The eighth-generation Toyota Camry has been spied undergoing testing on public roads in the States.
Although it’s covered from head to toe in camouflage, this prototype features a lot of the styling cues that made their debut on the seventh generation Camry’s extensive mid-life facelift.
Up front, the new car resembles the 2017 NASCAR racer that was leaked in September, with both featuring a spindle-style grille topped with a T-shaped moustache, aggressively styled faux air intakes, and thin rectangular headlights.
The production Camry also sports a prominent shoulder line down the side, flagpole-style wing mirrors, LED tail-lights, and upward kick towards the rear of the side window profile.
Above: side-by-side view of the new and current Camry models
Despite the aggressive front-end treatment, rear diffuser, four exhaust tips out the back, rear boot-lip spoiler, and the low profile tyres, this Camry development vehicle seems to be running a stock braking package.
Although the spy photographers didn’t get a clear shot of the interior, we can see that it will feature plenty of piano black plastic and deeply inset instrument pods. If Toyota’s recent models are any indication, the new Camry will also feature a large integrated touchscreen infotainment system.
Under the skin, the new Camry will be based on the Toyota Next Generation Architecture (TNGA), which made its debut underneath the polarising fourth-generation Prius.
Employing high-strength steel and, potentially, some aluminium body panels, the new Camry should be around 100 kilograms lighter than today’s car.
A four-cylinder engine will once again be at the core of the Camry lineup. This will likely be joined by a turbocharged four-cylinder, a V6, and a hybrid variant.
Rumours suggest that the Camry will be launched near the beginning of 2017, but won’t go into production until later in the year, with Toyota’s factories in the US the first to churn out the next-generation Camry. Asian production will likely follow on from there.
Since around 2001, Toyota has produced two increasingly divergent versions of the Camry.
Although both models feature the same basic interior and mechanical package, the one sold in Asia and emerging markets is designed with a heavier emphasis on chrome and luxury, while the American model has, relatively, sportier styling.
It’s not known if Toyota will persist with the current two-prong strategy. If so, it’s uncertain which version Australia will receive.
During the current and previous generations, Toyota Australia has marketed the ‘prestige’ Camry as the Aurion V6, while the American-style Camry, though built here, has been sold locally with only four-cylinder and hybrid drivetrains.
The new Camry will likely make its local debut at the end of 2017 or early 2018. With the company’s factory in Altona set to shut down by the end of 2017, the new Camry will be the first since the original sedan and hatchback models to be fully imported into Australia.