OS Giken. Rear camber arms created by DG-Spec and Progress combine with an adjustable rear stabilizer bar to help complete the Avalon TRD Pro Concept’s mechanical transformation.

2019 Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Drivetrain
- image 869775

All of these upgrades were done with one specific purpose: to not only make the Avalon TRD Pro Concept drivable on the track but to ensure that it has the proper mechanical setup to thrive in this environment. Granted, Toyota didn’t come out and announce any performance numbers, but it did say that the entire development process was so painstakingly tedious, it took no less than ten-track sessions at four different racetracks to properly assess and build the Avalon TRD Pro Concept into what DG-Spec’s Dan Gardner describes as the “quickest FWD full-size sedan on the planet.”

We’re inclined to believe that sentiment provided that we actually see the Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept on the track doing serious timed hot laps. Hopefully, we get to see that happen soon. Besides, what’s so good about hyping a concept if there’s no concrete evidence that it can do all the things it’s been hyped to do.

Final Thoughts

2019 Toyota Avalon TRD Pro Concept Exterior
- image 869768

By way of upgraded components and a few carbon fiber pieces here and there, Toyota, TRD, and DG-Spec managed to create a Toyota Avalon that behaves completely different from what we’re used to with the model. It’s an incredible achievement in a lot of ways, in part because the people behind the build managed to turn a full-size sedan into a full-blown performance car.

Even better, Toyota isn’t closing the doors on actually producing a limited run of the Avalon TRD Performance Concept. That will be entirely contingent on the public’s response to the car. So, if you want a piece of the Avalon TRD Performance Concept, let your voices be heard. Toyota’s listening.

  • Leave it
    • For now, it remains a concept
    • More power wouldn’t have hurt, right?
    • Not for everyone
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
About the author

Related Articles

2019 Toyota Avalon - Driven

2019 Toyota Avalon

What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: