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Which Camry is right for me?



  • Other than a model year and some $, is there any REAL difference between the 2007 and 2008 XLE V6?

  • Okay, I think I will want the V6 power rather than the I4 hybrid. I always keep my cars longer than 5 years and, in fact, will be disposing of my "newest" car, a 2001 model, to acquire the Toyota. The 2000 Sienna my wife drives now will become my car and the new one will be hers and the one we use for trips, etc.

    Thanks for your help.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    After driving a 2006 Sienna LE and previously a 2002 T&C LX, my wife and I cannot imagine why you would not get another Sienna for the trips. We would hate to drive a Camry on trips instead of the more roomy, comfortable Sienna. :shades:
  • Don't get me wrong. We love our Sienna and would use it for some of our trips but not all. It is a 2000 XLE V6 and we have had not a single problem with it through its 135,000 miles. It is very comfortable, has power to spare and handles like a dream. Best car we've ever had! We'll likely use the Camry on most trips, however, because of anticipated better gas mileage. And we are expecting it to be very comfortable and roomy enough for the 2 of us as well. We don't really need or want a second mini-van, even if it is a Sienna. And we're not about to get rid of the one we have. We'll ditch my 2001 Saturn L300 instead when we get the Camry.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    Easily understood. I would also dump the Saturn and keep the Sienna, and as you write, you don't really need 2 Siennas for just 2 people on a trip.

    My wife and I prefer the extra space of the Sienna with gas mileage not much less than a Camry with the same engine BUT we also like to take 2 grandchildren (and sometimes their mother and dad) on long trips.

    Some friends have a 4 cyl Camry and V8 Ford Explorer. They drive the Camry most of the time because of much better gas mileage. Comfort means more to my wife and I, so we would drive the Explorer even though the Explorer gas mileage is atrocious compared to a Sienna. :shades:
  • Thanks for your comments. I appreciate you taking the time to post.

    To be honest, most of our driving trips are business and we usually want to just get there, get done and get back. For vacations, we usually fly and rent a car. We don't have grandkids yet but I suppose we will one day and we would take them on vacations with us sometimes. Probably then we would drive and take the Sienna because it is roomier than the Camry will be. I'm pretty convinced we'll go ahead and get the Camry XLE with the V6 engine, though it's not 100% until we go ahead and do it.

    Best of wishes to you and yours. Thanks again for your comments.
  • Stiffer breaks on 2008 LE, XLE V6. The steering/gas seems very little harder (not very noticeable).The feeling of space in 2008 XLE didn't feel as much as 2007.
  • It's nice to read that some Camry owners have had their transmission flare problem possibly solved. But I've heard enough Camry V6 owners reporting flare problems so I'm no longer thinking about buying the Camry V6. Would a Camry 4-cylinder be a trustworthy and reliable alternative (assuming one is willing to take the big HP hit)? I ask that question because it seems Toyota has had FWD transaxle problems since 1999. What are the best FWD alternatives to the Camry?
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi carma350:
    I have a 2007 V6 XLE Camry with 20,000 + miles, and I DO NOT have the transmission "flare" issue. The vehicle was purchased in January 2007 from a dealer in nothern New Jersey. I think that the Camry is a great vehicle. The problems that you read about on these boards are from a small percentage of vehicles. Based on my Camry, I would consider another Toyota in 2010. Depending on the cost of fuel, I might go with a hybrid or the four cylinder Camry.
    Go to a Toyota dealer and test drive the vehicle that you want to purchase. You will know immediately if the vehicle has a "flare issue"! ------ And NO, I do not work for Toyota or a Toyota dealer!
    Best regards. ------------- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • djm2, thanks for responding. Glad to hear you're having a great experience with your Camry V6.

    As a potential buyer of a Toyota V6 / 6-speed powertrain (used in 2008 Camry, 2008 Lexus ES, and 2008 Avalon), the $30,000 (loan-financed) question for me is, what percentage of owners of this Toyota powertrain experience the "flare issue"? Probably nobody but Toyota knows for sure. The range of forum opinions by Toyota V6 owners is pretty wide.

    Some owners, such as yourself, have said those experiencing the flare are a "small percentage" (Does "small" mean 0.01%, 0.1%, 1%, 10%, etc.?) On the other hand, one owner said if someone buys a car with this Toyota powertrain, they will probably experience at least the "small flare" (200rpm). How does he know that?

    Another concern is, if I buy a car with a powertrain that has the flare (whatever the chance of that is), what is the flare's severity? The range of forum opinions on that has also been wide. Of the owners who experience the flare, some have said it's only a brief tach needle jump and mild engine rev (noticeable only by looking at the tach). But at least one owner said the flare is accompanied by an engine jerking or hesitation. That's a concern. And that's leaving aside the question of what kind of powertrain damage is caused by a (mild or severe) flare problem.

    Then there's Toyota's response. So far, it seems the flare issue hasn't been resolved. One owner said Toyota should label the problem by its real name, a transmission "slip," not a "flare" which sounds less critical. Will Toyota resolve the problem within another year? Don't know.

