2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Driving the all-new 2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid is pretty much like driving the all-new gas powered 2012 Camry. Now I don’t expect you to take my word on this so, I would like to throw out a challenge. When the 2012 Toyota Camry rolls into dealerships in November, take both cars out for a test drive. But, when you slip behind the steering wheels, you can’t know which version of the car you are testing.

After you’ve driven both cars I’m willing to bet—not large sums, well, a few pennies to be exact—that unless you’re among the most perceptive of drivers, you found little if any difference in the driving experience between the two cars.

Camry has been America’s top-selling car nine out of the last 10 years, but competition is brutal with Ford, Hyundai, Kia and even Volkswagen making significant inroads with their midsize entries. As for the Camry Hybrid, it has taken a beating. Introduced in 2006 as a 2007 model, it quickly became the second best-selling hybrid behind the Prius. By the end of 2010, it dropped to fourth best selling hybrid. For the first six-months of this year, it has slipped to eighth, with the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and Ford Fusion Hybrid the big gainers.

Toyota is confident the seventh-generation Camry will continue its streak of being the best seller. It is equally confident the 2012 Camry Hybrid will double its sales in its first year to around 50,000 to reclaim its sales ranking. Here’s why.

More Power And More MPG

The 2012 Camry Hybrid boasts the latest incarnation of Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive. The hybrid system again teams a four-cylinder engine, a small high torque electric motor and nickel-metal hydride batteries. Power continues to be directed to the front wheels through the transaxle’s continuously variable transmission.

The first half of the Camry Hybrid drivetrain is a new Atkinson-cycle version of the base Camry’s 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. (An Atkinson-cycle engine gives up a little power output in exchange for improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions.) The engine produces 156 horsepower, nine more than the 2.4-liter in the 2011 Camry Hybrid. The larger displacement and more efficient combustion boosts torque to 156 pound-feet, 16 more than the outgoing model.

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

The second half is a 105-kW electric motor and a revised 245-volt battery pack. The battery pack consists of 34 nickel-metal hydride modules, each of which contains six 1.2-volt cells. Although smaller in size, the battery pack stores and delivers more power.

Combined power output of the hybrid powertrain is 200 horsepower, a gain of 13 horsepower compared to the previous version. (Toyota does not publish a net hybrid torque figure, though it states the electric motor alone spins out 199 pounds-feet.)

Fuel economy for the previous generation Camry Hybrid—31 mpg city/35 highway/33 combined—was first eclipsed by the Ford Fusion Hybrid and then Hyundai’s Sonata Hybrid. But the 2012 model demonstrates Toyota’s expertise in gasoline-electric hybrid technology, delivering a 43/39 mpg EPA fuel economy rating with a combined average of 41 mpg. That’s a whopping 12 mpg increase in city driving and an impressive gain of 8 mpg for combined driving cycles, numbers that elevate the Camry Hybrid to again claim the title of most fuel-efficient midsize sedan.

So, how did the automaker produce a car with more power and more miles per gallon?

Weight is a major nemesis of fuel economy, and engineers cut around 250 pounds from the new hybrid. This includes trimming the size and weight of the battery pack.

Aerodynamics plays an important role in fuel economy and the 2012 Camry Hybrid achieves a notable 0.27 coefficient of drag (Cd) wind resistance. (The Toyota Prius registers 0.25 Cd.) To reach that number, underbody aerodynamic cladding was strategically placed and, the side-view mirrors and taillight lenses have integrated small fins that create a buffer around the car, helping the vehicle to slip through the air. This aero design trick was culled from Toyota’s Formula One days.

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Under the hood, the engine features a roller-rocker type valvetrain and a variable-output oil pump that help reduce internal friction, boosting economy. Another fuel-saving strategy is a water-cooled exhaust-gas recirculation (EGR) system. This feature boosts fuel economy by reducing engine pumping losses. Also, accessory drive belts have been eliminated, replaced by electric driven accessories, including the air conditioning compressor, water pump and power steering pump.

Software engineers are credited for helping to increase the mpg numbers by enhancing the hybrid system’s power management; the Hybrid’s electronic sensors precisely determine what blend of gas and electric propulsion best balances power and fuel economy. And finally, Toyota says lower rolling resistance tires also help boost fuel economy.


Like the gasoline models, the 2012 Camry Hybrid rides on an all-new platform, though wheelbase, length, width and height are carried-over dimensions. The result is a familiar looking vehicle, even though designers clad the sedan in all-new sheetmetal from bumper to bumper.

Except for those who work at a Toyota dealership, most people when they see the new car won’t say, “Wow, that’s the new Camry.” And surely there will be a host of auto critics who will berate Toyota for its conservative redesign, pointing to the Hyundai Sonata with its swoopy lines and sharp creases. But their livelihood isn’t dependent on Camry sales.

Toyota says that 50 percent of new Camry buyers will be current Camry owners. With a projected 360,000 first year sales—50,000 hybrids—the automaker wisely won’t risk alienating that many loyal customers with polarizing styling.

Granted, this seventh-generation Camry’s sheetmetal clothing bears more than just a little kinship to the previous model, the styling, while not stirring or striking, is clean, handsome and safe.

The most noteworthy change is up front where a new chrome grille sweeps upward to a refreshed headlight design. Below, an expansive air inlet is flanked by trapezoidal chrome fog light recesses. The design fools the eye and gives the impression of greater width. In the rear, chrome taillight accents were discarded and replaced by a more curved design that wraps into the rear side panels and extends into the trunk.

There is little to distinguish the Camry Hybrid from the gasoline models. Small hybrid badges adorn the front fenders and trunk. The front Toyota emblem has a blue background rather than black, borrowing a design element from the Prius.


Toyota heeded remarks about the hard, cheap looking interior plastics of the previous Camry. The 2012 Camry’s cabin is nicely furnished and is now on par with competitors. Soft-touch plastic on the upper dash is given an upscale appearance with genuine cloth stitching. Soft textures are also used on the upper door trim, door and center console armrests as well as kneepads on either side of the console.

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Exclusive interior design touches differentiate the 2012 Camry Hybrid from other Camry models. The Hybrid’s “metallic-tech grain” trim is a combination of a black dashboard with brushed-aluminum highlights and light gray or ivory seat fabrics. Unique to the Hybrid is a three-gauge instrument cluster with an analog fuel economy gauge plus, a power-flow display graphically shows energy flow, cruising range and real-time fuel economy.

Seating is all-day comfortable, and not just in the front row. Camry seats are kind to the gluteal portions of the anatomy, important in a car with a fuel range of 650-plus miles. Designers reshaped interior components to make it more spacious, with big gains in rear seat leg and hip room.

There’s also more trunk space. The trunk mounted battery pack was reduced in size and the DC-to-DC converter was moved from the trunk area to under the hood. That increased cargo room to 13.1 cubic feet, a 2.5 cubic feet gain. For long items, the right rear seatback folds forward.

On The Road

Toyota’s press introduction was held on the eastern slopes of Washington state’s Cascade Mountains, about three miles from the tiny town of Rosyln, the setting for the somewhat outré 1990’s TV series, Northern Exposure. There were several drive routes offered that included some marvelous two-lane black top roads that encouraged back road two-stepping, nearby Interstate 5 and a drive through the small town of Cle Elum.

The 2012 Camry Hybrid feels more like V-6 power than inline four. Toyota says the scoot from 0 to 60 mph is 7.6 seconds—halfway between the gas V-6’s time of 6.8 seconds and the four cylinder’s 8.6 seconds. Throttle response is near perfect; ideal for highway on-ramps as I found out when an 18-wheeler was motivating faster than I first thought. At the same time, the car is smooth as silk in low speed conditions.

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Transition from gas engine to electric motor and back again is no longer “almost seamless,” it is seamless—no shuddering, no shimmying; none, nada. As for the quirky, almost brick-like feel of the regenerative brake system of the previous Hybrid, it doesn’t exist anymore. Brake pedal feel is equal to gas-powered Camrys and very linear.

In terms of handling, the Camry is more than competent and is devoid of vices and totally predictable. It corners well and the electric power steering has good on-center feel and offers decent driver feedback.

But Camry’s are best known for their ride quality. A more rigid body structure and tweaks to the all-independent suspension provide a smooth and compliant feel that makes it ideal for long trips and daily commuting.

Cabin noise intrusion plays a role in perceived ride quality. Toyota has made wind noise almost nonexistent in the Hybrid with stronger door and rocker area seals; optimized placement of sound insulating materials; foam the roof, pillars and door openings; and acoustic glass used for the windshield.

All this adds up to a controlled, balanced and comfortable four-door family sedan.

