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Toyota Camry 2.5 Hybrid Luxury- XV50 Facelift 2017
Reasons why I bought this car
Having my parents already getting older & now retired, I would like to upgrade my car to serve them fetching around the city more comfortably (or more like chauffeuring them).
Apart from that, my previous car, a Toyota Corolla Altis 1.8G 2008 was starting to look a bit tired & has developed some suspension issues (result from when I bought this car 2nd hand & previous owner not taking care of it well). There was not enough back legroom in the 1st place & the beige fabric seats were getting harder to clean.
As a fan of 2nd hand cars all along, I've noticed Camry Hybrids suddenly was below the RM100k mark in the used market this year. After running the numbers, I've decided on chancing a used one, given all the features it had that I would love & Toyota's remarkable hybrid reliability.
Car selection process
I had a budget of: RM90000
Models that I have considered include: Mazda 6 2.0 Skyactiv & Toyota Camry 2.0 GX XV50 Pre-Facelift
Apart from being able to get a car which I can properly chauffeur my parents in, and also unusual for my younger age, I've also have a more elegant taste for cars as opposed to sporty ones. Of course, if we are to keep this car in the long run, it should be something reliable & one that I do not mind driving for a very long time.
Also, I have sat in a 2013 2.0G model before, so I know the Camry has got a lot of cabin space for practicality.
I have already done 2500km
This car, while it will not engage your hearts around corners, it has great straight-line performance for its segment (the feeling almost akin to a Proton X70 if I would dare say; being most of my mates who owned it accelerate hard once in a while too). The 2.5L hybrid powertrain is able to accelerate the car from 0-100km/h in less than 9 seconds. At the same time, if you are very careful with your driving, you may score better than usual FC rates (20.0km/L+) for a D segment that sometimes a Myvi or a Bezza may struggle to beat in real life. RM50 worth of petrol takes you 500km at least. I've averaged around 16.5-22.1km/L in my consumption.
On the other hand, as a car to drive me in chill moments & carrying my parents at times, it is a pleasant one too. It has very light steering (being electric powered) & a near-silent engine on the highway or in town. The creature comforts are aplenty & after a long drive, I have never felt lethargic as compared to driving long distances in my old Corolla Altis.
All of the features that my previous Altis had were carried over in this car and with this upgrade added new key features that my previous car does not come with. Those include:
1.Blind spot monitoring
2. Rear passenger blinds (a mixture of auto & manual operation)
3. Reverse camera & keyless start
4. Black leatherette seats which are easier to maintain
5. Blue floor lighting which lifts the luxuriousness of the cabin
6. A nice new blue Optitron meter for this Camry
Moreover, since Toyota updated the equipment list for 2016, the Luxury Hybrid receives a more elegant-looking 17-inch wheel, a more modern leather-wrapped gear knob & a DVR recorder as standard compared to the 2015 models. The 2015 model's rims (a 5 spoke rim in black & silver trim) look like a Camry that has begun to prep up for street racing (which is what it is not supposed to do). That is added value for you right there.
Subsequent models (2017 onwards) added on brown leather seats & an option for a 360 view camera.
- Interior cabin space. Massive
- Touchpoints, lighting & cabin look more elegant & modern than the previous generation models
- Safety features are aplenty for this car (minus the ADAS)
- Hybrid system is a whisper as a mouse in town/city traffic
- Neat trick; the DRLs do not simply turn on till you place the car in R/D when starting for the 1st time. The LEDs should last a bit longer that way
- The performance for a car this size, price range & segment is blistering quickly thanks to instant torque from the electric motors
- Despite the performance, do not expect a sporty/pleasant engine revving noise when you full throttle the car. The constant engine droning due to the e-CVT transmission will still there.
- The interior rear mirror has gotten loose. I noticed this is a common issue with this model. Will send it back to the dealer to rectify this later. Needs a permanent fix.
- The infotainment screen is a bit laggy to use; you will tear your hair off more when trying to use the navigation which is also partly outdated. No Android Auto/Apple Carplay too in 2017 is a downer.
- Boot space at 421L is woeful compared to other D segment cars & no pass thru-hole to the cabin for long items. Hopefully the next time the Camry Hybrid comes out again, Toyota can up their packaging game a bit more.
- Since the Camry's suspension does not have a long travel distance, you might feel more jolts going thru bigger bumps/potholes if you are not careful.
Total Score: 5
Quality & Features: 4
Ride Comfort: 4
Fuel Economy: 5
Price & Cost: 4
Overall I have not driven this car very far yet as I've only obtained it at the start of 2021 & MCO started. But with the times I've been driving out, each drive was a luxurious experience & same goes with my parents. It is the perfect family car (aside from the boot space) or an up-market city dweller if you are on your own. Hybrids in Malaysia, even Toyotas have a generally bad reputation especially batteries but recently there are more hybrid repair shops coming up that can serve them at a reasonable cost. And even then, Toyota's hybrid system is not pre-mature to the auto world. I will not say this car is at the level of refinement of a BMW 530e nor a Volvo S90 T8 (I have test drove both of them before, so I can tell), but for the price we paid, the value of comfort we get & the sheer reliability on hand, it is a choice we are willing to take.
Interesting events that happened to the car
No interesting events yet since I had not owned the car for long.
Instead, as an interesting experience, I do always have a soothing sensation whenever it rains in the evening/night. The fact that the shiny zebra wood trims faintly reflects the water droplets on the windscreen combined with plush leather seats & the blue ambient lighting on the floor & dashboard cocoons yourself as a passenger & driver equally that you are in a solid, safe & reliable car. Combine that with some jazz/piano music, and you are all set for the road.
It is just like relaxing at home on your bed while it is raining.
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