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2012 - 2013 Toyota Avalon

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Comments

  • roho1roho1 Posts: 317
    Don't think your old saying applies to an Avalon. I know of no young men that would be caught dead in an Avalon. They are not interested in an expensive full size 4 door sedan. Maybe if there was a 2 door hardtop version with 22" wheels and a wing on the back you'd drag some into the showroom.
  • Perhaps I should have used the term "younger man" and I think when the average age of the people who bought this car is calculated I think that will be the case. I diffenetly agree with you the Avalon or any car like it will not be bought buy truly younger buyers. Be advised I am 73 so younger for me younger has a total different connotation.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Now that I have my Avalon, I'm resolved just to get used to the new ride and move forward. I love the car otherwise, the handling is very much improved and still to this day, when I look at other cars, I keep going back to loving the one I bought. Next time I need new tires, I will put on Michelins. Question though: what is a very good product that I can use to keep my leather seats looking nice? a cleaner that will clean the seats but won't damage the leather? I want to keep it looking good from the start.
    Thanks.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    I use Lexol. There is a cleaner and a conditioner. About $10 each and work well.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • Avalon was 64 years old with the previous version, now about 55.

    Camry was 60, and now down to around 50, and the SE is even lower than that.

    I guess the 2014 Corolla (average age 53) will also see a difference with the new, more aggressive style. :blush:
  • robnichrobnich Posts: 13
    Teresa - I don't think you responded to my earlier suggestion that you try lowering the tire pressure on your new Avalon to 31 psi -- it really does make a noticeable difference. After you reduce the pressure, reset the Tire Pressure Monitoring System as described in the owners' manual.

    Robert N.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Rob,

    Thank you for the suggestion. The only thing I worry about is getting the psi too low. I know it won't set off an alarm, just concerned with driving with such low tires. I checked my tires the other day and they are all at 33 psi right now which is where I understand what is recommended I will keep the suggestion in mind and might try that. Thanks again for your help. It is appreciated.
  • At the expense of ride quality. The lower rolling resistance at higher pressures is preferable to some owners for better MPG, but there is a trade off.

    You will lose fuel economy by dropping pressure, as you increase rolling resistance, but yu won't feel like you are riding on the spokes.

    33-34 psi is a balanced approach, or what would be a happy medium. :shades:
  • robnichrobnich Posts: 13
    There's really nothing to be concerned about. Many of us have dropped the pressure to 31 psi with noticeable improvement in ride. Any loss of mpg is negligible.

    Robert N.
  • havechavec Posts: 45
    I've had the tires on my Limited Hybrid at 31 psi going on 3 months now. My overall milage is 34 mpg based on 66 gallons of gas. CR says 36 mpg for mixed driving but I haven't done a lot of freway driving and I live in a hilly part of California.

    I wish the Bridgstones would hurry up and wear out so I can get some MXV4s but it looks like that is going to be awhile. Maybe, I could sell them on Craiglist.
  • For the record a drop of 2psi in tire pressure usually results in less than one MPG average. Almost a rounding error. I had a 2009 Camry Hybrid and never averaged CR combine economy number as well. Missed it by about the same amount you did and I kept my tires properly inflated with regular checks. Came pretty close to their hi way average if I stayed under 70MPH.
  • Been using McGuire leather conditioner for years and my seats stayed new looking out to well over 1000,000 miles with a both my GS300 Lexus's. I stayed away from "cleaner" conditioners and substituted regular treatment of the seats instead(3-5 times a year minimum). Used it with similar results with my 2009 Camry Hybrid.
  • I think it is important to note the Avalon tested in Car and Driver had Michelins and they experienced non of terrible response to various road irregularities Motor trend commented on. Firm ride yes awful ride no.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    I haven't driven a 2013, but can tell you without a doubt Turanza EL400s are a crap tire. I had them on my 06 Avalon and hated them.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • havechavec Posts: 45
    The other variable in how the Avalon rides is if it has the 17 or 18 inch wheels. Just about everybody agrees that the hybrid with 215-55-17 tires rides better thatn the V6 with the 225-45-18 inch tires.

    Although, one V6 owner did have his 18 inch wheels switched out to 17's at CR's suggestion and reported little or no improvement.

