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3 Years And 92,000 Miles In My Avensis...


ooarrlatvian
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I took on a year old Avensis D-4D 2.0 diesel TR just under three years ago on a personal contract hire contract.

Before it goes back I'd like to share my experiences, the highs and the lows...

First of all, it has been supremely reliable. I've never been left by the roadside waiting for the RAC except for flat tyres. There has been far too many of them though. Maybe because I carry a heavy load in the back? I service Printing Presses for a living and I need to carry an extensive collection of tools, jigs, spares and fuses all the time. In fact I chose the Avensis partly because of it's cavernous 525 litre boot. I must have got through ten tyres in all, though as I said it may not be Toyota's fault at all.

I have had a problem with the heater since day one. It just doesn't work as expected on 'auto. I learned very quickly to leave it in manual setting and 22 degrees in winter, 18 degrees in warmer summer days. In auto the blower is invariably on FULL, either cooling excessively or heating excessively!. The garage couldn't find what was wrong.

Light bulbs. I must have replaced about thirty bulbs in those 92,000 miles, no exaggeration! I once had no less than four bulbs needing replacement - all at the same time! I booked it into Toyota on the pretence that I thought I had an electrical problem to save costs (I usually pay for my own bulbs for convenience despite having a fully-maintained lease). Although I was chatting to a friend about it one day and he asked me if I had sleeping policemen in my street (I do). He said he'd heard that using lights on a car with sleeping policemen causes the bulbs early mortality problems, although no council will ever admit it. So it seems Toyota may not be to blame for this problem either!

Comfort. It has been so so good on the M4 and M5, a daily routine that averages up to 200 miles a day racked up on the West Country's freeways. It cruises (with Cruise Control) beautifully, and the built-in Navigation system has been a God-send. I will miss that for sure when I pick up my new Leon next month.

I don't like the auto headlights. They flash at people when driving and must be very confusing for other drivers on dark winter afternoons. I don't like the auto wipers much either. It works better than the lights do but they usually go into 'turbo' mode in extended periods of light drizzle! Oh and make sure you never scrape ice off your windscreen with the wipers on auto. I completely lost a thumb nail for making that mistake!

Now for the single most annoying thing I've ever experienced in ANY car that I've ever driven - WARNING BUZZERS. And I've driven a LOT of cars.

I hear that Japanese people are somewhat different to British people. I hear they like to have rules and laws to live by, and they seem to live by them to the letter. I used to visit the Honda factory to service their printers and the British guys there used to say that Honda found it difficult getting their Japanese employees to use up their holiday entitlement. This fact makes me think the anecdotes are true about Japanese needing rules to live by, and by God the BUZZERS in my Avensis are like irritating law-makers!

I'm getting ready to get back into my car and decide to take off my jacket first. So I don't lose the key I put it part of the way into the ignition. Clang clang clang! Until I'm sufficiently hacked off to either close the door or remove the key again! Then I pull away in a bit of a rush and make the mistake of pulling away as I draw my seatbelt across me. BIG mistake! Ding ding ding, until I fumble with the clip and finally get it into the seatbelt holder! Oh and don't ever think of putting any books, shopping or bags on the front passenger seat either, unless you're ready with the passenger seatbelt. The same thing will result otherwise!

And yet, should you be unwitting enough as to walk away from the car with the hatch not quite closed, you will click the button on the key remote to lock it, except that it won't lock at all. So now your car is completely un-secured and an Aladdin's cave for every car thief in the area. And not a single alarm will alert you of this fact! You can't win I tell you.

I will miss my Avensis, make no mistake. But I really, honestly, truthfully will NOT miss being ORDERED not to attempt to drive without my seatbelt on, or put the key into the ignition whilst still having the door open, or not to go into the garage for a loaf of bread without turning the lights off.

Would I drive another Toyota? Of course. The garage have been superb. Cleaned and vacuumed every service, without fail. Courteous as well. But I think I'd test drive one before committing next time, especially the buzzers and warnings!

