The Toyota Camry quietly faded from the South African market about five years ago, its lack of popularity inspiring Toyota to replace it with the Avensis - which also eventually went away without a whisper.
Yet this pillar of spacious, solid and reliable (but boring) motoring is quite a hit in North America, where it's been the best selling passenger car for all but one of the last 14 years.
Little surprise then, that Toyota chose to unveil the all-new, 2012 Camry in that country - a car that promises a little more of everything its renowned for and a “sophisticated new design.” Well, by Camry standards this one seems like a step in the right direction with its slightly crisper and more angular lines.
There is also a small possibility that this new large sedan will make it to South Africa. TSA's corporate communications manager Leo Kok stated that although the company has no firm plans to reintroduce the Camry to our market, the company will gauge customer interest and right hand drive availability.
So what exactly have they improved? In a nutshell, Toyota claims more interior space, improved driving dynamics and a quieter ride, along with class-leading fuel economy, safety and modern multi-media technology.
The American market gets three engine choices starting with a 2.5-litre Dual VVT-i four-cylinder petrol motor that gets a mild power increase to 133kW. For the more discerning Camry enthusiast (and you can use your imagination here) there's also a more economical version of Toyota's trusty 200kW 3.5-litre V6. Both engines are mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox with a manual shift mode.
Toyota also offers a petrol-electric hybrid Camry that's 30 percent more economical than the previous hybrid - the new one boasting a claimed combined fuel consumption of 5.47 litres per 100km.
Inside the bigger cabin, buyers will find modern-age connectivity with Bluetooth wireless calling now standard, as is full iPod integration. The six-speaker sound system is mated to a 6.1-inch screen, which also serves as a portal for Toyota's new Entune multi-media system - which can mates with a smartphone to provide fully integrated access to navigation, entertainment and information services.
Finally, safety is well taken car of with all models fitted with 10 airbags, including knee-protecting bags for both front occupants. Like many high-end cars today, this Toyota also offers a blind spot monitoring system as an option.
I think Americans are going to like it. It's a nice red fridge.
I think that if the pricing is good, the old fashioned farmers in Limpopo and the Free State will buy it. I suspect any old gheezer who has just retired would also love it as it is reliable and would be cheaper to own.
I've said it before. It's sad when the Japs starts copying their own designs. The front looks like the current Accord. Remove that TOY badge, and you have an ACcord starring you in the face. Dull & boring, once again.
Is that a honda accord?
I love Toyota but they are making very ugly cars now plus its overpriced. Compared with what Honda and Suzuki are making why buy a Toyota
The fascia is so COROLLA and the rear so YARIS
whats with the gramps, down in KZN, the students so cool that they perspire itty little bitty bits of ice crystals, drive Camrys - and the girls know, its coz Camry drivers do it slower.
Just look at the number (lack thereof) of new accords and Mazda6's getting sold an you know that this won't sell in SA. The current Corolla's size is already close to that of a 90's Camry. Simply no need for this car and what will attrack AccordMazda6 buyers (the few there is) to buy this?
Looks like a Honda Accord
Theo Visser, wrote
I'd love to have one ! Boring maybe in the yes of certain people but it last for ever ! Come on Toyota !
Looks way better than the older versions, but is the price going to be through the roof?
Not quite there yet. The Cressida is the measure for this type of Toyota. Needs to be rear wheel drive; a 3 litre straight six engine; and more pronounced 3 box styling
My uncle drives one of the first models, very very reliable car.
Dirk Reyskens, wrote
PLEASE, please Toyota SA: re-introduce it here asap at a reasonable price AND in automatic! I've had 2 in the last 18 years and my wife still drives a '93 model automatic with >245 000 km on the clock. The best cars I've ever had and the Corolla is overpriced.
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