In the latest example of what seems to be becoming an industry-wide trend, the 2013 Toyota Camry will receive notable enhancements even though the car just debuted as an all-new model for 2012. It’s a strategy folks have seen deployed recently on entries like the Honda Civic, which was pretty heavily revised for 2013 after its next-gen debut last year, and the Chevy Malibu, a direct rival to the Camry that also was brand-new in 2012.
But while the changes to the Civic and Malibu looked like reactions to specific issues with each vehicle, the 2013 Toyota Camry is taking more of a proactive approach to head off challenges from rivals like the 2013 Ford Fusion and 2013 Nissan Altima, as well as the retailored Malibu. On the other hand, since the Malibu’s adjustments also included a lower price, leaving the Camry as the market’s most expensive mainstream midsize sedan, Toyota’s fine-tuning provides some extra justification for the car’s extra cost.
Getting down to the details:
- The 2013 Toyota Camry L opens at $22,235—$240 more than the Malibu—and gains a Display Audio screen.
- The next-highest trim grades, Camry LE and SE, swap out hard plastic door panels for soft-touch accents and a more comfortable cabin; the former also benefits from interior armrests that match the rest of the cabin color.
- A more premium door-panel stitching is used in Camry models with leather seating surfaces.
- Toyota’s Blind Spot Monitor has been added to the options list for the 2013 Toyota Camry LE, with the system also introducing a rear cross-traffic warning.
The 2013 Toyota Camry Hybrid welcomes similar changes—while continuing to offer 41 mpg in combined driving—and both it and the traditionally powered models are on sale now.