Car reviews - Toyota - Camry - sedan range
Toyota throws Camry's cardigan-wearing image to the curb with a crsip new 2006 model
28 Jul 2006
OKAY, let’s clear the air first. Camrys of old were for cardigan-wearing retirees, right? Folk who were more interested in durability, solid resale values and Toyota quality. Try as it might, Toyota’s marketing department had a tough time injecting some brio into the Camry range. In 2002, the Sportivo redressed that situation. It did everything right – stopped, handled and steered like a sportier-than-average sedan should. Well, after an initial drive of the new Camry, the Sportivo has lost none of its edge. You can give the cardigan to the Salvos and rush out and buy some racing gloves. This Camry can be thrown about and enjoyed.
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Model release date: 1 July 2006 to 1 November 2011
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Toyota CamryReleased: September 2002
Ended: July 2006
Family Tree: Camry
The previous model Camry offered both V6 and four-cylinder power in seven variants: the Altise 2.4, Ateva 2.4, Sportivo 2.4 and V6, Altise V6, Ateva V6 and Azura V6. It was a somewhat confusing array of model names that did nothing for brand identity. Despite this, every Camry model was spacious and handled, as well as stopped, effectively. Legendary Toyota reliability was also a strong selling point. The 2.4 developed 112kW at 5600rpm and 218Nm at 4000rpm while the V6 pumped out 145kW at 5200rpm and 284Nm at 4400rpm. Both engines were known for their solid, if unsurprising performance. Visually, the car looked dumpy from certain angles, particularly the rear, and the wheel tracks look too narrow for the body. The pick of the models was the Sportivo, with some subtle suspension and steering adjustments that proved popular with wannabe Fangios.
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