The 2012 Toyota Avensis is better looking and more efficient than ever before so is it finally time to throw off the Captain Sensible image?
What is it?
One of the country’s top selling models the Toyota Avensis has always been the Captain Sensible of family saloon cars. It is without doubt a sensible purchase but it is practical, safe and hugely reliable.
Who is it aimed at?
Pretty much anyone in the market for a family car, it will accommodate five adults or a family with small children easily and comfortably
The new Avensis is an attractive looking car thanks to subtle improvements that have been made to the exterior such as the grille and headlights. If the number of compliments we received, from random bystanders, during our test drive are anything to go by then the improvements have certainly made the difference.
Under the Bonnet?
Our car was powered by 2.0-litre disesl, with 124bp but more importantly to your wallet it emits a very euro friendly 120g/km of CO2 which means it’s in the lowest motor tax band.
What about Inside?
The Avensis has a modern and comfortable interior with ample space for five adults and an abundance of stretching room in the back. Everything feels solid and built to last, from the switches to the door handles; and the upholstery and materials are luxurious to touch. The well shaped and wide boot provides 509 litres of space for shopping, prams and anything else you care to squeeze in.
On the Road?
It is rides smoothly and is refined with hushed wind, tyre, suspension and engine noise regardless of surface. It is nimble in traffic and a relaxing cruiser on motorways. A reversing camera that displays a video image on the centre console LCD makes for effortless parking.
The Avensis has been awarded the maximum 5-star vehicle safety rating (2009) from Euro NCAP and comes equipped with a range of active and passive safety aids.
What about fuel economy?
One of the areas significantly improved on from the previous version is fuel efficiency which is up to 4.6 litres per 100km which is roughly 61.4mpg.
Okay so the Verdict?
The Avensis may not be the most exciting car on the road but we grew remarkably fond of it as the week went on. It is sharper looking, better to drive and more efficient and it deserves serious consideration if you are looking for a family car.
Why you’ll buy one? Toyota’s incredible reputation for reliability; improved fuel efficiency and performance.
Why you won’t? Not as good to drive as the class-leading Mondeo
LAST WORD: With styling, performance and a good blend of practicality and fuel efficiency the Avensis is unlikely to be toppled off the top spot for a while yet.
Competitors: Ford Mondeo; Peugeot 508; Hyundai i40
TOYOTA AVENSIS 2.0 D-4D 150 Manual
Engine: 1,998cc four-cylinder diesel putting out 91kW at 3,600rpm and 310Nm of torque at 1,600–2,200rpm
Max speed : 200 km/h
0-100km/h: 9.7 km/h
Emissions (motor tax) : 129g/km (€160)
Starting price: €24,995
Model price range : €24,995 – €38,165 (test car €30,595)
No of Doors: 4
Euro NCAP: 5 stars
Fuel type: Diesel
Fuel Economy (combined cycle): 4.6 litres per 100km
Boot Capacity Seats up: 509 Litres, Accommodates three wheeler pram easily or double buggy at a squeeze
Length: 4710 (mm)
Width: 1810 (mm)
Height: 1480 (mm)
Wheelbase: 2700 (mm)
Service interval: 30,000 km or every two years
Warranty: 3 years
18th April 2012