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Future models - Toyota - Camry - sedan

Cooler Camry cruises in

Bolder: The new Camry gains more aggressive styling than the current model, while the 2.2-litre four-cylinder engine makes way for a high-tech 2.4-litre unit.

Toyota has provided the first official images of its all-new Camry

23 Aug 2001

HERE it is. The all-new Toyota Camry, as revealed by Automotive Networks more than three weeks ago.

The official picture confirms Toyota has opted to go with far more adventurous styling than is the case with the existing car.

As reported previously by Automotive Networks, the all-new Camry will go on sale in the US and Japan shortly, but we won't get it until July or August next yearApart from its bold new styling, the Camry has also grown in size, measuring 4805mm long (up 50mm), 1795mm wide (up 15mm) and 1490mm tall (up 70mm).

The new Camry is reported to offer far greater levels of interior space, largely due to its 70mm taller stance.

Performance levels also promise to be sharper - particularly in the four-cylinder variant, which gains a new twin-cam 16-valve 2.4-litre unit with variable valve timing (VVT-i), as used in the Tarago.

The new engine generates 117kW at 5600rpm and 220Nm of torque at 4000rpm - a useful improvement on the current four-cylinder Camry's outputs of 94kW and 187Nm.

Fuel economy is also improved with claimed fuel consumption figures of 12.2 litres/100km around town and 8.8 litres/100km on the highway for the US-spec four-cylinder Camry with four-speed automatic transmission.

The current 3.0-litre V6 engine will be carried over with a few tweaks - although it will not gain variable valve timing, as is the case with the new Lexus ES300. Power and torque figures are quoted at 143kW at 5300rpm and 283Nm respectively - compared with outputs of 141kW and 279Nm currently.

Both the new four-cylinder engine and upgraded V6 meet the stringent Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) standards.

Our version of the new Camry will use the same platform as the existing car, unlike US and Japan-spec models, which gain new underpinnings. Toyota Australia says the existing platform is being carried over so the car can be tailored for local conditions - but cost savings are believed to be a large part of the reason.

Inside, newly styled front seats are claimed to offer improved lumbar support and a greater range of seating positions for added comfort.

The rear features 60/40 fold-down seats for storage of larger items such as skis, while L-shaped headrests are said to provide better rear visibility for the driver.

Pricing for the new Camry has been sharpened in the US, with some models actually costing less than their predecessors. Toyota Australia says it is too early to comment on local pricing.

It is believed there will be no wagon version of the new Camry, which means the existing wagon will be the last of its kind.

But the void may be filled by a Camry-derived soft-roader such as the Highlander - which offers the space and utility of a wagon along with some degree of off-road versatility.

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