Toyota Camry - Hits and misses

Toyota Camry - Hits and misses

The Toyota Camry is a luxurious sedan that is both smart and ergonomic. One of the longstanding models sold since 1982 Japanese automaker, Toyota, the Camry has undergone vast changes in almost all aspects. From its size to the exterior, cabin, features, to the engine, the Camry has evolved to cater to the ever-evolving demands of the modern and discerning auto industry.

The latest iteration of the Camry is the eight-generation of this Toyota sedan which was first introduced in January 2017 at the North American International Auto Show. It is available in several trims for the North American market but is only available here in the Philippines in one engine option and two trims: the 2.5 V and the 2.5G. Both trims of the Camry runs in the same 2AR-FE 4-cylinder in line, 16 valves, DOHC, Dual VVT-I engine that produces 184 PS of output at 6,000 rpm and 231 Nm of torque at 4,100 rpm. The engine is mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Prices for the Toyota Camry are as follows:

Variant

Toyota CAMRY 2.5 V

Toyota CAMRY 2.5 G

Price

Php 2.042 million

Php 1.856 million

With the continuous evolution of the Toyota Camry, the eight-generation of this sedan, despite the modern feel and updates, still hit a few snags. Here are the things we like most about the new Camry and what we think Toyota could still improve on.

Toyota Camry exterior

Toyota Camry Hits

Great fuel economy

The Toyota Camry with its four-cylinder engine can give you the most mileage without sacrificing on power and performance. According to https://www.fueleconomy.gov/, the Camry can go for 12.32 km/liter in the city, 17.43 km/liter on the highway, and 14.45 km/liter on combined city and highway driving. Edmunds’ even gave the Camry the Best Gas Mileage Cars for 2020 award for its fuel efficiency.

Smooth driving experience

The Camry is such a pleasure to drive. It's comfortable for long-distance driving and very dependable. Powerful enough to navigate the terrain without being jostled on uneven terrain thanks to its electronic power steering and MacPherson Strut type suspension in the front and double wishbone suspension at the rear—both of which have stabilizers. So you can go from the highway to the rough rural roads with ease. There is also a Drive Mode Select feature which lets the driver choose between Sport mode— for a more responsive car when accelerating, turning, and shifting; and Eco mode— for a more relaxed, cruising driving experience.

Toyota Camry interior

Comfy interior

The comfy cabin will assure you a relaxed drive once you enter the cabin. The ambient lighting sets the mood while the rear AC vents, power recline seats with butterfly-type headrests, and capacitive control panel that controls the air-conditioning and sunshade lets the backseat passengers have some of the plush comforts as well. The leather seats and soft-touch trims all add up to a comfortable ride. Plus, the spacious leg, hip, and headroom all adds up to a relaxing drive even for the long haul. The streamlined dashboard and the wood panel accents on the center gearbox and lower end of the dash creates a luxurious feel while effectively minimizing the plasticky feel. The heads up display coupled with the instrument cluster keeps the driver informed for an engaging driving experience.

High safety rating

The current Toyota Camry gets the highest safety rating from the ASEAN NCAP, giving it a perfect 5-star rating which makes it one of the safest passenger vehicles in the market. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave it a 5-star overall rating after getting a perfect score on all independent test analyses including frontal barrier crash, side crash, side barrier, and rollover rating. US News also gave it a perfect 10 rating while the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) gave it a “good” rating for the side-impact test, roof strength test, rear crash protection, and moderate overlap front test.

Toyota Camry safety

The Camry was able to score high on safety thanks to its 7 SRS airbags— where most cars would only place two (driver and front passenger) coupled with other safety and driving assist features such as the electronic parking brake, hill start assist, vehicle stability control, clearance and back sonar sensors, cruise control, engine immobilizer, speed sensing power door lock, and anti-lock brake system.

Also Read: Toyota Camry - Safety explained

Toyota Camry features

Connectivity

All Camry model comes with touchscreen multifunction display—7 inches for the 2.5 V and 4.2 inches for the 2.5 G. Both infotainment system, however, comes standard with h Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. The infotainment is partnered with a 6-speaker audio system. There is also a 12 V accessory socket and USB ports for charging phones and gadgets.

Toyota Camry Misses

Noisy cabin

There are Camry owners who complain of loud and unrefined engine noise during acceleration. Though shifting gears is as smooth as can be, the sound is not as fine-tuned. Maybe a more soft, melodic purr will be more appropriate given that this is a midsize car and not a compact sedan marketed for upper-tier buyers.

Toyota Camry rear

Subpar trunk space

Though the trunk space may seem ample enough if compared to subcompact and compact sedans. But the 15.1 cubic feet of space available in the trunk when the rear seats are sitting upright can be considered low for its segment. Sure you can fit a few pieces of luggage, a weekly grocery haul, and even a golf bag. But that is nothing compared to the competition. Rivals like the Nissan Altima has 15.4 of trunk space, the VW Passat has 15.9 cubic feet, the Honda Accord has 16.7 cubic feet, while the BMW 3 sedan provides 16.9 cubic feet of cargo space.

Bottom line

Despite its misses, the Toyota Camry remains a top of the line, much to be desired midsize sedan. This Japanese sedan oozes with luxury, comfort, and style with power and performance to boot! No wonder it retains the top spot on its class. It just goes to show, there will always be room and continuous innovation when it comes to maintaining an enduring nameplate brand.

Also Read: Toyota Camry - Top reasons to buy

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