My 1994 Toyota Camry managed to get 291,000 before it fell off the face of the Earth.
Did it become crusher fodder? Was it exported to a new and exciting life in the developing world? Or will Murilee someday find it among a junkyard menagerie of all too rare two door Camrys?
I wish I knew. I miss it. Neil Young’s, “Long May You Run” sometimes makes me yearn for that kinder, simpler machine.
That car was a constant companion of mine for the majority of my driving years. The four-banger Camry du jour was nothing special as far as performance goes, and if you saw it today, you wouldn’t remember it. Old Camrys still blend in with the automotive scenery like long gray pavement and white Crown Vic taxis.
But as for longevity? It was the equivalent of a young Pamela Anderson with a big smile and a hot fudge sundae. The homely Camry was hotter on long-term companionship than anything short of a rear wheel drive Volvo or a Honda Accord. Precious few models from the early to mid 1990’s could ever lay near of a claim to such an outstanding reputation for durability and value.
Today’s world of cars may be a bit more capable of hitting the big 3 0 0; with engine technologies that go far and beyond dual over head cams, variable timing, and Nordic pushrods. Even so. 300,000 miles is a tall order. Even today.
So with that in mind, “Would you ever keep your daily driver for 300k?” If not, what would it take for a manufacturer to make you a long term keeper of their current wares?