Tuesday, January 10, 2017
2017 NAIAS: 2018 Toyota Camry Promises More Excitement (w/ 11 Photos)
If there’s one constant criticism leveled against the Toyota Camry is that it’s the automotive equivalent of vanilla ice cream. Though it’s been stylistically been more aggressive in the past few generations, try as Toyota has, it’s still too dull behind the wheel. Well, that’s all about to change as the Camry migrates over to the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) which is poised to inject some driving fun into Toyota’s executive sedan.
Though what you see in these pictures will not reflect the Asian model Camry (our version tends to veer towards luxury while the Americans go sportier), what’s more or less sure is that they will share the same platforms. As such, thanks to the revised placement of drivetrain components, TNGA allows the Camry to have a lower center of gravity. They have also lowered the occupant hip points thereby reducing the overall height as well. TNGA has not only lowered the overall height, but the hood line while lengthening the Camry’s wheelbase by around 50 millimeters. Of course, all this lowering has affected the Camry’s silhouette. The “Keen Look” design philosophy is in full effect here and can be seen in the 2018 Camry’s aggressive styling and strong stance.
Inside, the driver and front passenger are treated to an unprecedented sense of outward visibility thanks to the more compact design of the instrument panel and lower belt line. Meanwhile, the dashboard itself is canted more towards the driver containing a mix of tones and materials that enhance ergonomics and a premium feel. Even the seats have been taken into account with more support and room than ever. There are three interlinked displays in the Camry that provide information with minimal distraction: there’s a 10-inch colored heads-up display, a 7-inch multi-information display within the instrument cluster, and an 8-inch audio/navigation display with controls for the climate control.
Matching the chassis increased handling and performance capability, Toyota has engineered TNGA-inspired all-new drivetrains beginning with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine (~205 horsepower, 250 Nm of torque). This new engine focuses on higher torque and power while lowering fuel consumption in total use range. It features a longer stroke and high compression, multi-hole direct fuel injectors, variable cooling system and the latest version of Toyota’s Variable Valve-Timing-intelligent Electric (VVT-iE). A 3.5-liter V6 with D-4S direct fuel injection and a gasoline-electric hybrid complete the line-up. Both normally-aspirated engines come with 8-speed automatics while the hybrid is mated to a CVT.
Among the many other features on the Camry include Toyota Safety Sense P or TSS-P. This multi-feature advanced active safety suite bundles cutting edge active safety technologies including Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD), Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA); and Automatic High Beams (AHB). Select models will also come with standard Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA).
While the US market 2018 Camry sales begin in the latter half of 2017, the Asian version has yet to be unveiled. Expect that to appear sometime in 2018 with Philippine sales to start soon thereafter.