By on January 21, 2016

2015 Toyota Camry

The streak began in 2002 and remains unbroken. Yes, 2002, which began with the Patriots winning the Super Bowl and ended after George W. Bush’s GOP was strengthened during the first mid-term elections of his presidency.

The Toyota Camry was America’s best-selling car. And the Camry has topped the best-selling cars leaderboard every year since.

In 2015, the Camry’s lead over the second-ranked car grew to 66,000 units from 40,000 in 2014. As U.S. passenger car volume declined in a record-setting year for the auto industry, the Toyota Camry’s sales did not. As midsize car sales slid 2 percent, U.S. Camry volume increased to the highest level seen of America’s most popular car in seven years.

Threats to the Camry’s supremacy in 2016? They stand shoulder to shoulder with the Camry inside Toyota’s own showrooms.

2014 Toyota Corolla

COROLLA
Not since 2009, before the Corolla forged ahead exclusively as a sedan, had Toyota’s compact slotted in behind the Camry on America’s best-selling cars list. But as compact cars gained a modest measure of strength in 2015, the Corolla generated 363,332, tops in its class for a second consecutive year.

Low fuel prices don’t help compacts if prospective buyers are also considering a slight payment increase to buy or lease an intermediate car instead, but compact car popularity is potentially enhanced by a declining subcompact car category.

RAV4
Toyota’s prediction, however, doesn’t necessarily see the Corolla being the Camry’s primary challenger. Rather, the surging RAV4 is the vehicle likely to overtake the Camry in Toyota popularity in the next few years. This won’t necessarily impact the Camry’s standing among passenger cars, though RAV4 sales expansion will likely come partly at the Camry’s expense. U.S. RAV4 volume has more than doubled over the last four years. As recently as 2012, the Camry outsold the RAV4 by 233,000 units. That margin was cut in half by 2015.

Just look at Canada, where small SUV popularity has crushed the midsize sector. The Escape outsells the Fusion, Focus, Fiesta, Taurus, and C-Max combined, and the RAV4 has outsold the Camry in seven consecutive years. The year before the RAV4 took over from the Camry, Toyota’s midsize sedan volume was 20 percent stronger. Change happens fast.

2016 Toyota RAV4

CONSISTENCY
In the meantime, the Camry hasn’t held on to its best-selling crown by pulling a rabbit out of the hat on New Year’s Eve.

Only in six of the last 24 months has the Camry failed to top the passenger car sales leaderboard, and only twice during that period has the Camry failed to hold the title in consecutive months. The Camry doesn’t squeak ahead with a blow-out sale over the holidays every year. Instead, it’s a surprise when a month ends and some other car has generated more showroom activity than the Camry.

MARGIN OF VICTORY
Over the course of the 14-year streak, Toyota averaged a 49,720-unit annual sales gap between the top-selling Camry and whatever the second-ranked car happened to be. In 2006 and 2009, that car was the Corolla, sales of which included its Matrix hatchback offshoot. (Camry sales used to include the Solara, as well, to be fair.) In 2011, the second-ranked car was the Nissan Altima, and the gap narrowed to less than 40,000 units.

Typically, however, the second-best-selling car in America is the Honda Accord, which ranked first in 2001 prior to the Camry’s streak began. In 2007, when Camry sales shot to a record-high 473,108 units, the margin of victory was at its largest: 80,877 sales. Never has the margin been smaller than in 2003, when the Accord trailed the Camry by only 15,546 units. 2015’s margin, 66,023 units between the Camry and Corolla, marks a three-year high.

MARKET SHARE
According to passenger car sales tallies from Automotive News, 5.7 percent of the new cars sold in America in 2015 were Camrys.

That’s the highest level since 2009, when the Camry accounted for 6.3 percent of the new cars sold in the United States.

HONDA CANADA
The Camry’s streak is impressive, but it isn’t mirrored in the passenger car arena north of the border. Honda Canada has made the Civic Canada’s best-selling car in each of the last 18 years.