Cheers all.

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good points although you forgot to mention they get louder and angrier if you dont put your belt on but 30 bulbs is a little excessive i have changed 1 in the 5 years i've had mine the centre brake light bulb in the rear window and that was 2 years ago.

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Decent writeup, I agree on the buzzer noise, it does annoy me, but as I don't drive nearly as much as you do, I have learnt to live with it as the good points outweigh the negative. I'm a fan of the hatchback and annoyed that the new Avensis is either saloon or estate, which is why I probably wouldn't be getting a newer one

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LOL having only had my used avensis for a couple of weeks I totally agree about the warning buzzers, they are driving me mad.

I drive a fair bit on private roads and land from one part of the site to the other, before I didn't bother with a seatbelt, not much point as you can't go fast, there are no other cars or people around and nothing to really hit now though I have to put up with the annoying buzzer or belt up just to have take the belt off 30 secs later.

If anyone knows how to turn these buzzers off i am all ears!!

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Oh dear,three years of seatbelt dinging,there is a post on here telling how to turn it off so only the light flashes,i don't even want to tell you it was posted about five years ago so it's been on here before you got yours..................... :yes:

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I took on a year old Avensis D-4D 2.0 diesel TR just under three years ago on a personal contract hire contract.

Before it goes back I'd like to share my experiences, the highs and the lows...

First of all, it has been supremely reliable. I've never been left by the roadside waiting for the RAC except for flat tyres. There has been far too many of them though. Maybe because I carry a heavy load in the back? I service Printing Presses for a living and I need to carry an extensive collection of tools, jigs, spares and fuses all the time. In fact I chose the Avensis partly because of it's cavernous 525 litre boot. I must have got through ten tyres in all, though as I said it may not be Toyota's fault at all.

I have had a problem with the heater since day one. It just doesn't work as expected on 'auto. I learned very quickly to leave it in manual setting and 22 degrees in winter, 18 degrees in warmer summer days. In auto the blower is invariably on FULL, either cooling excessively or heating excessively!. The garage couldn't find what was wrong.

Light bulbs. I must have replaced about thirty bulbs in those 92,000 miles, no exaggeration! I once had no less than four bulbs needing replacement - all at the same time! I booked it into Toyota on the pretence that I thought I had an electrical problem to save costs (I usually pay for my own bulbs for convenience despite having a fully-maintained lease). Although I was chatting to a friend about it one day and he asked me if I had sleeping policemen in my street (I do). He said he'd heard that using lights on a car with sleeping policemen causes the bulbs early mortality problems, although no council will ever admit it. So it seems Toyota may not be to blame for this problem either!

Comfort. It has been so so good on the M4 and M5, a daily routine that averages up to 200 miles a day racked up on the West Country's freeways. It cruises (with Cruise Control) beautifully, and the built-in Navigation system has been a God-send. I will miss that for sure when I pick up my new Leon next month.

I don't like the auto headlights. They flash at people when driving and must be very confusing for other drivers on dark winter afternoons. I don't like the auto wipers much either. It works better than the lights do but they usually go into 'turbo' mode in extended periods of light drizzle! Oh and make sure you never scrape ice off your windscreen with the wipers on auto. I completely lost a thumb nail for making that mistake!

Now for the single most annoying thing I've ever experienced in ANY car that I've ever driven - WARNING BUZZERS. And I've driven a LOT of cars.

I hear that Japanese people are somewhat different to British people. I hear they like to have rules and laws to live by, and they seem to live by them to the letter. I used to visit the Honda factory to service their printers and the British guys there used to say that Honda found it difficult getting their Japanese employees to use up their holiday entitlement. This fact makes me think the anecdotes are true about Japanese needing rules to live by, and by God the BUZZERS in my Avensis are like irritating law-makers!

