Toyota Camry 2012 Review

Toyota Camry 2012 Review: While the 2012 Toyota Camry lacks the instant charm of some competitors, a number of important, step-by-step enhancements make it a deserving challenger for any kind of family-car customer.

The five-seat car is available in L, LE, XLE and sport-tuned SE trims. A four-cylinder engine is conventional, with a V-6 optional on the SE and also XLE. I assessed the much-improved Camry Hybrid independently. The new Camry won't go on sale till October, yet I drove most variants at a media sneak peek.

Toyota Camry 2012 Review

That Thing's New?

Toyota describes the Camry as brand new-- seventh generation, revamped from top to bottom-- but the designing suggests a milder upgrade. The vehicle's size, size and wheelbase remain the exact same. The headlights look more improved than reimagined. The boomerang taillights include something fresh, yet the side profile resembles the old Camry.

The Camry SE has sporty body treatments and 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels, versus 16-inch steel wheels on the base model. Much better incorporated compared to the outgoing Camry SE-- whose slapped-on expansions had all the makings of a discount nose job-- it's the clearest redesign of the number, if you can follow its face. I see the late-2000s Acura TL, some Mazda6 and a lot of woodchuck.

Overhauled Inside

The revamped cabin really feels richer, if much less constant, compared to before. Dressed with stitched synthetic leather as well as a chrome-flanked, raised center panel, the dashboard has lots of high end eye candy. The high quality goes beyond sight alone-- the climate controls really feel weightier and also the gearshift crisper relocating from Park to Drive.

I prefer the last Camry's comfy seats to the new variation's, which are a touch firmer. Still, the motorist's seat has good change array, and also the facility console does not encroach on hip or knee area. Though the backseat is not as spacious as a Volkswagen Passat's or Honda Accord's, it fits adults great, with excellent clearance as well as a hump-free floor. The Camry XLE loses its reclining backseat, yet all trims obtain a 60/40-split folding backseat. The previous generation's SE and also XLE backseats didn't fold.

A couple of areas obtain the short shrift: cheap back door panels, an old headliner, no more one-touch power home windows all over. On the whole, though, cabin high quality really feels affordable, if short of the Kia Optima as well as Passat. And the Camry's usefulness-- substantial storage space cubbies, exposure unfettered by a coming down roofline or thick home window columns-- ought to draw purchasers.

Trunk volume procedures 15.4 cubic feet, up from last year's 15.0 cubic feet (14.5 in some trims) and also defeating the Accord. If trunk area is high on your list, look into the Hyundai Sonata as well as Ford Combination. Both vehicles top 16 cubic feet.

The Gripe is Grip

The prior generation Camry fasted: qualified with the 178-horsepower four-cylinder, muscle with the 268-hp V-6. That carries over for 2012, together with a 2 mpg enhancement for each variation in combined city/highway gas mileage, according to EPA price quotes. At 28 mpg with the four-cylinder and 25 mpg with the six, the Camry leads all rivals but the Sonata. Credit history Toyota for slendering most variations down greater than 100 extra pounds, tweaking the drivetrain, adding fuel-saving electric power guiding and outfitting the Camry with lower-rolling-resistance tires.

I'm sold on four of the 5 changes. Like a lot of family-car automatics, the Camry's six-speed discovers multi-gear downshifts, but it upshifts efficiently and typically kicks down quickly enough. (Toyota has gone down last year's stick shift.) Exactly what's even more, the Camry outsteers its precursor. I drove 2011 as well as 2012 Camry LEs back-to-back, as well as the old car's comatose steering feedback and highway discomposure have diminished. The 2012 Camry's wheel still goes numb during fast lane modifications-- the Accord and Combination maneuver better-- yet it really feels a lot more certain compared to it did.

The tires, however, are anything yet. The Camry LE has Michelin Energy Saver Green-X all-seasons, whose reduced rolling resistance boosts gas mileage. Unfortunately, it comes at a high expense. Push the accelerator, as well as the front wheels rotate away. On sweeping contours, the tires break from the line early, reined in only when the common electronic security system calls order. The outward bound Camry used common Michelin Power MXV4s. Where they stuck, the Power Savers wander off. Worst of all, I observed this after hours of modest driving with temperatures in the 80s. On a blustery winter season day, I fear the Energy Savers would make out even worse.

The Camry XLE and four-cylinder SE wear 17-inch Michelin Primacy MXV4s. They, as well, lack much hold. The V-6 SE has 18s as well as Michelin Primacy MXM4s, which-- finally!-- play wonderful. They fit the SE, which improves on its discordant precursor. The last SE dealt with as well poorly to validate its uneven trip. I drove the two generations back-to-back, and also the brand-new one leans even more yet handles much better-- sharper balance, elegant wandering, far better steering responses. I only desire Toyota had worked comparable magic with the suspension. It does not container as a lot through craters as well as ruts, but tiny bumps are felt in a fatiguing, ever-present rhythm. Some competitors-- the Suzuki Kizashi particularly-- find much better ground between ride and handling. The Camry SE has actually enhanced, however it's not there yet.

Common Camry trims ride a touch firmer compared to in the past, however overall comfort still thrills. So do the brakes. Toyota switched in a little larger four-wheel discs for 2012, as well as the linear response improves on the Camry norm.

Safety, Features & Pricing

Since this writing, the Camry has yet to be crash-tested. There are 10 typical airbags. As needed of all 2012 designs, an electronic stability system and anti-skid brakes are typical. A dead spot caution system is optional on the XLE. Toyota has yet to value the car, but authorities informed me the prominent LE version will not stray much from its 2011 cost-- $22,700 with the automated-- as well as the cost of the SE and XLE "will certainly be significantly reduced" than their precursors. Those trims were around $24,000 and $26,500, specifically, with automatic transmissions.

Don't expect to discover a Camry L easily. Toyota claims the base trim will consist of less than 5 percent of all sales-- mainly to commercial fleets, not customers. Common features include air conditioning, cruise ship control, power accessories, Bluetooth and also an iPod-compatible stereo. Mainline Camry trims add steering-wheel sound controls, remote keyless entry and a touch-screen stereo with Bluetooth audio streaming. Examine all the alternatives, and also the Camry could have heated up natural leather furniture, power pole position, a moonroof, JBL audio, 2 separate navigating systems (see the images to compare) and also Toyota's Entune multimedia system, which we information here.

Camry in the marketplace

Toyota chose brief completions with the new Camry: Eke out another 2 mpg, fine-tune the steering as well as handling, enhance the brakes. Some purchasers might desire the carmaker had actually opted to toss a designing long ball, as Kia and also Hyundai did. Toyota could lose out on some new buyers since the redesign looks also moderate.

However I'm not exactly sure the Camry required a designing overhaul; after all, its predecessor had actually matured well. The carmaker should restore the nameplate's track record for bulletproof dependability, which has sunk to just ALRIGHT in recent years. The interior is a couple of flubs short of family-car quality, and also the skateboard tires mar an otherwise fine-tuned driving experience. But the perceptiveness continue to be, and overall the Camry has actually boosted significantly. It continues to be, more than ever, a poster automobile for your right brain.