Moreover, the Civic’s dominance in the car sector is greater in Canada than the Camry’s dominance in America. 9.1 percent of Canada’s car sales in 2015 belonged to the Civic. Indeed, the Civic was even able to unseat the all-conquering Ford F-Series as recently as 2008 to become Canada’s best-selling vehicle overall. The F-Series outsold the Civic by a 1.8 to 1 count in Canada in 2015; the Camry by 1.8 to 1 in the U.S.

2016 Honda Accord Sedan Touring

RETAIL SEDANS
Speaking of Honda, the Retail vs. Overall Sales argument has often landed in their favour. There are factors worth noting, of course. The Camry’s greater emphasis on fleet volume isn’t paired with a poor reliability reputation, nor has the Camry’s greater fleet volume brought about severe reductions in resale value. Thus, Toyota could claim that a good fleet sale isn’t the same as, for example, a Malibu fleet-sale bonanza in 2007.

Keep in mind, also, that Honda markets two bodystyles under the Accord nameplate. Honda doesn’t provide a breakdown of Accord sales by sedan and coupe, but current inventory suggests Honda may have sold approximately 43,000 Accord coupes in 2015 plus 313,000 Accord sedans. Even if Toyota is dependent on fleet – good or bad – for a quarter of all Camry sales and not a single Accord ever ended up in an airport rental lot, the Camry sedan would still have outsold the Accord sedan.

Does it matter? Not likely to two automakers which sell hundreds of thousands of profitable midsize cars every year in America. And the Camry’s numbers — no matter how impressive the totals, the duration of the streak, or its ability to fend off all manner of challengers — won’t change the fact that the Accord is still my favourite midsize car.

Timothy Cain is the founder of GoodCarBadCar.net, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

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72 Comments on “2002-2015: For 14 Years The Toyota Camry Has Reigned As America’s Best-Selling Car...”


  • avatar
    VoGo

    Honda and Toyota are essentially #1/#2 in:
    midsize car
    compact car
    crossover
    minivan
    luxury crossover

    Where do you expand from here? If I were Honda, I’d put all my effort into adding capacity for the H-RV, and if I were Toyota, I’d launch a subcompact CUV competitor ASAP.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      Until you start combining nameplates to chassis then the Terrain/Equinox/SRX of Theta, Acadia/Enclave/Traverse of the Lambda, Malibu, LaCrosse, Impala, XTS to the Epsilson, sales of single nameplates isn’t that special. Especially considering these are half decade old platforms or more. Then the Japanese don’t look so good.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        The fact that Honda/Toyota continually outsells new domestic metal with their “old” stuff is more of an indictment of their competition than anything.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          The Camry is almost impossible to beat on value, durability, dependability, reliability and resale.

          My DD is a 1989 Camry V6 and it still runs great, has the original spark plugs and rides smoothly. Put in a new Interstate MT-35 last month, then used the old one to jump-start my neighbors’ cars when they need assistance.

          If I were to buy a sedan, I’d choose the Avalon XLE over the Camry V6 XLE. But I doubt I will ever buy another sedan. SUV and pickup truck are more my style, both Toyota, of course.

          • 0 avatar
            Waftable Torque

            My mom had a 1990 Camry LE V6. As good as that car was, a contemporary Taurus or Sable was a better car; superior chassis rigidity, a true mid-size instead of the Camry’s compact-class, better interior materials (even compared to a modern Fusion for that matter), and features.

            Where the Camry beat the Ford twins was in drivetrain; the 2.5L V6 was smoooooth, sounded good, and could run forever.

            Despite the rust, she would have continued to drive it, but it was written off in 2007 after a neighbor decided it would be fun to clip the rear of the car hard enough to spin the parked car into the middle of the street. The police knew him well.

            Even though your Camry runs well, I just wouldn’t feel comfortable in a car with 80’s crash-protection standards and near-useless headlights.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Waftable Torque

            “Even though your Camry runs well, I just wouldn’t feel comfortable in a car with 80’s crash-protection standards and near-useless headlights.”

