A minor change to the popular minivan “Toyota Alphard” with its powerful appearance and easy-to-use equipment. The second row was a test drive of the top grade “Executive Lounge S”. Which is the “leading role”, and confirmed the latest model.
Reasons why ride comfort cannot be given top priority
Since it is such a car, if I tell you the impression of the second-row seat first, the impression of ride quality was a little different from the last test drive. Last time it was in the Minato Mirai area of Yokohama, and this time it was in the Futtsu area of Chiba. It may be a difference in road conditions, but this time I always felt a slight vibration.
It converges relatively shortly for a single large input such as when stepping on a hole in the road, but it is uncomfortable when driving on an old paved road full of rough parts and seams. The vibration is transmitted to the buttocks that touch the seat via the floor. If you drive on such a road, any car will shake a little, but the vibration felt by the Alphard was strangely noticeable. I wonder if my expectations are too high because I’m sitting in a seat that looks gorgeous.
Feeling this buzzing, I remembered the recent interaction with the Alphard development team. Depending on whether the car gives priority to the ride quality when someone drives it or the handling when driving it by itself, the setting of the suspension should be different, and either one must be prioritized. To simplify it, in the case of a model in the price range where an expensive electronically controlled suspension cannot be introduced, there is no choice but to make it soft or hard. I think the Alphard is one of the softest cars because of its character, but it’s not the case, and there is a glimpse of the desire for handling.
When asked about that, the answer was, “Even in the Alphard, the driver is most often used to ride alone, so we can’t just focus on the ride quality …”. I think that specializing in ride comfort will give users deeper satisfaction, but in order to sell as many as one as a business, it may be necessary to choose a medium.
The third row seats are large enough to be used on a daily basis
Then to the driver’s seat. This was hardly memorable when it came to driving. There is no change in the hybrid system, and the impression is the same as before. It is powerful enough to move a 2230kg vehicle. However, there is no fun element to run. The combination of V6 engine + 8-speed AT, which I took on another occasion, makes me want to drive aggressively as much as it makes a good sound, but if it is a hybrid, it is better to have it on board.
I’m surprised that it’s so big but it’s not bad to handle. The line of sight is high and the design is square, so it’s a good idea to give up. When backing up or putting it in the garage, various sensors and camera images that can virtually create screens from various angles are useful. The “digital inner mirror” is effective when people are in the second and third rows.
I sat in the third row, but it wasn’t too narrow. The number of SUVs equipped with third-row seats, such as the “Lexus RX” and “Mazda CX-8,” is increasing, but the third-row seats provided with these are only occasional and cannot be used on a daily basis. If adults often use the third row, it’s tough unless it’s a minivan. If you flip up the third-row seat when not in use, a vast luggage compartment will appear. The floor of the third-row seat part has a double bottom, and when the lid is turned over, it is deeply scooped out. You can push things you don’t want to showdown, or you can leave them open and stack tall things upright.
Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge Safety S Sense is highly complete
The Alphard is equipped with the latest advanced safety equipment from Toyota today. Moreover, it is not an option depending on the grade, and the “full answer” that all grades are standard equipment is excellent. The name of the latest version is “Toyota Safety Sense” without “C” or “P”. The so-called automatic braking pre-crash safety can detect not only vehicles in front but also cyclists and pedestrians at night. Lane tracing assist, which assists the driver in maintaining the lane while the adaptive cruise control (ACC) is operating (the steering automatically moves to keep the center of the lane), is also provided.
The combination of ACC and steering assist is the function before the dawn of automatic driving, and it should be very effective in reducing fatigue and preventing accidents when driving on the highway for a long time including traffic jams. At this stage, this level is at the cutting edge. The next step is hands-free on motorways, which will happen in the not too distant future.
While these features may not always be equal to working well, Toyota Safety Sense generally worked well (although I haven’t tried automatic braking). If it is strong, it is a little reluctant to respond when it is interrupted by another vehicle while following the preceding vehicle. I want you to continue the operation even if you brake harder.
However, Toyota cannot stop laughing at the fact that about 80,000 cars (including Al / Vel), which have grades that greatly exceed 7 million yen, can be sold annually. If there was a third person with a thin face like a Noh mask, wouldn’t it be accepted by the people on the pros and cons side and sell even more? How about “Estima” also making a “brother’s contract” in the next generation and letting him take charge of a thin face?
Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge S Test car data
Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge S
Body size: Overall length x Width x Height = 4950 x 1850 x 1950 mm
Wheelbase: 3000 mm
Vehicle weight: 2230 kg
Drive system: 4WD
Engine: 2.5 liter straight 4 DOHC 16 valve
Front motor: AC synchronous electric motor
Rear motor: AC synchronous electric motor
152ps (112kW) / 5700rpm Maximum torque: 206Nm (21.0kgm) / 4400-4800rpm
Front motor maximum output : 143ps (105kW )
Front motor maximum torque: 270Nm (27.5kgm)
Rear motor maximum output: 68ps (50kW)
Rear Motor maximum torque: 139Nm (14.2kgm)
Tire: (Front) 225 / 60R17 99H / (Rear) 225 / 60R17 99H (Yokohama Blue Earth E51A)
Fuel consumption: 18.4km / liter (JC08 mode)