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CarAdvice attended what was part of a synchronised global reveal of the 2012 Toyota Camry this morning, in Melbourne.

The Camry has been a phenomenal success for Toyota for as long as I can remember and has played a major role in the brand’s long held position as the world’s most successful carmaker.

First launched in 1987, Toyota has produced a staggering 1.6 million Camrys in Australia in the ensuing period. It has also been the country’s best-selling mid-size car for the past 17 years.

Camry has also been a massive export success for Australia with more than 850,000 units shipped to overseas markets including the Middle East, New Zealand and various Pacific countries.

Last year alone, almost 96,000 Camrys were produced in Australia, with 70,000 of those exported.

Building Camry in Australia also means job security for no less than 16,000 Australian workers and Toyota dealers. That’s a major boost to our economy.

It’s not just the exports either. Toyota spends more than $2.8 billion each year on goods and services from 1274 local suppliers.

But like all car manufacturers that play in the super competitive medium size car segment, Toyota is no doubt feeling the pressure from all sides.

Fast moving Korean brands Kia and Hyundai are gunning for world sales domination before the end of this decade and as a consequence, have dramatically lifted the bar with smart offerings such as the Optima and i45.

The Volkswagen Group is well and truly on the podium too and recently overtook Toyota as the world’s largest carmaker with a saturation launch strategy, which includes what seems like a new model release every other month across its multi-brand portfolio.

That activity alone is pressure enough, but then you’ve got the likes of Mazda, Subaru and even Peugeot wanting a larger slice of this hotly contested segment.

Mazda has its new SkyActiv technology (read lightweight) launching in Australia this year and French giant Peugeot has just released its award-winning 508 sedan and Touring wagon that present a tempting choice to those buyers wanting European luxury and styling at Japanese price points.

The 2012 Toyota Camry cannot come soon enough, but it needs to be a considerable step up from the previous generation if it is to compete alongside what are some very capable rivals.

That’s right, the 2012 Toyota Camry is in fact the seventh generation of the model, but will the average punter be able to spot the changes?

For starters, Toyota will retain the current entry-level Camry Altise nameplate, and add the Atara; a better equipped variant that will be unique to the Australian market.

Despite the fact that every exterior panel on the new Camry is new and there are fundamental changes to the front apron and the rear of the car, those who aren’t enthusiasts may find the changes too subtle to notice.

Will these changes be enough to tempt prospective buyers away from Mazda, Subaru and Peugeot models in the same segment? I’m not so sure. Toyota has gone for the subtle approach with the new Camry and that’s most likely the result of countless research studies and focus groups that would have suggested a strategy something along the lines of ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’.

Toyota simply must succeed with the 2012 Camry, so you can bet your house on the fact that this car will be better than the previous edition.

There’s an all-new 2.5-litre four-cylinder ‘Toyota Direct Ignition’ petrol engine that Toyota say is both more powerful and more fuel-efficient, but details of its output won’t be released to the press until nearer to the launch date in November. However, we suspect that the US version, which develops 133kW and 230Nm, will be similar, if not identical to what we can expect for Australian-built versions.

The Atara models will also get twin manifolds, which will see it gain more power and torque, but again, we don’t know the specific details. With more power will also come 10 per cent lower fuel consumption, and that will mean a considerable saving in both dollar terms and CO2 emissions.

The only transmission available for the new Camry will be a six-speed ECT-i automatic transmission with sequential manual shift mode. The higher-spec Atara models (there will be more than one grade) will also include shift paddles for more driver engagement.

This new generation Camry is said to be dynamically superior to the current-generation car, due in part to a more rigid body structure, revised suspension and superior aerodynamic aids including specially shaped side mirrors and stabilising fins incorporated into the taillight assembly.

The steering too is said to have improved feel and responsiveness despite its all-electric approach to power assistance.

The current model Camry has a relatively high level of refinement and good NVH management, but the 2012 edition has more sound-absorbing material that suppresses unwanted noises inside the cabin.

