Which Camry is right for me?

xplyboyxplyboy Member Posts: 5
edited March 2014 in Toyota
Hi all,

New here but I'm going to get a new Camry right away but I need your help on choosing which model. Basically, it's a work car that I drive 100 miles a day on it. With that being said, It has to be a v4. I love the Se exterior cause of the side skirt. Does the le come with the same side skirts? I don't care about anything else on the se, just the exterior looks. But if I get a v4 on the se, will it be not enough egine for that body? Again, it's not about speed for me but I don't want to feel like the engine is way to weak for the se body. So which one? If I haven't given enough info, please let me know to help with the decision.

thank you


  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    There is no V4, your choices are an I4, or a V6.

    IMO, the I4 is plenty engine, doesn't matter which trim style. Go drive both if you want.
  • xplyboyxplyboy Member Posts: 5
    Thank you for your reply. What is an I4? It's a 4 cylinder right? Could you explain the difference to me?
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    It is a I4 cylinder engine, the 4 pistons are straight in-line (4 cylinders in a line, right next to each other).

    A V-6 has 6 pistons, which are arranged in two banks of 3 each. They are offset, so if you looked at the engine lined up with the crankshaft, the two banks would form a V, with the crankshaft at the bottom of the V.

    In both engines, a complete cycle is 2 crankshaft revolutions or 720 degrees. In an I-4, there is a piston firing every 180 degrees, or 4 fires per 2 crankshaft turns.
    In the V-6, there is a piston firing every 120 degrees, or 6 fires per 2 crankshaft turns.
  • xplyboyxplyboy Member Posts: 5
    Thank you again. But basically, it's just a 4 cy vs. 6 cy lined up differently. I4 still gets better gas mileage than the v6, correct?
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    Well yes, although the V6 has been reported to get very good mileage as well. The 4 cylinder has a 5 speed auto transmission (assume you are getting an auto), and the 6 cylinder has a 6 speed auto transmission.

    6 cylinder engine costs more to buy.

    The 4 cylinder LE is the standard, high-volume Camry.
  • suydamsuydam Member Posts: 4,677
    My daughter has a '99 Camry LE (4 cyl). She goes to a college 500 miles from home so it has been on many highway trips. It's been a wonderful car and gets 30 mpg or better on the highway. I think it would do fine for you. It's not a sports car but it has plenty of acceleration for what it needs and gets better gas mileage than the V6.

    The LE has lots of creature comforts too -- like power seats, nice CD player, and such.
    '14 Buick Encore Convenience
    '17 Chevy Volt Premiere
  • olemedolemed Member Posts: 27
    Hi, I am looking to purchase a new vehicle soon. The Camry is on my short list along with the Accord and Altima. I am test driving a Camry this Friday and am debating between the CE or LE trim. I am thinking the LE will be adequate - I like that it has keyless entry and power seat. I have read a lot of reviews about the Camry and frankly, I'm worried. It sounds like there were problems with earlier builds and that perhaps these issues have been ironed out with more recently builds. I don't know. In any case, what sorts of things should I be looking out for when I do my test drive on Friday? I have owned 2 Camry's prior to my current vehicle (Acura) and it sounds like quality has been slipping.
  • stlpike07stlpike07 Member Posts: 229
    I'd go with the LE. My new Camry is awesome. Its my first car to have keyless entry and power driver's seat (I'm 23). The drivers seat is very comfortable and you can adjust the lumbar support.

    I got the JBL stereo and the moonroof package. If you are an audiophile, check out the upgraded stereo. Its it incredible.

    As far a build quality. You can ask almost anyone with a new car and they will tell you about a "problem" or two. It is in the mind of the beholder. My car is perfect. There was a TSB available to me, so I had the dealer perform it and now the vehicle performs even better.

    I would voice your concerns to the salesperson and see what he or she has to say. Judge whether or not they are being honest and the quality of their answers. Ask what the dealer will do if you experience any problems and get their "responses" in writing.

    Others have voiced concerns about the Accord and Altima, so definitely do your research. Do multiple test drives and find a dealer that has a great reputation for excellent customer service. Also, keep in mind most people come to these discussion boards to gripe and complain about their cars, definitely not a representative sample of owners. A larger majority of people don't come to these sites and say "My Camry rocks."

    Also, people fill out "fake" Camry evaluations on here and yahoo autos. I can tell because people are describing problems that the dealer can fix under factory warranty or the problem has been fixed in newer builds.

    Good luck!!!!
  • olemedolemed Member Posts: 27
    Thanks, I appreciate your insight. I have done so much research on all these cars that I feel as thought my head is going to explode. But in the end, I know it'll pay off. :)
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Member Posts: 1,711
    I agree, my CE is perfect. I got the CE because I did not want to pay the extra $1,200 for a power seat and keyless.
  • redrose85redrose85 Member Posts: 1
    Hello Everyone,
    I'm probably going to buy a camry soon and was debating between the 2007 LE and SE. This is my first time buying a new car. Let me know your experiences, good and bad! Thanks for your insight! :confuse:
  • blaster556blaster556 Member Posts: 1
    How well is a 4cyl Camry going to hold up for all
    highway driving? We'll be doing about 90 miles per day on the car, with about 80 of that highway. The highway is pretty much flat in this area.

