2013 Toyota Camry XLE Hybrid Review by Stu Wright


Toyota’s Camry Hybrid mid-size sedan has been available since 2006, and has, up until now, been available in its second generation configuration as a 2013 model.  Such a car was delivered to my house last month for testing, and it was loaded to the total of $35,170.00, M.S.R.P.  The base price of $27,670.00 for the XLE model had, as additions, the blind spot monitor ($500), convenience package ($695), leather package ($1,185), premium navigation/electronic package ($2,670), safety connect package ($515), moon roof ($915), and carpet trunk mat set ($225).  It came in “Barcelona red metallic” paint and the leather seating was a dark gray in color.  It’s a five passenger sedan with a decent-sized rear passenger compartment and a 13.1 cubic foot trunk.  It comfortably seats five adults.

 I drove the Camry to Boulder and to Denver, and gradually grew pretty accustomed to the CVT transmission setup in the car.  CVT stands for continuously variable transmission (no shifts), and it is coupled to a gasoline 4 cylinder, 2.5 liter motor with 156 horsepower and 156 lb. ft. of torque.  Two electric motor/generators are on board to add in 141 more horsepower and 199 lb. ft. of torque.  Combined power rating is 200 horsepower, and as I mentioned, it was pretty suitable for driving the somewhat big sedan.  I liked the ride and handling  and the styling is great front and rear, and I still am OK with the side of the car, styling-wise. 

Fuel economy for the hybrid has been improved for 2013, by some estimates perhaps 5%.  Ratings for the car I drove were 40-City and 38-Highway. The current mileage compilation for the car is displayed on a dial; not digitally. When the car was picked up I notated 36 mpg for the miles I drove it. 

 I mentioned earlier the packages on board  this Camry – it was equipped like a mid-sized luxury sedan. Nice JBL stereo, 7″ touchscreen for navigation and backup camera, perforated leather seat inserts, blind spot monitor, satellite radio, 17″ alloys, and Bluetooth.

There is a reason the Camry is still America’s best selling car, and I experienced it this past month with the Hybrid. This Hybrid model with its state-of-the-art styling and economy will be chipping into Prius sales, and into any of its competition’s.


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