            I appreciate your valid concern and I would share it if my situation was the norm. It may have airbags in it because it says “Supplemental Restraints” on the steering wheel and dashboard. Hope they’re not Takata.

            As it is, I use the Camry to run errands in, more often now that my oldest son has “borrowed” my Tundra since before Thanksgiving.

            Longest trip I take is the 16 miles one-way to the Air Base and back to go shopping at the Commissary, and I drive it only during daylight hours. I don’t know if the headlights work. (They do. I just tested them.)

            We take the Sequoia whenever my wife and I go some place together, like lunch every day in town.

            Plus, the biggie, I live in the arid desert of the Southwest, so there is no rust. Dry rot, some. But no rust.

            If my 1989 Camry ever were to die, I would not revive it, just haul it off and collect my recycling money.

            I only paid my best friend $100 for it and that was to reimburse the two-year registration renewal. I’m still using his plates.

          • 0 avatar
            kit4

            Um, no. I have a 91 Camry. The Taurus/Sable were not better than the Gen 2 Camry. The Camry had better interior materials and was screwed together FAR better. It wasn’t even close. Those Camrys are built like tanks and are very strong. My friend had a 94 Taurus and the interior buttons all broken, the visors and cupholders were flimsy and the entire dash rattled and cracked. The Taurus was bigger and that was it. The Camry stomped it in everything else and it just got worse for Ford when the Gen 3 Camry came out.

          • 0 avatar
            Waftable Torque

            kit4, we owned a 1990 Camry LE and 1991 Mercury Sable LS at the same time, so I thought my impressions were fair.

            The Sable had some interesting features that were more typically found in near luxury cars than family sedans at the time, such as focused map lights, dual armrests, cornering lamps, velour door inserts, a decent stock radio, and rear parcel shelf cabinet with first aid kit. The Sable didn’t get retired until 2009, and even then it had far less rust at year 19 than the Camry did at year 8. The Vulcan V6 had the refinement of a tractor but it never gave us any problems. The Camry felt very bendy and unsettled over poor road conditions.

            Both were fine cars for their day, but they had enough flaws that you could have picked one or the other depending on your preferences.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            @Waftable

            My guess is that kit4 is referring to the durability, as well as the fit/finish of the interior, rather than thoughtful touches/features. Also worth noting, kits4’s friend has a ’94, this was after the redesign, a large part of which was some pretty massive decontenting. There’s no denying that the 88-91 Camrys rust like hell in any climate with even a bit of salted roads. Then again, growing up my best friend’s dad had an ’88 Sable with some of the worst body rust on the doors that I’d ever seen. That was the mid 90s as I recall, so 8 years in Upstate NY to get total perforation of door panels. T that locale was like Salt Hell, worst case scenario for any car. That old Sable was a comfy boat of a car, I have rather fond memories of it.

          • 0 avatar
            ponchoman49

            The Camry’s sloppy handling, numb steering and mediocre interior appearance kept several friends from buying the 1997-2001 generation.
            They would literally squeal around corners even at moderate speeds. There was also nothing special about the exterior paint quality with several brand new examples seeing bumpers that didn’t even closely match the rest of the car and plenty of examples seen over the years with clear coat peeling and fade. The single best part of the Camry was the smooth V6. The rest was meh

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            Ponchoman, if the rest was “meh” I can’t imagine what descriptors might be used in regards to GM sedans of that same era. “yuck” comes to mind, mostly.

          • 0 avatar
            C P

            Original spark plugs on an ’89? Uh.. BS?

        • 0 avatar
          bd2

          Not so much anymore.

          The Sonata/Optima cousins sell about as much as the Accord, if not more.

          The Fusion is generally regarded as a bit more fun drive than the Accord and the Mazda6 even more so.

          The much-maligned Malibu had things going for it – like a smooth ride, but the decision-makers at GM totally whiffed by inexplicably cutting passenger space in the outgoing Malibu (which the new Malibu fixes, among other things; the Impala is generally regarded as the best sedan within its segment – which bodes well for the new Malibu as a “mini”-Impala).