    Also, there are 23 owners reporting in on CRs website on the Avalon. Almost all of the complaints on the ride are V6 owners. For the most part, people aren't complaining about the hybrid's ride.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Thank you for this information. I appreciate it. I'll look for it in my automotive store.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Wow, this is really interesting regarding the wheel size and tires. You would think that the Toyota would go standard with Michelins instead of using the Bridgestones. I don't understand why some of the cars are coming with Michelins on them and others, like mine, are coming with Bridgestones.

    I am getting more used to the firm ride and I love the seats, they are comfortable to me. I think it was just a shock to me about the change in the suspension and ride coming from my 06 Avalon, but I'm getting over it. Otherwise, I think Toyota did a great job on the redesign. It really does look much more sporty.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Thank you for this suggestion. I will take a look at this one as well.
  • havechavec Posts: 45
    My local tire dealer didn't have much very nice to say about the Bridgestones either. Then again he is a tire dealer selling tires. The Camry hybrid comes with the same exact Bridgestone tire as the Avalon hybrid and gets a better ride score than the Avalon. CR may have rated the old Avalon as having a nice pillow soft ride but they rated the emergency handling as poor. Toyota can't win with CR with this car.
  • Even the iconic Lexus LFA sported the ancient Bridgestone RE070 over clearly superior, and easily more modern, performance rubber currently available. :confuse:

    Bridgestone must have paid Toyota a small fortune for the account.
  • bwiabwia Boston Posts: 1,266
    edited June 2013
    My local tire dealer didn't have much very nice to say about the Bridgestones either. Then again he is a tire dealer selling tires.

    Personally, I don't think car tires are as noisy as some claim. Cabin noise comes from three major sources---engine noise, wind noise and tire noise. Automakers use quiet glass to eliminate wind noise and sound deadening materials, noise cancellation technology and insulation to block engine noise.

    Unfortunately, these measures have made the cabin so whisper quiet that tire road noises sound louder than they really are. Tire noise is a matter of physics--the noise does not really come from the tire compound itself but rather from the air pockets created when the tire makes contact with the road surface. So you can waste your money switching to a different brand but the tire decibel level will not change appreciable.
  • nceencee Posts: 419
    Oh, contra my friend. It can be and is as big an issue as some are making out of it.

    In my case, I had to turn my radio up to 20+ on the volume to hear it, and not the tire noise:(

    Skip
  • Wow! You have come up with some interesting theories about perceived tire noises. I am 73yrs old and spent most of my life in the automobile service and repair business. I can assure you,I have identified and solved many a noisy tire problems in my time. Personal experience with awful tire noises from a set of new "Stones" was one of the worst examples I ever personal ever delt with. They where on a new Lexus I owned and getting them replaced with another set of tires transformed the car for the better in all respects. So with all due respect I strongly disagree with your hypothisis.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yes, that's a good product, and using it is a good idea. I would point out though, having had 4 of them, that the Lexus leather used is impervious to UV rays and other aging factors. It's amazing. I had a 96 ES up until last year, sat in the Nevada sun for 16 years, and the leather seats still looked, felt and functions just like new, with no treatment. - so while Meguires is awesome, that probably isn't the factor you may think. :blush:
  • Thanks for your real world experience input. Perhaps I will be less diligent in my leather treatments but it makes me feel better even if the seats are not benefiting that much if any. Old habits die hard,but at least there is no evidence I have caused any problems by over maintaining my interiors and it makes the leather look better.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    It certainly doesn't hurt them! Keep a polishing!!!
  • daveinvadaveinva Posts: 6
    Hi,

    I have not been on this forum recently, but I noticed your post and thought I could provide my reply.

    I did swap out the Bridgestone EL400's for a set of four Michelin Primacy MXM4 tires (P225/45R18) a few weeks ago. So, I now have had the chance to evaluate the ride of the 2013 Avalon for all four combinations of rim size and tire comparisons between Bridgestone and Michelin.

    If you use a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is the best, here are my observations:

    17" rims with Michelin Primacy MXV4 tires (P215/55R17)..........Score = 9
    18" rims with Michelin Primacy MXM4 tires (P225/45R18)..........Score = 7
    17" rims with Bridgestone Turenza EL400-02 (P215/55R17).......Score = 4
    18" rims with Bridgestone Turenza EL400-02 (P225/45R18).......Score = 4

    Note that the Michelin tires are not identical; the MXV4 is a little more ride comfort oriented, while the MXM4 is a little more performance oriented. The MXV4 is quieter than the MXM4 at highway speeds over 50 mph, but the MXM4 is overall much quieter than the Bridgestone tires. The Michelin MXM4 takes the road bumps better than the Bridgestones. The MXV4 is not available in the 18" size.

