The hotter of the two is the 2013 Avalon TRD Edition. Unlike many SEMA concepts, modification was handled in-house by Toyota Racing Development (TRD)—which is perhaps why exterior modifications are relatively limited. Tinted taillights, a custom-painted grille and dual exhausts look clean compared to the wild body kits that emerge for the Las Vegas show.
The most significant change takes place under the hood. The car retains its stock 3.5-liter V6, but it gets a nice boost courtesy of a TRD supercharger system. Toyota says the supercharger bumps up engine output and torque “substantially,” though no performance numbers were released.
There's not much going on beyond that; coil springs drop the car's body roughly one inch all around, and suspension gets a bit stiffer. Large cross-drilled, spiral-vane brake discs make sure everything stops safely. Inside, you'll find a lightly modified interior and an amped-up, 15-speaker sound system.
The second vehicle, dubbed the 2013 SEMA Avalon HV Edition, began as a hybrid version of the sedan. Toyota's hybrid synergy-drive system remains, but the car has been lowered and features the same suspension tweaks as the TRD Edition.
The HV Edition rides on custom 19-inch wheels and has the same beefy brakes as the TRD Edition.
It's interesting to see how automakers handle customization on cars that weren't born to be modified—an automotive segment that happens to include the vast majority of vehicles produced today. In addition to this pair of Avalon sedans, Toyota has already announced a souped-up Sequoia. We'll be sure to bring you news of any other sleepers headed to SEMA as the show approaches.
The 2012 SEMA show takes place Oct. 30 through Nov. 2 in Las Vegas, Nev. The show is a leading indicator of trends in technology and customization for the automotive industry. Autoweek will be there with the latest news, photos and video, and we'll bring it all to you right here at autoweek.com.