2014 Toyota Avalon Hybrid – efficient midsized luxury

20 Май 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2014 Toyota Avalon Hybrid – efficient midsized luxury отключены
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars

2014 Toyota Avalon Hybrid – efficient midsized luxury

The Toyota Avalon Hybrid is a premium-level full-size sedan that offers everything one might expect from a top-level, large sedan with the added bonus of hybrid efficiency. Adding Hybrid Synergy Drive to the 2014 Avalon means 40 mpg combined (EPA) without compromising space, comfort or drive.

The manufacturer says

Beauty is in the details. The 2014 Avalon represents everything we love about driving. This is design that will never go out of style.

Specs:

Overview

When most people think of the word hybrid they automatically think Toyota or Prius. The Avalon is basically the Prius’ big brother, though in a much prettier package with a lot more space and on-road confidence. The Avalon in any trim level or drive train option is a beautiful car.


The base model XLE Hybrid starts at $35,555 while the top-trim Hybrid Limited we drove topped $44k. For that, though, you get some serious luxury without paying for the Lexus nameplate, including beautiful interior treatments with four color tones and soft leather.

For the hybrid premium here, which is not insignificant, you get a return of 40 mpg combined (EPA, 40/39 city/highway) and that economy is not difficult to achieve. In a week’s worth of driving in inclement weather with ubiquitous Wyoming crosswinds and mile-high altitudes, we managed an average of 33 mpg overall. That was with a fully loaded cabin (car seats and adults), not-so-eco-friendly driving on many occasions, and regular use of Sport mode to make freeway onramps and highway passing a little more fun.

A more seriously eco-minded driver could easily approach or surpass 40 mpg in the 2014 Avalon Hybrid.

With all of that efficiency, the Limited package includes creature comforts that quickly become indispensable. The fast-heating seats, self-adjusting seat and steering wheel — they move back and up when the engine is shut off, to make getting in and out easier, and return when started again – and other little amenities within this premium package make it hard to imagine the car without them.

On the road, the 2014 Toyota Avalon Hybrid is a sure-footed, confident drive with an added bit of sportiness thanks to excellent steering dynamics (for the class) and the added electric torque it includes. The engine and drivetrain are the same as that found in the Toyota Camry Hybrid, which itself is a more than capable midsize car, so this sportiness is not a surprise.

There are few things to dislike about the Toyota Avalon Hybrid, especially in that upper trim level. It’s very comfortable, highly drivable, and easy to fall in love with. Although its premium price tag for the hybrid option is a bit steep, the huge gains in fuel economy could easily spell a return on that investment for many buyers.

In fact, using that metric, it likely beats many midsize sedans with smaller footprints and higher MPG when compared on a usability and economy-of-size measurement.

What we like

Toyota Avalon Electric Cars

Beautiful interior and stylish exterior overall, even at lower trim levels. While we would have chosen a different color combo inside for our test drive, we did receive many complements from others on its look, so that preference is noted as mere personal opinion.

Excellent and unsurpassed fuel economy for the segment. You will not find another full-sized sedan with the same MPG. Period.

What we don’t

Same clunky Toyota infotainment that plagues all of the company’s models. This is long overdue for an upgrade and is our primary complaint about many Toyota models.

Not totally kid-friendly . though Toyota did think of many touches like the plastic backing on the driver’s seats to combat foot wear from the kiddos and easy-to-clean faux and real leather options for the seating. Door handles and other no-no spots are within reach of toddlers in safety seats, however.

Conclusions

The beautiful 2014 Toyota Avalon Hybrid in any package is likely a great buy for any family that requires the usability of a full-sized sedan. It’s stylish, includes very dapper color options, and offers a smooth, comfortable drive and ride without the former granny factor of the older Avalon models with their thick suspensions and heavy body roll. For those who can justify the hybrid premium with a fuel-saving ROI (which will be many, if not most), it’s an excellent bargain overall.

Test Period Length and Limitations

Our Avalon was a test drive offered as a press loan from the manufacturer for a week as an everyday driver. Our drive took us through city, highway, and freeway situations in both sunny and inclement weather in Southeastern Wyoming. A total of over 390 miles were put on the vehicle during our test period.

Toyota Avalon Electric Cars
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars
Toyota Avalon Electric Cars

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