There’s a new dashboard design and better seats that are more aggressively bolstered than previous iterations, as well as more overall and useable space inside the car. For example, there’s 15mm more room between the hip points of passengers in both front and rear seats. Rear knee room has also been lengthened by 46mm for greater comfort.

Toyota Australia did not supply any interior images so we thought we’d show the US edition, as we expect the locally built car to be very similar.

As soon as CarAdvice is privy to further details about new Camry including pricing and more mechanical details, we’ll be sure to bring you that information.


  • springbok

    no wonder its not on sale in South Africa this thing is ugly

    • noMOAR!

      new carmy? still a yawn!

      • BOBSON1

        you can stick a bumper on it, but at the end of the day, you cant polish a turd…

  • Andrew_diablo

    2012 Camry looks tempting ..
    however, Kia Optima is equipped with more variety of functions and it’s styling is top-notched…

  • CB

    Front looks like Kia Cerato. Not a big fan of the tail lights. Where did they get the inspiration on the model name – Atara?

    • http://www.caradvice.com.au Anthony Crawford

      It’s Hebrew for ‘crown’ or Japanese for ‘new’. Camry also means ‘crown’

      • G

        so does Corolla.

    • Matty B

      So does this mean the Atara is replacing the Sportivo ?

      • Toyota Aurion Presara

        No I think the Sportivo will still stay.

  • K

    Ok, Um…. Camry?? Hey, how about dumpling for dinner?!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1435885244 Yani Hendriawan

    wow the interior is very nice

    • Richo

      Couldn’t dissagree more, typical Toyota styling both inside and out, far too “busy”

      The best designs are always the more simple elegant ones, this, just like the new Prado, looks over styled.

      • Lukaas

        Well the thing is Richo,
        Toyota cant win here, the critics of the current Camry said the Interior lacked prestige and premium feel. So Toyota improved it, added soft touch resin, made it look comparable to the european premiums, but now it seems Toyota has overdone it.

        It depends on who you ask.

        But MOST people on other online sites have been impressed of the improvement and finds the interior quite attractive and appealing.

  • mixjuan

    Really? Toyota couldn’t come up with anything more imaginative? They have good quality, but they need to work in some more out of the box styling. Get something a bit more attractive there, Toyota.

    • Wd

      ” those who aren’t enthusiasts may find the changes too subtle to notice.”

      ….who on earth is a camry enthusiast?

      • PT

        I am! 2 Camrys over 11 and 9 years [so far] respectively. Never put the car in for anything but its regular services. They are comfortable, roomy and ultra reliable. Nothing ever goes wrong. Who but the pretentious need flashy?.

  • Shak

    CA do you guys mean it makes 130kw and 230 Nm? Because im pretty sure a single engine cant make two outputs with that great a disparity between the two.

  • dadar

    It sorta looks very “Lexus-ey”, or is it just me?

    The interior looks very clean and I think it’ll age quite well though. I like. =)
    But the rear end looks quite odd? Maybe it’ll grow on me, but for now I’ll say “mehh…”

    • o

      Wait until toyota Aus shove there arbitary Radio system in, wont look so good then.

    • abc

      Yeah. It reminds me of the Lexus HS.

  • Sumpguard

    The lower part of the front spoiler destroys the car’s front end view imo. Interior looks fairly good.

    Optional extras include Hair Curlers, a Gentleman’s Tobacco Pipe and the obligatory Brown Cardigan.

    No doubt it will sell in droves but not to me thanks.

    • Phil

      Don’t forget the optional hat for the rear parcel shelf :)

  • iNoob

    If any of you know (and I doubt this) – of the Mark X (released only in Japan) this interior is very similar to the current Gen Mark X.

    I also believe that anyone who’s whinging on this forum about it will have 0 impact on the sales it will generate haha

    • Devil’s Advocate

      I don’t know, there may the be odd fleet manager who reads this forum…. ;-)

      • GWM

        Mark X also manufacturer in China now~

  • Maple leaf

    Looks awful but hey don’t judge a car by it’s looks!

    • http://CarAdvice The Salesman

      What? It is the first thing you judge a car by.