  • olemedolemed Member Posts: 27
    I test drove the LE and found it nice but boring. Test drove the SE and it was fun!! The handling was a lot tighter with the SE. LE was just lumpy and boring to me, but that's just me.

    In the end, I decided to go with the Accord. I test drove it before the Camry and found its handling to be superb. Yes, the ride is going to be firmer and some might even say harsher but I liked it. I like feeling connected to the road and don't mind it so much. The Camry, as nice and tempting as the soft ride was, was just not for me. I honestly would have gone for the SE but the Accord is a better deal for me financially.
  • 210delray210delray Member Posts: 4,721
    No problem at all; no reason to get the V6 unless you insist on more power.
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Member Posts: 1,711
    I agree.
  • stlpike07stlpike07 Member Posts: 229
    During the last 6 months, for business and school, I drove about 140 miles a day three days a week, 130 of it highway. The car handled prefectly. I have an LE I-4 AT. The ride was very smooth and I "floated" from one destination to another. I got great gas mileage too. I drive with a heavy foot (and like to go fast). I was averaging around 30mpg during those trips.
  • des92056des92056 Member Posts: 7
    Help!! I need expert advice. Promised my wife a new car next week and it will definitely be a Camry. I can't decide between the 2007 XLE, the 2008 XLE or the Hybrid. Either XLE would have the V6 engine. My wife is not particular about which one and the $ difference doesn't matter a whole lot. Would appreciate hearing any opinions and advice. Thanks!!
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    If price doesn't matter, go 2008 over 2007. If you do a lot of city driving and/or want to be green, go Hybrid. If you keep your cars a long time or are concerned with longevity and cost of long term hybrid/battery maintenance, go standard gas XLE.
  • gooddeal2gooddeal2 Member Posts: 750
    If you can live with a Hybrid power, you shouldn’t need to get a V6...get an I-4. :P

    2007 or 2008-if you can save about 1K by getting a ’07 instead of a ’08 AND you plan to keep the car longer than 5 years, you should get a ’07.
  • hansiennahansienna Member Posts: 2,312
    WHY does it have to be a Camry XLE?

    There are 3 silver Camrys is our neighborhood: A 4 cylinder LE, a 4 cylinder XLE and a V6 LE. The V6 LE also has a sunroof, leather interior, and is sharper looking than the 4 cylinder XLE.

    The owners of the V6 Camry LE say they LOVE the power and fuel economy of their V6 Camry LE and are very glad they got the V6 LE.

    The other 2 owners love their 4 cylinder Camrys but are not as enthusiastic as the owners of the V6 Camry LE.
  • des92056des92056 Member Posts: 7
    Other than a model year and some $, is there any REAL difference between the 2007 and 2008 XLE V6?

  • des92056des92056 Member Posts: 7
    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 Member 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:
  • des92056des92056 Member Posts: 7
    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 Member 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:
  • des92056des92056 Member Posts: 7
    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.
  • car111car111 Member Posts: 24
    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.
  • carma350carma350 Member Posts: 4
    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 Member Posts: 712
    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: ;):)
  • carma350carma350 Member Posts: 4
    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 Member Posts: 4,721
    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.
  • carma350carma350 Member Posts: 4
    Ok, I'll have to test drive it. Thanks.
  • chuck28chuck28 Member Posts: 259
    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 Member 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 Member Posts: 259
    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 Member Posts: 712
    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 Member 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 Member Posts: 259
    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 Member 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.
  • sodaguysodaguy Member Posts: 84
    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.
  • djm2djm2 Member Posts: 712
    Good Morning sodaguy:
    Thank you for sharing this information with regards to the water pump on the 3.5 V6 Toyota engine. Because of issues like this, I always purchase a 6 year / 100,000 miles / top of the line manufacturers extended warranty when I purchase a new vehicle. I easily put on 20,000 miles a year, so in five years, (or sooner), I will have 100,000 miles. During that period of time & mileage, I expect to replace a water pump, alternator, and / or an A/C compressor. I guess the water pump repair will pay for the total cost of the extended warranty! I will not own this vehicle past 100,000 miles. Vehicles without an extended warranty are just too expensive to repair!
    When I owned the 2003 Honda Accord, the vehicle was great untill it hit 50,000 miles. Between 50,000 miles and 80,000 + miles, the Honda extended warranty put $3,300.00 worth of repairs into the vehicle. The A/C compressor was $1,000.00 dollars.
    Best regards & Happy Holidays! ------------ Dwayne :shades: ;):)
  • rajeevg7usrajeevg7us Member Posts: 4
    Hi All,

    I will greatly appreciate your advice/coments on helping me decide to buy my next car after I had an accident.

