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Camry Hybrid fuel economy ‘in 6.0 litre range’

Most efficient local: Camry Hybrid goes on sale next February with a combined fuel figure of 'low 6.0 litres'.

Toyota attacks big Aussie sixes to underline Camry Hybrid economy

Toyota logo17 Nov 2009

By JAMES STANFORD

TOYOTA Australia says the new Camry Hybrid will achieve a combined fuel economy figure in the ‘low 6.0 litres per 100km range’ when it is released next February.

This figure is lower than fuel economy rating the company had previously hinted at and would make the vehicle the most efficient car produced in Australia, beating the standard petrol Camry’s figure of 8.8L/100km.

Toyota has taken the unusual step of publicising the Camry Hybrid’s fuel economy rating before it is tested for its official ADR81/02 rating. Toyota added that the car would also produce less than 150g/km of C02 and have a combined maximum power rating of 140kW.

In the press release issued on Monday, Toyota drew several comparisons between its four-cylinder mid-sized Camry Hybrid and large Australian six-cylinders to make a point about its fuel economy.

The release led with a claim that driving a Camry Hybrid would save 1000 litres of fuel a year compared with its local six-cylinder rivals, when used for 20,000km of city driving.

Toyota corporate manager of product planning, Peter Evans, said this would save each owner $1320 a year at the current fuel price.

8 center image “Those savings would be multiplied by two, 10, and even hundreds for fleet owners – and many of their owners will save even more by covering greater distances,” he said. “By driving Hybrid Camry, the savings on fuel and therefore on people’s wallets will be huge – and there is also a significant financial benefit.”

Toyota said the Camry Hybrid would use 40 per cent less fuel than the ‘most fuel efficient big Aussie six’ on the official urban cycle and 25 per cent less on the highway section of the test.

Currently, the most efficient Australia six-cylinder is the Holden Commodore 3.0-litre, which has an official combined fuel economy rating of 9.3 litres per 100km. Interestingly, Toyota’s own big Aussie six, the Altona-made Aurion, uses 9.9 litres per 100km.

While it did compare fuel economy figures in the release, Toyota didn’t compare the Camry Hybrid’s power figure with that of the Commodore 3.0 V6. That car has a considerable 50kW power advantage over the Camry Hybrid.

Toyota also did not compare the Camry Hybrid to other cars in its official VFACTS class, the medium segment, which includes vehicles such as the Mazda6 diesel.

That car beats the Camry Hybrid in both highway and city fuel consumption cycles and has a better combined average of just 5.9L/100km. Its C02 rating is close to the Camry Hybrid, at 159g/km.

The Camry Hybrid uses a 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine linked up to an electric motor which uses a nickel-metal hydride battery back.

Toyota tuned the petrol engine for economy and torque and it is linked to a continuously variable automatic (CVT) transmission.

Toyota Australia engineers have also implemented a range of suspension improvements for the Camry Hybrid which will not be carried across for the regular petrol model. The Hybrid model also features a range of noise and vibration suppression measures including more padding and a special windscreen with an extra layer of clear sound absorbent material.

It is 60kg heavier, thanks to the hybrid components which also take up a significant part of the bootspace.

Toyota is yet to set pricing for the Camry Hybrid, but has hinted that it would demand a premium of $3500 or less over a comparable petrol Camry model.

It is planning to produce 10,000 Camry Hybrids a year and the Victorian and federal governments have already agreed to purchase an undisclosed amount of vehicles.

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