And then there’s fuel economy, what the Camry Hybrid is really all about. I drove three stints on a route that was a near duplicate of my wife’s daily 15 mile commute—a tad over two miles on the freeway and the balance on city and rural roads with speed limits of 25 to 40 mph. In the 2011 Hybrid, the instrument panel readout was 44.5 mpg, the 2012 Hybrid LE model yielded 49.7 mpg.

My third trip was in the Hybrid XLE model, yes there are two Hybrid versions for 2012 (see below). By employing the Eco mode, which maximizes fuel economy across all driving conditions, and the new EV mode that keeps the vehicle in electric drive only up to 25 mph, the readout was 58.5 mpg. A longer 54-mile drive in the XLE that included a little over 40 miles on the Interstate registered 48.2 mpg.

All of these fuel economy numbers far exceed the EPA estimates, and for a couple of reasons. First, I’m quite sure I was more judicious in managing fuel economy than the EPA’s protocols. Second, the EPA does not factor the Eco and EV modes in their fuel economy estimates. Or, as the EPA says, “Your fuel economy may vary.”

More Car For Less Money

For the first time, the Camry Hybrid will be offered in trim levels, LE and XLE. The Camry Hybrid LE has a sticker price of $25,900, that’s $1,150 less than the outgoing model. And, this is no stripper model. Standard features include: keyless access with push-button start; power windows, locks and outside mirrors; cruise control; dual-zone automatic climate control, tilt/telescoping steering-wheel; and an audio system with Bluetooth and USB/iPod connectivity.

Step-up to the XLE and the base price of $27,400 is a decrease of $800 compared to last year’s model with upgrade package. The additional $1,500 for the XLE adds a power driver’s seat, a touch-screen stereo display and 17-inch alloy wheels.

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid

A blind-spot warning system is an option on the XLE as is a JBL audio system, two separate navigation systems and Toyota’s Entune multimedia system. Entune includes apps like OpenTable, and Movietickets.com so you can book a restaurant or buy movie tickets, as well as iheartradio that offers different streaming radio stations from across the country.

The average age of Camry Hybrid owners is 64 and it would seem they would be more likely to own a Jitterbug cell phone than a smart phone, which is required for Entune. For the hip baby boomers, the apps are free but the smart phone data time will cost you.

Completing the Camry Hybrid’s resume are all the biggies when it comes to standard safety systems. For active safety, Toyota’s Star Safety System integrates stability control, anti-lock disc braking system and traction control. Passive safety features 10 passenger airbags that include, in addition to head-protecting curtain side airbags, driver and passenger front knee airbags and torso-protecting rear-seat-mounted outboard-side airbags.

The Competition

Comparing the Camry Hybrid with the Ford Fusion Hybrid and Hyundai Sonata Hybrid reveals the competition between the three is fierce. The Camry’s base price is $25,900, the Sonata stickers for $25,795 and the Fusion is priced at $28,600. But at the pump, the Camry is the clear winner, besting the Sonata’s city fuel economy by 8 mpg and the Fusion by 2 mpg.

New hybrid car buyers with no attachments to a brand will have to spend some time to determine which of the above three is right for them. For Toyota devotees, however, it is pretty much a no brainer: The 2012 Camry Hybrid offers plenty of power, an excellent interior, loads of features, enough room for five adult and then there’s that fuel economy.

The 2012 Camry will most likely again be the top selling car in the U.S. But when the numbers are tallied, don’t be surprised if the Camry Hybrid racks up a total way beyond the 50,000 the automaker is projecting.

Prices are Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) at time of writing and do not include destination charges, taxes or licensing.

Price quote for Toyota Camry Hybrid

2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid
Base MSRP: $25,900
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  • Pat

    It is not smart to judge a car just by how it looks, what’s inside is way more important. That is what a typical Toyota camry buyers are looking for.

  • James Davis

    With these three great looking cars: Ford Fusion Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, and now the Toyota Camry Hybrid – and with their great gas millage – and even though all three can still get lost in a crowd because they look almost like triplets, …why would anyone even take a first look at the Chevy Volt hybrid with its low gas millage and high sticker price?

  • James Davis

    What happened to the numerous Chevy Volt commercials that usually dominate all your articles?

  • Max Reid

    While Sonata-H boasts Li-Ion battery, Camry-H still has Ni-Mh, but still it has higher MPG, CVT tranny and many other better features for a few hundred dollars more. Between Sonata-H, Optima-H and Camry-H, there will be fierce competition, but Fusion-H which is $2K more may go down in sales.

    Time for Ford to reduce price. So competition has forced Toyota to reduce the price of Camry-H with a LE trim.

    If Camry-H has better pickup, why would anyone buy a V6.

  • 54mpg

    “If Camry-H has better pickup, why would anyone buy a V6.” Because there are still many morons out there.

  • drm

    Dear Toyota,

    Please put the same 2.5 HSD drivetrain to Prius V body and make it look like an angular but aerodynamic SUV.

    Keep it at 41 mpg combined.

    Thank you.

  • Mr. Fusion

    IMHO this is the best looking Camry to date.
    Kudos Toyota.

  • Shines

    OK Toyota – where is the new 2 door Solara hybrid? 😉

  • michel

    Really TOYOTA is the best manufactured company in the auto world. I like Redesign & interior. This color is attractive & helpful to attract peoples. The silver wheel trims also stand out from the shiny exterior.Hybrid technology is the best technology developing in automotive world and doing great.

  • Ocnamor

    I think this Camry hybrid is going to surprise a lot of people. Its gonna fly off the floors and they won’t be able to keep them in stock. Im sure Im not the only person who is going to be dumping their mini-van, especially soccer moms whove come of age, and are tired of their vans. If people don’t have more than 3 kids, they are going to be buying this car in droves. 43 MPG vs 16 at best from the Sienna.

    Then there are those in the market for a sedan, which will be all those older folks, and its going to nail anyone looking for a sedan between the $24K and $30k price range. Competitors are going to be dying from this hybrid. Sure the styling isn’t dramatic, but you could stick any badge on it, and you can’t tell it from the Honda, Hyundai, or any Japan based car. The thing just oozes quality, reliability, economy, and solid ride.

    The GM Volt was DOA, anyway, and Hyundai is the only nearest competitor who has half a chance. Mazda, Nissan, Honda, are also rans. The german cars are for the silly snobs who love to waste their money. Ford is making cars that only 20 years old can tolerate. Good job Toyota ! My camry goes to my son, my wife gets this new one, and we trade in our Sienna. Not saying what Im buying but its going to have the Toyota badge on it for sure.

  • Evelyn Woolard

    I am a current Camry Owner(10 yrs) I am considering a Toyata Prius
    but perhaps should wait for 2012 Camry Hybrid. I like what I’m

  • rphoff

    HMMM no “buy American made products” comments interesting in these times.


    I drove a 2012 hyundai SONATA TODAY IT’S A GOOD CAR ,

  • likingITsoFar

    Well, I’m bummed about the design, but loving the mileage & price (though, less is best). The back of it keeps making me think of a subaru- of which I’m really not a fan. The front looks like a acura- looks good. Anyone know what the battery mileage/year warranty on this new thing will be? Replacement costs? I’ve read they last only around 7 years….but curious other opinions.

    I love my 1999 toyota 4runner, but may add this to the family mix. Also, excited about the rear seat being able to fold & extra space..though still may need a car top carrier for those occasional long trips with 2 kiddos & stuff. Looking good Toyota- keep it up and get us to 50mpg- I know you can do it!

  • t

    I can get a 2012 EX Insight with my desired colors inside and outside my desired options and with black interior, and leather trimmed with door guards and “all season” floor mats and BEAT the fuel economy of the Camry and pay less at 22,931 including destination charge

  • Nice-but

    Whoever came up with those light gray tri-colored leather seats in this hybrid?! That was a sales-killer for us. Looks very cheap. Why wouldn’t they go with a solid charcoal gray which would have been much classier? Design and performance are great, but yuck on those seats. For $5K more you can get into the Lincoln MKZ hybrid very nicely equipped.

  • Robin Wenz

    How come the Honda Fit hybrid isn’t mentioned? Costs under $22k n gets ant the same gas mileage

  • Nice

    Cant wait to get one of these. Anyone knows when this will be available in the US ?

  • BlackJackBob

    I tend to agree with your comments on the seats: I think they’re okay, but they’re also not how I would have designed them. I test-drove a Camry LE the other week (nice ride and handling), and I’ll also make the comment on the two-tone gray dash (dark and light). It’s not terrible, and some will love it, but I’d prefer it all one dark color. I think Toyota was just trying to be different for differance’s sake, and I’ll wager right now that sometime in years 2-4 of this Camry generation that the dash and seats will change.

    Also, I checked out (but did not drive) a 2012 Camry SE. That was more my flavor, with a uniform dark dash, and one color (black) seats. The most pleasing Toyota interior I viewed that day, Camry or otherwise.

