It doesn’t use exotic, lightweight materials. It doesn’t have a crafty electric powertrain. But a Toyota Camry is positively one of a many critical cars we’ll ever review, if usually since Toyota sells so damn many of them.
The Camry is now in a eighth generation, and Toyota says this one is sportier and some-more upscale than Camrys of old. However, after a week with one—the $32,250 V6 XSE—I’m left with one conclusion: there are evidently an awful lot of automobile buyers out there who only don’t caring many about their cars.
These days, platforms are out, and architectures—which are some-more non-static and reduction prescriptive—are a hotness. The Kentucky-built Camry is no exception, regulating Toyota’s New Global Architecture, that also creates adult a skeleton of a many new Prius. The complement specifies how opposite components are positioned; a specific tallness chair dictates where a steering circle and pedals and shifter all go. But it also creates for a lighter and stiffer Camry than before, one with a reduce core of sobriety that ought to be some-more beguiling to drive.
As mentioned, a exam Camry was a top-of-the-line model. It’s one of a cars underneath care for World Car of a Year (for that we am now a juror), and Toyota evidently felt that a top-spec automobile would make a best impression. The engine is a new 3.5L naturally aspirated V6, with non-static valve timing and approach injection, and it has a ability to run underneath a Atkinson cycle for improved efficiency. It packs a decent punch—301hp (224kW) and 267ft-lbs (362Nm) and is some-more fit a prior V6 Camry, with an EPA rating of 26mpg total (22mpg city, 33mpg highway). However, both a 2.5L inline four-cylinder (which starts during $23,495) and a hybrid (from $27,800) are both extremely some-more careful to run in that regard. All Camrys send their energy to a front wheels around an eight-speed involuntary gearbox designed in-house by Toyota.
We’ve determined in copiousness of prior automobile reviews that my pushing character in city is not gainful to good fuel economy, and in this case, a automobile didn’t wish to give me an easy-to-read mpg figure. Suffice it to contend that we doubt we managed to compare a EPA’s 22mpg pushing in town.
Not everybody will adore a approach it looks
We initial saw a new Camry just over a year ago in Detroit, during that time we wrote that it “does demeanour sportier and some-more sparkling than what might good have been a final cab we rode in.” While we still mount by that statement, we can’t contend I’m a large fan of a styling—particularly a XSE version, that gets an assertive front fender and a behind with a (fake) diffuser, and rocker row extensions and a behind spoiler on a case lid. Perhaps it’s a color-sensitive thing? The white automobile in Toyota’s images looks many reduction disgusting to me than a china automobile we spent my week with.
There’s something about a Camry’s styling that calls to mind a cars of a early jet age, cars from a late 1950s with wings and vents on them. Then again, a Camry’s deadliest opposition right now is a new Honda Accord, and that automobile looks like it left a bureau with a outrageous square blank from a front bumper, so one’s mileage might vary.
On a inside, things substantially weren’t helped by a Camry’s splendid red leather interior. It looks like a bureau of what Terry Pratchett memorably called a lady of debatable affection. Again, my opinion here is a cause of a press automobile since things demeanour a lot reduction disgusting when a some-more calm palette is employed. Ignoring a carmine hide, all else is utterly good. The ergonomics are sound, with a many widely used controls tighten during hand, and there’s copiousness of storage space in a doors and several other cubbies in a core console. The cabin is splendid and airy, quite interjection to a exam car’s twin sunroofs.
The inside is also really roomy, both in a front and behind (although a driver’s chair is rather tough and doesn’t offer many in a approach of parallel support). And a case is voluminous, during 15.1 cubic feet (427.5L).
It’s a MY2018 car, so it has copiousness of technology
Toyota has packaged copiousness of modernized motorist assists and reserve systems into a new Camry, and I’m happy to news that many of a facilities are enclosed as customary apparatus rather than being sealed adult in thousand-dollar choice packages. Toyota’s system—called “Safety Sense”—comprises brazen collision warning with walking detection, involuntary high-beam headlights, adaptive journey control, and lane-departure warning with steering assist.
Additionally, a XLE and XSE cars get some additional features: blind mark monitors, behind cross-traffic alerts, and intelligent clearway sonar, that uses a car’s ultrasonic sensors to detect probable obstructions when relocating during low speeds.
Most of these work well, with a difference of a “steering assist” partial of a line depart system. Although it would advise me if we drifted out of my lane, we never felt any steering support assisting me out. After a third or fourth try during vouchsafing a Camry try to expostulate itself for a integrate of seconds finished with me intervening, we gave adult perplexing to exam a complement or figure out if it used a industry-standard interlude of 15 seconds before whinging you.
The infotainment system, called Entune 3.0, is Toyota’s latest. It’s built on Automotive Grade Linux; Toyota is a large (and long-time) fan of open-source software. In V6 models, we also get some combined facilities like Siri and Google voice controls (but no Android Auto or CarPlay), energetic navigation (which updates a map frequently over-the-air with POIs and recently combined roads), HD and Sirius XM radio, and 4G LTE with Wi-Fi. Everything is tranquil from an eight-inch touchscreen (seven inches for lower-spec cars). You also get Qi wireless charging in a V6 as standard.
While I’m certain a underlying formula in Entune 3.0 is fine, a UI can be treacherous during times (even after a week, we had no suspicion how to cancel a navigation route), and a approach it renders a map on a infotainment shade can be a small tough to review during times. There’s also a remote bond duty for checking your car’s status, guest motorist monitoring, and even remote starting, a suspicion of that we am certain is environment some readers’ hair alight.
The UI of a 4.2-inch arrangement on a categorical instrument cluster is also reduction than ideal, with some treacherous layouts that (for instance) make it really formidable to tell how many fuel you’re indeed using. Instead of a constantly relocating bar graph, how about only giving me a numerical value?
Sorry, still a bit tedious to drive
Despite Toyota’s press materials claiming this is a sportiest and best-driving Camry to date, and notwithstanding a far-reaching stance, assertive bumpers, and that diffuser during a rear, there’s no removing divided from a fact that it’s still a Camry. That means it’s been designed to be as appealing as probable to a largest series of people; a outcome is a safe-if-unexciting time behind a wheel. The float is good and isolates we from bad highway surfaces, though it’s not a automobile that encourages we to squeeze it by a scruff of a neck or final to be taken out for an early morning expostulate on a twisty road.
Then again, if fad is what you’re looking for, you’re not going to emporium for a Camry. But a sales numbers don’t lie. Last year, some-more than 387,000 Americans bought a new Camry, and there’s each reason to trust that in 2018 it’s going to be a bestselling automobile (as against to truck) nonetheless again.
Listing picture by Toyota