2017 Toyota Camry 4-Door Sedan (Review)
by Philippa Lane
The Toyota Camry is a five-passenger midsize sedan that has undergone a complete redesign a couple of years ago with new exterior styling, noise insulation, better driving dynamics and interior details, improved handling, more equipment, better materials, and a contemporary appearance making it a top competitor in its class. The Camry was the best-selling midsize car in America last year and it is easy to see why.
Even though the changes seem subtle upon first glance, every element of the new Camry has been restyled, except for the roof. One noticeable change is the front grille. It is more prominent, larger, and the exterior has a more refined appearance with stylish LED front running lamps. Also, the door panels are enclosed in a padded leather-like material, the tail lights have an elongated look to them that is similar to some luxury sedans, and side mirrors have been redesigned to improve airflow. The dashboard and center console now have an upscale appearance with larger buttons and knobs with every trim level coming fitted with an attractive Entune touch screen.
There were some major changes implemented a couple of years ago to improve the Camry’s responsiveness by introducing a retuned brake-booster system and better electric power steering, which improves handling and in 2014, Toyota introduced a new Special Edition trim that is based on the sporty Camry SE. The new 4-cylinder Special Edition comes equipped with a sport tuned suspension, sunroof, stylish 18-inch wheels, keyless entry/ignition, vibrant blue interior trim accents, smoked taillights, and a sportier gauge cluster.
The 2017 Camry comes in four main trims: L, SE, XLE, and XSE with the newest trim to the group being the sporty Special Edition. Every Camry comes standard with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine that produces 178 of horsepower, 170 lb-ft. of torque, front-wheel drive, and a 6-speed automatic transmission, while the XSE and XLE trims can be fitted with a more powerful 3.5-liter, V6 engine that produces 268 of horsepower, 248 lb-ft of torque, front-wheel drive, and a 6-speed automatic transmission.
The base LE trim comes standard with automatic headlights, air-conditioning, cloth upholstery, heated mirrors, keyless entry, a rearview camera, a 6.1-inch Entune touch screen electronics interface, voice recognition, 16-inch steel wheels, cruise control, voice controls, a 60/40-split folding rear seats, an 8-way power driver seat with two-way power lumbar adjustment, Siri Eyes Free, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB/iPod interface, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, and a 6-speaker audio system with a CD player.
The SE adds sport fabric and simulated leather upholstery, advanced gauges, a sport-tuned suspension, 17-inch alloy wheels, unique exterior styling and interior trim elements, and a leather-trimmed steering wheel. An Entune Plus Package is available for the LE and SE trims and includes Satellite radio, HD radio, and an upgraded 7 inch touch screen display. A sunroof is optional.
The XSE adds dual-zone automatic climate control, 18-inch alloy wheels, leather and simulated suede upholstery, sport tuned suspension, LED running lights, heated front seats, satellite radio and HD radio, and a 4-way power passenger seat. A Convenience package for the SE and XSE models and adds keyless ignition/entry and an auto-dimming rear view mirror.
The XLE is very similar to the XSE trim, except that it has full leather upholstery, 17-inch alloy wheels and a more comfortable suspension. Also, the XLE trim has a wireless charging area for smart phones and a smart key push button start.
Safety features for all trims include- front and rear side airbags, front knee airbags, antilock disc brakes, a Pre-Collision System with Auto High Beams, stability and traction control, and a rearview camera. A Blind Spot Monitor and Warning System with Rear Cross Traffic Alert are available on the XLE and XSE trims. Adaptive Cruise Control is optional.
The Advanced Technology package adds a pre-collision system that uses the adaptive cruise control sensors and a lane-departure warning system. Optional only on the XLE trim is Safety Connect, which adds automatic collision notification, a stolen-vehicle locator, and an emergency assist button.
From testing, I have found that the 2017 Toyota Camry is a fun to drive, engaging sedan with a powerful 3.5-liter V6 engine that provides adequate acceleration and smooth on the road performance. The automatic ECT-I transmission is incredibly responsive and the Eco mode helps to increase fuel efficiency. The XLE trim goes from 0 to 60 mph in less than 6.5 seconds and yields an estimated 21 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway. The Camry actually looks and performs a lot like a Lexus ES350.
The 2017 Toyota Camry has a very comfortable and spacious interior and provides enough head and leg room in the front and rear cabin for taller passengers. The seats are supportive and plush with an ergonomic feel. Audio and climate controls on the center stack are big and are easy to reach, while the larger 7-inch Entune touchscreen interface with audio and navigation is intuitive and user friendly. Trunk space is ample measuring approximately 15.4 cubic feet with plenty of room to haul a variety of mid to large sized items with ease.
On the road, the Camry is a strong performer with responsive handling and has a composed, planted demeanor on busy highways, and when making sharp turns and travelling on curvy roads.
If you have been looking for a modern family sedan with comfortable interior, strong on the road performance, advanced technology, sleek exterior styling, and many features that are usually only available in more expensive luxury vehicles, then I highly recommend taking a look at the 2017 Toyota Camry.
The Camry has a starting MSRP of $23,070 and in my opinion; it is well worth the price.
To find out more about the 2017 Toyota Camry, please visit- http://www.toyota.com/camry/