2019 Toyota Camry

For quite a time, the Toyota Camry was the midsize sedan benchmark for those willing to stay within the mainstream brands. They’ve sold close to 20 million of these cars, spanning seven generations since 1983. While some may say that the midsize sedan market in the Philippines is slowly dying, it doesn’t mean that Toyota is willing to back down from the fight with one of their staple nameplates.

While Toyota has always been known for reliability and ease of ownership, their latest products have been surprising us with a very important but often overlooked feature: passive and active safety. The Rush and Vios offer more airbags than its competitors, and across all variants, creating a value proposition for peace of mind that’s almost unbeatable at their respective price points. The recently launched Toyota Camry is no different, and even at its base 2.5 G variant, offers at least 85% of what the top spec 2.5 V has; safety, technology, and comfort.

For starters, both available variants of the 2019 Toyota Camry will have the same 181 hp, 231 Nm of torque, 2.5L gasoline V6 with a six-speed automatic transmission. The 2.5 V does come with the driving modes (eco, sport, normal), but those who will be driven around in the Camry (which is usually the case for buyers) probably won’t prioritize this feature. In terms of exterior, they are exactly the same, save for smaller 17-inch alloy wheels on the 2.5 G instead of 18-inch ones on the top spec, meaning you get the same LED headlights, chrome touches, and exterior trim pieces.

The interior will have the biggest differences by only a slight margin, such as electronically adjustable leather seats on the 2.5 V and manually adjusting fabric seats on the 2.5 G. The center armrest for the second row gets a nifty control interface to adjust things like sunshades, climate control, and audio on the top variant, so that’s the biggest draw in our opinion, since the base model gets only cupholders. You also get a 4.2-inch multi info display instead of a 7-inch in the 2.5G. Everything else is identical in side the cabin.

Let’s talk about safety and convenience, this is where the two variants come so close in spec to a point where it doesn’t even matter which one you go for. Sure, the 2.5 V gets a head-up display, but that’s only a plus if you’re driving. Keyless unlocking with push start, six speakers, and the same infotainment screen size and features are standard. You still get seven airbags (driver and passenger side, knee airbag, curtain airbags all around), ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist, vehicle stability control, hill start assist, and emergency stop signal on both variants. That’s a majority of the safety alphabet right there, leading us to believe that Toyota will soon be known to have top safety right next to reliability and ease of ownership.

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