Car reviews - Toyota - Camry - sedan range
Toyota sticks with its proven formula, but improves its latest Camry in every area
7 Dec 2011
By MIKE COSTELLO
A NEW powertrain that delivers up to 15 per cent more power and 11 per cent better fuel economy is the highlight of the reworked seventh-generation Camry that sits on a major reworking of the previous mid-size car’s platform. The latest 2.5-litre AR engine delivers 133kW of power in the entry-level Camry Altise, stepping up a fraction to 135kW on the twin-exhaust Atara models that replace the Ateva, Sportivo and Grande of the superseded range. The lone transmission is a new six-speed sequential automatic – replacing the five-speed auto – while the manual shifter has failed to reappear after being dropped in the final year of the previous generation. With more input from Australian engineers than ever before, the Camry is designed to makes incremental gains in all major areas, including ride, handling, steering, noise and vibration suppression and acceleration. Safety has also been lifted, with seven airbags now standard across all models and high-tech safety gadgets such as a blind-spot warning system and automatic headlight dipping making their debut on the flagship Atara SL.
Model release date: 1 December 2011 to 1 April 2015
November 2011Family Tree: Camry
TOYOTA’S totally redesigned, sixth-generation Camry introduced a completely new front-wheel drive platform, as well as a new four-cylinder marketing strategy designed to give the company a two-way bet in the volatile large family car segment. For the first time since 1988, no Camry V6 was offered, with that powerplant going into the Camry-based Aurion large sedan. The Camry’s 2AZ-FE engine was a 2.4-litre twin-cam VVTi four-cylinder producing 117kW of power at 5700rpm and 218Nm of torque at 4000rpm. It powered the four-pronged Camry range – fleet-chasing Altise, sporty Sportivo, pseudo-luxury Ateva and flash Grande.
Like before, only a four-door sedan shape was offered, so there was no Camry wagon. A five-speed manual gearbox or five-speed automatic transmission were on offer and all models included anti-lock brakes, dual front airbags, air-conditioning, cruise control, power windows and mirrors, remote central locking with an alarm, powered driver’s seat adjustment and automatic headlights-on. A 2009 facelift brought a number of changes, including better fuel economy (to 8.8L/100km), six airbags as standard, Bluetooth phone connectivity and sound systems with an auxiliary audio-input jack and at least six speakers (two more for the Altise), plus sunvisor lamps and seatback pockets, among others.
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