2021 Avalon Will Offer All-Wheel Drive

2021 Avalon Will Offer All-Wheel Drive | Dixon, IL
2021 Avalon Will Offer All-Wheel Drive | Dixon, IL

For the 2021 model year, Toyota is introducing a long-awaited feature for the 2021 Avalon. Reports from Toyota confirm that the sedan will come available with all-wheel drive.

It will be the first time that this model offers an all-wheel drive option. This development is not entirely unexpected, however, as last year’s Avalon model featured a TRD performance trim, suggesting that more performance-based features could be making their way to the Avalon in the near future.

For drivers who are more concerned about efficiency than they are all-wheel drive, Toyota offers the 2021 Avalon in three different hybrid trims. Although the all-wheel drive feature is not available with any of the Avalon Hybrid models, these fuel-efficient Avalon variants achieve an estimated fuel economy of 44 mpg combined, making the Avalon one of the most efficient sedans in its class.*

Whether you are looking for a sedan that focuses on fuel economy or one that has the all-wheel drive capabilities to take on any on-road challenge, the 2021 Toyota Avalon is the model for you. Experience it for yourself when it arrives at Ken Nelson Toyota later this year. Until then, stop by to test-drive the other Toyota sedans we have in stock.

*EPA-estimated 43 city/44 highway/44 combined mpg for 2021 Avalon Hybrid XLE. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary for many reasons, including your vehicle’s condition and how/where you drive. See www.fueleconomy.gov.

Toyota to Provide Free Safety Software Starting Early Next Year

Toyota to Provide Free Safety Software Starting Early Next Year | Dixon, IL
Toyota to Provide Free Safety Software Starting Early Next Year | Dixon, IL

Starting in January 2021, Toyota will provide its Total Human Model for Safety software free for users worldwide.

Understanding THUMS

Toyota first launched this software system, often referred to by the acronym THUMS, in 2000. It was the world’s first software to simulate a virtual human body and analyze crash injuries.

Since that time, Toyota has updated THUMS to include human models of different ages, genders, and physical attributes. The company has also increased the fidelity of the software’s bone structure, musculature, internal organ, and brain simulations. This means that THUMS can now analyze potential injuries to both car occupants and pedestrians.

Representatives from Toyota claim that THUMS is a massive leap forward over physical test dummies, as the virtual simulations more accurately depict the particular shapes and strengths of different human body parts during an impact.

Influential tech for all

THUMS is currently in use at over 100 universities, suppliers, vehicle manufacturers and research institutes globally, with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety considering making THUMS a part of their assessments.

Seigo Kuzumaki, Toyota’s head of advanced R&D and engineering, says the decision to make THUMS freely available is an attempt “to further enhance vehicle safety across the entire automotive industry and to help reduce traffic injuries and fatalities.” Toyota hopes making THUMS freely available will both further vehicle safety research and enable users to improve the system’s human models.

Celebrate the brand’s progressive technologies when you stop by Ken Nelson Toyota to test-drive a shiny new Toyota model.

New Toyota Solar Cells Add More Miles to Prius Plug-in

Toyota Prius Solar Cells | Dixon IL

The Toyota Prius PHV, a Japan-exclusive model of the hybrid, first came into the spotlight because of its mounted solar power cells built to increase power for the engine. Recently, Toyota unveiled a new design of its solar power cells, which not only enhances the car’s power supply but also extends its range.  

The batteries are positioned over a broader area of the body including the hood, top, and rear hatch door. The new technology includes a redesigned solar battery cell film that measures only 0.03 millimeters, or less than 0.0012 inches. The new version is capable of generating 860 W, about 4.8 times more than the current model on the market.

The technology is a result of the partnership between NEDO, a Japanese national research organization, and Sharp, the manufacturer of the cells. Together they were able to produce an updated prototype that converts solar energy at 34 percent efficiency, up from 22.5 percent for the current model. The increased power generation allows the vehicle to power its own battery, whereas the current commercial model was only able to power the onboard auxiliary battery, which runs the radio, air conditioning systems, and navigation.

Altogether, Toyota expects the new design to be able to add 27.7 miles of extra range for each day the Prius sits in the sun. The driving system and auxiliary battery can also receive an added 35 miles of power in the same situation.

Celebrate this expanded range of the Prius PHV when you stop by Ken Nelson Toyota to test-drive a shiny new Prius.