    I have to decide on these two cars as my 02 Camry was declared a total loss.

    Camry 03 has 36600 miles - Desert Sand
    Camry 05 has 60000 miles - Sky Blue Pearl

    Both the cars have these options and are certified from toyota (3mo/3000 mile bumber-bumber, 7yr/100000 mile power train).

    Certified Vehicle
    Power Windows
    Power Door Locks
    Tilt Wheel
    Remote Trunk Release
    Cruise Control
    AM/FM Stereo
    Cassette Player
    CD Changer
    Tinted Glass
    Additional Power Outlet(s)
    Air Conditioning
    Climate Control - Auto
    Heated Front Seats
    Heated Seats
    Power Driver Seat
    Power Passenger Seat
    Arm Rest - Rear
    Center Arm Rest
    Leather Seats
    Map Pockets
    5 Passenger Seating
    Roof - Power Moon
    Power Mirrors
    Mirrors-w Turn Signals
    Body Side Molding
    Fog Lights
    Sunglass Holders
    Cup Holders
    Trip Odometer -Dual
    Reading Lights
    Air Bag - Driver
    Air Bag - Passenger
    Air Bags - Head
    Air Bags - Side
    Rear Shoulder Harness
    Traction Control
    Power Steering
    Power Brakes
    Front Disc Brakes
    Anti-Lock Brakes
    Front Wheel Drive
    Rear Disc Brakes
    Intermittent Wipers
    Rear Defrost
    Window Locks

    I am in a delimma on the color vs power train warranty for 03 and 05. I do not drive much to work and expect to put around 5000 miles per year. Would buying the 03 be a good decision ?

    Thanks in advance for your response.

  • caazcaaz Member Posts: 209
    well... its hard to make a decision based on the info provided. for example, there are no prices, so if the 03 cost 200.00 and the 05 13,000.00 I think id take the 03, lol.... We cant help you till we know what you're going to pay, and overall condition of the 2 cars. BTW, i just purchased an 03 with 38,000 miles on it. LE 4 cyl Auto for 11,000.00 I love it, go look under camry mpg, I'm getting great gas mileage.

    p.s. Give us the rest of the info and we'll help ypu...thx
  • caazcaaz Member Posts: 209
    I do own an 06 Sienna in mint condition, has 19,000 miles on it. I'm glad you mentioned the water pump cost, i'll be sure and add water pump lubricant by prestone, as well as frequent antifreeze changes. That should take care of the risk associated with the water pump repair.

    thx for the alert
  • rajeevg7usrajeevg7us Member Posts: 4

    The 03 and 05 camry Out the door price offer is $16500. The 03 is Certified and 05 can also be certified per the dealer. Also both are V6 Engines.

    Should I be concerned that 03 Camry is already 5 years old and with certification I get only another 2 years PT warranty compared to 05 for which I will get another 4 years PT warranty.

    Will appreciate any further comments.

  • gooddeal2gooddeal2 Member Posts: 750
    IMO, I say take the '05. There's no warranty left on the '05 unless it's a Certified. Even though the '05 has a lot of miles, it will level of after a couple years because you only drive 5k/year. (May be you can ask the dealer to certify the car for free?)

    For '03: if the original owner bought the '03 in mid 2002, the car is almost 6 years old, so, you only have warranty for a little over a year on the powertrain.

    Personally, I rather get a brand new BASE Camry for a little more $$.
  • caazcaaz Member Posts: 209
    Thats alot of money for either car... My 03 i just purchased has only 39,000 miles... I paid 11,000.00 I think you can do much better. Ive seen New advertised for 16,999.00

    Good Luck

  • rajeevg7usrajeevg7us Member Posts: 4
    Hi Caaz,

    Thanks for the reply. The 03 has heated leather seats, moon roof, Front/Side and Rear airbags, Traction Control (Vehicle Skid Control) etc among the features I listed above. Also it is a V6 XLE Engine.

    Do you think with all these features the price is too much.

  • 210delray210delray Member Posts: 4,721
    If I may chime in, I think considering all of the features and the fact that the car is certified, the price is not too far out of line. That $16,999 price for a new one is undoubtedly for the base 4-cylinder model, possibly with a manual transmission.

    If I had to choose between the two used cars you've mentioned, I'd go with the '05, if the features are the same as well as the condition of the cars.
  • gooddeal2gooddeal2 Member Posts: 750
    I think considering all of the features and the fact that the car is certified, the price is not too far out of line.

    I have to agree. 16.5K OTD = 15K +TTL. There's a small room to negotiate (1 to 1.5K lower at most) but not that much. There's almost no way you can get this for 11K unless it used to have major damages. 11K is for a base LE.
This discussion has been closed.