By Special Contributor Anthony Alaniz
Look out in your driveway.
Did you see it?
The best-selling car in the country? It’s very possible you have one, two, maybe even three Toyota Camrys lounging out there in front of your house.
Since 1983, 10.2 million Camrys have been sold. It is the best-selling car in America for a reason—though the reason is still unbeknownst to us.
The Camry exudes beige and boring like a badge. So, it should come as no surprise that the Camry has received an update for 2015 for the ever increasing competitive mid-sized car market.
At the 2014 New York auto show reveal, Bill Fay, Toyota Division Group Vice President and General Manager, said the Camry is the latest in an apparently long line of recent reveals that embraces the concept of “heart-racing excitement.”
That excitement looks like it is still pretty relaxed at the wheel in the new, 2015 Camry.
The exterior styling is of questionable character, but will offer LED low and high-beams for the first time, as well as LED DRLs down below.
[Ed’s Note: All Camry’s look a little less-than-stellar when first debuted. We’ll see how it looks over the years of Camry ubiquity nationwide=]
While Toyota is trying to zing up the young vote by trekking where Scion valiantly failed, the Camry has gone from a sensible family sedan to something that should have been left on the designers’ draft boards (do they even use draft boards anymore?).
Drafting ‘Screens’ is probably more like it…
The gaping grille has been reworked to look even more ridiculous. The slanted headlights look menacing, but the rest of the car is a smorgasbord of lines, creases, and designers desperately hoping to be on the FR-S team. The whole design language of mumbo jumbo is lost at the rear of the car.
The taillight design is reminiscent of the Avalon, which is a car that exudes subdued luxury, but looks out of place on the Camry. The oval exhaust pipes are the last attempt of presenting a sporty vehicle, but look haphazardly done.
While the 2015 refresh has sportier styling, interior upgrades and performance upgrades like sportier suspension tuning and revisions to the electric power steering system to improve feel.
Toyota hopes to seize younger, more enthusiastic buyers by painting the Camry as a sporty offering, not unlike the Mazda 6 and Ford Fusion. Those cars are known for their engaging driving dynamics and feeling of up-level luxury and sportiness—as much as a family sedan can be.
But the 2015 Camry is still a Camry—a car perceived to be best suited for long, sedate drives to the supermarket.
The engines are carryover, cautiously propelling the family sedan with either a 2.5- or 3.5-liter engine, or a magical hybrid powertrain. Six-speed automatics are standard, along with a CVT for the hybrid.
Expect to see the new Camry on dealership lots this fall, and in your driveway shortly after that.
By Special Contributor Anthony Alaniz
About the Author:
Anthony Alaniz is a freelance writer and Michigan native living in Tecumseh. After three years at Car and Driver focusing on web production and video engagement management, he branched out to focus on establishing a writing career. Currently he writes for a number of outlets covering the automotive industry, business, technology and breaking news.
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Official Details from Toyota Below.
More Than Skin Deep: America’s Best-Selling Car Gets Even Better With a Sweeping Redesign for 2015
- Toyota Camry rebuilt from the ground up with almost 2,000 new parts
- New, sporty XSE and Hybrid SE grades amp up driving dynamics
- Most upscale interior in segment with soft-touch materials throughout
- Produced by over 7,000 American team members
April 16, 2014
NEW YORK (April 16, 2014) – So what do you do when you have the best-selling car in the industry for 12 straight years? You find ways to make it even better. That’s exactly what Toyota did with the introduction of the new 2015 Camry. After selling almost a million of the industry’s benchmark sedan since the current generation launched in 2011, Toyota stripped it down to its chassis and rebuilt it from the ground up, raising the bar yet again in the ultra-competitive mid-size sedan segment.
“Customers today love the durability, quality and value that the Camry represents, but they are looking for a little more style, comfort and performance, and this 2015 Camry has all of the above,” said Bob Carter, senior vice president of automotive operations of Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. “This is the new Camry, and it’s coming from the new Toyota.”
Toyota designers and engineers re-imagined nearly every exterior surface of the car. Only the roof remains unchanged. The new, upscale interior features premium, soft-touch materials throughout the spacious cabin. Advanced instrumentation with intuitive controls helps keep the driver’s eyes safely on the road ahead.
Underneath the striking new exterior, the chassis and body structure are bolstered with additional spot welds, enhancing rigidity for better ride quality. A retuned suspension takes the Camry’s handling to a whole new level of responsiveness.
