———————- Advertisement ———————-
1. What’s new for 2015?
The Camry mid-size sedan has been thoroughly freshened for 2015, with edgier exterior styling, an upgraded interior and improved suspension, braking and steering. Every body panel has been replaced in 2015, with new exterior lighting, new trunk lid, larger rear wheel arches, and new bumpers and grille. Dashboard design is simplified, the steering wheel looks snazzier, better upholstery is available and the gauges now feature thin-film-transistor displays. SE models boast better acceleration, and the XSE adds a sports suspension and improved steering.
2. How much does it cost (with Trim info)?
Camry offers four trim levels on regular-engine models and three hybrid-car trims. The base LE lists for $22,970 and gives you the Entune Infotainment System, backup camera, USB/Bluetooth connectivity, 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and voice recognition. The SE begins at $23,840 and adds a sports suspension, paddle shifters, 17-inch alloy wheels and a special front grille. Next up at $26,150 is the XSE, featuring 18-inch wheels, optional LED headlights with auto high beam, and optional wireless charging. The XLE delivers LED daytime running lights, wood-grain accents, and available lane departure warning for the same price as the XSE. Add about $4K for hybrid models.
3. What options or trim level is best for me?
The fully loaded XLE with bigger engine will set you back about $35K, and you might instead want to buy the Lexus version. But it does give you all the luxury features you’d want, including leather, wood, moonroof, alerts for collisions and blind spots, adaptive cruise control and automatic collision notification. However, the SE is probably the sweet spot in the line-up, offering sportier performance and a good mix of features. The bigger wheels on the XSE compromise its ride quality.
4. What engine do you recommend?
We like the gasoline-electric hybrid, delivering 200 horsepower and excellent gas mileage. You get full torque from an electric motor as soon as you depress the pedal, so you enjoy an immediate blast-off from the start. The 2.5L 4-cylinder is certainly the most popular choice among buyers, and with 178 horsepower, it accelerates adequately. The smooth 3.5L V6 engine adds 90 horses but sacrifices 4 miles per gallon. The six-speed automatic transmission performs well.
5. How is the fuel economy?
Figures for the 4-cylinder are 25 city mpg and 35 highway mpg. The V6 returns 21/31 mpg. The Hybrid LE is the mileage winner with 43/39 mpg, whereas the Hybrid SE and XLE provide 40/38 mpg.
6. How does the vehicle handle?
Toyota engineers have decisively improved the handling and ride of the 2015 Camry, especially in the XSE trim. The feel is more responsive and livelier, with crisper driving performance. But the Camry has sacrificed none of the comfort and ease for which the car is famous. Perhaps our only quibble would be just a smidge too much body-roll on turns.
7. Are the controls easy to use?
The new layout is very easy to use. Gauges are much more visible thanks to technological improvements, and Toyota has spent a lot of time optimizing the position of all controls. We like the new steering wheel and the sharper steering.
8. Is it comfortable?
Camrys are always comfortable, but now the higher-trim levels approach luxurious, with new upscale materials such as suede seats with handsome stitching. The entire cabin feels more contemporary and fresher. For instance, Toyota wisely chucked the old-fashioned LED clock and put in a 6.1-inch touchscreen, a major improvement. The seating is comfortable and the cabin is noticeably quieter this year.
9. What about safety?
Camry provides 10 airbags, including kneebags to protect front-row occupants. Pre-collision alert collaborates with the dynamic radar cruise control to apply the brakes if you’re about to have a head-on crash. The safety systems include vehicle stability control, traction control, anti-lock brake system, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist and smart stop technology. Other useful features include blind spot monitor, backup camera, lane departure alert and a tire pressure monitoring system. IIHS gives highest marks, Top Safety Pick+, to the 2015 Camry, and the NHTSA awarded it a 5-Star Overall Rating, though only 4 stars for frontal crash and rollover.
10. How’s the reliability and resale value?
The 2015 Camry will no doubt continue the make’s reputation for high reliability and solid resale value. JD Power gave the previous year’s model 4 out of 5 stars for predicted reliability and overall quality. Kelly Blue Book suggests you’ll be able to get a 2014 Camry base model with 19.5K miles for as little as $15,277, but puts the fair purchase price at $17,089.
11. What other models should I consider?
If you are considering the hybrid, first test drive the Honda Accord Hybrid. It still looks like the one to beat. While Camry is sportier than before, you can acquire even more sportiness in some versions of the Ford Fusion, Nissan Altima, Hyundai Sonata and the aforementioned Accord. The Camry and Accord are probably the most reliable of the bunch.