Overview

Overview

Besieged by fresh new designs and powerful yet fuel efficient engines from Hyundai and Kia, along with redesigned models from Ford, Chevrolet, Nissan and Mazda, Toyota went all-out with the makeover of the Toyota Camry in 2012. Just one year later, the 2013 Camry continues to evolve, offering upgraded safety and comfort features and providing the kind of peppy performance and impressive fuel economy that mainstream America wants.

What Experts Think

As befits the best-selling passenger car in America, automotive reviewers hold the bar fairly high for the Toyota Camry. After its 2012 redesign, the consensus among the auto critics is that the Japanese automaker pretty much delivered the goods. The result is a family sedan that, while not a stunning design makeover, nevertheless remains one of the top choices in the midsize sedan segment.

"If you like the idea of Toyota quality and resale value, but years of Camry mass-appeal styling has made you look elsewhere, the 2013 Toyota Camry will bring a smile to your face.  Fuel economy on the hybrid model is actually better than some compact sedans." (Kelley Blue Book)

"The seventh-generation [2013 Toyota Camry] models are the best yet, combining useful improvements and new features with the time-tested virtues of smooth powertrains, good fuel economy, and quiet, roomy cabins." (Consumer Guide)

"Base Camry models are fairly dull to drive, but the SE trim level helps to liven up handling, and the optional V-6 gives it some zip. If you think of your car as an appliance, the Camry's reputation for quality and fuss-free operation may make it a good choice for you." (Car and Driver)

"With its well-rounded nature and long-standing history of dependability, the 2013 Camry stands as one of the top choices in the highly competitive midsize sedan segment." (Edmunds)

"All versions of the Camry are now among the top-scoring models in their classes. The Camry is quiet, rides well, gets good fuel economy and is very roomy...The four-cylinder and V6 engines both have improved fuel economy, putting them at the top of the family sedan class." (Consumer Reports)

What Owners Say

Family sedans come under a lot of scrutiny from the owner community. After all, the vehicle has to do yeoman duty in a number of varied circumstances. It has to be comfortable. It also needs to be peppy enough, get good fuel economy, haul the family and their stuff quite well, and be an overall good value, besides.

Commenting on consumer review sites such as Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, MSN Autos, Yahoo Autos and others, the general consensus is that the 2013 Toyota Avalon is comfortable, has good steering, great technology, impressive fuel economy, and should be good for resale value.

In five reviews on Edmunds, consumers gave the 2013 Camry five stars. Several commented that they had test-driven the competition from Ford, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda and Chevrolet and the Toyota Camry came out on top. Buyers of the Toyota Camry Hybrid were even more vociferous in their compliments on Yahoo Autos.

Owners on Kelley Blue Book gave the 2013 Camry a 9.1 (out of 10) overall score, highlighting the price, the gas mileage, good paint, comfort, interior appointments and overall handling as pluses.

Of course, there are a few gripes here and there, even in postings by owners who rate the Camry highly. Some nits include: lower trim levels (like the LE) lack an external trunk lid release; no hand grips inside the trunk to pull it shut; no dual exhausts; can't tow; "worst seats ever"; complicated radio, and lots of plastics in the interior.

Model/Trim Lineup

The 2013 Toyota Camry is available in L, LE, SE, XLE and Hybrid models. Most auto reviewers point out that while the Camry L is the least expensive model, most buyers opt for the slightly better equipped LE.

Standard equipment on the base Camry L includes 16-inch steel wheels, power windows and mirrors, air conditioning, cruise control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, trip computer, Bluetooth, a six-inch display and six-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD radio, SiriusXM satellite radio, a USB/iPod interface and an auxiliary audio input, and split-folding rear seats.

The next trim up is the Camry LE, which adds automatic headlights, steering-wheel audio controls, power door locks with remote keyless entry and an outside temperature display.

The Camry SE is a sportier trim decked out with a sport-tuned suspension, foglamps, heated exterior mirrors, 17-inch alloy wheels, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, sport seats and unique interior and exterior treatments. Included with six-cylinder Camry SE models are a navigation system, keyless ignition/entry, voice recognition and the Toyota Entune smartphone and Web integration system, and 18-inch wheels.

Top of the line in the gasoline models is the Camry XLE, which adds a sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, an eight-way power driver seat, the Entune multimedia telematics system, foglamps, the softer suspension setting of the LE, and heated exterior mirrors. V6-equipped Camry XLE models also get a rearview camera, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated front seats, leather upholstery, and a power front passenger seat.

Options on the SE and XLE include a premium 10-speaker JBL audio system, while on the XLE V6, a hard-drive-based navigation system with a larger central display is also available.

The Camry Hybrid sedan offers LE and XLE trim-level appointments.