  • islandbear

    Does the internet work when the car is in drive? If so, I personally would boycott this car! Does anyone know?

  • snowyjack

    Have any of you driven the hybrids on ice or snowy hiills? I heard they shut down when the tires spin!

  • Sunil Kololgi

    I had planned test drive a Nissan Leaf, very worried about breaking my rule about only considering a time tested car.
    Based on this review I will wait for the Camry hybrid.
    ‘ the best hybrids of the 21st century are the best gas cars
    Of the 20th ?!

  • Dave – Kingston, ON

    I currently own a 2007 Camry Hybrid, and overall like it. I checked out the 2012 today and it looks quite nice. I’ll probably look at getting one sometime next year.

  • Anonymous

    I just bought a Camry H XLE with NV/moomroo/leather….yesterday. Love it so far. Will do a road test for two weeks to see what actual mpg is.

  • Norm Silver

    When Ford introduced the Edsel in the late 1950’s it realized after a production run of three years and over 600,000 vehicle’s that it wasn’t a success and openly said so. Now GM has the Volt which still has poor sales, a dismal performance record; a big price and they are calling it a success. Hello… is anyone watching this swindle. The Toyota, Nissan and Hyundai Hybrids all are a big success. Not perfect but certainly far better than any US big three has introduced thus far. I drove all three and wouldn’t hesitate to purchase any of the three. They are good automobiles in my opinion.

  • Camry Lover

    I am still waiting for the Camry. Which city are you in and where did you buy the Camry. Does the Camry XLE come with one color Leather seats or are they 3 colored like the XLE non hybrid.
    Also please let me know how much you paid for it. I can’t wait to buy one! They are not in Texas yet. I was told they will be here end of December.

  • iww

    Just test drove a 2012 Camry Hybrid. Liked it on the whole, though there is one thing very weird about it: it whines when stopping.. sounds rather like an ambulance siren going a few blocks away. Has anyone else noticed this? Is this a common characteristic of these types of transmissions? This may be a deal breaker for me.

  • Totally agree about the seats. uuggllyy!!! Cheap looking!!!!

    Totally agree about the seats. Uuggllyy!! Cheap looking too!! Looking at the Lacrosse. Awesome car!! The ride is amazing and very plush interior!! Better warranty than Camry too. So sorry Toyota!


    Does anyone know if Toyota is yet shipping XLE’s with the side Blind Spot Monitor in the US?

  • ANMS

    Did you buy your Hybrid 2012 Camry in US or Canada ? I have not heard of it selling in the US yet.

  • gforinash

    Just got my XLE hybrid last night. So, yes, they are out, at least in Texas. First impression is very positive. I was amazed at how long I could go on “EV only” at 40 mph on a flat road. Will provide more details after some experience.

  • ANMS

    Where in Texas did you get it? None of the Houston Toyota dealers have it yet. If you don’t mind telling me how much did you pay for it and what options did you get. Thanks for your response.

  • gforinash

    I got it from Toyota of Richardson (Richardson, TX). I put a down payment on it back on 11/4. It is an XLT with the convenience package (CQ), premium mats (CF), Vehicle shield package (P2 – – didn’t want this, but it “already had it” – – right) and tint. Paid $30,500 out the door. That’s about $1500 less than suggested retail.

  • gforinash

    This whine sound (sounds like a siren winding down) is normal with regenerative brakes. It is the sound of the motor in generator mode. I just got my Camry hybrid and I had the same concern. Do some searching on this site – – you will find that it is very common.

  • ANMS

    Thanks for your prompt response. What kind of cloth seats does it have. Is it the same as the regular XLE with three colors and a brown stripe ?

  • gforinash

    Yes, it is officially “Ivory/Parchment/Ecru.”

  • B G

    Picked mine up last Monday in Southern California. Hard to find one! My husband purchased it for me while I was in Europe and we picked it up the day I returned. Magnetic Grey Metalic with dove Leather/Suede seats which are pretty nice looking. It is a big upgrade from my 08 Prius which was also well appointed. I paid sticker but got a great trade in price for my Prius. I think the car has everything possible except the blindspot indicator. Entune is a bit confusing and works differently with Iphone than it does with Android. Dealers are still not up to speed on Entune features so we are figuring stuff out by ourselves. One feature which allows you to respond to text messages with voice command does not yet work with Iphone because of the way the SMS software is set up. I guess we are the guinea pigs for Entune.

  • SoCalIndian

    Had my 12′ Hybrid XLE for over a week now. Must say that the ride is absolutely fabulous, totally blew my expectations. Purchased it in El Cajon, was the first one that arrived. Luckily it had the color and options that I wanted. Which was almost everything! 😎

  • SoCalIndian

    Hi BG,

    You’re right, the vehicles are incredibly difficult to locate right now. Took me several weeks to track mine down. Most dealerships in So Cal are taking security deposits for theirs. As far as Entune goes, you’re correct to assume that SMS feature isn’t available for the iPhone yet. With the latest iOS release, Toyota isn’t predicting to have this feature avaialbe until probably the 2nd or 3rd quarter of 2012 since it needs to teather in some unique way. Just need to figure out some way for Entune to make me coffee in the morning. 😎

  • Dave Mac

    Maybe because it is not a hybrid … it has an all-electric power train. This may be important to some people as it allows for people to run gas free if their daily commute is within the battery range of the Volt.

  • Jeanniepoo

    Just bought my new 2012 Camry Hybrid XLE in South Carolina (I live in Georgia). I hate moonroofs so I purchased a cloth interior and my dealer switched it to a leather interior as you can’t get a factory made leather interior without getting the moonroof as well. I love love love this car. There are very very few 2012s available in my 5 state area and I had to have mine shipped from Tennessee. The ride is whisper quiet and smooth and I happen to like the soft whooshing regenerative brake sound. My fiance drives a V8 Mustang and he’s very jealous of my new baby 🙂

  • keingkup

    Thank you for your knowledge and good things. you gave me.

  • zzman

    I bought a 2012 Camry Hybrid built in “Georgetown Kentucky, USA”

  • Ogungbe david

    The fact still remains toyota products are the best,av not heard of the 2012 hybrid camry sold any where in nigeria.

  • Ogungbe david

    The fact still remains toyota products are the best,av not heard of the 2012 hybrid camry sold any where in nigeria.

  • KimbaWLion

    Well I just got my Hybrid XLE around the Phila. area. I picked it up for $200 over invoice and used an internet service provider to get that price. I had no choice in anything! My previous car was totaled by a deer and I got the car before it was even on the lot! I looked at the Fusion Hybrid, the Sonata Hybrid and well as a Prius too. It BARELY has 30 miles on it and it is getting 22mpg. GOTTA love break in!!!
    Some dealers have 3-4 but there is NOT a whole lot of them floating around yet. I drive myself NUTS trying to pick out which one I wanted! The Fusion was NOT as comfortable, the Sonata’s passenger Seat has NOTHING on the Camry’s. It was a hard choice between the Camry and the Prius wagon, in the end the Camry’s BETTER comfort won it in the end for us. It was VERY, VERY close.

  • bob jones

    The new Camry hybrid looks nice, all the other hybrid cars look like cars for nerds.

  • gbordor

    i will love to have one of the classic type on 15th.january.2012

  • leo_21


  • leo_21


  • Rhodies

    Our dealer in the Piedmont area of South Carolina had a 2012 Camry on their lot for four hours at the beginning of November. I asked if another came around let me know. We got our dark green Camry LE Hybrid November 15 using a quote from USAA Insurance services. Great, way under invoice price and $2800 under the cost of a Ford Fusion hybrid (did not consider a Hyundai Sonata hybrid because of actual real world MPG and braking reviews). After the first three gas fill ups, we’re averaging 41.5 MPG. O.K., I’ll admit that I’m having fun driving around like an old geezer milking the mileage for all its worth. My Prius owner brother-in-law said that this driving novelty mentality should wear off in five-to-seven years. I had to transport four adult friends on a two hour Interstate trip the other day and there were no uncomfortable remarks from the back seat. An added note: I tried one full tank of $$ non-ethanol gas and there was no overall mileage difference.

  • rhodies

    Our dealer in the Piedmont area of South Carolina had a 2012 Camry on their lot for four hours at the beginning of November. I asked if another came around let me know. We got our dark green Camry LE Hybrid November 15 using a quote from USAA Insurance services. Great, way under invoice price and $2800 under the cost of a Ford Fusion hybrid (did not consider a Hyundai Sonata hybrid because of actual real world MPG and braking reviews). After the first three gas fill ups, we’re averaging 41.5 MPG. O.K., I’ll admit that I’m having fun driving around like an old geezer milking the mileage for all its worth. My Prius owner brother-in-law said that this driving novelty mentality should wear off in five-to-seven years. I had to transport four adult friends on a two hour Interstate trip the other day and there were no uncomfortable remarks from the back seat. An added note: I tried one full tank of $$ non-ethanol gas and there was no overall mileage difference.

