The mid-size sedan segment is one of the, if not the, most competitive segments in the American car market, from the manufacturer’s perspective. This is one segment that has long-standing heavyweights posting consistently strong sales figures and also some newbies who take the fight to these sales heavyweights in terms of handling and overall performance. One of the aforementioned giants is the Toyota Camry which has been in the game for nearly 4 decades now – 37 years to be exact. The 2021 Toyota Camry marks the 37th year of the mid-size sedan which has been flocking the roads this long.
The Toyota Camry has always been on the top of one’s priority if s/he wants a reliable car, which is comfortable to drive, has a premium interior, and performs as expected from a mid-size executive car – it feels as if the Japanese carmaker has found the secret to success. It does take care of one caveat of its prime competitor, the Honda Accord, by providing the power to all the four wheels as an option, if not as standard, on some of the variants. Having said that, we got our hands on a 2021 Toyota Camry with AWD on board, and boy oh boy were we impressed by its performance on road. If you want to read our thoughts on that, the review of the same has been uploaded on carindigo.com.
If someone is looking for a new mid-size car, the Toyota Camry makes a very strong case for itself. We’ve listed some reasons as to why the Camry has always been on the top of our recommendations for someone looking for a stress-free commuter that has nearly zero reliability issues.
Strong reliability reputation
Toyotas have garnered a reputation for being the only ones to come back home, without fail, every time they’re driven. The Camry has gathered the praises of many rating agencies and also has been the recipient of IIHS’ Top Safety Pick+ for 2021, which says a lot about the car’s dependability quotient. J.D. Power rated the 2020 Toyota Camry an 82 out of 100, with a “Great” in the “Quality and Reliability” parameter. Based on this, U.S. News & World Report ranked the Camry at a very respectable 9th place. The folks at Car and Driver applaud the Camry for “distinction for unsullied reliability.”
Impressive fuel economy
The Toyota Camry can be had in three powertrains – a 2.5L Inline-4, a 3.5L V6, and a 2.5L Inline-4 hybrid – all of which are naturally aspirated. Despite this, the fuel economy, as reported by owners, stands at 30 mpg in the city, 41 on the highway, for a combined of 37 mpg. The actual mpg bests the EPA estimates, which stand at 27 mpg for the city, 38 mpg for the highway, and 31 mpg combined. For comparison, the closest car to come to this mark is the Honda Accord which returns 30 mpg in the city, 38 mpg on the highway, and 33 mpg combined.
Talking of the hybrid powerplant, the Camry Hybrid returns 51 mpg in the city, 53 mpg on the highway, and 52 mpg combined which is as impressive as it can get! The Accord, on the other hand, returns a 48/47/48 mpg respectively. Now if you want to go on a long trip, the Camry can do that as well!
The Toyota Camry, no matter what trim you go with, offers a lot of standard safety features. The standard safety features include automatic emergency braking, full-speed adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam headlights, cyclist and pedestrian detection, forward collision warning, and lane-centering steering. If someone needs more safety, Toyota has got them covered with the Driver Assist package which will add Birds Eye View Camera with Perimeter Scan, Rear Cross-Traffic Braking, and Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS) on to the car.
Relatedly, the NHTSA’s crash test reports award the 2021 Camry a 5-star rating, which is the highest there is! On a detailed observation of the documents, the Camry scored a 5-star rating all around in every parameter – hence the overall score. Also, the IIHS’ 2021 Top Safety Pick+ adds another feather to the Camry’s cap.
Cost to Own
Talking to multiple owners, we got a lot of numbers and hence we did an average to give you, the reader, an idea of how much the Camry will cost to own. Over a period of 5 years, a 2021 Toyota Camry will incur nearly $2,969 in maintenance costs while the repairs, if any, will not be more than $571. Also, the estimated fuel costs will be anywhere near the $5,000 mark. Add to these figures the cost to insure the car, which will set you back by nearly $3,500. The worst thing to pull the value down is the depreciation – which is a mammoth $13,323. No wonder why the Camry is a pre-owned market favorite!
A bit of a disclaimer: the figures above are tentative and will vary depending on various factors.
Based on the above factors, we can surely say that the 2021 Toyota Camry is one of the most reliable mid-size cars out there which is easy to maintain and won’t cost you a dime in maintenance, given the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule is followed religiously. Also, this car is a perfect package when it comes to being loaded with safety features as standard, offering almost all the features that the competitors have as optional! To top it all off, the powerplants are the most fuel-efficient and will hence total a lower tab in your fuel expenses!