Used 1997 Toyota Camry Review
The Camry is the new standard for midsized sedans. It has room inside for five adults, attractive yet conservative styling, exceptional pep from an available 24-valve 3.0-liter V6, and a price that doesn't break the bank so long as options are kept to a minimum.
Toyota is going after the number-one sales spot with vigor. The Camry is larger and more powerful than last year, but costs less money. Coupe and wagon models have been dropped from the lineup, and consumers can opt for the V6 engine on base CE models for the first time. Antilock brakes are standard on all but the most basic Camrys, and an integrated child-safety seat is optional across the board. Buyers of V6 models can order traction control for inclement weather.
The new Camry can be equipped for rugged family life, or plush luxury touring. Options on higher-grade LE and XLE models include a premium sound system, leather interior trim, and a power moonroof. With the V6 engine, the Camry accelerates strongly. Braking is swift and sure with the antilock system, and Camry hangs on well in corners despite rather meek all-season radials.
Inside, a two-inch increase in wheelbase has allowed designers to maximize space, creating a larger Camry than ever. Controls and gauges are laid-out nicely in a more flowing dashboard than the previous car boasted. Camry CE sticks with a fixed-mast stereo antenna, but LE and XLE get an in-glass antenna, which reduces wind noise. Storage areas have been increased also, and a tissue holder is built into the center console. Front cupholders accommodate 20-ounce bottles of your favorite beverage.
Is the Camry the perfect family conveyance? Not out of the box, but it's close. We'd opt for a lightly-loaded CE with the V6 engine, add some aftermarket aloy wheels, and do a bit of suspension and tire work to create the ultimate sleeper of staid bread-and-butter sedans.
edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.