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Toyota Camry Hybrid



  • babyrocketbabyrocket Posts: 54
    I've had the TCH for 2 weeks and have put the NAV system through its paces in several different cities, and I've gotta say that so far it's been perfect. I've been very impressed with both the street/POI database as well as the usability, and the routing has been spot on for me. Your mileage obviously may vary.
  • wvgasguywvgasguy Posts: 1,405
    Great idea. I do have that as one of my destinations.

    I'll confess there were two times I now remember being "lost". Not really lost but I didn't know an easy way out and both times I got further in before I got out. That was in Miami and Philadelphia surburb areas late at night where I found my self in a place I didn't want to be.
  • willybillwillybill Posts: 83
    Thanks so much for your reply and comments.

    Bill H :)
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,179
    That was in Miami

    That was me in a rental car. Thankfully it was the middle of the day. Not a pleasant feeling I assure you.

    I set up the GPS system more for fun than anything. I came close to having the latest and greatest from Pioneer installed in the RV. The laptop did fine and tracked our whole vacation in Texas. I saved over $2k going that route.
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    that does raise a good point - when in a rental car with a NAV system, make sure you program your hotel as a destination. That way you can get out of sketchy neighborhoods if you get lost.
  • gandyfiregandyfire Posts: 36
    I have not heard of any built-in NAV that compares to the Microsoft Streets program. Mine came bundled with a dandy GPS for $106. I use one of my old laptop computers and have a nice big 15 inch screen

    I too purchased Microsoft Streets and trips. Great program with one flaw. Unless you lower the preference for secondary roads it routes you out of the way. We went from Florida to New York last summer pulling a 31 foot trailer. The program routed me up a 9% grade for 2 miles with a hairpin turn at the top and came back down the other side of the mountain just outside of Harrisburg, Pa :mad: when it should have sent me up a more direct route on highways 11/15 :mad:

    So I figure the Nav system in the TCH can't be any worse
  • wvgasguywvgasguy Posts: 1,405
    That was in Miami

    Unfortunately I had my wife and kids, it was close to midnight and I got somewhere I didn't want to be and wasn't sure how to get out. I was speeding on some back road near warehouses just hoping a cop would stop me and escort me back to the interstate.
  • presbyterpresbyter Posts: 5
    Picked up my TCH (Jasper Green, B Package {Leather, Moonroof, Power Passenger Seat, & a few other trivialities) 3 days ago, after waiting for almost 2 months from the time I put a deposit down. Still, this was the 1st one sold in my urban area - we have 3 dealers - and they are coming in at the rate of about 1 per month.

    The Camry replaces a 2002 BMW 330xi, which was fun to drive, but I have a natural averion to paying more dollars than I am getting litres; plus I am retiring soon, and so while I could write off about half of the Beemer's operating expenses against taxes, that will soon stop.

    Early impressions are favourable - the only, very minor, complaint is an almost inaudible rattle from the driver's side dash vent (the left-most one), which is present when the fan is running at the highest speed, and otherwise when the car is on a rough road. Probably something loose, or left in the duct. I'm getting after the dealer to solve that.

    Compared to the BMW, this car is a bit of boat, but I expected that. It's perky enough, if you put your foot down, and don't mind the fuel consumption meter hitting the upper stop, but for more economical driving, it is slow off the mark. (On the up side, around town I am using half the fuel that the Beemer used, and it is regular, rather than premium.) The power steering is precise, and responsive, but there isn't a lot of road feel at low speeds - it gets a bit better at highway speeds, but if you want sports sedan responsiveness, forget it. Again, I expected that.

    I've only gone about 250 km so far, and have been learning how to drive this cart for economy, rather than performance, but at present I'm down about one quarter of a tank, and showing a tank average of 6.7 litres per 100 km, which is somewhere north of 40 miles per US gallon. That's about a 45% reduction from my previous fuel consumption for the same kind of mixed driving, and, I'm paying 11 cents less per litre for regular as opposed to premium.

    Despite my limited driving experience with this car, I have learned enough that most trips, even short ones of less than 5 km, I get the "Excellent" message when I shut down.

    There's been some discussion about the NAV system, which is not available in Canada. Given the price, I'm not sure I would want it. I have a Garmin Nuvi, which I have mounted on the windshield to the left of the instrument "hump" where it is right in my line of sight. I have routed the power cable so that it is toatally out of sight, except for about 4 inches from the headunit to the side of the car. that gives me verything the NAV system would give me, including voice directions, at about $2000 less. Yes, there are some errors in the included map, as with the NAV system, but Garmin provides the 1st update map free, and unlimited software upgrades.

