How the Toyota Camry Works

©2007 Toyota via Wieck The Toyota Camry hit the U.S. market in the 1983 model year. This See more pictures of the Toyota Camry.

The 2007 Toyota Camry traces its roots in the U.S. to the 1983 model year and was one of the first Japanese cars designed expressly for the American market. Replacing the rear-wheel-drive Toyota Corona, the front-wheel-drive Camry quickly became Toyota's number-two U.S. seller.

By 1987, Camry was the company's top-selling model. A few years later, it displaced the Ford Taurus and Honda Accord as America's most popular line of passenger cars, a title it has held most every year since. Even today, despite a broader-than-ever Toyota lineup and the popularity of sport-utility vehicles, the Camry draws some 450,000 yearly sales, about 45 percent of Toyota's total U.S. car volume.

What's the secret of this success? It's not sex appeal or driving fun. Though a few Camry models do tilt toward sportiness, Camry has never tried to be anything more than a no-nonsense mainstream family car. Its key traits have always been solid engineering, high-grade workmanship, and strong value for money, a combination most competitors don't match. Camry also enjoys Toyota's reputation for high reliability and strong resale value, two more factors that keep it demand as both a new car and used car.

The Camry embodies the much-publicized rise of the Toyota brand itself. Indeed, it's one reason Toyota has grown to rank No. 3 in U.S. vehicle sales (as of 2006). Analysts predict Toyota will soon overhaul perennial No. 2 Ford Motor Co., and then pass General Motors to become the largest vehicle maker in the world.

This article traces Camry's evolution, from its beginning to the latest 2007 models. It's divided by the car's six design generations, starting in 1983.

©2007 Toyota via Wieck The

Each page begins with a description of the major design and engineering features for that generation. Then it discusses the significant changes to Camry for each model year within the generation.

Each page also includes a segment entitled "Toyota Camry Reliability." This lists the car's notable trouble spots as reported by owners and mechanics, and includes problems covered in company-issued service bulletins.

The pages conclude with "Toyota Camry Safety Recalls." These are recalls issued by the U.S. government's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

©2007 Toyota via Wieck The Toyota Camry -- such as this model from it has been one of the most popular and durable cars on the road.

Camry has grown larger, more powerful, and more luxurious over the years. It's also proven an ideal basis for the Lexus ES, the best-selling model from Toyota's upscale division. Camry has not been without its critics, and is by no means mechanically perfect. But by almost any measure, it is a remarkable automotive achievement. Learn all about it in the pages that follow.

For advice, reviews, photos, prices, reliability trouble spots, and even examples of used cars you're considering that are on sale in your area, check out:

  • Get expert analysis of thousands of used cars over the past decade at Consumer Guide's Used Car Reviews.
  • You've found the vehicle you want to buy, but only a Vehicle History Report can tell you if the odometer is accurate, if it's received any safety recall repairs, and a host of other essential information.
  • The Toyota Camry has been a perennial among Consumer Guide's Best Buy and Recommended vehicles. Find out why, and learn about our other top new-car values.
  • Shopping for a hybrid car? Click here to see the 2007 Toyota Camry hybrid and other 2007 hybrid car pictures.