Bold New Design, Still Old Reliable

Did you know the name "Camry" is derived from a Japanese word meaning "crown?" The name makes sense as the Toyota Camry has been the best-selling car on our shores for the last 12 years. In fact, Toyota has managed to sell more than six million Camrys in the United States since the turn of the century. After going through an extensive redesign for the 2015 model year we expect Camry's sales numbers to continue climbing. The Toyota Camry is one of the first vehicles people look at when exploring their options in the midsize sedan segment, and for good reason. The Camry provides a comfortable ride with ample storage space at an affordable price.

For years, Toyota has been known as the king of reliability and you just accepted that the vehicles were a little bland. Now you get the best of both worlds with the introduction of the 2015 Toyota Camry which features a sweeping redesign. For 2015, Toyota has attached the word "bold" to the Camry in marketing taglines and we'd be inclined to agree. The 2015 Toyota Camry is without question the boldest iteration yet. A gaping lower front grille swallows up air while pronounced side character lines and LED headlights pile on the aggressive look. Toyota sent us a Camry dressed in XSE trim and that brought features like a piano black mesh grille and LED headlights (standard on the V6 model).

Of the six vehicles included in our 2015 midsize sedan comparison, the Toyota Camry was the only one that came to the party with a V6 engine under the hood. A six-speed automatic transmission handles gear changes and helps the 2015 Camry achieve an EPA-rated 21 city/31 highway/25 mpg combined. During our time with it, we observed a combined mpg of 27.5 which bests the EPA's ratings pretty soundly. We were impressed with this figure as the 3.5-liter V6 engine, when tasked to serve with the Camry, is rated at an adequate 268 horsepower and 248 lb-ft of torque. The other midsize sedans we tested achieved similar combined mpg figures with two fewer cylinders.

2015 Toyota Camry at a Glance
2015 Toyota Camry Midsize Sedan Graph

The Camry has long been known to be a comfortable cruiser around town or on the highway while sacrificing any sort of fun driving character. Not anymore. While it still trails the Honda Accord and Mazda6 in pure driving feel, the 2015 Toyota Camry is leaps and bounds better than any version that came before the current one. Gone are the days of numb on-center feel thanks in part to the electric steering. This system helps sharpen steering inputs while a stiffer chassis increases rigidity and, in turn, helps guide the Camry through corners.

Like the exterior, the Toyota Camry received a heavy refresh inside for the 2015 model year as well. We didn't feel any worse for wear when we arrived at our hotel for the evening after logging over 150 miles behind the wheel. The seats are comfortable and everything is within arm's reach of the driver including the infotainment system and the climate controls. Pairing a smartphone is quick and easy with help from Toyota's Entune system and the new navigation system is easy to read. Our only real gripe with the interior is that noise levels are a little higher than we'd like when traveling on the highway. Regardless, the redesigned interior is one of the 2015 Toyota Camry's biggest strengths.

Here's how the 2015 Toyota Camry stacks up against the competition:

Toyota Camry vs. Honda Accord

Next to the Camry, the Accord is the most popular choice in the segment due in part to its legendary reliability. The Accord was refreshed last year so the Camry has the advantage when it comes to a newer, more refined infotainment system as well as a more conventional dashboard layout. Honda uses a two-tier configuration while Toyota has implemented a more driver-friendly dash setup first seen in the Corolla. A base-model Camry starts at $23,795 including destination while a similarly equipped Accord starts just below the $23,000 mark.

Toyota Camry vs. Chrysler 200

Like the Camry, another vehicle benefitting from a full-blown redesign is the Chrysler 200. The all-new 200 boasts redesigned exterior and interior styling but falls short of the Camry in terms of rear leg- and headroom. Trunk space is also somewhat limited in the 200 compared to the Camry. Nevertheless, the 200 beats every vehicle in this comparison when it comes to its touchscreen infotainment and navigation system. A base-model 200 starts at just under $23,000 which bests the Toyota by almost $800.

Toyota Camry vs. Hyundai Sonata

Deserving the title of "Most Improved," the Hyundai Sonata should be on the short list after you check out the Accord and Camry. The Sonata was named one of Kelley Blue Book's Best Family Cars for 2015 along with the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry. Like the Camry, the Sonata has been redesigned for 2015 and now includes pronounced saber lines and an interior that's easy to decipher. A large infotainment screen houses a navigation system that's easy to read and adjust to your liking. A base-model Sonata will set you back just over $22,000 which beats out the Camry by almost $1,800.

Toyota Camry vs. Mazda Mazda6

Redesigned for the 2016 model year, the Mazda6 now features even sharper exterior lines and an interior that has been vaulted to the front of the class. A recurring theme throughout the comparison test was how good both the Mazda6 and Camry looked. However, we're tempted to give the nod to the Mazda6's new design both inside and out. A base-model Mazda6 starts at $22,315 including destination and undercuts a similarly equipped Camry by almost $1,500.

Toyota Camry vs. Subaru Legacy

Both the Camry and Subaru Legacy share similar traits when it comes to a comfortable cabin but both vehicles lost points while cruising on the highway. Sound deadening materials were lacking in the Legacy while the Camry's ride at speed was louder than we would like it to be. No one in the industry has come close to matching Subaru's EyeSight technology but most have surpassed it when it comes to the infotainment system's configuration. Like the majority of vehicles in this comparison, a base-model Legacy is cheaper than the Camry to the tune of almost $1,000.

More Midsize Sedans

Build and price your own 2015 Toyota Camry, read our full review or check out our Midsize Sedan Buyer's Guide to see more options in the segment.

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