          The Camry and Accord still sell well (1-2), but they no longer have the market share of the midsize sedan segment like they did during their heyday during the 1990s-to-mid-2000s.

          Furthermore, the Camry in particular, no longer commands the premium that it once did (the Accord still does to a certain extent).

          Nowadays the Camry sells on price, reliability (drivetrain hasn’t changed much for a decade or so) and its cavernous rear passenger space (same goes for the Corolla), along with greater reliance on fleet sales.

      • 0 avatar
        VoGo

        The Accord is 3 years old, the Odyssey 4, the CR-V 4, the MDX 4, and the Civic is brand new.

        Show me 5+ year old platforms, Norm!

        Oh wait, they are in the GM showroom, with the Traverse, Terrain, LaCrosse, etc.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    No thanks, Camry. I prefer foreign-made cars.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      I’m actually thrilled that the Camry in my household is locally made, with 75% domestic content, a figure matched only by the F150 in terms of Big Three offerings. It’s held up well in 55k miles, although two “un-Camry” things have happened: the battery died this fall after only 4 years of use, and there is a minor and occasional dash rattle over rough pavement in the cold. Surprisingly my similar aged Civic is rattle-free when driven in the same conditions. Other than that it’s delivered incredible MPG for a midsize car (32ish MPG lifetime average)with a traditional port injected 4 cyl and automatic, and comfortable and smooth motoring with even a bit of off-ramp competence thrown in (hers is an SE with the more taut suspension and wider tires).

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        yeah a Toyota needing a new battery at 4 years is unusual 3 years is the average life span for an OE Toyota battery.

        • 0 avatar
          ponchoman49

          Toyota’s and Honda’s eat batteries like an 18 year old eats McDonalds hamburgers. My parent’s 8 year old 2000 Bonneville had to jump start the neighbors 4 year old CRV when the battery unexpectedly croaked and the Pontiac still had it’s original battery. That was real fun to do in the Winter months.

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            That’s awesome. My Toyota didn’t need a battery replacement in the 8 years I owned it.

            It should be confusing living your life anecdote to anecdote, but apparently you are used to it.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            I guess one’s mileage may vary. The battery in my ’01 Toyota survived 11 Minnesota winters and I replaced it only because it was 11 years old and I’d never had a battery go beyond 6 years before. The battery in my ’08 Toyota is the original. I may get used to the idea of an 11 year battery. Maybe 12…

  • avatar
    Corollaman

    I think that the subcompact CUV market will not increase as long as gas prices keep going down or stay down at today’s level. They’re just not a good value compared to their larger competitors when it comes to comfort and driving dynamics

    • 0 avatar
      Sam Hell Jr

      It’s weird, because some compact SUVs are legitimately more practical (usable backseat, headroom, cargo capacity and load floor height) than price-competitive mid-size sedans. Sit in the back of a CX-5 and a 6 and it’s clear that the former is a better family vehicle. (Notable exceptions: Camry, Accord, Altima.)

      But the same isn’t true of subcompacts. I can’t imagine anybody sitting in a Fit and am HRV and deciding the latter was a superior city car.

    • 0 avatar
      Nostrathomas

      While CUVs are pretty crappy all around if you look at it from a logical point of view, the vast majority of the population does not…they just buy what their neighbor are buying. And right now the whole neighborhood is on the CUV train.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        “CUVs are pretty crappy all around if you look at it from a logical point of view”

        You’re gonna have to back that one up.

