As my first car, it has been really amazing. The acceleration is perfect, and braking is good. Steering is very light, which I like. My gas mileage in the city averages around 20 to 23 mpg. View out of the rear window can be quite tricky while backing up, but the car's blind spot isn't too bad. However I would not recommend for snow driving. Only 2 inches here, and very slippery on roads. Overall I love my Avalon, and it's a very comfy ride!
I purchased my Avalon with 105k paint okay very quick but the transmission is not the best... Fuel mileage around 19 around town and highway.. Very comfy ride just replaced my dash on the recall... (all dash boards are refurbished not new) But love my car!!
This year and model should have lived up to the Toyota name, but sadly it is as bad as some American cars for reliability .They called it the closest thing to an American sedan, well they were right it fails in the engine after 40000 miles and continues to be a money pit for repairs, for years to come, DO NOT BELEIVE SOME OF THESE SAPPY OWNERS WHO DO NOT DRIVE THIS CAR ANYWHERE BUT TO CHURCH. IT IS NOT RELIABLE. The cylinder coils fail and fail regularly until you need new cylinders which sadly happen at less than 100k. Toyota should step up and recall these engines for failure, instead of touting the wondrous American-like sedan. Buyer Beware.
I've had the XL model since Aug. '07 and have about 6500K ultra-enjoyable miles on it. I've had two Beemers and an Infinity, also enjoyed them very much, but the Avalon is special in that it's smooth, quiet, fairly ecnomical on gas, considering its size. I use regular octane -- also Plus and Premium at times. I also have found the cloth/velour seats to be very practical -- warm on cold days, cool on hot ones. Transmission-wise, it just knows when to shift for you -- it's really a symbiotic relationship between car and driver, to use that analogy. The driver's seat needs more back support, though. So, I'll rate this car as a 9-1/2 -- ALMOST PERFECT -- but then again, nothing's perfect