Two new grades, the sporty and luxurious XSE and the eco-fun Hybrid SE, join the well-equipped entry LE and the premium XLE grade, giving customers more choice than ever before.
An Expressive and Athletic Exterior
The 2015 Camry’s exterior is more expressive and athletic with prominent character lines. The new car is slightly longer (1.8 inches or 45 mm) and features a widened track (0.4 inches or 10 mm) that communicates a dynamic stance and presence.
A pronounced body line starts from the Camry’s muscular front fender and spans across the doors and rear quarter panel, conveying a sense of motion. The completely revised, more aggressive front bumper cover features a wider more prominent trapezoidal grille shape, expressing a lower center of gravity.
The 2015 Camry will be available in 10 colors, including the new Celestial Silver Metallic and Ruby Flare Pearl.
The new sleek headlamps complement the aggressive front fascia, while the front turn signal indicators and LED DRL’s are integrated for an elegant appearance.
The 2015 Camry will offer exterior lighting with available LED low and high-beams and auto static leveling. The Camry’s rear tail lamps sweep into the tapered sheet metal at the rear of the car. A decorative garnish connects the tail lamps across the trunk lid and emphasizes its new sporty stance.
A Modern, Refined Interior
The interior of the new Camry is more refined than ever with premium materials, roomier feel and improved amenities. The center stack features a high-tech, upscale look that smoothly integrates with the console.
The center console tray has been redesigned to increase capacity while offering a convenient power source in the storage box. The new enclosed bin in front of the shifter now offers 12v, USB and a segment-first, available wireless charging system for select smart phones.
The 2015 Camry’s cockpit offers intuitive top-flight in-car electronics and displays that help reduce driver stress and distraction. The instrument panel features a new 4.2-inch TFT screen nestled between the three-dimensional Optitron gauges on the SE, XLE and XSE models. The screen’s color animation displays a wide range of vehicle functions and coordinates with the multimedia system to display audio, navigation, warnings and communications.
Detailed stitching and trim elements finished in satin chrome convey a sophisticated appearance. Varying by model, seat cover textures range from premium cloth all of the way to genuine leather and Ultrasuede with durable, high contrast French-stitching.
Toyota engineers focused on reducing unwanted wind and road noise to offer an even quieter cabin. Window and door seals were improved to keep noise outside. The carpet features 30 percent more insulating material. Even the Camry’s side mirrors were redesigned to better control air flow reducing turbulence and noise.
Additional spot welds were added to the door opening flanges to increase rigidity and enable spirited handling. A combination of Macpherson struts up front, a multi-link arrangement at the rear and a stiffer body structure allows for unique suspension tuning across trim levels.
The electric power steering on all Camry models is tuned for better on-center feel, better straight line stability and more direct-feeling steering inputs. In addition to improvements in steering feel, the new Camry’s hydraulic system has been revised with a two-stage brake booster to improve brake feel.
The Camry will continue to be available with 2.5-liter four-cylinder or 3.5-liter V6 gas engines paired with 6-speed automatic transmissions, or a 2.5-liter Atkinson Cycle engine with Hybrid Synergy drive matched to an E-CVT.
In 2011, Toyota launched the sporty Camry SE grade, resulting in attracting buyers that were 12 years younger than the rest of the segment average. The SE model now accounts for 45 percent of the Camry sales mix, proving that drivers want sportier models.
Building on this success, the Camry XSE grade gives customers more of what they want with enthusiastic driving dynamics and luxurious amenities. The Camry SE and XSE are distinguished by a unique mesh grille and fascia treatment. The Camry XSE adds to its edgier look with model-specific 18-inch wheels, unique shock absorbers, firmer bushings, higher rate coil springs, and unique EPS tuning, making it the sportiest Camry yet.
Also for 2015, a Camry Hybrid SE has been added to the lineup with unique dynamic suspension tuning that delivers an eco-fun driving experience. Up front, a stabilizer bar, absorber valve structure, and control arm bushing components were enhanced to offer improved ride quality while sharpening steering feel. The Hybrid SE’s vehicle stability control system has been retuned for smoother intervention and a more natural driving feel.
All Toyota vehicles come standard with the STAR Safety System. In addition, Camry will offer safety-focused driver aids including Lane Departure Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System with Auto High Beams, and Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
Every Camry sold in North America is the product of over 7,000 skilled American team members. From design and engineering in Michigan, to assembly in Kentucky, a unique American touch goes into each Camry that rolls off of the line. The new 2015 Camry will arrive in dealerships this fall.
What do you think?