        For a price similar to a midsize sedan, the compact CUV buyer (CRV, RAv4, etc) gets much better utility in terms of flexible cargo space (and taller cargo area than a wagon), the availability of AWD and a useful amount of actual ground clearance (something that all cars used to have, but less-so now). Said CUV gets the same mpg as a midsize sedan 10 years ago, as in, plenty good. Handling is a non-starter for most consumers, although it should be said the ride in many CUVs is more stiff than the manufacturer’s own sedan as they try to make a taller vehicle handle as well as one with a lower center of gravity. Likewise, the CUV is a bit slower in acceleration due to added weight, but adequate for most consumers. Throw in that taller seating position that makes most consumers feel safer in the flow of traffic, and it’s no wonder these things are selling so well.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        Yeah, this CUV thing is just a fad. I mean, it’s only been going on for 20 years. One of these days everyone’s gonna wanna go back to vehicles that are hard to get into and have no cargo space.

      • 0 avatar
        Corollaman

        I have to agree with you, as a get older, I long for a vehicle easier to get in and out of, even my Corolla is getting harder for me to use, and find myself needing more cargo room that a small sedan can offer.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Ah, the joys of being a teenager. Ignorance is bliss, and self-importance is ecstasy ;)

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      Yep CUV for the win for most people. Thus I could easily see the RAV4 taking over the Camry. Between low gas prices and the new hybrid model the Camry advantages begin to fade away. People (in general) don’t give a damn about driving dynamics. As far as comfort goes the CUV gets the win with its better visibility and ease of entry. I think the only thing that keeps people coming back to sedans is the locking trunk vs the “open” hatchback configuration.

      The Corolla gains are purely down to the same situation as the Accord vs the Civic. The Corolla / Civic are now as big as the old Camry / Accord thus people who don’t want a “big” car are fine with Corolla / Civic sized entry. Technology and feature wise they are both similar, maybe the only difference is seating options like leather?

      A more interesting thing would be what happened if the Solara came back? Is the Camry desirable in 2 door form? Convertible form? If I was Toyota I would be making a Camry everything: all wheel drive, convertible, hybrid, wagon, etc.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Unsporty coupes are to sedans what sedans are to CUVs…. the Solara and cars of its ilk are pretty much as dead a doorknob.

        I don’t see too many current generation Accord coupes… I am pretty sure putting the V6 + 6MT in the sedan would be a death blow.

        Value is a much bigger driver of car purchases today and CUVs deliver in spades. Similarly I think cars in the Civrolla segment strike that “just right” balance of size that has pretty much been the volume benchmark for a few decades. They stopped selling the Accord in the UK and Japan from what I remember. US still has some time but I see that whole segment suffering a similar fate.

      • 0 avatar
        Sam Hell Jr

        They kind of do. The tC is a liftback coupe with a Camry powertrain and a glass roof. The AWD hybrid wagon is, regrettably, the Highlander. That leaves out a convertible but then so does the non existent market for cheap convertibles.

  • avatar
    outback_ute

    So after all that, how many Camry’s did they sell?

  • avatar

    I drive an ’03 Camry SE with 53K miles.
    It has been very reliable – only 1 problem.

  • avatar
    laphoneuser

    Just dropped off my 2015 Camry SE to the dealer this morning for its 10,000 mile service. I’m loving the car. Very comfortable, good fuel economy, smooth powertrain, and plenty of space for my kids in the back. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.

  • avatar
    GermanReliabilityMyth

    Something, something grounded to the ground, something.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Bring back the RAV4 V6.

  • avatar
    Sloomis

    We bought a new ’11 Camry LE for the wife as a commuter car. It does an excellent job at everything we need it to do, looks good – Barcelona Red with the alloy wheel package – and has reached 60,000 miles without a single issue. That being said, it’s also the most boring car I’ve ever owned. Driving it just makes me sad. It’s so boring I actually enjoy driving my 11 year old Odyssey much more.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      The most boring car in this class and size IMO is the Altima CVT. To this day, after all the CVT improvements, it still drones, hums and contributes to white-line hypnosis.

      Try one on a 5-8 hour long Interstate trip. The zero-gravity seats are great. The droning with the radio OFF, not so much.

  • avatar
    Corollaman

    The Camry is like marrying a nice, decent wife who you can be sure will be there for you no matter what. And she is not high maintenance either.

