Toyota Avensis gets mild facelift for 2013

  • Equipment levels renamed and new kit added
  • New equipment including DAB radio
  • On sale from 1 April, prices from £19,155

Both the Toyota Avensis saloon and Avensis Tourer estate have been given a new list of standard equipment for 2013, as well as a reorganised set of trim levels.

The Avensis range now follows the same trim level structure as the new Toyota Auris and Verso models with four grades: Active, Icon, Icon Plus and Excel.

This replaces the previous, confusingly named Avensis grading system of T2, TR, T4 and T Spirit. Different names aside, the new grades are broadly similar to the old system in terms of equipment.

Entry level Active versions get Bluetooth connectivity, air-conditioning, seven airbags and heated door mirrors. The next grade up, Icon, adds 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights and wipers, cruise control and Toyota’s ‘Touch & Go’ media system which includes sat-nav and a rear-view camera.

Above this, Icon Plus includes leather and Alcantara upholstery, extra speakers and power-fold door mirrors. Finally, range-topping Excel derivatives get LED daytime running lights, 18-inch wheels, heated and electric front seats, parking sensors and a panoramic glass roof for Tourer estate versions.

The introduction of a DAB digital radio tuner on all versions above Active level is an important addition to make the cars compatible with the planned digital radio switchover in the near future.

All Avensis models regardless of trim are now fitted with ‘follow-me-home’ headlights - mean that the dipped beams and sidelights are switched on automatically after the car has been locked. A feature aimed at safety as well as convenience, this can light up the garage or driveway where the car is parked to enable the driver to avoid obstacles or hidden strangers on the walk to their door.

Available as an option is a new ‘Protection Pack’, which adds rear parking sensors and a boot liner at extra cost. A new exterior colour, Pearl White pearlescent, has also been added to the range.

The line-up of petrol and diesel engines is unchanged. For more information, you can read the full Parkers review of the Toyota Avensis saloon here and the Avensis Tourer here.

If you're considering one for your next company car, the face-lifted Avensis goes on sale from the start of April, with prices starting below £20,000 for a base model.