By on November 4, 2018

Toyota will be unveiling blackened versions of the Camry and Highlander at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show, indicating that we’re one step closer to the trend ending. Factories started adopting the “murdered-out” look a few years ago after the movement gained steam in the aftermarket. Now it’s cropping up on the most mainstream of models.

Officially, the Japanese automaker claimed its newest Nightshade Editions are “preempting the earlier sunset associated with the end of Daylight Savings Time.” But we know they’re primarily an opportunity to markup existing models by adding a few darkened bits of trim. However, you’re unlikely to mind if you’re interested in conveying a more-sinister image on the road. 

The Toyota 4Runner Nightshade Edition debuted roughly a month ago and looks rather handsome in gray. But you’ll likely be mistaken for a government agent in either black or white paint. This is also appears to be the case for the Highlander, albeit to a lesser degree. Available on the SE trim, Toyota’s appearance package adds black accents to the exterior door handles, and mirror caps, rear spoiler, shark fin antenna. Accompanying black 19-inch wheels, complete with black lug nuts, will match the black headlights and fog lamps.

On the other hand, the Nightshade Edition of the Camry gives it a distinctively sporty look in all hues. But it also changes the vehicle’s overall image to a lesser degree, since Toyota’s sedan wasn’t particularly chrome heavy to begin with. You’ll notice the biggest difference on models dressed in something other than black paint. However it’s only available in Midnight Black Metallic, Celestial Silver, or Super White.

Additions include blackened mirror caps, window molding, spoiler, antenna, door handles, and exterior badging. The Camry also comes with black 18-inch wheels and and darkened headlights. As with the Highlander, the appearance package is only available on the SE trim.

The Highlander Nightshade Special Edition will be available this January in a limited run of 5,000 total units, available in Midnight Black Metallic, Predawn Gray Mica, Salsa Red Pearl, and Blizzard Pearl. Camry variants are expected to follow suit immediately afterward.

[Images: Toyota]

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22 Comments on “Toyota Introducing Blacked Versions of Camry and Highlander...”


  • avatar
    Fred

    It’s still a trend I like. Especially since it hides these big grills on dark cars.

  • avatar
    civicjohn

    Come January 1, I will be camped out at my local Toyota dealership. Probably using a Tundra for cover, because I bet there will be ample inventory (current deal 1.9% APR for 72 months).

    I just want to be one of the lucky 5000 owners, I’ll be draining all of the fluids and laughing all the way to the bank when in 20 years they will be pushing my car across the Barrett-Jackson auction podium.

  • avatar
    Russycle

    Heh, wasn’t long ago that black mirror caps and door handles meant you were driving the bottom of the line basic model. Cue Fashion! by Bowie.

  • avatar
    riggodeezil

    “…conveying a more-sinister image on the road. “ barharharhar!!!! Such a menacing bad-ass spectre of speed demon-ry, that Nightshade Camry SE. If I see one zip up behind me, I will crap my shorts and promptly get out of the way.

  • avatar
    tylanner

    More options is typically good but good lord have they no shame…

  • avatar
    gtem

    So Toyota is doing from the factory what various mouth-breathers and highschoolers were doing to their 15 year old hand-me-downs (plasti-dip-it-all) for years. Good job?

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      To add anecdotal evidence: I was selling my friend’s ’09 Mazda 3i Sport this summer for a healthy commission, the car cleaned up really pretty decently (just starting to get a tiny bit of rear fender lip rot). Specifically, my friend had really brought the 17″ factory alloys back to luster with some polishing compound and elbow grease. A father and son roll up in a bro-d out Wrangler, top and doors off. They look it over, junior is wanting to switch out of some kind of old truck that’s killing him on gas. They’re getting excited and start talking about what the kid might do to the car. Dad is telling him “yeah, you could tint it out and black out the wheels with plasti-dip.” I really had to hold my tongue. We were having problems selling the car quite honestly and I’m glad they ultimately bought it, but I wish I had a few more buyers waiting in the wings because I oh-so wanted to tell them I wasn’t going to sell them the car. Oh well they didn’t notice the torn CV boot and that the AC compressor was kind of on the fritz.

  • avatar

    Camries are already scariest vehicles on the road even without all that cloud of blackness.

  • avatar
    jalop1991

    “Toyota Introducing Blacked Versions of Camry and Highlander”

    You misspelled “Camry Wagon”.

    Anyway, they’re doing it all wrong:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercury_Marauder

  • avatar
    deanst

    Until they come up with a big paper bag (or 2) to hide the ugliness, this will have to do.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    And here I am all fuddy-duddy like, avoiding these types of packages to begin with. It just reads cheap/Pep Boys.

    I will say my Outback with the 2-year-only Special Appearance package DID use the dark highlighted headlights from the Legacy instead of the usual Outback set, but that’s a minor thing.,,,

  • avatar
    phila_DLJ

    Well at least I won’t mistake these for unmarked cop cars, which is typically the case with Explorers. I swear, 9 out of 10 new Explorers are white with blacked out wheels and trim. Only tags and lack of extra antennae betray their civilian status, but it takes longer for the eye to notice those details.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Its actually pretty easy to tell Cop/not cop explorer, day and night.

      Cops have different grills. Cops have steel wheels. Cops have barrier between front and rear row, which is visible day and night. In fact, I sometimes take a pickup truck for police SUV because rear window in PU looks just like the barrier in police car.
      Also, you may spot little lights in the grill of the police car.

  • avatar
    geozinger

    So is this like the faux-Cajun style of cooking?

    Blackened fish, blackened shrimp, blackened peanut butter? Oh wait, the last one was my idea…

    I didn’t like the black out versions of the Chevys, I don’t think this works here, either.

    IMO you’ve got to keep these kinds of paint jobs on cars and wheels spotless, otherwise with road grime on it they just look cheap.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      I like blackened cars. I don’t like that every laymen can go and buy one off the lot. It was much more fun when people did it in aftermarket fashion. Put some effort into looking different.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    My dream is coming true – bad @$$ Camry, yay!

  • avatar
    la834

    > Toyota will be unveiling blackened versions of the Camry and Highlander at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show, indicating that we’re one step closer to the trend ending.

    Zing!

  • avatar
    SilverCoupe

    My wife has a blacked out Mini Cooper S. Black car, black wheels, black tinted windows. Her brother calls it the Amish Mini. Not particularly frightening.

  • avatar
    MrAnnoyingDude

    Will make a cool Down On The Junkyard in 2035.


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