"I own 2 of the new generation Camry base model CEs (2008 and 2009). I use them for business travel, and drive 25k +/- miles per year. I liked the '08 so much, that I gave it to my daughter for her first car and bought the '09 for myself. I add that because I feel very good about the safety features on the Camry. The little things, like the automatic running lights, the 5 star ratings, etc. mean a lot to me when she hits the highway every morning for school. She likes the styling, the sound system, etc., so we are both happy.
I'm a big guy, and comfort on road trips is important. It's a great road car. Head room, leg room, seat comfort, road noise, etc. are all great, much better that some competitors. It handles well and performs good everywhere, especially on the Interstate. Very impressive for a 4 cylinder. I think that the transmission makes a big difference here.
As for gripes, the transmission does seem to upshift and downshift irregularly at neighborhood speeds (30 +/- mph), especially if going downhill. It seems as if the car can't decide on the right gear to maintain a constant speed, and makes the ride a little jumpy. It is the same for both of our cars, and I noticed the same criticism from another owner. I am not really concerned that it will become a problem, it's just annoying.
Also, on both cars, the window seal / stripping sticks to the glass. It happened to both cars within weeks of buying them. I actually thought that the power window motor was broken one day last summer, because the windows were stuck closed for several seconds. It also creates a black, visible outline on the edge of the windows where the rubber has stuck to the glass. I didn't notice this comment on any reviews, and I have not taken it to the dealer to see if it is common.
In my mind, the quality of the new generation Camrys will be determined over time, thus my 4 star rating (that plus the window issue and the OEM tires are only good for about 30k miles). It does seem that attention to detail (the "fit and finish") may be a little less than with earlier Camry models, but then, it is a lot more stylish and has more creature comforts and features than it's more austere predecessors. Maybe I'm being too tough.
Bottom line, it's a great car for the money and I would highly recommend it."
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