2012 Toyota Camry: Thoughts After 650 Miles
July 23, 2012
Over the weekend I did another road trip with our Camry. It was pretty much the same route I did back in April when I compared the Camry to the Explorer, though this time round-trip. As I expected, the Camry was an appealing companion. A few thoughts on why follow.
Composed and quiet ride. The Camry's not the quietest sedan out there, but it's still pretty good. My wife and I could talk easily. Our kids slept in the backseat. Oh, and at one point, I had to perform some unexpected maneuvering due to a tire blowout from a semi-truck ahead of us. The Camry's not the sportiest out there, but the SE is composed enough, and certainly preferable (in this situation) to some of the other family haulers in our fleet, such as the Explorer.
Comfortable front seats. We've covered these before in various blog posts, but I'll still call it out. I could drive the Camry all day and still be comfortable.
Plenty of storage space. The cupholders are nicely sized, as are the door bins and center console bin. We never had a problem trying to find a place to put something.
Decent power and responsive transmission. Sure, it's just a four-cylinder, but I wasn't ever left wanting for power. Having the responsive transmission certainly helps, as it did driving over the I5's 4,000-foot Tejon Pass. (I haven't calculated fuel economy for the trip, but will do that later this week.)
The only things that I found to be negative were the dim-witted touchscreen interface and trunk space. Trunk space is certainly adequate, but because of the bracing at the front of the trunk (behind the rear seats) and the gooseneck trunklid hinges, it's not as optimized as I'd prefer.
Looking this over, it reaffirms to me what I summed up back in April. The Camry doesn't really excel in any particular area, but it doesn't drop below a B anywhere, either. And for me, that's pretty impressive.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 11,372 miles