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TRD Aurion Love Affair


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TRD Aurion Quandary

I have just purchased my first Toyota ever at the age of 48 and it is a TRD Aurion. I looked at XR6s and FPVs, 50 different configurations of Commodore, Mercedes Benz C280 and several other potential vehicles. I needed a cruiser with grunt and style to replace my Nissan Skyline R34 which, alas, did not suit my executive image anymore (apparently according to the wife!). By way of background, I am an ex race car driver and had my best successes in front wheel drive things.

The dealer where I finally purchased the 3500SL with sat nav, roof and everything, literally paid me to take the car away. I am certain this is partly due to the eternal bashing that this car has received. They were astounded that anyone even turned up to look at the car let alone, depositing the "Cyril Ash" into their bank account the next day! I am pretty sure they would have paid the towing fees if I had asked for this.

Now, I am not one to blog let me assure you all. In this instance though, I think the record needs to be straightened by someone who has actually driven and owned this fantastic vehicle, and who has some small understanding of such things. It is my opinion that this car has the potential to gain "cult status". The build quality is as high as the Merc that I almost purchased (phew). It matches it for comfort, appointment and overall "bling factor" at nearly half the price. I have owned a lot of cars, and let me tell you, this TRD turns heads. I have had several people stop me and ask; "mate, what's that?" Kids walk by whispering; "wow, a TRD maaannnn".

Something has surprised me, apart from this quite unexpected attention. I am scratching my head, wondering what the bad press is all about. The handling, sheer cornering grip and pulling power on corner exit is..........very exciting! Is this not what Toyota had in mind? An executive express with attitude? Something that exasperated motoring enthusiasts can by stealth, enjoy without owning their own oil well?

But down to guts and bolts, this thing honks. Big time. It certainly has bicep whipping torque steer and attention grabbing power delivery characteristics, but, all of that is assisting me with my Skyline withdrawal symptoms! These things are only noticeable when they are provoked. Have we all turned into Play Station gurus aka” let's adjust the ability level to make us look like A. Senna!?” I wanted a car that I can have fun with, take large loads in and project style with. Well, I found it and I have it. I can’t wait to get it down to Wakefield Park and record some lap times with TCS off (ssshhhh).

I am a very happy camper and cannot believe my luck. I should add that it cost me 20K less than anything else I was considering which I could have afforded if convinced otherwise.

So, in closing, Toyota, you have a new, very satisfied customer. Good on ya. Is there anyone else as happy as I am?

PS: Only one problem, the cruise control does not hold when going down even small hills. Is this the way Toyota cruise control is? There is virtually no retard. Would appreciate an answer on this.

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Mate you don't have to convince us! It's the die-hard Holden and Ford people that tend to bash this car left right and centre. I can't tell you the number of times people have gawked at the TRD Aurion and so many people actually come up to me to ask about the car. It's like people just cannot accept that Toyota is finally back in making performance cars. I think it is the sheer reputation that the Toyota brand has in Australia, and the fact that it is finally shedding its "fridge on wheels" image that gets people excited.

This car will hold its own. You will find that you can keep up with the V8s, but barely. You could keep up with the SV6s and SSs, but don't try to take on the HSVs and FPVs. The advantage from having this car is the fuel consumption - you get V8-like power for V6 fuel consumption. Biggest problem is not with the lack of power, but the lack of grip and the immense torque steer (on the upside, you get a free upper body workout every time you accelerate hard!).

To sum up, a very underrated car in my books. You get luxury, performance, reliability and exclusivity in one car. Fuel consumption is low enough to be a practical day-to-day runner, but brings excitement once you decide to open it up. Besides, 1 in every 3 cars is a Holden/Ford. To really stand out from the crowd, you need a TRD. :D

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Hehe I thought I was the only weird one. I love the torque steer too....kekeke....makes it really exciting to drive. I can only count once when it nearly got me in trouble....it was raining that day and I was supercharging down the freeway entrance when I felt the steering go left, then right, then right again. Really had to hold on tight to try and keep the car in a straight line!

Edited by TRD Aurion Owner
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Hehe I thought I was the only weird one. I love the torque steer too....kekeke....makes it really exciting to drive. I can only count once when it nearly got me in trouble....it was raining that day and I was supercharging down the freeway entrance when I felt the steering go left, then right, then right again. Really had to hold on tight to try and keep the car in a straight line!

If you get into trouble in a front drive car, look back to the guys like Bo Seton who raced Morris Cooper Ss. I raced Suzuki Swift GTIs with factory LSDs. Let's talk about tourque steer and understeer!!! When it understeers, BACK OFF THE GAS! It will straighten up immediately. Front wheel drive is actually one of the greatest handling inventions of the modern car. We've just forgotten how to use it.

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Good to hear some feedback from another TRD owner

i dont get the chance to drive my car alot as i tend to use my work car

Although everytime i do get to drive it makes me smile :)

Call me odd but i enjoy the torque steer :lol:

Can you please tell me if your cruise control does not hold the car going down hill? Is that a Toyota cruise control trait? Our other car is an Audi Quattro and the cruise control actually applies the brakes down steep grades. It never breaks away from the set speed. There seems to be very little retard with the Aurion cruise control in this situation. Maybe I have a fault with the system. I'd love to hear about this.

