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Avalon reveal timed for Melbourne show

American cousin: The new Toyota Avalon shares many external panels with the Australian car but our version will have a unique nose and tail.

Toyota is holding back its new Avalon large car, awaiting the introduction of the GST

12 Jan 2000

TOYOTA Australia will launch its new Avalon upper-medium sedan at the Melbourne motor show on March 3.

The fleet-oriented car will use the V6 engine and stretched underpinnings from the Camry but has an all new body, unique to the Australian manufacturing plant.

A new Avalon has just been unveiled in the US. The car sold in Australia will be largely similar but has different nose and tail treatments.

It will ride higher and have the suspension tuned to cope with the vagaries of Australian roads, from smooth interstate blacktop to crumbling urban roads.

The Avalon is not slated for export at present with a single engine choice tuned more for performance than fuel economy or ultra clean emissions.

Toyota has recognised the fleet market's interest in power output and step-off acceleration, as well as open road performance.

Sources close to Toyota suggest the car will be the fastest in its class in acceleration from rest to 100km/h, be only slightly slower than the fastest car in its class over the 400m sprint and be the fastest from 80-100km/h on the fly.

The Avalon will be shown in a variety of trim levels at the Melbourne motor show but only goes into volume production in April. Sales are not due to start until July 1, in order to make best advantage of GST pricing.

But Toyota might opt to start sales earlier should the Federal Government reverse its present stand on the roll-back of wholesale sales tax before July 1.

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