    I wish I knew what the true odds were of getting stuck with a car that has the flare. If a car has the flare, it might damage the powertrain, even if Toyota eventually resolves the problem. I'm comparing Camry V6 to competitors, even thinking of the Camry 4cyl which doesn't seem to have any problems as significant as the V6 flare. I wonder whether the 4cyl provides enough power.
  • 210delray210delray Posts: 4,722
    I'd personally go with the 4-cylinder. It's got plenty of power, based on my experience with two Camrys from the prior generation. Try before you buy though.
  • Ok, I'll have to test drive it. Thanks.
  • chuck28chuck28 Posts: 257
    Hello Dwayne, in all due respect I think you are leading people on. I know you have been pro Toyota since I have been reading your post.
    The fact of the matter is that you cannot just go and test drive a Camry and know if it has the problem?
    The car has to be sitting for a long enough period of time maybe 8 hours to notice the flare and it might not happen everytime you start off.
    Most test drives are not done from a cold start seeing someone usally drives up the car for you before your test drive.
    I think you are trying to sell cars?
    Merry Christmas!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Um, I think if our friend Dwayne were really trying to "sell cars", he wouldn't be posting so frequently about his, um, over-enthusiastic maintenance schedule! ;)

    I think your point is that we should hear from those who have actually experienced the flare on whether a test drive will show the problem - makes sense to me. :)
  • chuck28chuck28 Posts: 257
    Hello Pat, I can't agree with your answers. First of all I think it was mentioned in a recent post and something I agree with is that dealerships make more money off the servicing of a car than the sale it's self.
    I also don't understand your answer to the point that a test drive would not determine if the car has the flare problem. If you test drive a car and it does not flare does not mean it does not have the problem. My car only flared once in the morning and once in the evening. Point was the car has to come off a cold start and the flare cannot usually be repeated until the next cold start.
    Most test drives don't take place with a cold start.
    Anyhow, Merry Christmas!
  • djm2djm2 Posts: 705
    Hi Chuck28:
    I am not pro Toyota! The only reasons why I own a Toyota Camry today are as follows: 1.) The Honda Accord seating quality was killing my body.---- and ---- 2.) I could not get an "in stock" Buick or Chevrolet Impala, (in New Jersey), with the required color & trim package. The Toyota Camry was third on the list of desired vehicles. I wanted to purchase an American brand name in place of my Honda Accord. Yes, ---- I earn my living in sales, but I do not sell Toyotas.
    From what I have been reading about this problem, the "flare" is just part of the issue. Some owners are commenting about the "shift pattern" when accelerating onto a highway, or quick acceleration / braking issues in passing situations.
    If you truly want to purchase a new Camry. Go to a Toyota dealer and discuss your concerns about the "flare issue" with the sales person at the dealership. Tell him / her that you will purchase the vehicle if it does not have the problem! --Select a vehicle that you want to purchase from their new vehicle holding lot. Ask for a set of dealer plates, and take that vehicle for a ride! If is does not have the problem, you have just bought yourself a new vehicle. When I purchased my Camry, I took a test ride on the vehicle that I was purchasing. YES, it was a cold start of the vehicle!
    Best regards. ----- Dwayne :shades: ;) :)
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi Chuck. I don't think you understood my post. I was supporting your post except for the fact that you said Dwayne was trying to sell cars. I do not believe that. Otherwise I was just suggesting that someone who has experienced the flare issue would be the most helpful in telling us how to determine whether a particular car has it.

    I did not say anywhere that a test drive would (or would not) determine if the car has the flare problem. Read it again. :)

  • chuck28chuck28 Posts: 257
    Hello Pat, I'm sorry for the misunderstanding. I think the bottom line is that there are cars with these problems but Toyota has not come out publicly to tell us they have a problem nor have they told us they don't have the problem.
    I can assure you they have a problem. Atleast my 07 v-6 Camry does.
    I said it before Buyer Beware!!!

    Merry Christmas!!! Chuck
  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    Chuck, I think you're trying to make a mountain out of a molehill. If you are dissatisfied with your Camry go to arbitration and have them buy it back. Plain and simple.
    Yes, I do sell Toyotas and also drive what I sell. I've owned three Camrys and would buy another one in a heartbeat, even without test driving to check for the so called "flare". This flare is nothing but the transmission shifting quickly into the next gear.
  • Potential buyers of the Toyota 3.5L V6 (found in the Sienna, Avalon and Camry) need be aware of the high repair costs that are associated with this engine.

    On page 9 of the factory service manual, it states the instructions for water pump removal.

    Replacing the water pump on the Toyota 3.5L V6 require engine and transaxle removal!

    For those of us who plan to keep this vehicle for as long as possible (200k+), it's very likely that we'll have to replace the water pump at least once. With this design, replacing the water pump is likely to be very, very expensive, possibly at least twice the amount it costs to replace the timing belt and water pump on a Honda 3.5L V6.

    This is something that potential buyers of the Toyota 3.5L V6 need to keep in mind.
This discussion has been closed.