  • LG from OH

    GREAT question ~ I would’ve purchased a Solara hybrid in a second had it been available. My Solara was one of the best cars I’ve ever owned and very sporty looking as well.

  • min hwang

    Hyundai will eat away Toyota one bite at a time.

    Hyundai is now offering a lifetime replacement guarantee for hybrid batteries for its Sonata gas-electric hybrid/

  • charles h kidder

    The V-6 is quicker, not the hybrid.

  • Phyllis Jaramillo

    to gbordor or anyone who knows the significance of “the classic type on Jan 15, 2012” mentioned in the post of one week ago?
    Is there a special vehicle to be introduced on that date?

  • Anjy

    Toyota and Hyundai don’t stand in the same league. So there is no question of comparing these two. Toyota is far better quality and performance wise.

  • Carmania

    I’ve driven many cars and there is no doubt that Toyota Camry is the best car to buy. 2012 Camry is beautifuly redesigned inside and outside and it gives you amazing comfortableness of smoothness and quietness. I don’t think Hyndai cames no close to Toyota’s technology.

  • Joe Akins

    we currently own a 2004 Camry XLE with a 130,000 miles, one owner purchased in 2006 with 23,000 miles…dependable excellent vehicle, superior quiet ride and very comfortable seats…..love this car. recently took a trouble free 3600 mile road trip across several states and got excellent mileage. No one can convince me otherwise about different types of gasoline making a difference in mileage. Averaged about 33 mpg and one tank got over 36 mpg and thats calculating to the T. The worse mileage we got was a little over 30 mpg on one tank and that wasn’t in the mountains. Very interested in the 2012 Hybrid XLE and have test drove em a few times. I think its a nice looking vehicle and i love the peace of mind driving a toyota. I know anything can malfunction and it will but history proves the fact that toyotas will most likely not be broken down on the side of the highway. I test drove a Kia Optima as well, nice car but just cant convince myself to leave my toyotas. Also have a 2000 Tundra with 140,000 miles and going strong.

  • Bill from Omaha, NE

    Twelve years ago I was turned off by Toyota when the Salesman wanted a $100 deposit just to talk car deals. I bought a Chrysler Sebring convertible instead.

    I must have mellowed over the years, as I just made a $500 deposit to order a 2012 Camry Hybrid XLE due to arrive early February. I too used the USAA Buyer’s Support to broker the final price. I only ordered the Convenience package and All-Weather mats. The dealership coordinated with a local shop to install heated leather seats for $1500 extra once it arrives. Far cheaper than the linked-options I would have had to get to have factory installed leather. And what looks like better quality leather in the color I want ( I was able to see a few cars already undergoing installation while seeing first-hand the leather options).

    What sold me on the Camry Hybrid: mpg, acceleration going up the on-ramp, smooth quiet ride, comfortable interior, leg room for me (6’2″) and my adult rear-seat passengers, quality work. And the exterior is pleasant looking…despite what I’ve read.

  • Joe Akins

    I dont see a problem with the exterior as well Bill. Like you, i think its pleasant looking and thanks for the info on the local shop installing the seats. i will definitely look into that.

  • Tatiana

    What I am wondering is if this car is good for new drivers?

  • Bill Shoup

    Bill – I am very interested in the Toyota dealer and local shop that did your seats. Can you share the name of both? I am in Sioux Falls and am considering doing something very similar.

  • RT

    I just bought this car and it is amazing. I would say this review is spot on. I’m a devoted Toyota Owner and it was a No brainer for me. I’ve been getting 47+ and sometimes 50+ MPG’s in this car. Mostly drive in ECO mode. Almost makes power mode pointless unless your in a hurry or just want to punch it for fun. I still can’t believe I own one. Finally gave up my 99 Solara, 204,000 miles. I would recommend this car to anyone who can afford one. Don’t waste your money on a regular camry, with this fuel economy it makes it the best car on the market in my opinion.

  • Jack Reztib

    Spent a few days sitting in other cars as they seemed ‘tight’ for my 6’1″ frame. They must all be built from the same computer program. Told my friend that she should pick out what she wants and I will ‘suffer’ the close quarters. No one told me to raise the seat! Bought a 2012 Camry LE hybrid the other day. Raised the seat and much less confinement on the right elbow. I also like the better visibility with the seat all the way up. Front tires still had 45 lbs in them and the car ‘danced’ all the way home in cross winds. Lowered it to 35 and the hunting/dancing was gone. Very positive steering. The 2012 was much better on the braking whine at low speeds (also drove a 2011 hybrid Camry). Interaction between the engine and electric motor was improved in the 2012. When ‘punched’ on a 70 MPH merge/onramp you’ll hear that motor and it sounds good when surging to 80 MPH. The rest of the time very quiet. Some windnoise which I attribute to suction on the drivers side door and it would be worthwhile to figure out why and eliminate it. All electric drive is fun. ECO drive and cruse control eliminates all the thinking for economy if you aren’t a hypermiler. Headlights are brilliant and the inside beam control is a nice feature when vehicle loading changes. Finest vehicle I’ve ever driven. Get yours while you can!

  • Jack Reztib

    Spent a few days sitting in other cars as they seemed ‘tight’ for my 6’1″ frame. They must all be built from the same computer program. Told my friend that she should pick out what she wants and I will ‘suffer’ the close quarters. No one told me to raise the seat! Bought a 2012 Camry LE hybrid the other day. Raised the seat and much less confinement on the right elbow. I also like the better visibility with the seat all the way up. Front tires still had 45 lbs in them and the car ‘danced’ all the way home in cross winds. Lowered it to 35 and the hunting/dancing was gone. Very positive steering. The 2012 was much better on the braking whine at low speeds (also drove a 2011 hybrid Camry). Interaction between the engine and electric motor was improved in the 2012. When ‘punched’ on a 70 MPH merge/onramp you’ll hear that motor and it sounds good when surging to 80 MPH. The rest of the time very quiet. Some windnoise which I attribute to suction on the drivers side door and it would be worthwhile to figure out why and eliminate it. All electric drive is fun. ECO drive and cruse control eliminates all the thinking for economy if you aren’t a hypermiler. Headlights are brilliant and the inside beam control is a nice feature when vehicle loading changes. Finest vehicle I’ve ever driven. Get yours while you can!

  • Sherry

    We are the proud owners of a 2012 Camry Hybrid! With only 200 miles on the car, we regularly get 40-42 mpg and are lovin’ it! We drove Hybrid cars and/or cars which claimed great gas mileage. This is the only car which has the power to move in/out of traffic and onto/off of the interstate. This is an awesome vehicle. Great interior & wonderful, easy to use dash.

    Those of you who may not like the looks may not feel the same way when gas is over $4 a gallon this summer. I think the car looks great, we are thinking about trading our other car for a 2nd Camry Hybrid!

  • Rooftop Cargo Carrier

    It is a great car. I have car top carrier on mine and works perfect.

  • Anthony89

    you cant put a larger engine in a prius and expect the same gas mileage. as you can see, it use to be that someone was a car or truck person. then the wagon came, then SUV, and now there are so many different vehicles just because people arent happy with just having a vehicle…and people get confused easily after looking at so many different models. and the prius has a POWER mode along with its ECO and Ev. so technically, it does have the same power as a corolla (hince it has a corolla powered engine). but the new prius C will be out in the fall and is suppose to look a little better and and a tad bit faster….take into consideration that a prius (depending on model…but none the less true for all models also) is more aerodynamic than a corvette.

  • Anonymous

    Does anyone here know if it will hurt my 07 hybrid camry, if I put 20′ after market rims on it. Transmission motor etc. any info will help!!!!

  • Tawanda

    This is a great car which should not be expected to be perfect in every respect. The seats cannot be expected to match the mercedes s class or lexus LS. They are good enough for this class. The comfort too is just great. An improvement on that popular smooth quiet soft ride. To me this is the definition of comfort

  • Kelli

    I believe it’s made in Kentucky

  • RT

    yes, it is. which is another bonus knowing your contributing to American jobs

  • alaa

    my car is 2007 toyota camry hybrid, i drive this car on the worest road in the world daily and it prove it self, but my next car will be Hyundai Sonata hybrid cause korean cars realy have a significant difference of replacement parts, toyota replacment parts very expensive in my country some parts even more expensive than mercedes it self whayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!
    so i will steb down dependibility and reality to Hyundai Sonata hybrid but keep it in perferct condetion because of cheap replacment parts.