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the TRD aurion is awesome...how much are they going for??

Let's just say, apply pressure at the dealership. They are not selling. It must be said that Toyota's PR department has not handled this very well. I have car number 450 and it is 2007 build. There is a August 2008 model on Carsales.com and it is number 518?! Greatest bargain of the modern era. Remember, they spent $8 Mil on development, and if my maths serve me correctly, that's about, say 600 cars sold = $13,333 per car! That's an aweful lot of development per unit! I wouldn't like to be the accountant.

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MarksTRD no my Aurion doesn't apply the brakes on cruise either. I think this is standard practice for Japanese cars. I had a Nissan Maxima and it too did not apply brakes when the speed exceeded the cruise speed on a slope. I'm guessing it is the cost involved. They have to make the brakes apply just enough pressure to retard the car but not too much that will cause jerky or sudden stops.

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MarksTRD no my Aurion doesn't apply the brakes on cruise either. I think this is standard practice for Japanese cars. I had a Nissan Maxima and it too did not apply brakes when the speed exceeded the cruise speed on a slope. I'm guessing it is the cost involved. They have to make the brakes apply just enough pressure to retard the car but not too much that will cause jerky or sudden stops.

Thanks for this and I thought that may be the case as the casing of the throttle contol is not a bellows type, it is a fixed plastic encased throttle control. So, it accelarates OK uphill, but does not retard. I thought it may be electronic. Let me add, our Audi is a 1994 model (S2). Japan has its limitations. I guess if it were a Lexus, story would be different?

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i read in an article some where that says that toyota is happy with the side affect the trd has. apperntly lots of people go in looking ant the trd and then end up buyin a sportivo that same day . so i guess the trd aurion does rack up sales of other models.

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i read in an article some where that says that toyota is happy with the side affect the trd has. apperntly lots of people go in looking ant the trd and then end up buyin a sportivo that same day . so i guess the trd aurion does rack up sales of other models.

Yes mate, good point! The fact is that TRD is where HDT was when P. Brock got screwed by GM. Remember, they hated him and Larry building better cars than they did from their shells. Difference is, there is little to no personalitly involved. I hope the marketing gurus of Toyota realise what they have to do to build a brand. That is what HSV has done by default! Lucky bastards, I would love to be the recipient of that heritage Problem with V8 Supercars is that they have closed out every other car maker??!! I cannot imagine what Toyota will have to do to address this problem, but they have done it with Nsacar in the US. Maybe the IS 250 F is the beginning of the end? The shock of the NEW? Maybe they should employ Neale Bates and get it happening. Everything is half hearted.

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Problem with V8 Supercars is that they have closed out every other car maker??!! I cannot imagine what Toyota will have to do to address this problem,

I read an article a few weeks ago (I will see if I can find it) stating that Craig Lowndes' team was in discussion with Toyota re. a V8 Supercar entry for 2010 and that there was some possibility within the current rules (but please don't ask how)

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MarksTRD no my Aurion doesn't apply the brakes on cruise either. I think this is standard practice for Japanese cars. I had a Nissan Maxima and it too did not apply brakes when the speed exceeded the cruise speed on a slope. I'm guessing it is the cost involved. They have to make the brakes apply just enough pressure to retard the car but not too much that will cause jerky or sudden stops.

Thanks for this and I thought that may be the case as the casing of the throttle contol is not a bellows type, it is a fixed plastic encased throttle control. So, it accelarates OK uphill, but does not retard. I thought it may be electronic. Let me add, our Audi is a 1994 model (S2). Japan has its limitations. I guess if it were a Lexus, story would be different?

Yeah i've seemed to notice that as well. When the car is rolling downhill, the brakes don't apply. I had a Lexus IS200 for a couple of months and it was the same case, the cruise control only accelerated uphill but didn't brake going downhill. Maybe the new Lexus models have taken this into consideration? Maybe the new IS250s?

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MarksTRD no my Aurion doesn't apply the brakes on cruise either. I think this is standard practice for Japanese cars. I had a Nissan Maxima and it too did not apply brakes when the speed exceeded the cruise speed on a slope. I'm guessing it is the cost involved. They have to make the brakes apply just enough pressure to retard the car but not too much that will cause jerky or sudden stops.

Thanks for this and I thought that may be the case as the casing of the throttle contol is not a bellows type, it is a fixed plastic encased throttle control. So, it accelarates OK uphill, but does not retard. I thought it may be electronic. Let me add, our Audi is a 1994 model (S2). Japan has its limitations. I guess if it were a Lexus, story would be different?

Yeah i've seemed to notice that as well. When the car is rolling downhill, the brakes don't apply. I had a Lexus IS200 for a couple of months and it was the same case, the cruise control only accelerated uphill but didn't brake going downhill. Maybe the new Lexus models have taken this into consideration? Maybe the new IS250s?

It's the old story, when in doubt, read the instructions. I just read the Cruise Control section of the Owners Manual, and it says something like, if the car begins to pick up speed when going down hill, disengage cruise control, jam it back to third, apply the brakes, THROW OUT THE ANCHORS AND EMPLOY PARACHUTE! Roger.

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I currently own a 08' Corolla, but I really wish I got the Aurion instead sometimes. I had an Aurion for three days while I was having issues getting my Corolla sorted and far out it was awesome. I loved it! :D

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