  • avatar
    pdieten

    Best seller, whatever. Am I the only one who thinks the current Camry, and especially the grille and that weird black plastic strip in the C-pillar, is hideously ugly?

    It’s been two years, I still can’t stand the sight of the things.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Camry used to be a big seller here, it outsold all other appliance style motor vehicles.

    If you are interested in appliances I have a great link you can read.

    http://refrigerators.reviewed.com/features/2014-best-of-year-refrigerator-awards

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    “Even if Toyota is dependent on fleet – good or bad – for a quarter of all Camry sales and not a single Accord ever ended up in an airport rental lot, the Camry sedan would still have outsold the Accord sedan”

    That’s an analysis worth remembering when the “Accord beats Camry in real customer sales” cudgel is wielded by the usual suspects around here.

  • avatar
    NoGoYo

    Not really related, but people who would buy a brand new Corolla over a CPO Camry on the same lot are f***ing STUPID.

    The Camry has more oomph, more space, is arguably safer, and still gets good MPGs in 4 cylinder form. Plus the current Corolla is UGLY, especially in cheapo LE trim.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    My friend and I weren’t overly impressed with a rental 2014.5 Camry SE with the basic 2.5 4 cylinder.

    Yes it was rather boring and really didn’t do anything bad. It was the little things that added up and annoyed us. Starting with interior quality. The all black interior with painted silver looked and felt low rent, especially the fake cloth seat material. It was akin to sand paper and actually bothered the backs of my buddies legs after a day spent driving the car. The headliner is the worst of any car I have driven to date feeling wafer thin and cheap. The car only had 12K miles and the shift indicator letters were already starting to wear off a little, the passenger side A-pilar trim piece was loose fitting and could easily pop off and worse the center dash vents popped right out while going over a particularly bumpy rail road track. Looking at the vent assembly revealed why. They are held in with cheap plastic clips and one had broken off! I have rented car’s costing almost half of what this one did that didn’t have this issue!

    The drive was okay except for the really numb steering. Even in sportier SE trim it didn’t at all feel sporty like a Mazda 6 or Accord. Heck even our rental 2016 Malibu Limited rode and drove a tad sportier. Quietness was average and not as good as earlier rental Camry’s but some of that was probably the larger lower profile tires fitted to the SE. The 2.5 was adequate and gets a good jump off the line. Highway power is less satisfying and most other competitors 4 cylinder engines felt quicker save the 2015 Chrysler 200 and it’s goofy 9 speed.

    Pluses included better than average interior space, especially rear legroom, reasonable but by no means earth shattering MPG with averages in the mid to high 20’s, a pretty large trunk and that perceived reliability. Too bad the rental car didn’t quite live up to that failing to start with a partially dead battery in my driveway the next morning. A simple jump did get it going and the car went back to the rental agency. I reported this issue to them and the clerk stated that this car has been in before for this same exact issue and thanked me for letting them know. I did get a coupon for a free upgrade on my next rental so that was something we took advantage of when up-sizing to a 2015 Impala LTZ last Summer.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      Combating anecdote with anecdote, the 2012 Camry SE that I deal with on a daily basis has suffered exactly none of these trim failures in 55k miles and 3.5 years of everyday non-pampered use. Pooled data suggests that my fiancé’s ownership experience is much more typical than this fantastic tale that you love to regale us with on a monthly basis.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        It’s getting into “don’t feed the trolls” territory. Rarely have so many words been spilled over a single rental car experience, with such relentless frequency and to so little effect.

        I’d link Jack’s reviews of the Camry SE and new Sonatas that convincingly refute poncho’s no-credentials-but-will-pontificate-anyway impressions of driving dynamics and powertrain performance, but I’m sure the readership is tired of that as well. Plus, this was one of poncho’s more level-headed analyses, even if it was a 400 word essay we’ve all read before.

        So very many times before.

