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Toyota Camry 2006 and earlier



  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    A decent amount of activity on this board recently- very cool. Camrys are often blasted for their vanilla characteristics, but there are few cars on the market that more precisely suit the needs of the target audience.

    maxamillion- you're a younger guy, right? glad to see I'm not the only one who appreciates cars like the Camry. If youd like, shootme an email, and I'll give you my AIM SN if youd like to speak real-time.

    In answer to your question- jdeib's post is pretty comprehensive. Finding a manual Camry equipped the way you want it will be a task- but not an impossible one. If dealers give you a hard time, remind them politely that the Camry is a 400K/year volume seller, and if that particular dealership can't help you, you're confident another can.

    Also, read this article regarding Holdback, another good piece of advice from Edmunds: Again, it will give you the upper hand in negotiations- you make it know that you are aware that ordering the car will allow the dealer to secure the entire "holdback" amount from the manufacturer- so why would the dealer be unwilling to do so?.

    Finally, might I make a suggestion? If you don't need 4 doors and can wait about 6 months for selling prices to drop, get the Solara SE, which has more standard equipment at a slightly lower price than the Camry SE.

  • slov98slov98 Posts: 112
    I've noticed the thermemoter is way off after you start the car while parked outside during the summer. I've seen a reading of 107 when it was about 91, after 5-10 minutes of driving the temperature returns to a more reasonable level. I don't trust the initial reading but under cloudy conditions the temperature seems to be accurate from the start, should work in the winter when it's needed the most.
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    I am seriously considering the Solara since I now know it will be available with a 5spd manual on I4 models. I actually like it..but I like the Accord coupe as well.
  • dekesterdekester Posts: 322
    Looking for comparable vehicles with TC as we don't need an SUV with 4WD/AWD. My Olds Intrigue performed flawlessly in all the snow we got in the NE this winter with the TC kicking in just a couple of times.

    I see the NIssan Altima has TC optional; how about the Camry SE or XLE V6?


  • talon95talon95 Posts: 1,110
    VSC (Vehicle Stability Control) with Traction Control is optional on all Camry V6 models.
  • dekesterdekester Posts: 322
    Thanks. I couldn't see exactly where on Toyota's web site where it mentions TC. I hoped it was part of the VSC. Guess I'm too used to seeing it listed as a separate option/item, like GM does.

    This now pushes me towards the Camry SE or XLE over the Altima. Don't like the sloping roof on the Nissan - I just KNOW someone's going to bang their head getting in or out (probably me).

    Edmunds shows an XLE with most of the options should go for around $25G with a $28G sticker. If I go for an '03, they should be discounted soon. I guess no changes fo the '04 models?

  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    There is some speculation regarding changes to the 04 models, though nobody has confirmation. The biggest rumour circulating is that SE V6 models may get the newly introduced Solara/Sienna/RX 3.3L engine with 225hp and 240lb ft.

    It is my opinion that the incentives on the 03 will not be increased any further than the level they have already reached- I believe $750-$1500 rebate currently, dependent on the region of the US in which you live. If you can find an XLE V6 that with the equipment you want at a price you want, Id say go for it. If you want an SE perhaps wait to see if the engine upgrade is true- but, most likely, you'll pay more. Your call, I'm sure you will be happy with whatever you choose.

  • toledo19toledo19 Posts: 119
    Here in Calif they're knocking 4K off the MSRP.
  • raytoy44raytoy44 Posts: 10
    To all people who know their automatic driver seat slides......YES, Toyota now has a FIX BULLETIN for this problem.

    I have the part on order for my car. It has annoyed me for so long now that I HATE driving this car. The dealer tried telling me all seats "slide a little" but upon escalating the issue to the Toyota Regional Customer Realtions person last year they acknowleged it on my FOURTH visit, and fixed it WRONG and made it WORSE..... NOW upon trying to get it fixed again they admit the issue has a NEW PART to replace.......WHAT OTHER RECALLS DOES 2002 CAMRY HAVE??????

    The seat is also uncomfortable for people 5'6".

    CONSUMERS REPORTS Magazine 2003 NOW shows CAMRY as ONLY AVERAGE in REPAIR QUALITY (2002) while all other Toyota models are still Excellent.

    CAMRY NOW SHOULD BE AVOIDED. It is the worst car I ever bought new.

    unhappy owner
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Thats really unfortunate that you have had a bad experience with the Camry's seat and your dealership, and Im sorry that it is the worst car you have ever bought new- is this based solely on the seat, though?

    Consumer Reports did rate the Camry's predicted reliability only "Average" based on the ownership experience of 2002 MY purchasers. However, many manufactureres, even Toyotas of the past, have had several first year redesigns drop slightly in the ratings. I'd be willing to guess that this rating will pick up at the next review.

    As a reference, I'm 5'7 and have no problem with any of the Camry seats, front or back.

