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In the twilight years of its fourth decade, and with a fully restyled model turning heads and capturing hearts, it could be argued that the enduringly popular Toyota Camry is more popular than ever. While the Camry badging has found itself attached a number of different body styles across its various generations, it speaks to Toyota’s willingness to continually evolve the Camry to meet the changing demands of contemporary drivers.
Those who have placed themselves in the market for a used Toyota Camry have empowered themselves to proceed with utmost confidence. Over 90% of Camry’s sold within the last decade are still on the road today, but this should hardly be a surprise. With an estimated 80% of their vehicles still on the road today, Toyota serves up assurance of longevity and dependability in all of their offerings. Confidently rating among cars that are proven to
That said, the majority of pre-owned car buyers tend to focus on the last 5-6 model years; whether looking to maximize the return on their investment or trying to purchase a vehicle within the guidelines with a certified pre-owned program. With this in mind, the Camry doesn’t disappoint.
Model years falling between 2011 and 2016 carry Toyota’s XV50 identifier, signifying the body’s slow migration away from the soft curvature of its oversized predecessor. Lighter, sleeker and more angular, these Camry’s provided a strong indication of Toyota’s intention to align certain design notes with its upscale Lexus cousins, while retaining a sportier, more aggressive edge. The result was a distinctive era of Camry well-deserving of further exploration.
Hardly a beginning, the Camry enters every era with a longstanding reputation as on of the most popular midsize sedans. But with a reputation based around reliability, there is an inherent risk of being overlooked for something flashier. But 2011 marked the beginning of the Camry’s evolution, towards ‘something more’.
Made available in four trim levels (base, LE, SE, and XLE) the front-wheel-drive Camry came equipped with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. Capable of up to 179 horsepower, the Camry was rated at 32 mpg (combined) with the automatic transmission and 26 mpg (combined) with the manual. There was also the option of a 3.5-liter V6 paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, capable of 268 hp and 248 lb-ft of torque. Offering 23 mpg (combined) and a swift 6.5-second sprint to 60 mph, the five-seating sedan rates among the fastest mid-priced sedans. But the Camry is more than just functionality with a dash of sport.
Bluetooth-enabled (even at the base trim) the trim levels offered a number of features worth exploring, with the top-of-the-line XLE offering a variety of luxury-inspired amenities.
With a firm foundation beneath it, the 2012 Camry enjoyed a full redesign. Offering more than just an improved aesthetic, its new personality was enhanced by improvements in comfort, construction, and safety.
The cabin displayed stronger material and stylistic choices, as well as seating that had been redesigned around comfort. Across the same trim levels (as offered in the previous model year) were improvements in infotainment, incorporating touchscreen interface, navigation, voice commands and web integration.
And for those with an eye to sustainability, the option of a hybrid variant made the Camry more appealing than ever.
Considering that the Camry had never felt livelier and more energetic, it is of no surprise that Toyota turned their attention to safety. In government testing, the Camry earned a Five-Star rating for overall crash protection and offered better than average braking capabilities. But the inclusion of blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert would herald a growing number of safety and driver-assist features that would be added in the coming years, with Toyota leading the charge. And of course, infotainment amenities would evolve to include a larger touchscreen (with rearview camera added mid-year) and enhanced smartphone compatibility. After all, times were a-changing’…
Continuing on with many of the good choices that had re-sparked so many drivers’ interest in the Camry, Toyota made few changes to the 2014 model.
Notable, however, was the introduction of the SE Sport trim. Offering such features as a sunroof and bigger wheels, it lent the Camry a more aggressive stance and aesthetic. More than just another one-note family-friendly sedan, it was clear that the Camry’s continual evolution would proceed unhindered.
For 2015, the Camry would receive yet another significant overhaul, surprising an industry which wouldn’t have expected any major changes for another 2-3 years. Offering a more sculpted profile and new, premium fascia, the Camry found itself taking on a number of luxury-inspired attributes.
This sense of maturity was echoed on the interior, which would employ more high-end trim materials, tasteful accents and upgraded controls to enhance the look and feel of the cabin.
For the 2016 model year, the Camry would go largely unchanged. Considering the strength of the previous model year updates, there were few criticisms. And in light of the changes to follow in 2017, the rest year seems perfectly well-earned.
While the 2017 model year introduced the eighth-generation Camry in the provocative XV70 body style, there is no denying the generation of vehicles that helped to pave the way for it. This is good news for those interested in buying a later model pre-owned Toyota Camry, as they are bound to find a great fit within the 2011-2016 models.
Furthermore, with due diligence and proper care, they can rest assured that they will receive a great return on their investment. Toyota longevity speaks for itself, meaning that there will be plenty of opportunities to ‘Go Places’ behind the wheel of a Camry.