2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid XLE 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid CVT)
Iím going on 1000mi and so far fantastic car. First looked at the L4 but the hybrid got my attention.
I was never too interested in hybrids, either too small or not enough mileage difference between the regular gas versions, but that's all changed on the Camry. It has great power and incredible gas mileage for a mid size sedan. Other than the spaceship sound (kind of cool) when you brake (regenerative power transfer) you can hardly tell itís a hybrid. Wow! The looks have been sharpened and the interior is very comfortable for me. Traded my reliable 2005 Camry LE and am very pleased with the new Camry and first hybrid for me. I'm getting low to mid 40mph consistently with about 80% rural highway and 20% 25-35mph rural roads near home and work.
Smooth Hybrid system, power, Brake downshift feature, visibility, quietness, low effort steering, touch screen & info on dash, comfortable seating, Bluetooth phone compatibility, USB flash interface for my entire music collection on one flash drive and touch screen control. I wasn't sure I'd like the smart key system, but really love it. No more messing with my keys to get in the car. It takes a little getting used to though. I like the classic looks, not flash in the pan styling, good clean lines and easy wheels to clean. I selected the cypress pearl with the ivory interior. Wanted a less common color and really like it. The black dash & trim with the ivory seating is a classy look.
The interior is great but would feel better not having such a light material panel on the seating. It might get a bit soiled down the road, but we'll see. Nice and cool in summer though. I wish homelink was available without the high end XLE option package. I believe you can add just the mirror, but living with a garage remote in the car still. I would have liked turn signals indicators on the mirrors for extra safety. I wish the OEM all weather mats were better. I bought aftermarket black rubber (soft) mid grade Weathertechs and they are great. Still waiting for a WT black rubber trunk mat. None of the above are show stoppers, but would give the edge.
Forgot to mention the Steering wheel as a "favorite feature". The leather has a unique feel which I like a lot. It feels like a dry suede but is a smooth leather. It does not get hot or sticky and it's a black wheel. I love the inner radius thumb bumps which are very useful and comfortable for two hand driving. Perfect diameter IMHO, A+++ for the steering wheel. I like it much better than my past BMW 3 series wheel.
Update: Going on 19,000mi. Average MPG 41.3. Zero defects, first car ever that never went back to the dealer under warranty. Car does well in the winter and rain with the Bridgestone tires. Some don't like the Bridgestones but I'm fine with them. This cold winter I was seeing some 37-39mpg tanks, but in the Spring & fall with no heat or A/C running I'm seeing upper 40s now. Mileage seems to get better over time. The seats are staying pretty clean with the light color, but the passenger seat has one stain I need see if I can clean with soap & water first. The steering is nice and light, but does not return to center well. I like the light steering, but don't like the lack of return to center. Not a show stopper but something that could be improved. The passenger seat belt clunks against the door panel when not fastened. I fasten it even with no passenger to prevent the clunking against the side panel - poor design.
Overall still very happy with this car. My number one concern is always reliability and this TCH is the best I've seen. For the price it's a very comfortable car (I'm 6'-2") and works great for my 14 mile commute. Mileage tends to vary depending on my driving routes. If you mix highway and speed zones under 45 you can do very well with the TCH. It's not a fancy showy car, but that's good as far as I'm concerned. The ride is a bit stiffer than the older model Camry, and I think I like the older ride a bit better. Still love the steering wheel, Bluetooth, Keyless entry, and gas mileage.
Overall still think this is a great car and a super reliable vehicle. Toyota seems to have stepped up it's quality. If you are looking for a mid size car with decent power, comfort and fantastic gas mileage, take a look at the 2012-2014 Camry Hybrid. Not sure how the 2015 will stack up being new, but may be even better.
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