The all-new 2018 Toyota Camry will hit the road with class-leading fuel economy, a long list of safety features and prices starting at $23,495 when it goes on sale in July in the United States.
The 2018 Camry proved quiet and comfortable in a day driving through the countryside.
Toyota achieved its fuel economy without resorting to a couple of new technologies competitors like the Chevrolet Malibu and Ford Fusion use: a small-displacement turbocharged engine and auto-stop to turn the engine on and off when idling.
The Camry’s 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine is all new. It will account for about 85 percent of sales.
An optional V6 will power about 10 percent of Camrys, with a hybrid accounting for the remaining 5 percent.
Pure gasoline models get a new eight-speed automatic transmission. The hybrid has a continuously variable automatic transmission.
The 2018 Camry uses the same architecture as the Toyota Prius and C-HR SUV. The new Camry is 1.3 inches longer and 0.7 inches wider than the 2017. Its wheelbase grew by 1.9 inches. The well-equipped SE, XLE and XSE models are heavier than last year.
The four-cylinder engine has 25 more horsepower than its predecessor. It delivers plenty of power for everyday driving, but revs loudly under acceleration and climbing steep hills. The suspension absorbs bumps well and is composed in curves.
The V6 is an anachronism in mid-sized sedans. When the new Honda Accord debuts with a line-up of all turbocharged four-cylinder engines this fall, the Camry and Nissan Altima will be the only mainstream mid-sized sedans offering V6s.
That’s likely to give the Camry V6 an edge in performance versus its key competitors. That’s a minor selling point for mid-sized family sedans, but it complements the new car’s long, low hood, scooped sides, bold black grille and rakish looks.
The eight-speed transmission is smooth and quick, delivering nearly imperceptible shifts, with no hunting among gears while driving through towns, countryside and hills.
Available safety features include pedestrian detection, lane departure alert and assist, automatic high beams, adaptive cruise control, blind spot and cross traffic alerts, low speed automatic braking, hill start assist.
DETROIT FREE PRESS/TNS