  • JD

    I’ve had my 2012 Camry LE hybrid for 6 days and it is the best vehicle I’ve ever owned. Got almost 61 mpg avg on a 50 mi round trip recently. Avg’ing ~48mpg generally. Its comfortable and fun to drive. I stay in ECO mode — why not with the mileage vs gas prices today, however switching out of ECO on the move, the car lurched forward with unexpected power yet has plenty of umph in ECO! I love the standard smart key feature, the body styling, and the interior upgrades. I’ve been a toyota fan for years and own a ’97 T100 pickup also that has 215K miles and still purrs. I’m a dyed-in-the-wool Toyota man altho I did due diligent comparison shopping before-hand on hybrids. The others don’t come close. I would recommend this car to anyone looking for an exceptional hybrid vehicle. Toyota has the experience in hybrid design and make improvements every year. They are king. In sum, great MPG, reliability, quality, price ($1K below invoice) etc., etc., etc. sold me. Can’t say enough about this outstanding hybrid vehicle.

  • christian

    if youre anywhere in the world and want to buy a camry any model email me will get you one or any hybrid
    it’s the best car out there for the money
    here a sugestion
    test drive the 450 H from lexus
    and then test drive the camry Hybrid
    $29,000 difference and i prefer the camry
    and there made in kentucky USA
    so you encourage are work force and not the ASIAN labor
    and dont forget my golf carts they make over 50 MPG also
    and street legal in many state
    gas will be $7.00 a gallon like Europe soon Canada is almost $6.00 a gallon they put the price in liter to confuse you
    you will pay $150.00 soon to fill up youre big SUV
    warm regards

  • Christian

    i forgot VISIT my website for a nice golf cart 50+MPG
    Street legal in Florida and many state

  • Walter Bryant

    Have a 2012 XLE for a week now, traded a 2006 RAV-4 in on it, no problems with the RAV-4 except am getting some older an wanted more leg room an a better seat. Wanted a Camry back in 2006, but the Camry did not have enough head room with the moon roof. The redesigned 2012 Camry XLE took care of that, averaging 43.5+ mpg, Neat car to drive, like every thing about it, had some concern about the battery life an replacement cost the batteries are designed so if a battery cell goes bad, that cell only could be replaced an the cost would be greatly reduced even after the 8 year 100000 mile guarantee does expire. A friend that brought 2005 Prius used has never had a problem with it an she is getting 50+ mpg. Toyota does do it’s homework…………….walter

  • JD

    I believe we could all get better mileage from our vehicles (gasoline only and hybrid) if we’d only learn to simply nudge the accelerator. Stop the “off-the-line” goosing and go the speed limit when on the highway. I find that when I do the speed limit (which I’m getting better at), cars pile up behind me and often a driver (young and old) is way too close to my rear bumper. Thats inconsiderate and makes everyone stress. Some of it is the competitive nature we all feel when on the road–keeping up with the Jones. I mentioned I got 61mpg avg with my 2012 Camry LE hybrid on one trip and avging 48mpg. If I can do it, anyone can. I encourage everyone to make an effort to change their aggressive driving habits. We’ll all be safer and if there is a line behind because you’re doing the limit or below, you are saving gas AND those behind you will as well.

  • JD

    I’m having a blast driving and learning about this beautiful car! Another drive today averaging 60+MPG in my new Camry LE hybrid. I’m learning how to drive all over using the multi-information screens. Love it when the car goes into EV mode on the road and watching the MPG green leds on the right shoot up to the top. I’ve gotten into the habit of pushing the EV mode button when the ready light comes on before the engine starts. The battery has to have a certain level of charge in it to do this, and it kicks off at ~20mph, but its just another tool in the bag Toyota has provided on this car. Great for increasing MPG even more and cutting emissions as well.
    Read Consumer Reports today where the Camry HV is listed in the top 10 along with 4 other Toyota vehicles. Good job Toyota!

  • gforinash

    I have about 3400 miles on my Camry Hybrid XLE to date (since late November). My mileage has been getting better and better. I think part of that is I’m learning how to maximize the battery usage and partially some kind of break-in. I’m averaging almost 42mpg. If you check out this website, you’ll see that Toyota hybrids often exceed the EPA mileage estimate. This is not true of the Hyundai or Fords – – they are getting far below their EPA estimates. http://www.fueleconomy.gov/mpg/MPG.do?action=browseList

  • JD

    Right on Steve! That ain’t no baloney!

  • ammc

    After logging 190,000 on my 2004 Toyota Prius, I was ready for something a little more upscale–but it had to be a hybrid. After test driving the 2012 Prius, the Lexus CT100, and the Ford Fusion hydrids, I got in the 2012 Camry and immediately fell in love. I pick up my Barcelona Red LE this week. And it’s the same price as I paid for the Prius in 2004. Thank you, Toyota!

  • JD

    Dear ammc – you made the right choice. I’ve had my Camry LE hybrid (classic silver) several weeks now and the excitment and enjoyment – not to mention the great MPG (51mpg) – has not worn off. You will love this car.

  • luxuries4millionaire

    At first this 2012 model looks ugly.

    Let’s see if we get used to it.

  • JD

    Ugly!? Whats ugly about this beautiful, aerodynamically designed vehicle?

    …or are you one of those who likes the super techie lines of an Elantra for example, preferred by the younger, wants flash, generation?

    If your looking at hybrids, know the Camry HV has been super-tuned for aerodynamic slicing through the ether. Of course, if your a millionaire, you may not care as much about efficiency and the cost of petrol like most of us.

  • TominNC

    Test drove an ’07 Camry Hybrid and hated it – purchased an ’08 Accord instead. When it’s time to buy again, though, I’ll reconsider the Camry Hybrid and compare it to the ’13 Fusion and Accord Hybrids when they come out. The new Fusion seems to win on looks and fuel economy, but total driving performance is as important in my book.

  • ACM

    We received my wife’s 2012 Camry Hybrid XLE two weeks ago. For the record we traded in a 2008 Mercedes Benz B200 (not available in the US) .
    We ordered Attitude Black metallic with the leather package.
    My wife sat in a car in the show room but we never drove one till ours came in , 4 weeks later. All the reviews we spot on . This is the car of the future, mark my words, Toyota has produced the answer to $200 a barrel oil (and believe me its just around the corner).
    After owning a MB , I must say the build quality is as good and even better in the Toyota.
    It is tighter and the acceleration far exceeded my expectations. It is super quiet and the JBL Harmon stereo is truly amazing and its GREEN designed. So far we have averaged 42 mpg on the first 2 tanks, we are still in cold weather so I can see that improving as the days get warmer.
    Congratulations Toyota.. the best built cars on the planet.

  • ACM

    Remember the movie “Who Killer The Electric Car”, GM did.!!!!.. the Volt will become as will all electric cars a blip on the automotive timeline.

  • penny stocks

    These spare parts and pics are really good and nice.I got some ideas from this blog.

  • Anonymous

    please toyota don’t ever stop making camry i love this car mor than anything else

  • Anonymous

    Totally agree!

  • Anonymous

    Totally agree!

  • michaelb1

    Its made in Kentucky.

  • Celtic

    I’m Averaging 37.34 mpg mix of city and highway driving around Seattle. Nine tanks of gas and enjoying the XLE it is comfortable sitting in stop and go traffic. Reasonable visibility for the driver although the aerodynamic side mirrors and a little small.

  • JD

    I’ve been averaging 50-52mpg combined since I bought my Camry LE hybrid February 24th. I have driven ~3K miles so far. The terrain makes a difference. Is it hilly around Seattle? Don’t understand why others aren’t getting better combined mileage…

    I’m a dedicated hyper-miler. The temps have been 30s at night and 50s during daylight here in Maine. Mileage will only get better when it warms up.

    I nudge “Pearl” along. I rarely exceed the speed limit and often drive under the limit–especially if no one is behind me. The 2012 Camry hybrid is capable of excellent mileage. This is a great car but will take a change in driving habits for many to realize the benefits. Btw, gas has reached $4 here providing added incentive for hyper-mile driving.

  • DavidG

    Design is verrrrry boring. Should have talked to the Camaro designers.Like the mileage

  • JD

    Aesthetic preference is in the eye of the beholder.
    I for one, love the simple, aerodynamic lines of the 2012 Camry.


    Toyota production systems scores again-well done! 200 hp, 40 mpg avg, 10 air bags/3400 lbs (safe), quiet/comfortable/reliable/upscale for about $25k! Sound/proven engineering too-look at all the tech data! Others will follow, but Toyota has the head start folks-made in America too (Fusion in Mexico) Picky Engineer.