      • Lukaas

        Point taken, but looks of the car to the driver only matters when he/she isnt driving it…. although if you enjoy people looking at you and your car while you are driving then I suppose looks is your main priority.

        • http://CarAdvice The Salesman

          That sounds like something only ugly people say. The biggest buying motive is desire. Wants and needs closely follow and are often used as excuses to justify a desire driven decision.

  • Flying High

    We can take solace in the knowledge most of these will be exported…

  • Alexander

    What’s up with Toyotas obsession with naming everything after crowns?
    Corona = Spanish
    Camry = anglicised for the Japanse word ‘Kanmuri’ (meaning crown)
    Corolla = Latin for ‘small crown’
    Atara = Hebrew

    • MatthewM

      What’s up with BMWs obsession with naming everything after numbers?

      325i – number
      530 – number
      135 – number

      Naming everything after ‘crown’ is just Toyota’s chosen naming convention, most brands have one — deal with it.

    • Golfschwein

      Interesting, Alexander! And just in case you never knew that Golf (Gulf), Passat, Polo, Jetta, Bora and Scirocco are all trade winds, consider that a fair swap :)

      • Alexander

        Yea I picked up on the Scirocco, Bora etc, I prefer it to random translations of crown :)

    • AndyGF

      Im not going to pretend to be a vulcan and say things like ‘numerical or alphabetic terminology is more logical…Jim’, but the difference is Small Crown, Big Crown, Grey Crown, Beige Crown. Would indicate that its all the same thing, just variations in size.
      Otherwise Toyota would name their cars after headpieces; Crown, Bowler, Basher, Wig? And the ‘sporty’ ones would be called Cap(on backwards), Goggles, Clown, Dunce?

      Compare that to Hondas even, musical terminology, James May would tell you that those musical terms are all totally different, or winds in VW case, very different cultures and types.

  • Ryan

    Looks very Amercian!

  • Damian

    Toyota still haven’t moved to a true multi-link rear suspension like all of its competitors. Disappointing.

    • Ben

      Hey the dumb beam rear axle is cheap and works for Holden on the Cruze. Watts link or not, it’s still a beam axle not IRS.

  • PhantomHamster

    Im guessing pedal operated handbrake a’la Aurion style….

  • JEKYL & HYDE

    “hey look mum,i can play xbox on the steering wheel” lol….

  • MattP

    Exciting news, it appears this model Camry may have indicators! And an indicator stalk. I hope they run training courses for all future Camry buyers in the use and purpose of indicators.

    But I cannot see an accelerator pedal in the picture, which is one feature I hope they would have added to this seventh generation model.

    • Golfschwein

      Non-switchable, GBS-based speed limit activated automatic cruise control would be my inclusion.

    • Daniel D

      Some Toyotas in the US were unintetionally fitted with accelerators, which when pressed caused acceleration. Camry owners then crashed into something in shock at the sudden movement.

      Best they remove the accelerators on this model and we focus on how to use the indicators. We can get to the pedals in a future model.

  • Fizza

    I was really hoping that the V6 variant would have the direct injection 3.5 from the Lexus IS350 that generates 233kw. Instead, based on the information that is coming out of the U.S. it seems like the new V6 Camry(Aurion in Oz) will still be powered by the same standard 200kw 3.5 that has been powering the current generation of cars since 2006. This engine is no slouch but at this busy segment of the market companies need to remain innovative, progressive and on the ball.

    Assuming that the new 2012 V6 Camry will also span for approximately 5 years means that within a 10 year period(2006-2016) the V6 3.5 will remain unchanged. This is based on the fact that Toyota rarely upgrade their engines during mid-model facelifts. So how would you feel buying a brand new Aurion ZR6 in 2016 knowing that your next door neighbour who is a uni student owns a ten year old 2006 Aurion Atx with the same engine and power output. It’d probably be lighter and faster too That alone really is nothing short of being total poos and wees in my opinion.

    • Hermione Granger

      Fizza – IS350 engine in a camry??? your living in fantasy world mate! the harry potter blog is elsewhere…

  • RB26

    Sigh…I was really looking forward to this… But disappointed again… All the euro cars are turbo charged nowadays…. And prove to be similarly economical…but as usual, a gutless engine from Toyota again…

    At least a power train similar to the old JZX100 Chasers would have been nIce with current emissions levels of course….but doesn’t look like it….

