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Toyota Avalon 2008-2010

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Comments

  • rpfingstenrpfingsten Posts: 154
    People, please be careful tempting fate trying to see just how far you can get on a tank of gas before re-fueling. Not to mention the safety factor if you were to get stranded on the side of the highway miles from anywhere, but if you love your car, I would advise not letting the tank get that low. The last thing you want to do is possibly pull up some sediment that may be at the bottom of the tank and inject it into your fuel line or engine... Myself, when my gas gauge shows about a quarter of a tank left, I fill up. For me it's peace of mind.. oh and someone asked about oil Personally I use Mobil 1 Synthetic 5w-30.
    I absolutely love the Avalon. Really only one complaint and it's a cold weather rattle complaint that I hope has been remedied. Guess I'll have to wait til next fall to find out for sure. :-)

    Roland
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    Makes me wonder how Toyota could not know
    relatively confident they do know - what confuses me, however, is how it can be possible for the odos to be off that 3% but not the speedometer, or the computer calculated FE (factoring in the 3% error). Remembering back in the old days when we had mechanical speedometers/odos, speedos tended to be notoriously optimistic (something like 80mph indicated was maybe 70) but whatever that error as also generally reflected in the odo as well all because it was a mechanical (cable) system.
    Leads me to to the conclusion that what we see on speedo/odos/trip computers etc. are now calculated as opposed to measured. Something like the computer in the car deciding that since the engine is turning 1800 rpm in high gear, the car must be traveling at 60mph, and then deriving from that the distance travelled. Small wonder that we have that odo error?
    Agree with the poster that DTE is essentially worthless, being nothing more than a fancy quantitative gas gauge and almost as worthless as those cars I've owned with 'instantaneous FE' displays. I own a couple of Nissan vehicles with trip computers and the DTE will actually increase if you happen to be getting better FE than what the computer expects - heck an 80s vintage Ford Aerostar I once owned would do that. Toyota's system won't so, in effect, it is even less realistic. As I posted earlier, I regularly drive my Avalon about 420 miles between fill ups, usually put 16+ gallons of gas or so, but usually see only 370-380 'expected' DTE when it resets on fillup. Only ONCE in 3 years (and 75k miles) has my Av shown 400 mile estimated DTE, and that was immediately after one of those exclusively highway trips where we all might typically see 30mpg and that 500 mile range I'm talking about - with an adequate reserve.
    The one advantage to having that trip computer IMO is in encouraging all of us to modify our driving habits to maximize FE - important in these days of $60+ fillups.
  • jpm1908jpm1908 Posts: 17
    The fuel range hits zero at around 310-320 miles for me and the car at this point takes approx 15.5 gallons.. I'm averaging around 20 MPG. I do love this car but wish the mileage was a bit better. For the gentleman who uses synthetic oil, i'd be curious to know how often you change it. I just hit 2500 miles and am going to get my first oil change.

    regards-jamie
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    I'm averaging around 20 MPG.

    You must do similar driving to me as I float between 21 - 22 consistently, that is almost all city and/or gridlock highway.

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

  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    Leads me to to the conclusion that what we see on speedo/odos/trip computers etc. are now calculated as opposed to measured

    You may very well be right about that. It probably all ties into the VSC/trac/drive by wire system. If I get a chance to grab my mother's 09 Camry (4cyl) I will check the odo just to see if its off too. I would be willing to bet it is.

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

  • akinakin Posts: 24
    Anyone here know when the 2009 Toyota Avalon will become available? And what what will change relative to the 2008?

    Thanks
  • rpfingstenrpfingsten Posts: 154
    Jamie... I believe it's me you were asking about synthetic oil and the time between oil changes... I still change my oil every 5K. I'm sure I could go longer, but since the warranty states oil changes every 5K, and since I don't want an argument with Toyota over any possible warranty issues, I stick with the 5 K interval. by the way, I personally use Mobil 1. As for gas mileage, when I top my tank off, my computer says my range is about 360 miles, which I am pretty sure is not correct. I say that because I always refill my tank when it gets down to around a quarter of a tank left. That normally is around 300 to 310 miles since my last fill up, meaning I should still have another 75 to 90 miles left in the tank. As for my mpg....I"ve noticed that in the last couple of months, it's really improved... back and forth to work which is a combination of city driving and short 4 mile jaunt on the hiway, I'm averaging around 27 to 28 mpg... It used to be around 24-25.. but like I said, here in the past couple of months, it seems to have gotten better. Of course that's been without the a/c, so I'm sure I'll lose alittle now that the warmer months are here.

