CHANGES FOR 2013:

– Backup camera standard on base model.
– New Value Package for base model.
– XLE, XLE V6 and Hybrid XLE get blind spot monitor and anti-theft system as standard.
– Hybrid LE features standard display audio.

The seventh-generation Camry, a mid-size staple, has been North America’s best selling family car for more than a dozen years. It’s comfortable, roomy, quiet and fuel efficient, and while hardly sporting, the Camry is a solid handler. All 2013 Camrys get standard backup camera and a new Value Package for the base LE, which raises it above stripper status for a reasonable sum. The SE model with go-fast body bits, sport-tuned suspension, and more aggressive transmission mapping brings a dash of spice to this conservative yet capable offering.

Toyota’s Synergy Drive incorporates a 2.5L four-cylinder engine and two electric motors for a total output of 200 hp. The sedan can drive up to 2.5 km (under 40 km/h) in fully electric mode, and under normal driving it proves to be swift and smooth, although arguably not as seamless as the Ford Fusion Hybrid. The forward-positioned battery pack gives this hybrid a large 440 L trunk, and new this year the XLE gets standard blind-spot monitoring and anti-theft system.

The Camry is available with a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine in the LE, SE and XLE models, and a 3.5-litre V6 in the SE V6 and XLE V6. Both engines use a six-speed automatic transmission. The Camry Hybrid uses a 2.5-litre four-cylinder with Hybrid Synergy Drive system and continuously variable transmission (CVT), and comes in LE and XLE trim lines. It is a full hybrid, capable of running on its battery alone.

Features on the LE include 16-inch steel wheels, air conditioning, CD/MP3 display stereo with auxiliary input and USB port, Bluetooth connectivity, XM satellite radio, backup camera, cloth seats, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, keyless entry, driver’s auto up/down window, trip odometer, exterior temperature gauge, dual vanity mirrors, tilt and telescopic steering wheel with audio controls, floor mats, cruise control, digital clock, illuminated entry, front and rear splash guards, heated mirrors, variable intermittent wipers, LED taillights, driver and passenger knee airbags, and chrome grille.

The SE adds 18-inch alloy wheels, navigation system, sport fabric upholstery, eight-way power driver’s seat, auto-dimming rearview mirror with compass, three-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel, aluminum scuff plates, garage door opener, skirt package, sport-style grille, rear spoiler, chrome tailpipes and fog lamps.

The XLE builds on the LE and adds 17-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, navigation system, eight-way driver and four-way passenger power-adjustable heated leather seats, dual illuminated vanity mirrors, leather-wrapped steering wheel, simulated woodgrain trim, pushbutton start, rear reading lamps, glass breakage sensor, power sunroof, blind-spot monitor system, and anti-theft system.

The SE V6 builds on the SE and adds dual illuminated vanity mirrors, pushbutton start, and power sunroof.

The XLE V6 builds on the XLE and adds premium stereo.

Features on the Hybrid LE include 16-inch steel wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, display CD/MP3 audio with auxiliary input and USB port, cloth seats, 60/40 split-folding rear seatbacks, keyless entry, driver’s auto up/down window, trip odometer, exterior temperature gauge, dual vanity mirrors, tilt and telescopic steering wheel with audio controls, pushbutton start, floor mats, cruise control, illuminated entry, chrome grille, front and rear splash guards, heated mirrors, variable intermittent wipers and vehicle approach notice.

The Hybrid XLE adds 17-inch alloy wheels, CD/MP3 display stereo, Bluetooth connectivity, eight-way power driver’s seat, auto-dimming rearview mirror with compass, leather-wrapped steering wheel, blind spot monitor system, anti-theft system, and fog lamps.

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