DALLAS -- The fifth-generation Toyota Avalon that goes on sale next month as a 2019 model shares almost nothing with the previous generation, including the pricing, which starts at a higher $36,395 with shipping for the base XLE model.
The base sticker price is $2,000 more than the outgoing model, but Toyota says the newer Avalon includes more equipment and more technology that makes the newer version a better value in an apples-to-apples comparison.
Estimated fuel economy for the 2019 model of the large sedan is 22 mpg city, 32 mpg highway and 26 mpg combined. That's an improvement over the 21/30/24 mpg rating for the outgoing model.
The base hybrid XLE model for 2019 is a different story. The cheapest Avalon hybrid now starts at $37,395 with shipping, compared with $38,395 for the outgoing model. Estimated fuel economy for the 2019 base hybrid is 44 mpg combined, compared with 40 mpg for the 2018 model, the company said in a statement.
The Avalon's new XSE trim for 2019, with sport accents such as a blacked-out grille and bigger wheels, has a sticker price of $38,895 with shipping. That compares with $37,595 for the XLE Premium grade of the 2018 model.
The 2019 Avalon XSE hybrid will have a base price of $39,895 compared with $39,845 for the outgoing XLE Premium. Estimated fuel economy for the new XSE (and the Limited trim) is lower by 1 mpg combined when compared with the 2019 base model because of weight and equipment differences.
On the Limited trim with the V-6 gasoline motor, the 2019 Avalon starts at $42,695 with shipping, which is $500 more than the outgoing model. The hybrid Limited's price is unchanged at $43,695.
And on the Touring trim, the 2019 model has a starting price of $43,095, compared with $38,795 for the 2018 model. The difference comes, in part, from the mechanical changes on the top sporty trim of the redesigned Avalon, Toyota said.
The Touring trim previously was more of an appearance package than a performance upgrade, but now is significantly different in how it goes down the road as Toyota searches for younger buyers.