Toyota has launched the updated 2015 Camry range in Australia, with significantly overhauled styling and dramatic price reductions across the board.
The price of entry has plummeted to just $26,490, pushing the midsized Camry deep into small-car territory.
It’s also the last Camry destined to be built at the company’s Altona assembly plant, and will be produced right up until the plant’s planned shutdown at the end of 2017.
Designed to appeal to a younger audience than before (though Toyota admits that its definition of young is ‘under 50'), the new Camry sports a fresh design that’s worlds apart from the outgoing model
Essentially a thorough facelift of the existing seventh-generation Camry, the 2015 Camy range features all-new sheet metal on every panel bar the roof.
The front windscreen, rear windscreen and front door glass also carries over, but tweaks to the C-pillar sees the rear doors receive new glass as well as doorskins.
The model line-up remains largely intact for the petrol models, with a four-model strategy stretching from the base-model Altise to the high-grade Atara SL.
The Hybrid range, meanwhile, takes up the Altise/Atara nomenclature, with three models now offered rather than the previous two including a new Camry Hybrid Altise priced from $30,490
There have been no major changes to powertrain technology for either the 2.5 litre petrol or the Camry Hybrid.
Petrol variants still produce 133kW of power (135kW in the dual-exhaust Atara variants) and 231Nm (235Nm Atara) of torque, while the Hybrid’s system output remains at 151kW and 270Nm
A six-speed automatic is standard on petrol models, while the Hybrid continues to utilise a CVT auto.
The biggests mechanical changes come with the sporty Atara SX model, which for the first time has received special attention from Toyota’s local technical team and gains a unique suspension calibration, 18-inch alloy wheels and a sharper steering ratio.
The spring and damper settings are entirely unique to Australia and help give the Atara SX a more buttoned-down feel in corners.
Swaybar bushes and links are stiffer too, to promote better body control.
Meanwhile, the power steering rack is based on a modified US-spec system and features a slightly faster 15.9:1 ratio, as compared to the 16.9:1 ratio used by other models in the Camry range.
Fuel economy is unchanged, with the Hybrid consuming 5.2 l/100km on the combined cycle and the 2.5 litre petrol drinking 7.8 l/100km.
While the interior doesn’t get the same kind of wholesale changes that have been applied to the exterior, there are new trim materials, new upholstery and a reshaped steering wheel to spruce it up.
The feature list has been bulked up too.
The Toyota Link internet-enabled app system is now available on all Atara models and will also feature the Pandora music-streaming app from next month, allowing drivers to play music from the service over their phone’s internet connection.
All models get a touchscreen audio headunit, with the base Altise making use of a 6.1-inch screen and Atara models receiving a 7-inch unit.
All come equipped with Bluetooth phone/audio integration, a USB audio input and AM/FM/CD player.
The Atara S and SX also get voice recognition controls, while the Atara SL boasts a ten-speaker JBL premium audio system, as well as sat-nav.
Safety equipment also gets a boost in the Atara SL in the form of automatic emergency braking, a pre-collision warning system, active cruise control, lane departure warning, rear cross traffic alert and blind spot monitoring.
That’s in addition to the standard reversing camera, seven airbags, ABS, EBD, brake assist, traction control and stability control found in all other Camrys.
PRICING (Excludes on-road costs)
The 2015 Camry range is available now, with aggressive price cuts across the board.
To launch the model, Toyota is also offering sharp national drive-away pricing, at a $2500 premium over the retail prices listed below.
- Camry Altise - $26,490
- Camry Atara S - $ 29,490
- Camry Atara SX - $31,990
- Camry Atara SL - $37,440
- Camry Hybrid Altise - $30,490
- Camry Hybrid Atara S - $ 32,390
- Camry Hybrid Atara SL - $40,440