TOYOTA INTRODUCES A NEW AVANZA
The first-generation Toyota Avanza was a pioneering ‘no-frills’ compact MPV that delivered exactly what it promised on the tin – it got as many people as possible from one place to another in comfort. However, the all-new Avanza which goes on sale on the 6th February 2012 has upped the ante considerably by going big: it’s big on style, big on space and big on comfort.
Make no mistake, the newcomer still retains all the virtues of the outgoing model namely: seven-seater flexibility, compact exterior dimensions and excellent value for money, but the entire package is finessed thanks to the following:
In the words of Calvyn Hamman, Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing (Toyota SA Motors): “The Avanza with its three-row configuration and affordable price tag has virtually no competitors in the compact MPV market segment. This all-new second-generation model offers so much more from a styling, refinement and comfort perspective, that we are confident it will be even more favourably received than its predecessor.”
Design and Styling
Dynamic and spacious are the two keywords in the Avanza’s design language. More remarkable is the fact that this was achieved without dramatically increasing external dimensions – the new Avanza has grown in length by 20mm and 25mm in overall width.
In profile the dominant styling elements are the svelte, elongated windows which give the impression of one solid piece of glass. This more muscular demeanour is reinforced by the flared wheel arches and the lower rocker panel featuring a curved character line. Colour-coded door handles are standard. The S and SX models are shod with 14-inch steel wheels and complementary wheel caps; the TX variant is equipped with 15-inch alloys. Mud guards are standard on the SX and TX models.
Frontal design traits include an outwardly-thrusting ‘snout’ which incorporates the Toyota logo – this is the new family face of Toyota which was first exhibited on the recently minted Yaris. The grille is body-coloured across the range except for the flagship TX which has chrome mouldings. This top-line model also gets front fog lamps on the standard menu.
The luggage door ‘flares out’ from the license plate, once again imparting a sense of strength. A rear spoiler with an integrated high-mount stop lamp and a rear chrome garnish strip are two of the trimmings that come standard on the high-end TX model.
Dynamism and spaciousness likewise characterise the Avanza’s indoor environment. The ambience of the cabin has much more of a passenger car presence than its predecessor. This is partly attributable to the design of the instrument panel which has been lowered as much as possible to enhance visibility and open up the cabin. Also contributing to this car-like feel is the centrally located cluster allowing for easy access to the vents, audio controls and ventilation system.
The tactile quality of the interior has also been addressed with all dashboard and door panel surfaces offering a high quality texture without using paint or chrome – instead accent glossy and matt surface finishes have been effectively used on the areas surrounding the outer ventilation vents and on the central vent knobs.
One of the biggest triumphs though of the new Avanza is the way in which occupant and luggage space has been increased without substantially enlarging the external dimensions. All three rows of seats offer occupants ample room including kneeroom and, even with a full complement of passengers utilising all the seats, there is still enough boot space to store a fair amount of luggage. Space was created by adjusting the shape and placement of the seatbacks and door trim, millimetre by millimetre.