    • Lukaas

      RB26, I’m assuming you are a fan of the RB26DETT engine…

      Just to let you know…
      This is a CAMRY.

      Not a Chaser, Supra or Soarer.

      I dont think Turbo charging it wont affect sales much. I mean going 4 cylinder and turbo gets you the same power as the V6, but the V6 is more efficient and easier to maintain… not to mention durable. Camry’s are supposedly designed to reach 250,000-300,000 km without an Engine rebuild.

      A turbo charged 4, especially driven between 3,000-5,000 a lot wont be as durable long term, unless you can afford to pay a couple of thousand rebuilding it and changing engine parts every 100,000 or so kms.

      And this is coming from someone who has had a couple of engines rebuilt (3SGTE and SR20DET) back a several years a go. Most SEDAN buyers will stay away from these cars.

      Sure people can argue Europeans (Audi, VW) and Hyundais are using turbo 4s, but dont get me started on how much it is to service a VW/Audi car after it has 80,000 km, maybe 3-4 grand if its well taken care of. Hyundai? well they want to win share market NOW, they dont have the “durable” reputation which Toyota and some japanese OEMs do.

      • AndyGF

        So just because you could not look after two Japanese turbo charged engines, makes all Turbo engines unreliable…

        You forget; the Germans INVENTED forced induction, the Germans PERFECTED forced induction and spend billions inventing technology that now makes it the future, (variable vanes, direct injection, ect), and just because a few non-german manufacturers couldnt make their forced induction engines reliable, now all forced induction engines are painted with the same tarnished brush!

        That’s like claiming that all PIZZA is fattening & unhealthy, just because a few American companies turned it into a oily-cheese covered mess! Pizzas origins as a peasant food meant it was surprisingly healthy compared to what you order today. The similarities run deeper, as you can still get properly made thin crusted pizza today from good Italian restaurants, but you pay a little more? So why not pay a little more, and get something really good, than pay a little less and get something half baked.

  • Devil’s Advocate

    Just one slight oversight in the article Anthony. 1987 was the year when Toyota started building the Camry in Australia, however the Camry was introduced/imported to our shores before then (1983/1984). Remember the Camry liftback?!

    I have my popcorn ready for some of the more “entertaining” comments that will obviously follow over the next couple of days!

  • Jp

    Stabilizing fins on the tail lights…. Ha ha bit of a stretch dont u think! Not f1 here guys – how much stability and rigidness you really think those styling bumps will add at 40kph cornering in suburbia!

  • steve

    I hope they start the models with 17″ rims at least…comment that it might have 16′s sums up Toyota really…

  • Mark

    I like it, great changes for a Camry, big fan

  • o

    Camry drivers are the people who are always on the news complaining about lack of parking everywhere. Hope the aurion looks better =p

    • Johnboi

      Well the next gen Avalon to be realeased Q3 of 2012 has the design elements of the Jaguar Xj and Audi A7..

  • Theo

    PENSIONERS REJOICE!

  • AndyGF

    At least they gave it direct injection, its about time…

  • F1MotoGP

    Hybrid fuel economy is very good.

    The 2012 Camry Hybrid LE, with preliminary EPA-estimated fuel economy of 5.47 l/100km city /6.03 l/100km highway / 5.74 l/100km combined, yields about 39%, 11% and 24% boosts in fuel economy in the EPA city, highway and combined driving cycles respectively compared to the previous generation, due largely to the new hybrid powertrain, but also due to lighter vehicle weight and optimized aerodynamics (Cd=0.27).
    Source: Green Car Congress

  • G

    … hun?! new Camry?!
    aw, back to sleep…

  • Y

    “There’s an all-new 2.5-litre four-cylinder ‘Toyota Direct Injection’ petrol engine that Toyota say is both more powerful and more fuel-efficient, but details of its output won’t be released to the press until nearer to the launch date in November.”

