The Toyota Avalon has never been considered a styling benchmark, but that could change with the next-gen model set to debut at next month’s New York auto show. The sketch above shows a car with a coupe-like roofline and, while Toyota hasn’t specifically identified it as the Avalon, we expect that this is, in fact, the automaker’s flagship sedan.
Toyota describes the car in the teaser image as a “stunning U.S.-designed” sedan. The Camry is ruled out since it’s already been released, and it’s not the Corolla since the sculpted exhaust pipes integrated into the lower rear bumper would look completely out of place for an entry-level compact car. By process of elimination, there’s a good chance it’s the all-new Avalon, which could benefit from some serious changes to take on the new 2012 Hyundai Azera.
Toyota has previously announced plans to release 19 new or updated models in 2012, including the Lexus and Scion brands. Earlier this year Toyota division group vice president and general manager Bob Carter provided the following riddle while speaking to the Automotive News World Congress: What has “more space than a BMW X5, [is] faster than a Volkswagen TDI, and [has] higher MPG than a Fiat 500?”
Not surprisingly, attempted answers to the riddle led to rumors that Carter was teasing the all-new Avalon. In addition to a more swoopy body style, rumors also state that Toyota’s flagship sedan will get hybrid a powertrain, which would likely be needed to beat the Fiat 500’s fuel economy of 30/38 mpg city/highway. Regardless, the new sedan is set to debut in a little over a week, so expect more teaser images from Toyota.