    There has also been discussion of the radio sound quality. I have fairly sensitive ears (which is why a soft rattle from a ventilation vent bothers me), but as far as i am concerned this sound system is the equal of the one in my former Beemer, with the improvement that at high volume there is no induced rattle from the surrounding door lining. But then, I tend to listen to classical music and jazz - if your choice is heavily underlined by bass percussion rap, you may find the sound kind of puny. But, it is accurate! I've burned an MP3 CD to test that capability, and it plays folder names, tracks, and artist as on the disk - my only complaint is that text longer than 9 characters is not displayed - unless there is some way of making it scroll that I have not yet discovered. (Excursus - if you get one of these, definitely read the owner's manual, and keep it handy; there is a lot of stuff on these cars that requires exploring, and testing, and customizing!)

    Trunk size - definitely small, but exactly the same size as my former BMW 330xi. However, it is differently configured. Previously, I could get two large suitcases in side by side, now they fit one on top of the other. In both cases, other stuff fits in odd nooks and corners around the luggage.

    One luggage issue to be aware of; while both back seat fold forward, only the passenger's side allows a pass-through from the trunk to the rear seat - the other side is blocked by a high-voltage battery ventilation duct. (Question - what design decision went with retaining the standard 60+ litre fuel tank, which gives you about 1000km cruising range, rather than a smaller tank, and more luggage room.) I can live with the small trunk space, and the pass-through compromise, but if your life-style requires you to be able to travel with "stuff" for four, this is not your car - a roof-rack would wreck your milage, and towing a trailer is verboten by the owner's manual, and would do nasty things to your warranty.

    Recommendations: a qualified yes - it meets my expectations and then some, but that is based on my needs! Your milage may vary, so evaluate carefully what you expect from a car before committing. I think this vehicle is a reasonable compromise between performance and fuel economy, and given the state of our planet, I am willing to give up some performance for less fuel consumption and fewer emmissions. You may think differently.
  • spiff72spiff72 Posts: 179
    Hmmm - no news is good news?
  • presbyterpresbyter Posts: 5
    Sorry spiff - I hit "Enter" and accidentally posted a zero content message - but see my edited verion.
  • 07tch07tch Posts: 2
    My Titanium/Ash (NAV, leather, sunroof, mats, heated seats & mirrors) has 1000 miles and I've averaged just over 40 mpg (mostly highway). I've added 35% tint to the glass, but in reading previous posts, I'm not alone in wanting other (non-hybrid) options such as the sliding armrest from the XLE, factory fog lights (although I'd settle for a switch under the dash rather than the factory switch on the turn signal) and options that would probably affect my mileage such as the SE's spoiler, ground effects and black grill. The spoilers are available on e-Bay, but the dealer has been no help on the other items. If anyone has done any of these mods, please post part #s, cost, installation experience, etc. Thanks.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Nice report. Complete and balanced IMO. Adding your ex- to the list..

    13. 02 330xi
  • hueristixhueristix Posts: 30
    I got my loaded magnetic gray today and it is so good I almost feel guilty. The ride is so quiet. The interior is super nice. The electronics are overwhelming, but easy enough. So far I have driven it as normal with plenty of speed and averaged 38 mpg but only put 27 miles on it.

    This replaces a 1995 Mazda Protege that served me well with great mileage and "pickup" but now I can have improvement in both areas and about 5 more airbags.

    I got it for $750 under MSRP but only because my buddy is an old friend of the dealer! This was the 4th one in Toyota of Santa Cruz, and the 1st in this mag. gray. About 10 people on the list.

    I must say I would like an even darker gray but in the evening it looks quite dark. I had a 1987 Camry so this is a 20 year anniversary. This one is MUCH bigger and much more luxurious. I am happy with my decision- love feeling like I am frugal and in a solid sedan too.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    It might be interesting to see what the Previous vehicle(s) were:
    I know of one where it was ...