  • JD

    Right on DRJJJ ! (IR Engineer)

    However, I will say the avg mpg “from the last start” gauge was a little off when I checked after gassing up today. I calculated the mpg after filling the tank at 49.7mpg (only took 5.25gals@$3.82.9/g in so. ME) although indicated 51.3 mpg avg on the dashboard long range mpg gauge. But, I had been out zipping around, putting her through her paces after 3500 miles driven. Engine pistons/valves cured…

    So,,, the Camry’s EPA advertised combined mileage of 39mpg is big time less than actual miles of almost 50mpg (based on a hyper-miler’s driving habits)…and this for a mid-sized, family sedan auto w/200hp get-up-n-go. And she will push you back in your seat when floored, …especially when you switch out of ECO mode! The reviews don’t do the 2012 Camry hybrid justice wrt power IMHO.

  • GF

    I have about 4200 miles on my 2012 XLE Hybrid and absolutely love it. Have been averaging about 42mpg and climbing with mostly highway driving. I have to say (and this applies to pretty much any car), the most frustrating thing about tracking your mileage is the variance in “filling” the tank. With my Camry, I can put 1.5 to 2 gallons in AFTER the automatic pump shutoff, and I’ve yet to completely fill it. This shutoff varies for every pump at every station. My point is just that your calculation can be thrown way off in a positive or negative direction depending on how much you squeeze in at fill-up. You really only know your true mileage after averaging many tanks.

  • JD

    Hi GF,
    That is a very good point you make about gas filling variability. However, I don’t usually stop filling after the auto cut-off. I know its not recommended, but I continue to pump at the slowest rate the throttle allows until I get as much in there as possible, ie, even up into the tank fill neck. I pump until the nozzle continuously clicks off with the trigger pulled. As with most electronics, there is always an instrument accuracy tolerance. The new Camry HV mpg instrument read-out is apparently even less than +/-5% accurate based on vehicle instrument vs. calculated mpg.

    I’ve checked the MPG several times since driving my 2012 Camry HV. One time the average mpg was within .8mpg of the calculated. Actually 0.8mpg over the read-out. However you’re correct, the best way to get a good handle on the actual mileage your getting is to perform the calculations over a period of time. I’m at 3.8k miles thus far.

    Bottom line, I’m apparently averaging ~50+ mpg with my 2012 Camry LE so far — and absolutely happy with all other aspects of this beautiful car …


  • TCHfan

    Been through two tanks now. I’m getting about 42.5 MPG on 30 mile morning commute, mostly interstate driving in the low 70s. Driving on non-interstate trips, in econ mode, I’m getting between 45-50 MPG.

    Why would anyone not pay the extra twenty-five hundred and get the LE Hybrid over the LE? This gas mileage is insane! Far better than EPA avg. MPG.

    Get one while you can at this price.

  • JD

    JD reporting;

    Took a trip in my 2012 LE Camry HV. Went fm ME to VA on 95, NTP, Tappan Zee Bridge, etc. and noticed a big drop in MPGs (~45 combined). Basically a lot of hi-way driving with a ~150lb load consisting of kit of drums, mics, stands and hardware in the trunk while the back seat had asundries for 2 wks stay in Virginia. It was hot; 90degs several days and high 80s most others — didn’t notice a bump in MPG due to higher temps, so maybe due to higher drain on battery when using A/C(?). did the entire trip without resetting the AVG MPG display. After ~1600mi., 44.6 MPG combined avg – still well above estimates.

  • JD

    JD Reports:
    On the delta in performance between driving in ECO v.s. non-ECO:
    While in non-ECO, the accelerator pedal is hyper-sensitive(IMO) and you feel the power transfer from the HSD system. I like the result of the CVT… a smooth power marriage between electric (volts) and combustion (petrol) that sets you back in your seat immediately or milliseconds later, pushes you back in your seat! Sooo, to those pundits who say there’s no feel or sportiness to this car… I have to disagree (!) and I’ve owned several sports cars . The 2012 Camry HV LE drives like a well-tuned sports car. The 200+ pound electric moror power source helps balance this car. It corners very nicely once used to the electric steering unit.
    If the ECO driving mode is used, there is noticeable power shift delay. There’s a wait while the electric motor engages to produce 200HP. The delay is in the 100s of millisecond range. However, in non-ECO mode, I really feel like I’m driving a large responsive sports car. But that’s just me. Thank you Toyota – and for building my car in Kentucky USA!

  • bm

    what if batterys go how much to replace

  • JD

    Toyota guarantees all Hybrid Vehicle batteries for 8yrs / 100K mi.

    1) The battery is made up of cells which can be individually replaced, so there is lower cost if a cell goes – usually the case.

    2) Amazingly, Toyota has replaced only 2% of its hybrid vehicle batteries starting in 2007 with the Prius.

  • SE

    Did test drive one the other day and noticed this too. Not sure, but it does bother me too.

  • SAM1845

    i bought a cmry hybrid 2012, only gets 700 km on my 64 liters tank, expect to have at least 800 km on a tank, i nthink this hybrid is a fucking scam, i should buy a volkswagen diesel i probably be happier now…

  • Antonio

    I just purchased a new 2012 XLE Camry. great power, hreat economy, outstanding fueture and very comfortable. Can’t ask for more.

  • Rose Thornton

    My new 2012 Camry XLE Hybrid has 2,000 miles (30 days new) and I love everything about it. This is my THIRD Camry (1998 and 2003) and it’s by far – the best.

    The interior is a little heavy on the plastic, but I love the leather seats (XLE). The instrument panel is just downright pretty – and informative as well. Lots of graphs and charts!

    Real-world mileage is high 40s around town and about 45 on the highway.

    AMAZING, and a sweet ride, too!

    For my line of work, it’s an ideal car. http://www.searshomes.org/index.php/2012/05/22/the-2012-camry-hybrid-an-ideal-car-for-house-hunting/

  • Rose Thornton

    My new 2012 Camry XLE Hybrid has 2,000 miles (30 days new) and I love everything about it. This is my THIRD Camry (1998 and 2003) and it’s by far – the best.

    The interior is a little heavy on the plastic, but I love the leather seats (XLE). The instrument panel is just downright pretty – and informative as well. Lots of graphs and charts!

    Real-world mileage is high 40s around town and about 45 on the highway.

    AMAZING, and a sweet ride, too!

    For my line of work, it’s an ideal car.

  • Zepol Derfla

    getting an average of 46 mpg in Houston. Best ride, no road noise , lots of room , drives like a sports car leaving my Accord at home more. Cant wait to take on a long trip….

  • jorge6474

    This is so easy to say, people who talk negative about this car either their not toyota lovers or dont have this car, i purchased this car yesturday, after days of reaserch and prices, and not to mention reability toyota hybrid is a no brainer. Honda dont even have an accord hybrid, they are investing more in hydrogen, its cool. Hundai is new in hybrid technology, im scare. Ford same story with focus. Drove the regular and hybrid camary, cant even feel the diffrance, only diffrence is that when the electric motor kicks in the car is so quite, not used to it, i feel like my car died on me, but its only the electric motor taking over. This has to be the best purchased i ever made in a car not to mention i get 60MPG once you get used to knowing the tricks to use the energy of the battery.

  • Jack London

    HI Folks, Just bought a 2012 Toyota Camry LE Hybrid. The car rides very well, plenty of leg room, and I do not feel stuffed into a cockpit type front seat. My mileage is in the upper 30’s. Wondering here if i have the ECO button enagaged or the EV button cancelling out the EV or vica versa which might be affecting my milage? . I do love the car, just envious of the mileage some of you folks are getting. My one concern with buying this Toyota is having to be at the mercy of Toyota dealerships. Have had some long term Toyota vehicles and they are fine, but have also been ripped off at Toyota dealerships big time. I have an independent Japenese repair shop here in Mass but when in Fla am at the mercy of Toyota Dealerships. Can anyone recommend an independent rerpair shop in the Stuart Jensen Beach area? Thanks!


  • Freddie

    We’re currently driving a 2009 Nissan Altima, but had 2 Camrys before that. We would have stayed with Camrys for many reasons, but unfortunately the last time we bought we found that Toyota had changed the angle of the front window. It was only a slight change, but enough to lower the rear view mirror creating a blind spot at 2 o’oclock. A pedestrian dashing across in front of the car from right to left would have been invisible (almost found this out the hard way on a test drive). Unfortunately no amount of seat adjustment seemed to fix the problem and that was a deal-breaker for us. We’re ready to trade again. Hopefully Toyota’s fixed that problem. If so, we’d gladly go back to Camry and a hybrid model is certainly on the table.

  • GF

    After 6 months, I’d like to share some of my observations about the XLE Hybrid…

    In the city, I like to make a game out of maximizing the distance I can go on just the battery (I know – – NERD).