      • 0 avatar
        Sloomis

        As the owner and frequent driver of a 2011 LE, I’d have to concur with ponchoman49 to some degree. I’m overall very pleased with our Camry (except it’s boringness) but many aspects of the interior feel quite cheap and flimsy, and we’ve had some issues with little trim bits here and there. I had the exact same issue with the passenger side A-pillar – I hit a bump and the entire interior cover piece fell right off. Some of the rubber moldings on the outside came loose too and were fixed under warranty. I also expected better mpgs than we’re getting – we get mid-20s (unless it’s all highway driving), which is acceptable but not exceptional. None of it changes my opinion, it’s a very good car, especially for the price, but it’s not perfect.

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          I never claimed perfection. The interior of the Camry was absolute crap from 2007-2011. 2012 was an improvement but still shocking to anyone who owned a mid-90s Camry. 2015 was larger improvement that finally got it competitive again, as long as you stay away from the Fusion. The 4-cylinder’s fuel economy is also decidedly midpack (standardized tests, not anecdotal), but largely inconsequential to one’s wallet.

          Poncho’s bogosity begins when he writes about “sporty” driving dynamics that he is unable to elaborate on specifically, makes claims that instrumented tests refute, and tries to apply his one rental experience to the literally millions of Camries sold. This is OK once, but he has repeated it for so long on this website.

          Anyway, if your 2011 bores you try a current SE. They drive nothing alike.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            Thanks for typing all that out 30-mile, I think you sum it up perfectly. The fact that Ponchoman is a GM dealer explains a lot. I had merely assumed that he was the GM version of ‘billfrombuckhead,’ resident Mopar fundamentalist.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      This Poncho guy/spammer has admitted that he is a Chevy dealer. His endless “anecdotes” aren’t worth the bytes that they consume.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I don’t have a problem with the Camry but as many products that have had an outstanding reputation after many years the manufacture becomes complacent and starts taking cost cutting above quality. Toyota is living on its past reputation when they were one of the few who made long lasting and reliable vehicles which is no longer true as many competitors have either caught up to Toyota or exceeded them in quality and reliability. I still see many 1992 thru 1996 Camry which was one of the best made Camry with better quality materials. I doubt many of the newer Camry will hold up as well and last as long. Toyota has become like the GM of the past.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      I’d put money on acurrent generation port injected Camry with its 6speed automatic outlasting just about any other vehicle currently in the US marketplace with minimal repairs, short of Toyota’s own yaris, prius, 4runner, or land cruiser. They may have cheaped out on some interior elements (being rectified now thankfully), but the mechanicals underneath are rock solid. Toyota is an incredibly conservative company that sticks with and refines proven powertrains, and it shows up year after year in reliability scores.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Maybe the current Camry is better than the prior one but after driving several Toyotas when buying a new car for my wife in 2013 we bought a CRV. I am not saying I would never own a Toyota but for not much more I would take a Honda over a Toyota–nicer interior, better ride, and just overall a nicer package. Of all the Toyotas I would probably pick an Avalon over a Camry or even a Lexus. Toyota has done a nice job on the new Avalon. Yes Toyota is a conservative corporation but they no longer have a monopoly on reliable and long lasting vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      What data and timeframe are you using to judge “long lasting?”. The decline in tactile interior quality has been going on for about nine years, and Honda has done similar to a somewhat lower degree. Tell me if you see a reliability problem here:

      http://www.truedelta.com/Toyota-Camry/reliability-264/vs-Accord-108

      In shorter term reliability, Lexus and Toyota still top the rankings, even above Honda:

      http://www.consumerreports.org/cars/highlights-consumer-reports-2015-annual-auto-reliability-survey

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I never made the claim that Toyotas are long lasting, Toyota has made that claim. I also never made the claim that Hondas are long lasting, again that would be Honda. Most of today’s vehicles will run for many years but I doubt most will be collectors items and I doubt most of today’s vehicles will be restored in the future. All the electronics and computers on most of today’s vehicles would make them harder and more expensive to restore, but then maybe aftermarket parts might be available that could make it more affordable. Also how many people are going to get as excited over a 40 year old Camry as a GTO or Mustang?

