This car is fine in many respects, but suffers from 1-2 sec. hesitation when applying power while the car is already in motion (from very low speeds to moderate speeds of about 35 mph). Also does not downshift (to allow more engine RPMs and therefore more power) on moderate hills when the gas pedal is pressed. The combination of the weak engine (low torque) at low engine speeds and the transmission hesitation is so bad that the car is, in my opinion, a safety hazard.
OK, first of all I was really reluctant to buy after I read some of the posts here. However, I rented a Camry before I bought one to see if I could experience what people here experienced. In the rental I did experience the hesitation but nothing I couldn't live with. Overall I was impressed. I bought a new Camry after I rented one. I have experienced none of the bad experiences posted here. The car is performing well. The only slight problem is a vibration at 70mph, feels like an out of balance tire. I drove the car 600 miles in the last week and gas mileage averaged 26 mpg. strictly hwy was 31 mpg. So that is my experience.
An article came out 2 weeks ago about Toyota having an upgrade on the sluggish shifting & hesitation for the Camry 2.4 5A. I took my car back to the dealer & they upgraded the engine software and calibrated the tranny. My car does not hesitate anymore & the auto shifting is smooth. Now I can say that this is an exciting car to drive. Good job Toyota, for correcting what should not have been in the first place. For owners who are having the same problem with the hesitation & shifting, I suggest that you bring it back to your dealer for the fix. You will feel the difference.
After driving this car for a month it is very obvious to me that there is a design flaw in the transmission. The acceleration is acceptable if a bit jerky but if you need to drive between 30 - 60 MPH you will not like this car. The transmission constantly shifts back and forth between gears. When this first started happening I though I may have had the emergency brake enabled or big gusts of wind kept hitting the car. This problem makes this car absolutely no fun to drive and makes me wish I had purchased something else.
Toyota has just given American car manufacturers a leg up by putting out this inferior car. This car has a serious/dangerous hesitation problem. Unpredictable acceleration including hesitation when pressing on the gas while moving for up to 3 seconds. When making a left turn, feeding onto a highway or giving it gas while moving the car hesitates for up to 3 seconds before moving! It goes nowhere! When it finally gets moving the acceleration is sluggish. Have almost been reaer ended twice because of this defect. This is a lawsuit waiting to happen. SHAME ON TOYOTA!