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2015 Toyota Camry: New Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Autotrader November 2014

Although it isn't fully redesigned, the 2015 Toyota Camry comes awfully close. Completely updated on the outside so that it barely resembles its predecessor, the latest model boasts bolder, eye-grabbing styling intended to evoke more emotion. There's also a revised interior, new features, a new trim level and an enhanced driving experience for better ride quality and more behind-the-wheel enjoyment.

But while the Camry's updates are impressive for a face-lift, they're not as comprehensive as they might seem at first glance. The latest Camry retains last year's interior dimensions, for example -- and it keeps the old model's engines, transmission and fuel economy numbers. Still, it offers a major update to remain relevant in an increasingly cutthroat midsize sedan segment.

What's New for 2015?

The latest Camry boasts new styling, a revised interior, a new trim level and a few new features -- but its updates stop just short of a full redesign.

What We Like

Roomy interior; smooth and quiet ride; surprisingly capable handling; plentiful standard features; excellent optional V6

What We Don't

Polarizing styling; gas mileage increasingly trumped by rivals

How Much?

$24,000-$32,400

Fuel Economy

The front-wheel-drive Camry offers three engines: a 178-horsepower 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, a 268-hp 3.5-liter V6 and a hybrid 4-cylinder that we've covered in a separate review. EPA fuel economy ratings for the regular 4-cylinder Camry are 25 miles per gallon in the city and 35 mpg on the highway, while the V6 checks in at a still-respectable 21 mpg city/30 mpg hwy.

Standard Features & Options

The 2015 Camry is offered in four basic trim levels: LE, SE, XSE and XLE.

The base LE ($24,000) takes the place of last year's Camry L. Standard features include 16-inch steel wheels with hubcaps, a new-for-2015 backup camera, keyless entry, automatic headlights, air conditioning, a USB music interface, a power driver's seat and a 6.1-in Entune infotainment system.

Next up is the SE ($24,800), which adds some sport to the lineup, boasting a leather-wrapped steering wheel, sporty gauges, firmer suspension for better handling and alloy wheels.

Topping the range are the XLE and XSE (both $27,000) trims, which are offered in 4-cylinder or V6 guise. Standard features include alloy wheels, a power passenger seat, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats and satellite radio. The XSE model offers a sportier character, boasting 18-in alloy wheels as well as leather and suede upholstery, while the XLE touts more comfortable 17-in alloy wheels and full leather upholstery.

As for options, the Camry offers a wide variety: Extras include a keyless ignition, a power sunroof, a navigation system, a larger 7-in Entune interface and a wide range of modern safety gadgets like adaptive cruise control, automatic high beam control, rear cross-traffic alert, blind spot monitoring and a pre-collision and braking system.

Safety

The Camry offers the usual array of standard safety equipment, including 4-wheel anti-lock brakes, curtain side airbags and front and rear side airbags. New for 2015 is a standard backup camera, while high-tech safety options include rear cross-traffic alert, blind spot monitoring, a forward-collision alert system and adaptive high beam control.

Although the revised Camry has not yet been tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), last year's mechanically similar model earned a perfect 5-star overall rating.

Behind the Wheel

In terms of drivability, the 2015 Toyota Camry retains much of what makes it so popular: It's comfortable, smooth and roomy enough for four adults and their belongings. It also boasts a simple control layout, predictable handling and a wide range of features from simple to high-tech. In other words, this car hits home for the wide majority of drivers.

For 2015, however, the Camry boasts a few additional updates designed to increase its appeal. Some revisions relate to comfort: The Camry now offers a smoother ride, and its interior boasts better materials for a more luxurious look and feel. We also think the latest Camry is a little quieter than the outgoing model.

Other updates relate to performance: SE and XSE models boast a sportier ride. While the latest Camry can't quite go toe-to-toe with performance-oriented rivals like the Mazda6, we think Toyota's midsizer is now one of the more spry models in the segment. That's big news for a car frequently criticized for its notoriously bland driving experience.

Other Cars to Consider

2015 Ford Fusion -- The Fusion is one of our favorite midsize sedans, offering excellent fuel economy, a roomy interior, a long list of technology and handsome styling.

2015 Honda Accord -- The Camry's perennial rival boasts a hybrid version, a plug-in model, a wide range of features and improved interior materials compared to previous generations. It's hard to say which is better.

2015 Mazda6 -- The Mazda6 was recently redesigned to offer a more attractive exterior and a better driving experience, just like the Camry. We're impressed with the midsize Mazda, and we think it's worth a look for just about any sedan shopper who wants to stand out from the traditional pack.

Used Lexus ES -- If it's luxury you're after, consider a pre-owned version of Lexus's popular ES sedan, which was based on the Camry until the 2012 model year. New versions are more expensive than the Camry, but a well-maintained used ES should offer high-end luxury and excellent reliability.

AutoTrader's Advice

Find a Toyota Camry for sale

It's hard to find a bad apple in this barrel. The 4-cylinder LE is certainly the value leader, but if you want extra fuel economy or performance, you can't go wrong with the Hybrid or V6, respectively. The Camry lineup is exceptionally well-rounded -- and changes for 2015 only improve things.

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Used 2015 Toyota Camry LE
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Used 2015 Toyota Camry
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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2015 Toyota Camry: New Car Review - Autotrader