    I’ve learned a few things about EV mode and the “ECO Line”
    – You might as well leave the car in ECO mode all the time, unless you are trying to impress someone that has heard that all hybrids are slow
    – Without using the “EV Mode” button, it is very difficult to accelerate from a stop and stay on electric power only (EV indicator is on).
    – One good use of the EV Mode button is from a stop. If the battery has at least 3 bars, pressing the EV Mode button will allow you to accelerate at a slightly faster rate (but still not fast), allowing you to stay on electric power. When not in “EV Mode,” the car will kick on the gas engine as soon as the “power” indicator reaches the ECO line. When you have forced EV Mode using the button, your rate of acceleration can exceed the ECO line, but only up to 25 mph. If you want to stay on electric power beyond 25 mph, you have to maintain acceleration below the ECO line. I have found that you can push the EV Mode button, moderately accelerate to 24 mph, and if on the level or downhill, back off the accelerator and see if you can remain below the ECO line.
    – Sometimes you feel like it should be running on electric power, but the gas engine is running. For example, the engine is warm, you are going 40mph or less, not accelerating, on a level road with at least 3 bars on the battery. Usually, you can get it to switch to electric only by letting off the gas and gently re-applying pressure on the pedal, keeping your acceleration below the ECO line. That seems to make the car re-think its mode and switch back to the battery.

    On the highway, there are only a few things you can do to maximize mileage – – accelerate slowly, keep a steady speed and watch your speed. This car loses about 1 mpg for every 5 mph over 60.

    I’ve been getting consistently 43mpg in the city and 41mpg on the highway.

    Love the car so far!


    Have been comparing to Prius and conclude the Camry XLE is too great a value to pass on! Indy rear suspension, 3 extra air bags, 400 lbs more will help in crash, conventional gauge placemen/consol, wider, longer, heavier/ more stable, better visibilty, luxo interior compared to prius and hot rod performance @ 40+mpg! Also, less maintenance and we may find that these hybrids are convertable to lithium/better batteries in the future which may mean stellar resale! Note: the tranny appears really robust and different from what the rest offer too! Sold!

  • JD

    Thanks for the hints GF!
    I’ve been punching the EV mode button at stops and that is definitely a plus. I continue to be a hyper-miler, i.e., going speed limit and/or less. Getting ~50mpg overall with my 2012 CHV! Gas prices headed up again. Loving this car!

  • Baba Yaga

    On July 22, 2012 I got 2012 Camry LE hybrid for 22,975 + tax and fees ($25,140 out of the door in North California). With the price is just 2K more than a quote for regular SE model – hybrid has much more in power and gas savings (difference in similar driving 12,000 mi between regular and hybrid is about $650 a year with $3.50 per gallon).
    For me 2K upgrade to hybrid is much better than to spend 3K for navigation, rims, power seats or moon-roof. All of this stuff not giving any savings comparing to hybrid!
    Well done, Toyota!

  • emin

    In order to promote the eco-friendly hybrid cars, it is always necessary for government and other associated organizations to come up with some kind of tax credit amounts for hybrid models.

  • JD

    Initially tax incentives were necessary to drive HV sales however, there are no tax breaks for the CHV. At this point in time with empirical data, i.e., battery life, inevitable rise in gas price, and lower HV pricing, people are much more likely to buy a hybrid vehicle today without a subsidy.

  • Randy c

    I have a Prius and the trans does shut down if the tires spin,for it wont hurt the drive train,so you cant rock out of snow,I put on winter tires now it runs like a jeep,Love it!!!

  • JD

    Thanks for the advisory anecdote Randy C. I’d heard snow treads might be necessary…especially here in Maine. 🙂

  • Roger

    I am in northern California, too. Where did you get the hybrid for this price?

  • Romayne

    I just want to know if any of the hybrid that Toyota makes will ever have better selection of the interior color????? I would love a solid black leather interior trim.

  • pablo exitcar

    No, I think you bought a regular Camry LE. The invoice on the Hybrid LE is 23.9k and they’re selling well, there’s no reason they would sell under invoice. Or maybe it was used?

  • Anonymous

    I’ll bet if you drive the V6 and the Hybrid you would think the Hybrid was a lot faster. I traded in a BMW 330xi 255hp and the Hybrid seems faster than the BMW because you get that instant torque of the electric motor kicking in that makes it seem faster than the inline 6 of the BMW. Punch it at 60 and you’ll feel instant accelleration in the Camry that puts you pack in your seat whereas the BMW just has increasing push when you punch it and you don’t feel as much accelleration. But for 60 to 100 the BMW would smoke the Camry (that’s one reason I got rid of the BMW I was driving too fast). It seems the accelleration only lasts for 5 or 10 mph then it the accelleration slows down.

  • Alanfromhumboldt

    Just bought the 2012 XLE hybrid in Michigan for the long road trip home to Northern California. This is our fourth Camry, and first hybrid. This car outperforms all of the others in power and handling, and is a very comfortable ride. The added bonus of 40+ mpg made the decision to get a hybrid a very easy one. We did look at the Prius, but were not impressed with the more confined interior space or ride handling. Also, we felt the additional road clearance would be an advantage on our rural roads with their frequent road hazards. All of the points made in this review seem to be holding true so far.

  • Neurad1

    This article states: “Soft textures are also used on the upper door trim, door and center console armrests as well as kneepads on either side of the console”. The plastic “knee pads” are not cushioned at all. I test drove a 2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid yesterday and the “knee pads” were hard plastic. The side of my right knee had a “dent” in it after the test drive. It was uncomfortable. I actually found there to be no more (and perhaps less) legroom in the Camry than in the Prius that I test drove the same day.

  • Alvin

    Does only the Hybrid XLE come with leather interior? I’m thinking of getting the Hybrid LE but I want the leather interior :(. Also, for those who have gotten either LE or XLE, which did you pick and why?

  • stak

    I have to admit as you said that the 2012 Camry has shocked me. It goes against everything that I’ve thought about hybrid(Camry) vs. diesel(TDI). In the past I would always, always go with the TDI, even though diesel is more expensive than regular unleaded here. Having a hybrid go 0 to 60 MPH in just a tick over 7 seconds?!?! I need a whole reset of the automotive landscape. For the 1st time in my life hybrids looks very attractive.

  • ATS in San Francisco

    Can anyone explain to me why the Camry hybrid XLE has lower EPA mileage ratings than the LE (40 / 38 vs. 43 / 39)? It seems to me that the only mechanical difference is in the wheels and tires. So perhaps it is a calibration issue stemming from a difference in tire circumference. Otherwise, there would have to be a difference in the electronic or electro-mechanical configuration, and that seems very unlikely. Any ideas?

    We bought our XLE just over a month ago and are quite happy overall. Like a couple of the responders above, we used the USAA buying program. They took our specifications online and sent them to the three nearest Toyota dealers. The best price (by far) came from Hilltop Toyota in Richmond CA. The sales rep, Nickolay Mack, was also straightforward and knowledgeable. Sorry for the sales pitch, but good businesses should be rewarded.

    Also I should note that I really appreciate the this review and all the useful comments.

  • JD

    As in electric and with hybrid technology, weight is a large consideration with respect to mpg. There’s almost 100 lbs curb weight difference between the XLE and the LE. The wheels are larger (17″) on the XLE compared to the LE which has 16″ tires. However, the alloy wheels, stock on the XLE, do not account for
    the total weight differential. There’s also fog lights and a moonroof (w/motor) adding to this weight difference.

  • Tim M

    The difference is the tires and the slight weight difference. Don’t underestimate the effect of tires on a vehicle in both acceleration and mileage. On one car of mine, a VW diesel, I lose 3 mpg just changing to my summer wheels (bigger and wider) than my winter wheels.

    I too plan to use the USAA buying service. Their insurance is great as well. Nobody has beat their rates for me yet.

  • anon

    I got the LE but if I had to do it again I would go with the XLE for sure! The problem though, is that the dealerships load the XLE’s up with all the options! So, the prices are not $1500 more for the XLE, you either get the LE for 24k (what I paid), or the XLE for over 30k because they all come with all the options. I guess you could order one, though. And the leather would cost you $1400 on an LE, whcih the salesman said I could get any time, really.

  • Anonymous

    I really think some of these Camry drivers are smoking too much crack! High 40’s in mpg? Yeah, right! Maybe on a total downhill ride! I get around 33mpg average, but I drive 75mph and up on the freeway, and drive pretty fast overall, and not in eco mode much, and constantly use the air conditioner. Yeah, I had 79mpg going downhill on the freeway one time, big deal!

    I think these people are lying, TBH, saying they get high 40’s on average. They WANT to think that so bad, I guess!