    Roland
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    also use synthetic and also pay heed to my 5000 mile reminders -which I find quite handy. As rpfingsten says I'm relatively confident that synthetic will far outlast the 5k, but rather safe than sorry ( at 70k I'm past any warranties). Do it myself usually - shops will charge me about $70 with me providing the filter - and then I have to watch em close to make sure I get the 6+ qts the car uses OR I can buy 6 qts. of Mobil 1 at Walmart for about $28.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    think Toyota has a history of sorts - 5 year product cycles thereby making the 2010 model logically the one to change. But the question is WHY - since its introduction over 3 years ago now it has remained the most powerful - and economical - sedan in its class. Only goes to show how remarkable that 2005 model was (and is). Why would Toyota want to fix something that ain't broke? Hopefully only cosmetic changes and some changes to the option lists (like VSC obviously becoming standard) -unless they want to switch ends on the drive wheels :)
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    unless they want to switch ends on the drive wheels

    Captian.... don't tease me like that! FWIW I read somewhere redesign is stretched out to 2011.

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

  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    Oh, I don't know if they will stretch this generation Avalon to six years before it's redesigned. The last generation was carried over one year and it hurt sales a lot.
    Mack
  • iamknottiamknott Posts: 82
    Captain,

    I think you were implying that it would be a good thing for the next Avalon model to be RWD. I am curious as to why. I'm old enough to remember when the changeover to FWD occurred and was all the rage for its advantages in traction and increased rear leg room. Now, many people are urging a switch back to RWD for most cars, presumably because the improved weight distribution yields better performance handling. I admit to the advantages and disadvantages of both systems, but what I don't understand is why any (non-racing) large sedan owner would want RWD. Educate me please. Right now I'm darned happy with my Avalon's traction in snow and the ability to haul five people comfortably.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Think about the dangers, safety hazards, of driving a 4WD/4X4 on a snow or ice covered roadbed with the center diff'l remaining locked. FWD is fine for getting up and going initially but seriously hazardous, like the 4X4, once underway on a low traction roadbed.

    Many of the newer F/AWD systems engage drive torque to all four wheels for quick acceleration, getting up and going initially, but the remove most, or all, drive from the front once underway.

    Look at the way the new Acura SH-AWD system works...the best of the best for F/AWD systems.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    and was all the rage for its advantages in traction and increased rear leg room.

    All great things for a family sedan. However, RWD just "feels" better IMO . There is the added benefit of better weight distribution as you noted. One other point is if you want to put more power under the hood there is a limit to what FWD drive can handle. Our Avalons deal with 268 HP pretty well, with virtually no torque steer. Would it handle 325+? Its all probably a moot point anyway, I don't see the Avalon going RWD anytime soon. If it did it wouldn't share parts with its little brother Camry and certainly would raise the price north of 40K. OTOH if they want to put the direct injected 2gr-FSE from the IS350 in and make it RWD and keep the price where it is... where do I sign?

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

  • iamknottiamknott Posts: 82
    seriously hazardous, like the 4X4, once underway on a low traction roadbed. >

    Geez, Mr. West, during the past 20 winters of driving FWD cars, I've never felt that I was in a seriously hazardous situation, but then I never let my 1963 Corvair swap ends like Ralph Nader warned that it would either. Perhaps I'm not driving fast enough. ;)
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "Our Avalons deal with 268 HP pretty well..."

    Yes, with DBW throttle control and TC, of even without TC, you probably NEVER get WOT in any low gear or in a tight accelerating turn.

    That's how cadillac "moderated" the adverse effects of the torquey NorthStar engine in the now obsolete FWD Cadillac models.

    Now FWD is "history" for Cadillac as is the V8 engine.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Geez, Mr. West, during..."

    Yes, you and ~99% of FWD or F/AWD owners NEVER encountered handling involving safety issues, especially those south of the snow belt. But on the flip side 99.99% of RWD owners never encountered these issues.

