With dramatic body lines and a head-turning TRD trim, the 2021 Toyota Avalon is a showstopper. First produced for the North American market in 1995, the Avalon is now in its fifth generation. In contrast, the Chrysler 300 was first produced in the 1950s, but the modern version came to be in 2005 and is in its second generation.
While both vehicles offer luxury-focused features, the 2021 Avalon and 2020 Chrysler 300 split ways when it comes to the standard offerings at all trim levels. Toyota includes a whole suite of active safety features standard on every Avalon with Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P), while the Chrysler 300 lacks comparable advanced active safety technologies on their base models.
With all purchases and leases of a new Avalon, you also get the support of Toyota technicians with the ToyotaCare plan which includes factory-scheduled maintenance and Roadside Assistance. For its part, the Chrysler 300 offers a 36,000 miles/36 month basic warranty and roadside assistance for 60,000 miles/60 months.
Let's see how this comparison plays out in not only safety and reliability but performance as well.
Publish Date: 12/01/2020
The 2021 Avalon builds on a Toyota-wide enthusiasm for performance.
When it comes to sportiness, the Avalon XSE Nightshade, TRD, and maxed-out Touring trims don’t just look the part – they feature standard sport-focused features such as aluminum pedal covers, paddle shifters, and Sport Mode for a more exciting drive. The Chrysler 300S and 300C also come with Steering Wheel Mounted Shift Paddles and sport mode.
While the Chrysler 300 Touring comes standard with a 3.6L V6 24V VVT Engine with 292 horsepower, you can upgrade to the 300S for more power with the optional 5.7-Liter V8 HEMI® MDS VVT Engine. Although it is more powerful, with 363 horsepower versus the Avalon’s 3.5-liter V6 engine that offers 301 horsepower, it comes at an added cost of $3,000. Not to mention, the V8 for the Chrysler 300 is only available on the 300S and comes standard on the 300C.
Plus, the Avalon XLE FWD beats the 300 when it comes to fuel economy with an EPA-estimated 22/32/26 (city/hwy/comb) MPG rating versus the Chrysler 300 FWD's EPA-estimated 19/30/23 (city/hwy/comb) MPG rating on all but the 300C FWD. Additionally, the Avalon also offers three hybrid options: the XLE Hybrid, XSE Hybrid, and Limited Hybrid. The XLE Hybrid has an EPA-estimated 43/44/44 (city/hwy/comb) rating while the XSE Hybrid and Limited have an EPA-estimated 43/43/43 (city/hwy/comb) rating.
Both the 300 and 2021 Avalon offer FWD and AWD options.
Safety is a big part of any car-buying decision. You'll be happy to know that the Avalon comes with many standard safety features.
Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) comes standard on the Toyota Avalon. This suite of active safety features includes a Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA), Automatic High Beams (AHB), and Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC).
The Chrysler 300S, Limited, and 300C need the optional SafetyTec™ Plus Group to gain a comparable suite of safety features akin to the Avalon’s standard TSS-P. Adaptive Cruise Control, Automatic High-Beam Headlamp, Full-Speed Forward Collision Warning Plus, and Lane Departure Warning Plus features simply aren’t available on the Chrysler Touring and Touring L.
The Avalon also features standard Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert (RCTA). Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) with Rear Cross-Traffic Braking (RCTB) is available as part of a package for the Avalon Touring and Limited, too. Blind-Spot and Cross-Path Detection do not come standard on any Chrysler 300, but there is an optional package for the 300S and higher.
Toyota is known for reliability and the ToyotaCare plan is a big part of that.
Every new leased and purchased Toyota comes with ToyotaCare which lasts 2 years and 25,000 miles, whichever comes first. ToyotaCare also includes 24/7 Roadside Assistance that lasts 2 years and unlimited miles. Chrysler 300 comes with roadside assistance as well, but it's limited to 60 months/60,000 miles and it does not include factory-scheduled maintenance.
The Avalon has also received many awards for both reliability and safety. In 2020, the Avalon won the Kelley Blue Book® award for Best Resale Value: Full Size Car and Toyota won the Best Resale Value – Brand award. In 2019, the Toyota Avalon was awarded the highest possible safety rating, Top Safety Pick+, by the IIHS when equipped with LED projector headlights. It also got a 5-Star Overall Safety Rating by the NHTSA. Currently, the 2020 Chrysler 300 has not been awarded as a safety pick by the IIHS and received a 4-Star Overall Safety Rating from the NHTSA. The Chrysler 300’s most recent recorded award was in 2007, when it made Car and Driver’s 10 Best List.
For better fuel economy ratings and more standard active safety features, the Avalon is a great choice for those wanting to buy a comfortable luxury sedan.
The Avalon comes backed by several awards that help give drivers peace of mind on the road. Plus, TSS-P adds to driving confidence, knowing that a suite of active safety features is at your fingertips. The base 2021 Chrysler 300 Touring starts at a lower MSRP of $30,040 compared to the Avalon XLE’s starting MSRP of $35,875, but additional features, like the SafetyTec™ Plus Group, only come at added costs on the Chrysler 300.
With both gas and hybrid options, the 2021 Avalon offers better fuel efficiency at an EPA-estimated 22/32/26 (city/hwy/comb) MPG rating for the XLE FWD and 44/43/43 for the XLE Hybrid. The Chrysler Touring, Touring L, 300S, and Limited have an EPA-estimated 19/30/23 (city/hwy/comb) MPG rating and do not have hybrid options available.
Added convenience features, such as four USB charge ports and one USB 2.0 media charge port, come standard on the Avalon. Drivers also get eight speakers, Apple CarPlay®, Android Auto™, and Amazon Alexa compatibility. Plus, you get a 3-month All Access trial for SiriusXM® standard. On the other hand, the Chrysler 300 offers six speakers, Android Auto™, Apple CarPlay®, and 1-Year of SiriusXM® Radio Service.
Although the Chrysler 300 has a lower starting MSRP, you can't beat the standard features and outstanding safety awards of the 2021 Avalon.