  • Anonymous

    Yeah, it is surprisingly fast! And I come from a BMW with 255 hp! That instant torque from the electric motor is pretty cool if you’re into accelleration. I always thought that the car industry was stupid for selling hybrids that were really slow, and didn’t take advantage of the electric motor to help the accelleration. Well, the Camry is definitely not slow, around 7.2 0-60, and it actually feels faster than that, especially when you’re passing on the freeway and kick it down. My BMW had more constant pull, but for the first 10mph rise in speed when you kick it down the Camry feels much faster. Then it just kind of burns out where the BMW would just constantly accellerate.

  • JD

    Dear Anonymous et’al,
    Driving habits have everything to do with MPG as I’m sure we all know. I’m averaging 50+MPG consistently with my Hybrid Camry LE (not lying), however, I rarely drive above 55mph, I keep the car in ECO mode 99% of the time, have a very light foot–altho I do like to experience the excellent acceleration and power of this great machine occasionally. It is impressive!

    When I do get on the turnpike and do 65-70mph, the mileage immediately starts to drop. However, you should see an increase in MPG around town and elsewhere if you leave the car in ECO mode and discipline your lead foot to behave itself. Try driving the speed limit or just 5 over on inter-town highways (mostly 50mph around here) and in-town. I bet you’ll see improvement. I can attest to the fact, most people drive too fast. The mindset seems to be to get from point A to B in the shortest time. Why!? 1) Are people always running late, 2) do people enjoy filling their gas tank more often (not) 3) people don’t really care that the efficiency of their vehicle is not optimal? etc…

    I try to be a “hyper-miler” and find it challenging to try for best mileage. With the helpful gauges on the CHV you can monitor your style of driving and how it changes when you become a light foot. Your MPGs will go up if you simply change the way you drive. Even when on the turnpike you should be in the 40s MPG range if you aren’t heavy on the pedal, speeding, etc. Is it really necessary to pass that car in front of you who is doing 5mph over the limit? Take a deep breath, enjoy the scenery, and know you are saving fuel.

    Have fun and good luck improving your MPG!

  • Laurie

    The whine when slowing is regenerative braking. My kids and I think it is awesome 🙂

  • Laurie

    The whine when slowing is regenerative braking. My kids and I think it is awesome 🙂

  • JD

    Actually, I think the whine when slowing down in the Camry hybrid is the electric motor winding down. I like it very much too. Sounds like a jet engine decelerating. 🙂 …and this car is a jet compared to its competitors…

  • stak

    anonymous, thanks for giving your experience with the Bmw comparo. This is the 1st hybrid I recall that has that extra oomph behind it instead of that laggy feeling. When they get a 50 mpg hybrid that can dash 0-60mph in 6 seconds flat I’m signing up!Pronto. Don’t think that day will be too far off the way Toyota is going.

  • JD

    Now that the temps have started to drop in southern Maine, so has my average MPG with the Camry Hybrid Vehicle (CHV). We’re in the mid to high 50s during the day and high 30s to 40s after dark now and I’ve dropped from 50 average during the summer months to ~47mpg average now (mid October.)
    I expected a drop when cold weather started but not quite this much so soon. My driving habits have not varied. I hope it doesn’t drop too much more with gas prices so high. However, it often gets into the minus fahrenheit numbers here in southern Maine during January and Febuary.
    Also considering snow treads for the car as hybrids apparently do not play well in snow and may even shut down with too much spinning.

  • Dave Kitchell

    I own a 2009 Camry Hybrid and it’s been a great car with mileage much better than what the sticker lists. Living in the Midwest however, I see my mileage drop around 25 percent during peak cold months. I’ve never seen an explanation of this. Does anyone have any thoughts?

  • Anonymous

    I suspect that at least part of the drop in mileage is due to the heater. Unlike the air conditioner, the heater requires that the gas engine run to heat the coolant circulated by the heater. I’m sure there is no electric “coil” component to the heater as that would be a huge power draw on the batteries.

  • Anonymous

    This article offers an explanation as to the drop in hybrid mileage due to cold weather: http://alternativefuels.about.com/od/hybridvehicles/a/hybridfuelecon.htm

  • annasrcpml

    I did tons of research and test drove 4 different brands of hybrids. I wanted to buy a Camry hybrid, but the sound genereated by the regerative brakes was a deal killer. It’s an irritating high-pitched whinning sound – the kind a jet airliner makes as it’s braking during landing. No way I could listen to that every time the car brakes. To be fair, the sound does not happen if you’re braking from a speed of under 20 miles per hour. I”M SO DISAPPOINTED!

  • JD

    All hybrids have this “jet engine” deceleration trait. As the car rolls slower, the motor(s) — there are several in the Camry HV — must wind-down as the vehicle comes to a stop. Other HVs have more or less the same electric motor sound and some actually buy a license to use Toyota’s Hbrid technology. It may be a hearing sensitivity. I think we all hear somewhat differently within the audio range.

    Also, amount of sound deadening material used in the firewall and floorboards will effect cabin sound levels. Different models and/or manufacturers equate to various levels of sound deadening. ..a high-end Lexus will be quieter than a Camry. Personally, I like the ‘cool’ jet engine whhiiirrr-ing sound. It makes me think good thoughts like I’m polluting less, getting great MPG, driving more efficiently, and enjoying the comfort, power off the line, an overall fit and finish of this car. …oh yeah, made in America Too!!!

  • Howtoon

    I recently bought a 2007 Camry Hybrid. I love this car, but I have never before been a fan of Camry. It only had 17k miles on it, but with the outrageous gas mileage, I have driven it over 4,000 miles in the last two months. I would definately recommend buying a used one with low miles if you can find it. I have owned an acura, mercedes, nissan, cadillac, buick, you name it ive probably driven it, and this is the most responsive and easy to drive car ive even been in. The greatest thing is that it is a full size sedan, which doesnt make you feel like the little guy on the road. My favorite feature is the keyless entry with lock button on the outside door handle, which once i found out what it did i always use it and never need to find/take my keys out of my pocket, which can be a hassle if holding items ie groceries. The siriusxm radio is awesome and i almost never want to get out of this car. Camry Hybrid <3

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  • christian

    i got one now 2012 hybrid camry it,s fun to press that gas pedal
    very fast ,nice looking ,but they still put garden chair,the gas gage always look full compare to my FJ cruiser always look empty
    please TOYOTA we are not ASIAN
    we eat burger we need good comfy chair to ride
    the rest the car is PERFECT ,trunk is OK to very good
    got the LE maybe the XLE leather would be better
    but i do beleive if they would upgrade the seat they would pick up a lot more client on any of there product those car are built for ASIAN that eat rice all the time and no bread

  • JD

    Christian, I agree regarding your comment re. Camry seat comfort…or lack thereof. The XLE has electric lumbar, fwd and rev., & tilt (8-way) which would be better. However, IMHO an LE Hybrid should at least have a supportive drivers side seat. That means lumbar support too. I let Toyota know about the lack of lumbar supp soon after I bought the car. Hope we see this in future Camrys.

    On another note, mileage is down to about 48 avg in my classic silver LE CHV since the cold weather set in. It’ll likely go down further as the deep freeze sets in here in Maine. Will report back in winter…

    Wonder if anyone has experience driving on winter roads in a Camry Hybrid?… I’ve read snows are a good idea. As the story goes, if you spin too much the engine(s) can shut down and not restart immediately.

  • Anonymous

    2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid vs. 2012 Toyota Camry Hybrid Hybrid – summary from official specs. and several reviews…

    – The Fusion has a really cool “Aston Martinish” grill.
    – The Camry has 12 more horsepower, weighs 303 pounds less, and gets to 60mph 27% faster than the Fusion (7.2 seconds vs. 9.1 seconds).
    – The Fusion has a more “high tech, lighter, smaller Li-ion battery pack” that somehow takes up 4 cubic feet, leaving a trunk that is more than 1 cubic foot smaller than the Camry’s (12 cubic feet vs. 13.1 cubic feet).
    – The Camry’s trunk is 2.3 cubic feet smaller than the standard Camry, while the Fusion’s trunk is 4 cubic feet smaller than the standard Fusion. How is this technology smaller?
    – The Camry hybrid weighs 177 pounds more than the non-hybrid Camry, while the Fusion hybrid weighs 293 pounds more than the non-hybrid Fusion. How is this technology lighter?
    – The Fusion is rated at 47mpg, and the Camry 41mpg; however, the Camry actually gets 41mpg, and the Fusion gets less.
    – This is especially bad for the Fusion, because it has a tiny gas tank, 26% smaller than the Camry’s (13.5 gallons vs. 17 gallons).
    – The Camry has more back seat headroom.
    – The Fusion Hybrid costs $2,000 more than the Camry Hybrid.
    – The Camry is made in Kentucky, while the Fusion is made in Mexico.
    – The Fusion has a really cool “Aston Martinish” grill (repeated, I know, but people are really excited about the grill).

    Real-world gas mileage references (also check Ford C-Max – – same drive train)
    – Toyota and Ford user forums