    1. 1/4 ton pickup
    2. 1/2 ton pickup ( 20 yrs old )
    3. Honda Element
    4. 2003 Infiniti FX45
    5. 98 Camry XLE ( 115K trouble free miles )
    6. 04 Accord LX
    7. 95 Toy Land Cruiser (200,000 miles 13 mpg! I love the LC and am keeping it as well)
    8. 91 Camry V6 Le (selling)
    9. 06 Chrysler 300 loaded (bought 03/13/06, called last week for a TCH just went and watched it come off the truck 05/24/2006)
    10. 97 Mercury Sable LS (219,000 miles)
    11. 2004 Infiniti FX45 (14 mpg) :(
    12. 1995 Avalon 164K trouble free miles.
    13. 02 330xi
    14. 1995 Mazda Protege that served me well with great mileage and "pickup"

    Addon as you wish.
  • lungdoc63lungdoc63 Posts: 55
    What color is the interior - Gray or Bisque. Did you see both options? What are your thoughts?
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Hey Gary - LarsB here......long time no "see"

    Here's a test for your MS S&T program. See if this address shows up:

    4135 E. La Salle St. Phoenix AZ 85040

    I have yet to see a mapping program on the web or anywhere else which will show this address.

    Anyway, gents and gals, I traded my 2004 HCH for a 2007 TCH yesterday. Base model, white with tan cloth interior. Paid Sticker, at $26,758 with options heated outside mirrors (really need that in PHOENIX you know!!) rear bumper applique and carpet/trunk mat set. I wasn't really ready to buy, I wanted a Red TCH, but no one had one and no one had one coming in anytime soon. The sales guy just kept sweetening the deal. I got a zero deductible extended warranty, one year standard maintenance (oil changes etc.) for free, and he backed off the normal $1000 ro $2500 he has been gouging people on the Hybrids. They gave me $17,000 for my 2004 HCH with 32K miles. Just a hard to pass up deal.

    I love the electric-only mode. I can use that at several places in my commute, and did so yesterday. When I enter my gated community, I'm all electric from there into my garage. One main street is under construction until 2008 and the speed limit is 25 MPH - I was all electric on most of that stretch too. My kids' summer camp is on a 25 MPH road - all electric there TOO.

    I'll keep you all posted on the MPG I get. I'm at 31.9 for the first 27 miles, but I'm still learning, and the A/C was running full blast most of the time yesterday. It will get better, as my TCH did, as I learn the car.

    Happy Motoring all you TCH owners !!!
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,179
    Cool man, I like white cars. They are cooler in our desert heat. You got a good price for your HCH and I think your going to like the TCH a lot.

    You got Bill Gates on that address. You won't have to make your payments on the TCH. The bill collectors won't be able to find you :shades:

    Have fun with that new car. I bet your kids get lost with the additional room in back. I imagine you will be over 40 MPG by the first 1000 miles.

    Mapquest has you so I guess you have to make the payments :)
  • hmwellshmwells Posts: 2
    I saw the TCH at the Chicago Auto Show back in February and the following week, I plunked a $500 check down as a deposit. I told the dealer that since I was currently driving a Jaguar, I wanted the car loaded to the max, including leather. The dealer asked me to give him a couple of color options, so I gave him blue and grey. The first one that came in was a white basic model, so I took a pass.

    Last night I picked-up a fully loaded model in blue. The dealer told me that they have no more models coming in for the near future and that there are 25 people on his list. I did pay sticker price for the car, but I am happy to do it based on the price-point and the fact that there will be a gift from Uncle Sam next year. I must say that the car is all I expected and more. I owned a Lexxus in the mid 90's and this car seems as quiet and well-appointed as that one. Now its on to ordering those smug vanity plates.
  • Very well written report, thanks.
    My TCH should be arriving around June 16th :) Can you tell me if the consumption readings are switchable from US to imperial please.

    Even though the Nav system has its shortcomings it would be nice to have it for the other features, phone list, maintenance schedules, fancy hybrid system screen etc.

    I am considering installing a factory Nav system after I receive my car if the Canadian model has the correct wiring and would give the readouts in kilometres as well.
    Maybe a bit too much to hope for. :surprise:
  • wvgasguywvgasguy Posts: 1,405
    I have fairly sensitive ears (which is why a soft rattle from a ventilation vent bothers me)

    Interesting, I have lousy hearing and the rattle bothers me as well.
  • Near the top of this page, there is an Edmund's "Rate It" feature, where owners can provide evaluation of their cars. There are currently 65 reviews. I clicked to add mine, and found a pop-up menu of various 2007 Camry models... all... except... the... HYBRID!!!
  • gandyfiregandyfire Posts: 36
    the only, very minor, complaint is an almost inaudible rattle from the driver's side dash vent (the left-most one), which is present when the fan is running at the highest speed, and otherwise when the car is on a rough road. Probably something loose, or left in the duct. I'm getting after the dealer to solve that.

