DEL MAR, Calif. — Toyota is deep in a product "renaissance," executives say, thanks to a new global platform that is remaking its cars and crossovers from the ground up. And that rebirth has come just in time for a couple of its fading car nameplates.
Fresh versions of the Avalon sedan reach dealers in May, and the Corolla hatchback is slated for the summer. Both vehicles move onto the Toyota New Global Architecture and get a complete overhaul with bolder styling and better performance.
Both vehicles also get sport versions with real hardware changes, effectively expanding the Avalon and Corolla families in much the same way Toyota has done with the new generations of the Camry sedan, RAV4 crossover and Prius hybrid.
The Avalon and Corolla hatch are the first Toyotas to offer Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa for smartphone integration, but no Android Auto yet.
"Right now is an exciting time in our history, because our product renaissance is here," said Lisa Materazzo, Toyota vice president of vehicle marketing and communications, at a media drive of the vehicles near San Diego.