The heavily revised 2015 Toyota Camry has been revealed, stunning the assembled media at the 2014 New York auto show.
Dubbed the “big minor change”, the updated Camry brings significant exterior and interior styling modifications over the current car, which went on sale just over two years ago in March 2012.
All of the exterior panels except the roof turret have been changed, meaning new doors, boot, bonnet, lights and bumpers have been adopted. As a result, Toyota claims the new model - which will be on sale in the US around September and will launch in Australia in 2015 - is more emotional than the car it replaces.
Bill Fay, group vice president and general manager of Toyota US said the new model aims to live up to the brand’s “Waku Doki” philosophy of adding excitement to its cars.
“The new Camry … will connect even better with families on a rational and emotional level,” Fay said. “Our customers expect more and we will give them more,” he said.
"We stripped the current Camry down the chassis and started almost from scratch," Fay said, elaborating that the new model's body has been reinforced for increased torsional rigidity.
According to the brand the front-end styling is "all about attitude". The XSE model shown at New York features LED headlights, a new bonnet with a more sculpted appearance, revised headlights and a gaping blacked-0ut grille. The rear looks more refined, with new tail-lights, a softer, more curvaceous tailgate, and more flattering rear bumper, while 18-inch alloys add to its street cred.
The new Camry's interior has also been significantly updated, with "almost every surface that driver and passengers touch" seeing changes.
Those revisions include a new centre stack, new seats and a new steering wheel. There's also a revamped audio system with revised touch-screen media screens of up to 7.0 inches in diameter, and the US will see Camry models sold with a high-tech wireless phone charging system. There is also 30 per cent more carpet insulation for better cabin comfort, and the side mirrors have been pushed further from the body of the car for reduced wind noise.
But in a blow for Australian buyers, Toyota Australia public relations manager Mike Breen said the major interior changes will not be carried over to the locally-built car.
Breen said there will be material changes - revised fabrics on the seats and doors will be seen - but the more significant style-focused elements won't be adopted.
Toyota Australia will also palm off the newly developed safety systems that the Camry will offer in the US, such as a pre-collision warning system, lane departure warning system, radar-based adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert and auto high beam headlights.
Under the bonnet of the updated Camry is the same 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine which is currently available in two states of tune – 133kW and 231Nm in the base model Altise and 135kW/235Nm in all other models. It’s not yet clear whether there will be any changes to the engine for Australia.
The Camry Hybrid will also see major changes, although that car is yet to be revealed. Breen told CarAdvice that the new model would carry over the same 2.5-litre hybrid drivetrain, and no significant efficiency changes are expected.
The Japanese brand's US arm said the new model will also feature revised suspension for improved comfort and handling characteristics, and Breen said the Australian arm will continue its local development program to make the car better suited to Australian tastes.
The new Camry will be built at Toyota's Altona plant in Melbourne until 2017, when the brand will cease production of the Camry and Aurion. The Aurion will see a minor update sometime next year.
The Camry is Australia’s highest selling mid-sized car, and in the US it is the country’s best selling model.
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