    I understand from reading the owners manual, the left vent contains the A/C Plasmacluster system which emits ions to help keep good air quality in the cabin. Page 235 states "a low noise may be heard during operation". Is this possibly the "rattle" you are hearing?

    By the way, if you are like me and are still waiting for your TCH to arrive, the owners manual and Nav manual are available for download on the TUNDRASOLUTIONS web site. A one year membership costs only $25. IMO it is well worth it. By the time my car arrives I should have a pretty good grasp on how everything works and all the do's and don'ts. Also if any service bulletins should come available in the next year these would be accessible as well. Check it out.
  • gandyfiregandyfire Posts: 36
    Southeast Toyota re adjusted their inventory today. There are now 462 in the system. However, only 3% are loaded with factory leather, NAV, and moonroof. Also once again they have added a plethura of port installed options to the loaded ones giving them an MSRP above $35,000

    Many of the new ones coming in have port installed leather, Satellite, 18" or 19" wheels, mud guards, alarm system with remote start, etc. So if you want a really really loaded one and live in the Southeast they are all scheduled to arrive in June.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,179
    That is just for the 2007 Camry. If you go into new cars there is a separate category for the Camry Hybrid. 8 people have rated the TCH so far. This link should do it for you... ml
  • Thanks Gandyfire for the TundraSolutions tip. I just joined, paid the $25, and downloaded the service manual for the TCH that I'll own next week. After touring around that site and seeing all what they have to offer, I concluded that it was worth it...but that's just me! El geeko-extraordinaire! :D
  • Thanks, I just added my brief review.
  • willybillwillybill Posts: 83
    I was called today and picked up my TCH, Magnetic grey, ASH leather, NAVI, Heted Seats, sunroof the works. I am SOOO impressed!.. I Love it !!. It is exceptionally quiet, the bluetooth phone works great, the navi map is exceptionally clear and easy to read. The restaurant indicators even have LOGOS! IE Mcd abd BK etc. My initial average fuel economy was 33.1 MPG but we were hitting it kind of hard. The switchover between gas and elec is hardly perceptable very seamelss. Very smooth, very quiet.
    The lack of any sound other than the AC at stops is a little un-nerving at first but the power is there again when you need it. The CD changer is behind the NAVI screen and it tips out and forward to load CD's. The fold down rear seats are nice and the control for them is in the trunk. The keyless entry is awesome. It knows when you have the fob in the car and you can then push the start button. The JBL sound is great. The audio cuts off when the phone is answered. You can set speed dials and dial when driving using speeddial or enter numbers when in park.
    The flow screen is a nice demonstration mode for passengers but I found the consumption screen to be more useful. The touch screen is awesome. I love absolutely everything about the car so far, but have only had a chance to put 60 miles on it.
    Now for the good news.. I paid retail as the dealer quoted me. $30,589.
    To me it feels like a luxury automobile coming from a HONDA PILOT!. I'll have pcis tomorrow and more to report but so far, I am ecstatic !. The dealer had one person in front of me in sequence and offered it first to him. He declined due to the NAVI and leather. They called me, I told them hold it I would be there. Guy #1 came back and changed his mind and the dealer honored my committment.
    Probably not good news for the guy who declined.
    Anyway. There will be much much more posted here in the days ahead. Magnetic Grey and ASH is the combination you want! Also no phony woodgrain.. Just a nice brushed aluminum on the console with grey leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.

    Goot ago now... need to take another look at it in the garage!! :blush:
  • gampagampa Posts: 78
    Wonder if anyone was able to search the web for a simple Auto computer mount for a smaller laptop. I kind of like the idea of a laptop instead of the indash system... more flexibility and options... could add GPS, Street and Maps 2006, mobile dash cam , internet access, phone access and for sales personel and traveling nurses... easy access to their next appointment information.

    Need a simple mount for say a 10 inch laptop/ notebook and accessories.(cordless IF mouse). that is sturdy yet tucks/folds/collapses away when not in use to be out of the way of the passenger.

    ...and when you are done, you take it with you...

    I have seen laptops in range from $1299 - $2100 in stores

    What do you think?

    Does anyone have this set up?

  • ehaszehasz Posts: 15

    Thanks for the great post! Your excitement for the car is contagious... not that I wasn't excited enough already. Mine was supposed to arrive this morning, but mysteriously didn't...
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    Dealing with a laptop for navigation and internet in a car is too much hassle.
    Just get a Blackberry 8700c with Edge internet access and a Garmin Nuvi.
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