Toyota Avalon Overview
Fuel Economy: 21 City / 31 Hwy
MSRP: Starting at $32,285
Inside the 2015 Toyota Avalon:
The Toyota Avalon is a full-sized sedan that has been in production since 1994. While Toyota is a Japanese company, the Avalon is and has been produced since inception at the Georgetown, KY manufacturing plant. The Avalon is in its fourth generation and was last overhauled with the 2013 model where the most notable change was the aggressive front grill and addition of a hybrid option. In total, the Avalon is available in eight trim options which include: XLE, XLE Premium, XLE Touring, Limited, XLE Touring Sport Edition, Hybrid XLE Premium, Hybrid XLE Touring and Hybrid Limited. This luxury vehicle includes a very sporty drivetrain with Toyota’s 3.5L V6 DOHC 24-Valve engine with 268 horsepower. The hybrid option is the same engine found in the Toyota Camry, which is a 2.5L four-cylinder DOHC 16-Valve that puts out 200 net horsepower.
The interior of the Toyota Avalon is very spacious and passengers will enjoy the comfortable premium seats. The optional leather-trimmed interior with 10-way power adjustable seats make this vehicle feel like a first class experience. Standard on all models are plenty of premium amenities including the Star Safety System, 10 airbag system, Entune Audio Plus infotainment center with 6.1in touchscreen display and rear view camera. Available features include three-zone climate control, premium navigation system and Technology Package which includes Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Automatic High-Beam and wireless charging station for smartphones.
Hyundai Genesis Overview
Engine: 3.8L or 5.0L
Horsepower: 311 or 420
Fuel Economy: 18 City / 29 Hwy
MSRP: Starting at $38,000
Inside the 2015 Hyundai Genesis:
Since 2004, the Hyundai Genesis has been a crown jewel for the Korean manufacturer in terms of luxury and performance. The Genesis is a full-sized sedan that is currently in its 2nd generation which simplified the trim and drivetrain options in addition to giving the Genesis a sportier look. Consumers have the option between the base 3.8L V6 engine with 311 horsepower and a 5.0L V8 option with 420 horses. Both have an eight speed automatic transmission with smooth shifting and handling. The base Genesis 3.8 is available in both rear and all-wheel drive, whereas the Genesis 5.0 is only available in rear wheel drive. While the performance and acceleration is there with both options, the already unimpressive 18 City / 29 Hwy MPG drops to 15 City / 23 Hwy in the 5.0L option.
Hyundai allows consumers to pick and choose the options they like rather than bundling them up in multiple trim options. This regal, luxurious vehicle comes with a suite of standard features which includes 18in premium alloy wheels, rear-view camera, nine airbag system, leather interior, heated seats and navigation system with 8in Hyundai Blue Link infotainment display. The Genesis 3.8 has 3 premium packages that you can add to your vehicle including the Signature, Tech and Ultimate Package. While not standard, Hyundai does offer a wide variety of safety features including Smart Cruise Control, Automatic Emergency Braking, Blind Spot Detection and Lane Keep Assist.
Our Pick for Winner:
Base Model: Hyundai Genesis
The Hyundai Genesis 3.8 base model is easily the most luxurious full sized sedan for under $40K. It has more tech and safety features than even the most tricked out in competitor options. Hyundai dropped the available coupe option and simplified the options for consumers. The result was a full sized sedan with 123 cubic feet of cargo room; the most of any vehicle in its class.
Upgrades: Toyota Avalon
Toyota is leading the charge towards hybrids in America and more and more of their vehicles are becoming available in 40+ City MPG-capable options. While the Hyundai Genesis has an additional engine option which is much more powerful with superior handling, it’s only available in rear wheel drive. This is likely because the gas mileage is already a meager 18 combined MPG and all wheel drive would make that worse. Toyota Avalon Hybrid owners will attest that 40 is significantly better than 18 MPG.
The Toyota Avalon is available in eight trim options with nine color options. The key word there is options and Toyota offers consumers a wide array of them. Conveniently priced at $5,000 less than the Hyundai Genesis, Toyota allows consumers a lower price point to ownership. The Toyota Avalon has a sporty look and handles with an equally sporty feel. It’s the perfect blend of luxury and performance.