I'm getting ready to get back into my car and decide to take off my jacket first. So I don't lose the key I put it part of the way into the ignition. Clang clang clang! Until I'm sufficiently hacked off to either close the door or remove the key again! Then I pull away in a bit of a rush and make the mistake of pulling away as I draw my seatbelt across me. BIG mistake! Ding ding ding, until I fumble with the clip and finally get it into the seatbelt holder! Oh and don't ever think of putting any books, shopping or bags on the front passenger seat either, unless you're ready with the passenger seatbelt. The same thing will result otherwise!

And yet, should you be unwitting enough as to walk away from the car with the hatch not quite closed, you will click the button on the key remote to lock it, except that it won't lock at all. So now your car is completely un-secured and an Aladdin's cave for every car thief in the area. And not a single alarm will alert you of this fact! You can't win I tell you.

I will miss my Avensis, make no mistake. But I really, honestly, truthfully will NOT miss being ORDERED not to attempt to drive without my seatbelt on, or put the key into the ignition whilst still having the door open, or not to go into the garage for a loaf of bread without turning the lights off.

Would I drive another Toyota? Of course. The garage have been superb. Cleaned and vacuumed every service, without fail. Courteous as well. But I think I'd test drive one before committing next time, especially the buzzers and warnings!

Cheers all.

Okay - so how much does your kit weigh, - to me it sounds like something

like a VW Caddy or Berlingo Van might be more suitable - or even move up to the next size van again if the weight was particularly high. If (a big if i know as i really haven't a clue what you carry weight wise) the weight is too heavy for a car then this might be a health and safety issue. Thus the company should be addressing this by sorting you out with the finances for a van (im speculating here but it sounds like the company expects you to supply your own wheels and youve gone for something that will also do the family car stuff as thats what the finances allow).

About the 92 000 miles - is that just your mileage in your time with the car (you said it was a year old when you got it) or is it the total mileage on the clock now.

What was the thinking behind going for the Leon (just being curious and nosey)

Red diesel

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Hi all and thanks for your encouraging replies.

I do wish I'd known about bypassing the buzzers but I only joined the forum a while after I got the Avensis.

I have done 92,000 miles in it (actually 93,000 now), it already has 18k on it when I leased it. It was a re-lease, IE somebody took out a 3 or 4 year lease on it but left their job and the car became surplus so they offered it out and I got it at a discounted rate of £304pcm, FULLY maintained including all tyres and tax etc. I think it was a good deal.

I will be sad to see it go, just wish I'd posted the question of removing the buzzers some time ago!

Oh and I got a similar deal on the Seat. It's a 11 plate and has done 26k already. I've had to significantly prune my tools and jigs stock, the garage being my 'stores' for now in order to accommodate the extra stuff. It's the ecomotive diesel 1.6 which is tax and congestion charge exempt and boasts of doing up to 74mpg so I'll hope to get something in the high sixties from it.

Cheers.

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The door buzzer drives me mad, I cannot listen to the radio with the door open, the cigarette lighter socket turns off with the ignition which resets my Sat Nav, but the braked lights will still work with the key out, funny Japanese logic.

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Agree about the buzzers and the crazy auto wipers. Other gripes are (2007 Avensis, 1.8 petrol):

  • Interior lights far too dim (replaced mine with LEDs); headlights aren't great either
  • Very poor illumination of electric window switches (no illumination at all on the passenger switches or on the electric door mirror switch!)
  • Instrument lights go out when ignition is turned off but key still in (can't see clock when sitting waiting for SWMBO to be lifted from pilates!)
  • SWBO can't figure out the front and rear fog lights
  • Setting the digital clock (which runs slow) is too fiddly (bring back analogues!)
  • Auto lights don't come on unless it's almost dark
  • Changing headlights is a specialist job; rear lights needs a contortionist
  • Space saver spare wheel

Other than that, I love th car for its economy, practicality and reliability. SWMBO is a great fan of the huge boot and the illuminated vanity mirrors.

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