Toyota May Kill V6 Camry

Derek Kreindler
by Derek Kreindler
toyota may kill v6 camry

Fans of the Toyota Camry have insisted that unlike lesser American and Korean rivals, their beloved mid-size sedan would never forsake the legendary V6 engine for a puny, profligate two-point-oh-tee. They may need to be ready for a plate full of crow.

Automotive News is reporting that the next generation Camry, which will be built off of Toyota’s all-new flexible architecture, may get a downsized engine as part of the massive overhaul. Quoting Toyota powertrain boss Koei Saga, AN writes

“It might be able to replace a six-cylinder with a four-cylinder plus turbo plus direct injection,” he said. “Compared to a V-6, we think this solution will be less costly.”

But marketers are evaluating whether Americans will accept the idea.

“Eventually we think this is where the technology is going, but right now we don’t know what the reaction of U.S. customers will be,” he said. “So probably right up until the last moment, we will have to be ready with both and watch customer feedback.”

Toyota has a perfectly good 2.0L turbo four-cylinder in the form of their new powertrain in the Lexus NX. But at 237 horsepower, it has a long way to go before it can put down the same kind of power as the 3.5L V6 currently powering the Camry, to say nothing of potential fuel economy losses that some of these engines are known for.

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  • Jrasero23 Jrasero23 on Jul 16, 2014

    This story really goes back to 2008, when Toyota discontinues the Solara and ends it's short reign as the economy midsize sports car and Honda creates the bold 8th gen Accord Coupe sleeper. Both Toyota and Honda realized sports or performance cars sold very few units to warrant production, thus the Solara was killed and the Honda Coupe became a niche sleeper car. For me the death of the V6 is great since manufactures such as VW, Hyundai, and Ford have shown how turbos paired with four cylinder engines can really perform as good or better than any V6, but here is my problem. Toyota is somewhat late to the turbo charged game and while the launch of a turbo charged Camry would coincide with the launch of the Lexus NX 200t, there are a lot of kinks that need to be ironed out with turbo charging, Ford and even Hyundai know this first hand. If I was Toyota I would offer the turbo charged four cylinder standard and have the V6 still optional like Ford/Lincoln does but make the V6 a 3.7 and give it close to 300 HP. While I know my last comment will never happen seeing a turbo charged Toyota is good news. Hopefully Honda and Acura will finally follow since their once modern engines have failed to become updated.

  • DrGastro997 DrGastro997 on Jul 16, 2014

    That's too bad if a Toyota kills the V6 option. Who benefits from this cost savings? Toyota.

  • DrGastro997 DrGastro997 on Jul 16, 2014

    That's too bad if Toyota kills the V6 option. Who benefits from this cost savings? Toyota.

  • Silverkris Silverkris on Jul 17, 2014

    From a practical standpoint, do most drivers really need a V6 in a midsized sedan for their driving needs? I drive a 2009 Camry with the 2.4L 4 banger, and it suits my needs very well - mostly suburban, some open road conditions, the normal commute. The only real advantage a V6 would have over the 4 cylinder is smoother acceleration/less noise at higher speeds, and better torque for going up hills and inclines. That has to be traded off with higher fuel consumption, higher maintenance/service costs of the 6-cylinder.

    • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Jul 17, 2014

      "do most drivers really need a V6 in a midsized sedan for their driving needs?" In the automotive space, most of what does exist doesn't need to exist. Camry and its ilk succeed partially because they fit the needs of many consumers, which is all well and good. But many people are willing to pay for a little more. "That has to be traded off with higher fuel consumption, higher maintenance/service costs of the 6-cylinder." Historically, real world V6 highway mileage is generally better in a heavier vehicle vs an I4. You pay for that privilege with lower mileage in gridlock driving, where the I4 or hybrid shine. I'm also not sure what higher maintenance cost you're referring too, but such costs probably vary from motor/model/OEM to each other.

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