I bought this Avensis as a replacement for a new shape Mondeo TDCi Zetec, as the Mondeo was too wide for my new workplaces parking spaces, and unbelievably this shape of Avensis is about 13 cms narrower.
I think I was spoilt by the Mondeo, the Avensis definitely feels like the last generation of this class, which of course it is compared to the current Mondeo. The Mondeo rode and handled better, has more steering feel, and had less engine and wind noise.
However, the Avensis does feel better built; not surprising bearing in mind Toyota's reputation.
I was impressed with the kit count; sat nav (very old tech display though), rain sensing wipers, auto lights etc, though I did miss an aux connection for my iPod, down to the car's design age I guess.
The auto wipers seemed a bit slow to react though, they're far better in my new car, a Vauxhall Signum, and a real bugbear for me was nowhere to rest my right foot when the cruise control is on; the Mondeo was great for that, and my Signum is good too.
I got about 42-43 mpg on average, mine had the 150hp 2.2 diesel, and performance was actually pretty brisk, but it always felt like you had to cane it for mid-range acceleration, whereas my Mondeo with less power and more weight always felt like you didn't have to try as hard; maybe it's down to gearing?
Good size boot and good rear space, although felt a bit narrow inside for class of car, my wife's Skoda Octavia is actually slightly wider, I can't moan too much as that's partly why I bought it though!
Bodywork looked like it'd last forever, and I like this shape of Avensis, I think the exterior has aged less than the interior.
Overall, a functional, slightly forgettable (even boring?) car which did the job. I can understand why so many taxi drivers use them.
Replaced now by a 2.8 V6 turbo Vauxhall Signum in a fit of madness!!