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Toyota Camry review 2020

The Camry won’t set your heart racing but is hard to fault.

£25,114
Average Price
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4
Out of 5

Pros

  • Cheap to run
  • Good levels of practicality for the class
  • Comfortable drive

Cons

  • Lacklustre infotainment
  • Only one engine, trim level and bodystyle on offer
  • Expensive
  • MPG

    0 - 0

  • CO2

    98 - 101 g/km

Model review

The Toyota Camry is a mid-sized saloon car which has been sold by the Japanese manufacturer since 1982. There have been many generations of the model over the years, not all of which have been sold in the UK.

In fact, the latest version marks the return of the Camry to Britain, with the previous iteration not being sold on these shores. Along with the new Camry, which arrived in 2019, it’s worth noting that the 12th generation, current Corolla hatch (as well as its estate and saloon counterparts) also marked a return for that nameplate to the UK in 2019.

Current model

As mentioned before, the Camry has now returned to the UK in its latest form. Available exclusively as a hybrid and in saloon guise, the model aims to rejuvenate Toyota’s placing in the segment while offering low running costs and good levels of space throughout.

For now, let’s focus on how it drives – and it’s better than you’d expect for a mainstream, comfort-focused saloon car. While it’s not particularly exciting or entertaining on a twisty road, there’s lots of grip and the steering is actually rather precise. This all adds up to a confidence-inspiring driving experience. It’s no sports car, on the other hand, and is much adept at comfortable cruising rather than being thrashed.

When it comes to the Camry’s interior, everything feels well-built and the materials used throughout the cabin are of good quality. It’s no Rolls-Royce, but it’s more than luxurious enough for the class and price point.

One feature of the interior that’s not particularly up to scratch for the kind of car is the infotainment system, which doesn’t feel very modern compared to rivals at all. The screen’s graphics are fairly poor and isn’t particularly responsive. 

Value for money

New Camry models are priced from £31,295, which is a tad above rivals such as the £24,395 Mazda6 and £24,450. However, with its hybrid powertrain, the Camry does in some ways justify its hefty price tag.

Used Camry examples can be had for as little as circa £1,000 – that isn’t the latest generation, however. Used prices for the current iteration rise to around £22,000, which isn’t too bad for a car that won’t be more than two years old.

Looks and image

In the looks department, the Camry isn’t anything to write home about, but it’s not ugly either. Sure, it features a striking, rather aggressive facia which gives it a bit of a sporty edge. But apart from that, it doesn’t do a lot to stand out from the crowd. That being said, to most buyers this probably won’t be a negative point – to the majority it’ll look just fine.

Space and practicality

The Camry fairs rather well in this area for a saloon car. The cabin is spacious, with good levels of headroom and legroom throughout, even in the rear. It’s not perhaps the best in its class, with the likes of the Skoda Superb feeling a tad airier, but we don’t have any major complaints.

In terms of the boot, the model, again, fairs well – despite there being no über practical Camry estate with this new iteration. With 542 litres on offer, there’s plenty of space to make use of.

  

Engines

There is currently just one powertrain offered with the Camry – a 2.5-litre petrol hybrid developing 215bhp. While it’s not an incredibly rapid setup, it does provide for swift acceleration, thanks in part to the electric motor.

Despite the model’s decent amount of power, don’t be deceived into thinking it’s a performance machine. The Camry much prefers a relaxed drive and doesn’t feel particularly comfortable being ringed out.

Running costs

Due to its hybrid powertrain, the Camry should be rather cheap to run. The model claims to return up to 53.3mpg and emit 98g/km of CO2, which is very impressive and should get company car buyers on board.

The car can also run on battery power alone, which is possible mostly in stop and start traffic for a mile or two. This allows the Camry to excel within the urban environments when it comes to fuel usage.

Things to look out for

Toyota as brand, as well as the Camry nameplate, has a great reputation for reliability and durability. With this in mind and despite the current model being fairly young, we have confidence the model should please the majority of buyers and prove a reliable servant. It’s still worth watching out for any potential issues, however, as you should with any car.

  

Rivals

While the saloon segment isn’t perhaps as thriving as it once was, the Camry isn’t without its rivals. Cars such as the Ford Mondeo, Mazda 6 and Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid are all keen to take on the Toyota. Fortunately, the Camry proves a worthy competitor and class-leader contender thanks to its economical powertrain (providing for low running costs), comfortable drive and spacious interior, among other aspects.

  

Depreciation

The Camry should depreciate at the same rate as most mainstream saloon cars – although the hybrid powertrain probably will help it. At the end of the day, as the model becomes more common and older, it will depreciate – but not at an unusual rate. That being said, it’s still a good buy and won’t break the bank when it comes to selling it on as long as the car is kept in good condition.

Which Camry to Pick

Cheapest to Buy When New

2.5 VVT-i Hybrid Design 4dr CVT

Most MPG

2.5 VVT-i Hybrid Design 4dr CVT

Fastest Model (0-60)

2.5 VVT-i Hybrid Design 4dr CVT

Trims Explained

Currently, there is just one trim level offered with the Camry – Excel.

'Excel'

This is the one and only trim level available with the Camry and comes equipped with kit such as 18-inch alloy wheels, a seven-inch touchscreen, full leather heated front seats, as well as lane change assist and adaptive cruise control.

Priced from £31,295

Summary

  1. The Toyota Camry is a saloon which originated back in 1982
  2. It has returned to the UK for its new generation
  3. New Camry models can be had for £31,295
  4. Used examples can be had for as little as circa £1,000 – £22,000 for the new iteration
  5. It’s very practical and spacious for a saloon
  6. The model isn’t amazing to look at, but looks relatively sporty and aggressive
  7. Only one engine is offered – a 2.5-litre petrol hybrid with 215bhp
  8. The powertrain offers swift acceleration and low running costs
  9. The Camry feels more suited to a relaxed, rather than a spirited, drive
  10. There’s only one trim level offered, called Excel

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