Although the world was hoping for the highly anticipated Supra debut, the 2018 Detroit Auto Show has instead been blessed with the 2019 Toyota Avalon.
As the most Lexus-like Toyota in the Japanese automaker’s lineup, this big flagship sedan is now in its fifth generation and continues to be made in America. Here are five things you need to know about the 2019 Toyota Avalon:
Looking more premium than ever, the Avalon gets a fresh new face that makes it look even more like a Lexus from some angles. Along with deeply stamped new bodywork, it gets animated turn signals, LED lighting, a massive grille, and a more angular rear end.
All in, the Avalon looks longer, lower, and wider, which helps it look less dowdy. Even the front and rear overhangs have been shaved down.
Inside, the cabin has been refined with available saddle brown leather (a new shade called Cognac), real wood and aluminum trim, quilted seats, and more. Toyota claims the Avalon has segment leading space for rear seat passengers.
V6 and Hybrid Powertrain
The base Avalon will be powered by a carryover 3.5-liter V6 paired to a new eight-speed automatic transmission sending power to the front wheels (it replaces the old six-speed unit). Although official output hasn’t been announced yet, Toyota says it will be more powerful than the current Avalon’s 268 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque, all while being more fuel efficient.
The hybrid Avalon gets a 2.5-liter four-cylinder with a 460-volt electric motor and a CVT. The battery now lives under the rear seats instead of the trunk, which opens up more room for cargo. Official fuel economy has not been announced.
Performance on the Mind
The new Avalon will get a multi-link rear suspension and, for the first time ever on a Toyota, it will be available with an adaptive variable suspension that should help it balance handling and comfort well. Changes in damping can happen in as little as 20 milliseconds. Also, to make sure you feel fast, the Avalon now comes with “engine sound enhancement,” “intake sound generator,” and is available with quad tailpipes. If you prefer a quieter ride, active noise cancelation is also available.
Like all other Toyotas, the new Avalon comes standard with Toyota Safety Sense P, the brand’s suite of safety and driver assistance technology. Adaptive turning headlights along with active highbeams, full-speed adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, active lane departure assist and a pre-collision system are all standard. Blind spot monitoring, rear-cross traffic alert with automatic braking, a back-up guide monitor, a panoramic around-view camera, and a 10-inch head-up display are additional features available.
ALSO SEE: 2018 Detroit Auto Show Coverage
Finally Apple CarPlay
Toyota is finally going to offer Apple CarPlay compatibility as standard and is one of the last automakers to jump on board. This is the first Toyota to offer this. In addition, Amazon Alexa integration is available, but no Android Auto. Other available tech goodies include wireless smartphone charging, wifi hotspot capability, five USB ports, a nine-inch touchscreen that recognizes smartphone gestures, smartwatch compatibility, a high-end sound system, and more.