More than a new look
In 1982, Toyota launched a relatively basic looking compact car they named the Camry. It was boxy, affordable, came in either a sedan or a hatchback, and could be fitted with a wide variety of engines. As the years passed, the Camry enjoyed steady success. In 1991, Toyota realized that, in order to bolster sales, they needed to make their sedan larger, and since regulations in Japan prevented them from doing so in their home market, they had to develop two versions; Japan received the “narrow-body” version, while we got the “wide-body” variant.
It was at this time that the Camry became the runaway success it is today. Nowadays, it’s pretty much impossible to go out on the streets without seeing one (the fact that they are impossibly reliable helps, too…).
2018 has brought a host of changes to the midsize sedan—there’s a lot going on. Let’s examine exactly what’s changed, starting with the most obvious.
It’s pretty evident when you look at the 2018 Camry that much has changed. Not only is the front fascia completely reworked, but every single panel is different, more stylish. The roofline flows at the back, giving the Camry a sportier look. The back wheel arches bulge outward, providing girth and gravitas.
Inside, the aesthetic has also been upgraded, with more pleasing-to-the-touch materials and interesting textures like the faux leather dash elements, or wood-like details. Whatever your opinion is on the new car’s styling, you can’t call it dull.
Under the hood
If you take a look at the spec list for the 2018 Camry, you might not think anything has changed under the hood of the car—there’s still a 2.5-litre four-cylinder and a 3.5-litre V6 on offer. However, both these power plants are new. There’s the four-cylinder that now produces 203 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque, and for those requiring more in the acceleration department, the V6, producing 301 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. Yes, you read this right: there is now a Camry with over 300 horsepower. The only transmission offered is an eight-speed automatic, which further improved fuel economy.
The 2018 Camry got a tech boost in several areas as well. Setting it apart from the competition is its standard seven-inch infotainment system, LED headlights, Bluetooth connectivity, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning and more. Some of these were optional on all but the most expensive 2017 variants of the sedan and other weren’t offered at all!
Now with Safety Sense tech as standard, the new-gen Camry adds Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist and Automatic High Beams to its list of safety tricks. There has also been an upgrade to the Toyota Entune 3.0 interface delivering on-board Wifi, Dynamic Nav and more goodies.
The midsize car segment is one of the most competitive in the automotive industry and the 2018 Camry is testament to what it takes to stay on top of the change. If you want to know just how much the Camry changed in a single year, the best way is to come down here and test-drive one.