    I am familiar with Lexus and Toyotas ratings but is that the only criteria that you use in buying a vehicle? Does this mean that Hondas are not reliable? How about Hyundais and Kias are they any less reliable? Does that mean that a vehicle not on the top of the list will not last? I have a 99 S-10 since new (almost 17 years) and it was not on the top of the reliability list but it has given me very reliable service with mostly routine maintenance. How about my wife’s 77 Accord which she had for over 17 years? Does owning a Toyota mean that you do not have to do any maintenance? It has been my experience that any of today’s cars and trucks will run for many years with proper maintenance. My point is not that Toyotas are not good, but Toyota doesn’t have a monopoly on reliability and durability.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      You are wandering all over the freaking place. Future collector’s status in 40 years? Anecdotal experience with your one truck? Claiming you didn’t claim what you actually did claim? Your comment is a headache.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @jeff S – vehicles have gotten more reliable in general but buying based on durability data is a safe bet. It does not guarantee that you won’t get stuck with a lemon but it does help tip the odds in your favour.
      I used to go on the assumption that buying new was good enough but after suffering through a Grand Caravan that was getting something fixed 3-4 times a year, I was sold on the value of research.

      We went with a Sienna because it has great ratings. I do agree that the look and feel of the interior isn’t as good as Honda but it has been reliable. I don’t have a problem with a lack of “soft touch” plastics. WTF? I recall my dad’s pickups with mostly metal door panels and dashes. “Soft touch” tends to take a hit from rambunctious boys and big dogs.

      Even when I looked at pickups I did some research. JD Power put the F150 slightly behind the Tundra in 2010. I didn’t even look at a few brands based just on that data. The F150 had huge discounts and the Tundra had a few grand off of MSRP plus offered what I really wanted; a crewcab 4×4 with a 6.5 box. I wasn’t willing to step up to a 3/4 ton just for that feature.

      The interesting thing is that after 2010 Ford’s F150 ratings have dropped. I’m never an early adopter since the so called domestics traditionally have a drop in durability with the first few years of a new model. Case in point – the 2015 GM full sized 1500’s didn’t even make Consumer Reports “Recommended” list. Same can be said for the new GM small trucks.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    @Lou_BC–Again I said you should not buy alone on the bases of just one criteria. Lou_BC would you buy a truck or van just on the bases of a rating alone or would you consider other criteria in addition? There is nothing wrong with buying a Camry or a Corolla but to just buy a vehicle basis a consumer review and not look at other criteria is blind. If 30-mile fetch likes the Camry better that is his choice but to say that a Honda, Ford, Hyundai, or Kia is not a reliable vehicle is not true. Lou you know that I am not a fan boy and have owned a lot of different brands. You should look at a vehicle’s ratings and use that as one criteria for buying a vehicle but you should not use that as the only criteria. As you stated today’s vehicles are more reliable than the vehicles of the past.

    I do know people who are so loyal to a brand such as Toyota that they will buy a Toyota without even driving one. As for a vehicle lasting 40 years and being a collector item my point was to answer 30 miles comment about long lasting. What is the definition of long lasting? My definition would be any vehicle that you can get 10 years of reliable service doing routine maintenance is long lasting regardless of brand. A manufacturer’s advertising would be different.

    As to your Grand Caravan you got a lemon. I had 1 Ford product that was the worst vehicle I ever owned in regards to reliability and I had 2 Ford products that were among the best vehicles I have owned. Does the 1 bad Ford mean that all Ford products are bad? What is the definition of long lasting?

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    “What is the definition of long lasting?”

    The lesson learned after you first show kindness to a fool?

    Original flavor Trident gum?

    Rib injury?

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Long lasting could also mean an extended stay from your mother-in-law.

  • avatar
    C P

    I have a 2001 Camry that was among the last imported from Japan, J VIN. It just won’t quit. Every time I think it will, I hear from others w/ the same generation that have twice as many miles. It is the last new car I bought. Currently looking for another Toyota from that era & not a new car full of nanny stuff.


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