    And then throw in the bias that many drivers within the snow belt are well aware of the safety hazards of FWD and F/AWD and simply do not purchase them and then you have an equation that is inadvertently skewed toward 50/50.
  • nimiminimimi Posts: 249
    It's always fun in the Seattle area to see the BMW drivers (and RWD in general) slipping, sliding and generally driving without going anywhere whenever snow falls here!
  • dfurnierdfurnier Posts: 26
    I recently inquired about DLC and nav on this forum before purchasing. Thanks for the input. We traded our 03 Avalon for a blizzard 08 LTD w'o those options Tuesday and are very pleased with it.
    We have a Razr v3m and paired it no problem. Some other issues though are:
    1. When I try to send the phonebook from the Razr, the phone displays BT link busy.
    2. Is there a way to input names to display on the MFD when a call comes in?
    Thanks for your help.
  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    You may not be able to transfer your phonebook. Look in www.toyota.letstalk.com and find your phone and service provider. It will list all the things you can and can't do. What's and MFD?
    Mack
  • dfurnierdfurnier Posts: 26
    Oops. Multi-function display.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Yes, here on the eastside in the '90 dec snow storm our offices were still over on Northup way. I helped a BMW driver get moving twice but he just simply wouldn't learn to "feather" the throttle to keep moving up the slight incline. Insisted on spinning the rear wheel until smoke rolled.

    The slight incline at the main MS campus entrance was fully blocked, "choked" with Porsches, BMWs, and MBs.

    And then just this last winter I had to show a BMW driver how to disable the TC system and then tried to quickly educate him on how to "feather" the throttle just up to the point of almost losing traction. Didn't work.

    But at least neither of them got up and going initially and THEN discovered the poor traction conditions like so many FWD vehicles in '90 scattered heither and theither all over SR520.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    you were implying that it would be a good thing for the next Avalon model to be RWD. I am curious as to why
    yes I was, but the reasons for why are not the same sort of 'unsafe at any speed' comments you might see from wwest.
    Torque steer and engine braking are undoubtedly becoming conditions of these high power FWD cars we drive. The manufacturers, thru reengineering suspension geometries as well as throttle and tranny control programming, are largely minimizing the effects of things like this. What they haven't been able to change however is the natural weight imbalance of the FWD car - certainly an enemy to a well handling vehicle of any sort. BMWs, for example, are what they are because of a whole lot more than just the RWD - they are almost without exception evenly weight distributed and are further engineered to do specifically what they do (or don't do).
    FWD has been with us now for many many years and is an inherently safer and easier car to drive specifically for today's drivers because of the better traction and more prevalent understeer conditions you mention- like that BMW driver that wwest talks about that can't get up a snow covered road because nobody ever taught him to 'feather' a throttle. In fact, I would contend that it is drivers like this that make things like traction and stabililty control systems MORE necessary on RWD cars than FWD ones.
    Will Toyota join Chrysler and/or Pontiac and produce a RWD Avalon? Not if the marketing folks (or Lexus) has anything to say about it. Are the Avalons that both you and I drive unsafe? Hell no - cars are safer now then they've ever been!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Yes, I quite firmly believe that absent the introduction of the Olds Tornado back in the late sixties we would not today have many of these new "nanny" control aspects, maybe including ABS.

    "Specifically for today's drivers.."

    I couldn't agree more...!

    But I like to think, continue to think/believe, that somewhere in the near future we will have driving simulators designed along the same line as today's flight training simulators. These will be used to train new drivers, even high school students, how to "handle" differently configured, FWD/RWD/F-AWD/R-AWD/4WD/4X4/etc, road going vehicles in climatically different roadbed conditions.

    I suspect that only then, with EVERYONE having learned how to correct for (RWD) overstear, and the fact that (FWD) understear/plowing, is beyond the driver's ability to correct (just hang on a PRAY..!!) will these patently UNSAFE FWD and F/AWD vehicles disappear, TOTALLY disappear, from the marketplace.