Performance

Most auto critics praise the drivetrain improvements to the 2012 Camry that yielded impressive performance and fuel economy gains. These essentially carry over into the 2013 models, although there are modest internal enhancements this year for even better performance.

Powering the base Camry L and LE is the 178-horsepower 2.5-liter in-line four-cylinder engine. Mated with the standard six-speed automatic transmission, EPA-estimated fuel economy for this engine/transmission setup is 25 mpg city/35 mpg highway/28 mpg combined. This is among the class leaders.

The optional 3.5-liter V6 generates 268 horsepower and 248 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy estimates here are an impressive 21 mpg city/31 mpg highway/25 mpg combined.

The Camry Hybrid adds a 105-kilowatt (newly redesigned) battery pack to the 2.5-liter in-line four cylinder engine resulting in 200 horsepower for the total hybrid system. The Camry Hybrid has a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Other improvements to the Camry Hybrid include lighter, more compact and better-managed electrical components. EPA-rated fuel economy is 43 mpg city/38 mpg highway (Camry Hybrid LE), and 41 mpg city/38 mpg highway (Camry Hybrid XLE).

Interior

In the view of most automotive reviewers, the interior of the 2013 Toyota Camry is where the midsize sedan really shines. Toyota paid special attention to the quality of materials used as well as the overall cabin layout. Clearly, the intent was to maximize both comfort and space, which, most auto critics agree, Toyota did nicely.

Of special note is the two-tier or layered leather-covered dash and the handsome stitching on door panels and dash in upper trims. While ride comfort is considered impressive, the base front seats are thought to be lacking in bolstering, something which is solved on upper trims. Another high point in the Camry's interior is the roominess of the back seat, which also has a reclined seatback angle that some auto critics say helps Camry match the Honda Accord in backseat comfort.

Headroom is generous in all seating positions, and backseat passengers also have plenty of hip room and legroom.

Trunk room, at 15.4 cubic feet, is about average for the class, although the 60/40 split rear seat does fold down to allow for additional cargo capacity. In the Camry Hybrid, there is a 2.1 cubic-foot reduction in trunk storage space.

Safety & Reliability

Most auto reviewers note that the 2013 Toyota Camry has expected and federally requires safety features. These include antilock brakes, stability system, traction control, front side airbags and curtain side airbags. Driver and front-passenger knee airbags are also included, bringing the airbag total to 10.

Other safety-related features include a rearview camera, a blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert, and Toyota's Safety Connect assistance system.

In government crash testing by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2013 Toyota Camry received a top five stars for overall crash protection, four stars for overall frontal impact and five stars for overall side impact protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the Camry the highest possible rating of "Good" for the trio of frontal-offset, side and roof strength tests, but the Camry scored a "Poor" in the new "small overlap" frontal impact crash test. Some auto critics comment that only a handful of cars have been subjected to this new test and most have earned a similar score.

As for reliability, the 2013 Toyota Camry has a four and one-half Power Circle score in the J.D. Power Predicted Reliability rating. This means the Camry is between "among the best" and "better than most" in terms of reliability.

Trim Style Engine Drive Train MSRP
Sedan - FWD
L 4dr Sedan I4 Auto L (Natl) 4 Cylinder FWD 22235
LE 4dr Sedan I4 Auto LE (Natl) 4 Cylinder FWD 22680
SE 4dr Sedan I4 Auto SE (Natl) 4 Cylinder FWD 23400
XLE 4dr Sedan I4 Auto XLE (Natl) 4 Cylinder FWD 24855
SE 4dr Sedan V6 Auto SE (Natl) V6 FWD 27260
XLE 4dr Sedan V6 Auto XLE (Natl) V6 FWD 30465

Comparison of 2013 Toyota Camry with Similar Cars

2013 Toyota Camry MSRP Invoice
2013 Toyota Camry $22,235 $20,345
Similar Cars to Consider MSRP Invoice Compare
2013 Nissan Altima $21,760 $20,356 2013 Toyota Camry VS 2013 Nissan Altima
2013 Honda Accord $21,680 $19,849 2013 Toyota Camry VS 2013 Honda Accord
2013 Ford Fusion $21,900 $20,422 2013 Toyota Camry VS 2013 Ford Fusion
2013 Chevrolet Malibu $21,995 $21,225 2013 Toyota Camry VS 2013 Chevrolet Malibu
2013 Hyundai Sonata $20,895 $20,010 2013 Toyota Camry VS 2013 Hyundai Sonata

Car Rankings

Interested to see how the 2013 Toyota Camry ranks against similar cars in terms of key attributes? Here are the 2013 Toyota Camry rankings for MPG, horsepower, torque, leg room, head room, shoulder room, hip room and so forth.

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