2013 Toyota Camry: Manages to finesse its way in even the most slippery situations. The Camry just seems to get better with age in the looks department. The top contender family sedan offers a conservatively streamlined exterior with angular design cues that give it an overall aerodynamic/sporty look.
Inside, you get a multi-layered dash, high-grade materials, neat fit and finish and a real spacious feel. The functional controls are ergonomically designed, large and logically placed. The seats all around are comfortable and can easily accommodate wider frames. Leg room for rear passengers is a noteworthy plus. The Camry also offers storage a-plenty. The car is offered in four trim levels, the base L, LE, SE and XLE. In the XLE, you get easy-on-the-back, reclining rear seats (all trim levels get 60/40 split folding rear seating) which is not something that is typically offered in this segment. Across the board, the vehicles get Bluetooth phone connectivity, tilt-telescopic steering wheel, as well as a touchscreen audio system, Bluetooth audio streaming, an iPod interface and a USB port. Other great options include the stressless voice command-based navigation system (in two screen sizes--a 6.1-inch and 7.0-inch), keyless ignition, JBL audio and Toyota’s Entune,™ a smartphone connectivity system that allows users to take advantage of popular mobile apps like Pandora and sports and stock info.
Toyota builds its Camry line with two engine choices--including a 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder with 178 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque; and the optional 3.5-liter V6 with 268 hp and 248 lb-ft of torque. Behind the wheel, the Camry handles in a way that does not give you the blues. The Camry's ride is stable, controlled, it offers a driving dynamic that leaves you feeling safe in knowing, that you'll get through the white stuff without breaking a sweat, or gnawing at a nail. The 4-cylinder gives you more than enough power and responsiveness, as a matter of fact, you'll never really want for more in the family sedan. Taking corners, braking, the Camry handles these in-the-snow-tactics in a very refined manner.
Safety in the Camry is pretty bulletproof these days--antilock brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution, brake assist, vehicle stability control, traction control, ten standard airbags, including front knee ones and a host of other safety features.
Fuel-wise, the 4-cylinder offers a respectable EPA of 25 city/35 hwy and 28 combo. For those who prefer a fuel sipper, there is Toyota Camry Hybrid that pairs a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine with 156 horsepower and 156 lb-ft of torque with an electric motor/battery pack (I have not reviewed it).
The 2013 Toyota Camry is a definite drift buster with winter road manners that shine. Prices start at $22,235. www.toyota.com
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