Report: The Next Toyota Avalon to Gain a (Competitive) Hybrid Variant

What has “more space than a BMW X5, [is] faster than a Volkswagen TDI, and [has] higher MPG than a Fiat 500?” Your guess is as good as ours, but the mystery future car in question was teased by a Toyota executive and reported by WardsAuto. The quote came from Bob Carter, the Toyota Division Group Vice President and General Manager, who spoke to the Automotive News World Congress about the future of the Toyota brand. Not surprisingly, the general manager was pretty tight-lipped about the future of the successful brand. Still, he managed to tease a future model amidst the secrecy. Like a strange third-grade logic problem, all we know is what the car isn’t: it’s not a Prius variant (in the vein of the c or v models), it’s not based on the recent NS4 Hybrid Concept from the Detroit Auto Show. It’s obviously not the Camry Hybrid, seeing as that model was recently updated. Judging from the quote, it might be fair to say that the car will be a hatchback, but rumors point to some sort of Avalon hybrid. The car, according to Carter, will have “lavish features rarely found in near-luxury vehicles,” although he didn’t say exactly which features the mystery car will have. However, rumors have long circulated that the next Avalon will wear a swoopier bodystyle, similar to that of the Mercedes-Benz CLS or Audi A7. To recall, the mystery car would have to exceed an interior passenger volume of 102.4 cubic feet to pass the X5, have more than 140 horsepower and/or 236 pound-feet of torque to top the TDI, and exceed 30 mpg city and 38 mpg highway to beat the 500. We think those standards are certainly beatable, and would love to see the car that does it. Source: WardsAuto (sub. required)

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