  • raytoy44raytoy44 Posts: 10
    The seat sliding and me hating my 2002 CAMRY is based on MANY PROBLEMS. I have several posts on the EDMUNDS CAMRY PROBLEMS boards so I will no repeat them. The Edmunds Boards are very disorganized and redundant.

    Please see my PROBLEMS LIST but it includes engine noises/weakness and tranny jumping when cold problems and MANY PEOPLE WRITE of them on the boards. I have them ALL!!! The car S**ks to drive and the dealers all seem to be in denial. I had 3 prior Toyotas which were great.
    The 2002 Camry is a LEMON and crap.

  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    YOUR 2002 Camry is apparently a lemon and crap. That has not been the case with ours. Ours was not flawless, but has been an outstanding vehicle over the last 34K miles. Again, I'm sorry that you have had a bad experience, but its hard to make blanket statements based off one vehicle- I had a 94 Civic that had a MAJOR mechanical breakdown far earlier than I would have ever anticipated. But I dont think Hondas are junk.

    Also, please do not slam the Edmunds boards- they are one of the truly useful consumer based automotive tools on the web. If you dont agree with the structure here, nobody is forcing you to post. Among others I am sure, my experience here has been overwhelmingly one of increased automotive awareness, and I enjoy reading and writing about vehicles.

  • dchoppdchopp Posts: 256
    I have an 03 and I think its a marvelous piece of engineering.My wife is 5'6'' and thinks the ride and seat comfort is outstanding. She claimes its 1000 times better than that Grand AM we got rid of. Maybe you should try another service dept. as they are all different.
  • bklynguybklynguy Posts: 275
    I just saw a picture of the 04 Solara's dash / interior, it looks really nice. Any chance the 04 Camry will get the updated interior and more HP ( and some HIDs ) ? I know some of you guys may suggest the ES 330 but I'm interested in the Camry XLE V6 ( or 04 Acura TL, who knows )
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    All good questions. Its all speculation right now, but the two big 2004 changes that people have heard rumours about are possibly the 3.3L V6 from the Solara being used in the SE grade Camry, and ABS w/Electronic Brake Force Distribution being standard across the line.

    Additionally, I emailed a dealer that we almost purchased our 02 from, and he said this :

    "Hi Joe, The 2004 Camry is due out early Sept. The only change that was mentioned that might come to life is a redesigned dashboard. The 2003 Camry recieved upgrades of standard power seat and keyless entry"

    So maybe you are on the mark with the new dash design. Right now, its anyones guess. Toyota is always historically tight lipped with regards to the Camry- nobody new about the VVTi V6 introduced midyear until about a week before the announcement, for example.

  • dillon3499dillon3499 Posts: 11
    I was able to get a brochure on the 04 yesterday. The only significant change is the addition of a Limited Edition which appears to be a LE dressed up 16" wheels etc.

    I am still trying to decide if I purchase an 03 LE, Auto, with Conv + B, Side AB, Antilock and the Mirrow. I just got a quote for $18,949 after $1K rebate, plus Tax and Tags. Should I go for it or get a fresh 04 and most likely lose the $1K?? Any ideas will be appreciated.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    How were you able to get a brochure?! I would very much like to have one, and I'm surprised, if what you say is true, that Toyota has changed so little. If that is the case, go with the 03 and save a grand. You're getting a very good portfolio of safety and convenience options at that price.

    PS- Is there any way you could scan the brochure or fax or whatever? I enjoy being the locus of Toyota/Lexus info for friends and family. (A somewhat dubious distinction, I suppose, given the vanilla brand connotation)
  • petlpetl Posts: 610
    Anything is possible. However, I would be surprised if Toyota would redesign the dashboard on the 2004 Camry. Particularly since it is only in its 3rd year of the new design (how time flies). Also the Camry is still selling very well. Major changes to the interior and the exterior usually occur after 4.5 to 5 years with minor exterior redesign changes usually appear in the 4th year of production. Mechanical improvements and upgraded features are more likely to occur at any time because changes to the vehicle structure are not required and the assembly process remains the same. They could change the instrumentation cluster and/or it's lighting without redesigning the dash to give it a different look (like they have done with the SE). They don't spend money unless they have to. There's a reason why Toyota is the richest and most revered car company in the world.

    The Solara has always had a different dashboard and interior layout. The Solara's is more luxurious. This trend will probably continue. That's too bad.
  • dillon3499dillon3499 Posts: 11
    TO: Alpha 01

    I don't have fax capability but I got mine through a Dealer. Call your local Dealer and see if you can pick up an 04 Camry brochure!