    Does that mean that the Aussie Camry will get direct injection?

    • http://www.caradvice.com.au Anthony Crawford

      No, please see below comments.

    • yo

      damn 0.1 litre increase. WOOOOOOO

      “clap clap”

  • Henry

    The Head Rest are descusting!!~!!!!!

  • http://ACA Shane

    att : Australian Car Advice – The newer Toyota 2.5 4-cyl engine known as the 2AR-FE is not direct injected. It however is Dual VVTi as opposed to the old 2.4 4-cyl (2AZ-FE) with single VVTi.

    Cheers

    • http://www.caradvice.com.au Anthony Crawford

      That’s absolutely correct Shane. I meant to say, ‘Toyota Direct Ignition (TDI) thanks for the edit.

      • AndyGF

        Awe, what a shame; so it does not have direct injection… what a shame!

        (asks three mates for his money back, and then some)

  • abc

    The steering wheel controls look like d-pads from a gaming controller. I wonder if anyone out there will create a hack to enable steering using those.

  • Phil

    I reckon the 3.5L V6 in the Aurion will be a carry over with minor modifications at best. The current model engine outruns the chassis so putting the same V6 from the IS350 would be too much power for a FWD.

    • BlackJesus

      Lol too much power for a FWD? Your joking right? As a teacher of the automotive subject, I don’t think you have a clue what your talking about. Its not the 80′s anymore. FWD’s of TODAY are just as if not MORE capable than other configurations of today.

      • http://www.caradvice.com.au Anthony Crawford

        Focus RS is case in point. Awesome grip and huge traction limits.

  • maximark

    I don’t mind the rear end look, I think the headlights and grill look quite nice too, but it let down by the front bumper which looks like a farm gate, hopefully Toyota Australia will redesign it,they are doing quite a good job for those sportivo models.

  • http://NSSAN James Cortez

    Listen folks, the new camry is anywhere between 155 lbs to 220 lbs lighter and for a mass produced / global cars, that’s quite an achievement given that almost all cars gain weight!! ya’ll commodore and falcon lovers: take notice of the weight reduction accomplished by this world car. Strictly speaking commodore uses the same engine as the cadillac so it is not really an australian car.

  • http://www.rubiworld.com.au Realist

    typically boring Toyota.
    I have seen morre flair on my Wrangler

  • dasher

    The car is nicely proportioned with sharp crease lines -slightly wedge shaped..the US shots look nice to me and I am confident our local lads will do a good job on the Aurion …while there is a sense of the old design I think it will look entirely different in the tin…and I understand its lighter and has more space, the four cylinder is much more powerful in Australia, more economical and has a 6 speed auto, ten airbags, the interior looks a tad busy but a serious improvement..its a tough audience to say that on paper this is not a big improvement..I will be surprised if does not do very well…..I own a Honda Type R for me and and Aurion Presara for the family..I don’t need any more power in the Aurion I just hope they have improved steering and slightly sharper handling without spoiling the limo feel. …if they manage that well enough I’ll sign up again (hopefully) for another troublefree 150,000Ks..sorry to be a bore kids.

  • BlackJesus

    I think the car will go far. In typical Toyota style, Win em all and kill em all.

  • Dragan

    Looks better in real life…….

  • Car-Enthusiast

    You know what i don’t get about toyota with all of their cars. They go through the all the trouble of integrating a touch screen entertainment system (radio/CD, satnav) and then its almost as if just before they finish the car they remember to add the clock, just above the centre dashboard. why? . How hard could it of possibly been to just add the Clock into the Centre entertainment system.

  • Someone

    The wheels have always looked too small on this car, which doesn’t help the styling.

  • yohannT

    Toyota Camry is truly a fantastic car. It is much better to other models. I like the styling and the interior. The Toyota Camry is one of the very best cars as it is very durable and comfortable. It has sold very successfully in the United States markets. You are able to feel secure when driving. It is a family friendly vehicle. While Missouri is a large state, finding this perfect family automobile can be an enormous problem. Finding a dealership can actually be simple though. Just go to: http://cardealexpert.com/state/MO