    Maybe replaced with systems such as the Acura SH-AWD, F/AWD with a difference, a VERY significant difference, FWD torque biasing when appropriate, RWD torque biasing, leading or lagging, otherwise.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    patently UNSAFE
    it would be assertions like this that I have the problem with. The proper correction for an oversteer condition is counterintuitive - meaning adding power to relieve the condition as opposed to (quite naturally) releasing the accelerator, the usual remedy for that understeering monster. Recognizing this - well engineered cars will almost always understeer at the limit, even those German 'sports sedans'. Such things (nailing the accelerator when you get in trouble) are beyond the ability for things like simulators to train into any of us - you and me included. Our first (and natural) reaction will always be to release the accelerator and hit the brakes.
    Lastly, even though FWD (or FW biased) vehicles have accounted for the vast of majority cars sold in the last 30 years or so, accident and death rates (per vehicle mile) continue to decline - must be because they are 'patently UNSAFE'???? :confuse:
    You have seemed intent on ragging on FWD's failings and not recognizing what advantages it does offer. Mass retraining is not a viable option, and I don't think that a whole bunch of folks stuck in your cold parking lot somewhere because their car is 'too smart' to move is terribly realistic either.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I suspect you meant to type understeer in that first senstence.

    "..are beyond the ability for things like simulators to train into any of us..."

    Wrong, that's is exactly what flight simulators are used for, through repetitive simulation runs our intuitive actions are overcome in favor of making the corrective actions, EVERY time, for the situations at hand.

    "Mass retraining is not a viable option.."

    But correct, corrective, training right at the "beginning" is, say driver training in High School.

    "bunch of folks stuck.." "car is too smart to move.." "is terribly realistic either.."

    Believe it or not people are SMART. Just a few minutes stuck in the cold parking lot and most people would be out adding traction, chains, etc. Wouldn't it be really nice if the car somehow knew that current conditions along the selected route were unsafe for the available traction and simply wouldn't start moving...??

    Wintertime accident, injury, deaths, reduction would be nothing less than phenominal.
  • doobredoobre Posts: 42
    I am in Dubai, I have the 2005 with the crap transmission and have been complaining to the dealer here since day #1. No help from them at all, except recently they offered "would you like to try the 2008" since it has a diff transmission. I had a 10 day test drive and the 2008 is a BIG inprovement on the 2005 (even though it still lacks some gadgits). I did the very first 1000kms in the 2008 and all seemed fine until some of the old issues I have had with the 2005 started to appear.

    Firstly, when starting off at the lights and the car in front first brakes then accelerates again, causing you to 'off and on' the accelerator. I big thud/jolt goes thru the car. Like the tranmission jumps into gear.

    Then on the last day I felt the same sort of thing that I have felt in the 2005 at slow speed. When traveling at about 50kmph (30mph) in continuous traffic, on a very slight incline, when applying a very slight gentle accelerator pressure, the car shuddered very lightly for about 2 seconds. Just as if you are rolling over very small cloes together bumper strips. (the strips placed on the road designed to slow you down) this happened a couple of times. This issue was evident in my 2005 on day one, but then the shuddering was very much stronger.

    But of course these issues are completely unpredictable and intermittent so can not be repeated for the dealer. Hence they have done nothing aboput fixing the 2005.

    My conclusion is that the new 6 speed transmission is a big improvement but still has at least two of the underlying problems of the 2005. Even with a "generous" trade-in offered for my 2005 I will not change to the 2008. After feeling the same things happening, even if lesser, who knows if all the other issues I have encountered with the 2005 will appear over time.... "why throw good money after bad"... my advise to you do NOT buy a new Avalon....
    cheers doobre
  • nimiminimimi Posts: 249
    I can offer a different perspective. I had an '06 Limited (totalled) and now have an '08 Limited. Both were/are exceptional. I didn't really notice any transmission problems with the '06, however, I had the TSB applied anyway and it worked fine.

    I like the looks of the '08 better (both inside and outside). The '08 also is "tighter" in its driving and handling.

    I would very much recommend buying a 2008 Avalon.
  • tfeltontfelton Posts: 80
    I have an '08 Avalon Ltd. and I'm not sure about the effectiveness of the auto-dimming rearview mirror. I have turned it on correctly according to the manual and tested it with a flashlight to verify that it's working. However, in use at night, I really can't tell if it is actually working. The old flip type in my '98 Sienna is dimmer.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on this?
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    It only dims when the lights are pretty close behind you. If someone has especially bright lights or has their beams on you will notice it will get really dark. It is meant to be fairly seamless and when you drive a car without it you will notice the difference. Another way to tell if it is working is that the drivers side door mirror will dim as well. Hope this helps.

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

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