Avensis has an unbelievably long list of standards

l 2006 Toyota Avensis 2,0litre Advanced

l 2006 Toyota Avensis 2,0litre Advanced

l Price: R199990

l Mileage: 20000km

l Colour: White

l Motorplan: Balance of the 3-year 100000km factory warranty and a 5-year 90000km service plan.

Charl Wilken

To be named Toyota's flagship sedan in the South African market is definitely a label that comes with big responsibilities.

But after driving the Toyota Avensis, I can say with certainty that this is truly a car that will live up to expectations. The Avensis, which replaced the Camry last year, is living up to the expectations.

Our used test car was a 2006 Toyota Avensis 2,0litre Advanced from Killarney Toyota with a mere 20000km on the clock.

The car is a little taller than a Camry. On the outside the front styling provides clear family features to the Corolla and Yaris, but is more defined, with strong lines running across the bonnet and down to the frame of the big three-element headlight units, grille and the lower air intake in the bumper.

The front and rear decks are short and emphasise the large cabin, while the blunt tail is dominated by big, faired-in tail lights and a deep, moulded rear bumper.

The large cabin has generous legroom in a car that's only 4645mm long; the interior styling uses a series of long curves to emphasise a feeling of space.

Leather upholstery is standard, as are electrically adjustable bucket-type sports front seats with unexpectedly firm lateral support.

Where the Avensis is impressive is under the bonnet.

Our test model was a 2.0-litre four-cylinder with five-speed manual transmission delivering 108kW of power and 196Nm of torque to the front wheels.

It won't take more than 10 seconds to reach the 100kmh mark and top speed of about 200kmh is achievable.

We found the Avensis extremely comfortable driving around town, and on the open roads you don't want to stop and get out.

When looking at the long list of standard equipment on this Avensis, it is unbelievable that this is an entry-level version.

Standard features include a multi-function steering wheel for extra safety. The driver now has no need to take his hands off the steering when changing settings.

Other luxuries include cruise control, dual-zone air-conditioning, electric windows, eight-speaker sound system with front-loading CD player and MP3 capability.

The car is equipped with dual airbags and ABS-brakes. The Avensis also received a five-star Euro Ncap award for safety.

At R199990, this is a give-away.

Contact Jill from Killarney Toyota on 011-486-1424.