    The best possible ride for the 2013 Avalon appears to come from the combination of the 17" rims with the Michelin MXV4 Primacy tires. I would venture to say that the 2 point improvement in score from 7 to 9 comes 50% due to the larger sidewall and 50% due to the Primacy MXV4 vs. the MXM4 tire design.

    Now that I'm riding on the MXM4's on the 18" rims, I would say the ride is OK. It is a reasonable compromise between handling and comfort. I liked the ride on the 17" rims with the MXV's more, but I don't care to spend $1500 to purchase 4 new Toyota 17" OEM rims. You would also need to have a competent mechanic transfer the four TPMS valves to the new rims as well, otherwise you're looking at over an additional $400 for four Toyota OEM TPMS units. My current thinking is to ride the Avalon with the MXM tires, and when it comes time to replace them, consider buying four 17" rims and MXV's then, assuming that I plan on keeping the car for a few more years from that point.

    I actually have not tried the suggestion of lowering the tire pressure from 33 to 31 PSI to see if the ride improves, as other posts have suggested. I did note that when I got the car back with the Michelin's installed the fronts were set at 33 PSI, but the back were set at 29 PSI. I didn't like the way the vehicle was riding, and I raised the rear to 33 PSI, and the ride is actually better. The only residual ride annoyance I still observe is that when riding on smooth, but worn, blacktop roads, I seem to feel a sense of riding over a pebbly/gravelly surface, while when I ride on newer blacktop road surfaces, the ride is smooth. This is probably due to the stiffer suspension, as opposed to a softer suspension which would probably filter this out. A little more padding in the seat wouldn't hurt either.

    To sum up, I know how well the Avalon can ride with the 17" rims and the MXV4's, but I'm not up to sinking in the cash to switch from 18" to 17" rims at this point. Maybe later on down the road, if I know I'll keep the car for many years.

    P.S. Note that just going from 18" to 17" rims without also changing the tires to Michelin MXV4's does nothing to improve the ride in any meaningful way. I believe that this was mentioned in another post on this thread. Also, my observations comparing the Michelin Primacy MXV vs. the MXM tires agrees with the overall reviews of these tires on Tirerack.com. Both Michelins are vastly superior to the Bridgestone El400's, but the MXV is a little quieter than the MXM (but both rate in the excellent range).
  • robnichrobnich Posts: 13
    Thanks for this thorough and careful analysis, which I am sure will be helpful to many forum users. I do believe, however, that you might try lowering the pressures to 31 PSI -- there is nothing to lose but the 5 or 10 minutes it will take to do it and I think you will agree that there is a noticeable improvement in the ride without detectable deterioration in handling, should you decide to go ahead with the change. Another 5 or 10 minutes will put you back where you were if you don't agree.

    I think that one should also consider the possibility that Toyota, the largest manufacturer of cars in the world, might have known what they were doing when they put 18" rims on the top of the newly redesigned Avalon line. Handling and appearance are generally felt to improve with larger wheels, and many of the costliest and most admired performance/luxury cars such as Bentley sport wheels up to 20" in size.

    Robert N.
  • teresa01teresa01 Posts: 14
    Wow, Dave!,

    Thanks so much for the detailed analysis. I appreciate it so very much.
    This is great information to have and I will probably do as you have done and just hang onto the 18" wheels and replace with Michelin tires next time around. I'll be sure and look for the tire that you have switched to. I agree that sinking an additional $2K into the car for 17" wheels is a bit steep after paying for the car. I usually keep my cars for at least 8 years so if I do keep this one that long, I may eventually switch the wheels out but for now, I am just getting used to the ride. If I find a few years down the road that I need a more floaty ride, I guess I can upgrade to the Lexus or get a Caddy. LOL. I really didn't want one of those ;-)

    Thank you again for the information, it is really helpful.

    Teresa
  • havechavec Posts: 45
    Thank you for your detailed post. Just one more nail in the Bridgestone's coffin. I can't wait to replace my Bridgstones on my TAH Limited and be able to confirm what everybody is saying about how lousy they are.

    The one thing that has me confused is CR's report on the V6 and hybrid Limiteds. The V6 they tested had Michelin Primacy MXM4 size P225/45R18 91V tires and they said that if you value ride comfort go with the 17 inch rims as they "noticeably take off the edge and make the ride less harsh" So what you are saying that it is all in the tire doesn't agree with CR is assessment.
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