    The Dealer says he will get the 03 I want and that I can look it over before committing. Of course this has to be accomplished by Thursday. If the 03 is fresh with the right packages I'll probably buy it. I'll let you know!
  • lok888lok888 BostonPosts: 1,788
    When I shopped for my Camry SE, my dealer told me they don't make all colors on SE. I guess my dealer was lied to me. They just wanted me to but whatever SE they had in the lot. So far, I have seen a black, silver (mine), beige, dark green and dark blue on the road.
  • san123san123 Posts: 2
    Sometimes I notice the key gets warm after I drive my 98 Camry. Is this a problem related to the ignition, or electrical.

    My car battrey also leaks. But I still see the green light indicator on the battrey. The engine cranks and runs great. Why should a battrey leak. Can leak be associated with the ignition key to warm up.

    Any thoughts please.
  • brozhnikbrozhnik Posts: 172
    A couple of basics, shouldn't have to ask the board, but:

    1) is it correct that any Camry that has ABS also has EBD (electronic brakeforce distribution, if I remember that right). This is NOT the case with Accords, but this is what a Toyota dealer told me about Camries. EBD is definitely a feature I want.

    2) How important is traction control in a midwestern state with a winter? I can get an LE with ABS and curtain bags for, oh, mid 18K (is that too high?) but to get traction control I need to get up to a V6 XLE (is that right?).

    That's getting up to the 21K range if i am correct. So--your thoughts please--do I need to do that? If so, why? Thanks!
  • brozhnik - another feature you might want to consider is stability control - it is an independent option from traction

    I live in the midwest and agree that the additional features for driving on ice is worth the extra expense.
  • slov98slov98 Posts: 112
    i have a v6 camry with ABS but can't find anywhere that I also have EBD, not on the sticker or on yahoo auto

    btw v6xle will cost more than 21k, that is v6le price
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    -Camry SE models are available in any color.

    -I am sorry, but I do not know anything about leaking batteries.

    -Any Camry equipped with ABS since the redesign for the 02 Model Year has EBD. This is not a feature that you will notice functioning, but I believe that it serves a good purpose- to best appropriate brake force.

    -To get traction control, it is not necessary to purchase the XLE V6 Camry; the LE V6 and SE V6 also offer the VSC (which includes traction control) option. Thus, VSC is available on any V6 model, but none of the 4s. (V6 LEs with VSC/Side Airbag package will sticker for about $24K, and if you can get one for 21K, you've got a very decent deal, IMO).

  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    SE in Black Walnut was beautiful. WOW! Very rare combination so hard to find though. Phantom Gray is nice on the SE. SE's are hard to find in Midwest. You can get any Camry you want as long as it is a LE 4CY auto.
  • lok888lok888 BostonPosts: 1,788
    alpha01 - That's what I thought. I noticed my SE has no rear chrome garnish (license plate) and chrome window frames like the LE and XLE. Also, do you know if the rear headrests are adjustable?
  • tpm2tpm2 Posts: 3
    Considering purchase of one of the above. Need input with regards to which vehicle will offer the lowest operating/main. costs and be most rewarding to drive over the expected 5 year 125k ownership. Driving is mixed 50/50-City/Hwy.
    Have heard pro's and con's for both. Need input from current owners.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Thanks to a very friendly dealer up in WI, I was able to obtain (a bit earlier than some of the dealers in NJ, I suppose, as two denied my in person request) an 04 brochure.

    Many thanks to this individual.

    I've tried to summarize what I saw, and most of it is already known, but here it is:

    2004 Camry changes:

    1. LE models: New 15-inch alloy wheel design (opt. 4 cyl./ std. V6).

    2. New “Limited Edition” model includes LE 4 cylinder features plus:
    § Limited Edition Crystal White paint
    § Limited Edition Fawn fabric
    § Limited Edition Champagne pearl badging
    § Limited Edition embroidered floormats
    § Unique grille design
    § Fog lights
    § Unique 16-inch alloy wheels on P215/60R16 all season tires
    § Woodgrain-style interior trim
    § JBL Premium 3-in-1 AM/FM Cassette and 6 disc CD Changer w/ 8 Speakers in 6 locations and FM Diversity reception
    § Leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob

    3. SE V6 models: 3.3L VVTi V6 producing 225hp @5600RPM & 240lb.ft. @3600 RPM and 5 speed Super ECTi transmission, rated at an Estimated 20/29 city/hwy

    Mid-season 03 changes carried over:

    4. LE and SE models: Power driver’s seat and keyless entry standard

    5. SE models/XLE V6: Power moonroof standard

    6. LE V6 and XLE V6: VVTi added to existing 3.0L V6, now produces 210hp @5800 RPM & 220 lb.ft. @ 4400 RPM and 5 speed Super ECTi EPA rated at 20/28 city/hwy

  • 18fan18fan Posts: 147
    Do you have any info on what the August incentives will be on 03 Camry? I am in Pittsburgh.... think that's the Central Atlantic region?? Thanks.

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