THE eighth-generation Toyota Camry, premiered at the North American International Auto Show in 2017 and sold in Japan, the US and other markets later that year, is now available in the Philippines.
The car arrives today in all Toyota dealerships in the country. Two variants are available — the Camry 2.5 G that costs P1.806 million and the Camry 2.5 V priced at P1.992 million. Both variants can be ordered in a special white color for an additional fee of P15,000. Six other paintjobs are offered.
As the variants’ designations suggest, the latest Camry is powered by a revised 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine fitted with dual VVT-i — Toyota’s variable valve-timing system. The engine makes 181hp at 6,000rpm and 231Nm at 4,100rpm. A six-speed automatic transmission, equipped with Sport and Eco modes, is matched to the engine. A new feature of the transmission is its ability to shift to a higher gear quicker and blip the throttle when downshifting when it is set in Sport mode.
Propping up the new Camry is a structure conforming to the Toyota New Global Architecture, which the car maker said is focused on rigidity and better handling. The car has a lower center of gravity than the previous model, and its suspension — MacPherson in front, double wishbones in the rear, both with stabilizer bars — is now tuned to respond more sharply. Wheels are 17-inch alloys for the 2.5 G variant. The 2.5 V gets alloys an inch larger, which should benefit handling even more.

Toyota Camry 2
Cabin of new Camry more stylish, better equipped than previous model.

Besides better dynamics, the new Camry’s structure has also made the car safer — Toyota said the Camry scored the top 5-star rating in Southeast Asia’s version of the New Car Assessment Program. Among the car’s safety features are seven airbags, hill-start assist, stability control and ABS with electronic force distribution and assist.
While the two Camry variants are identical mechanically, distinguishing the 2.5 V from the 2.5 G are the former’s power-reclining backseat; touch screen controls for the sunshade, air-conditioning and backseat; a seven-inch touch screen multimedia panel (the 2.5 G has a 4.2-inch touch screen); a power sunshade; transmission modes; triple-zone automatic climate control (against the 2.5 G’s dual); power-adjustable steering wheel with memory function; and power-retractable side mirrors and multi-configurable, leather-wrapped front seats with memory settings.
Both variants are equipped with electric power steering assist; LED head lights, daytime running lamps and tail lights; rain-sensing wipers; smart entry with push-button ignition; multimedia with Android and Apple mirroring capability; and leather steering wheels.
Certainly, instantly recognizable in the new Camry is its more adventurous, edgier styling both inside and out. — Brian M. Afuang