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Used Toyota Camry review: 2006-2011

The bottom line is that Toyota Camry an easy car for a family to live with.
EXPERT RATING
8

It's easy to criticise the Camry, it doesn't do anything very special, but it's also easy to like it, as many Australian families appear to do if you go by its continuing strong sales.

The bottom line is that it's an easy car for a family to live with. Sure, it's not exciting, it doesn't challenge the senses, and it's not in the least sporty, but it drives with ease, it's practical and it's reliable. What's not to like when it's got all of that going for it.

NEW

Toyota launched the sixth generation Camry in 2006 and at the same time realigned it within its overall model range. Gone was the V6 engine and its associated models, the sixth generation Camry was an all-four model and you had to buy an Aurion if you wanted the pep of a V6 engine.

The Camry has never been regarded as particularly stylish, but it has evolved into a more eye-appealing car with each new model and there's nothing about the sixth generation model that warrants criticism.

Four main models made up the range, beginning with the Altise and climbing through the Atevo, Sportivo and Grande, which topped the tree. There were upgrades in 207 and 2009, and a Touring model appeared in 2009.

There was also a hybrid, but that's a specialised model and deserves its own treatment. The Camry is perfect for a family; it seats four adults in comfort, will take five at a squeeze, and has a decent boot. Inside, the cabin is roomy, the seats are quite comfortable, but if there's a criticism to be made it's that it's a little bland.

With the V6 gone the only engine choice was the 2.4-litre four-cylinder unit. It wasn't a neck-snapper, but it didn't need to be in the family car class. It performed perfectly satisfactorily and delivered acceptable fuel economy.

The transmission choices were a five-speed manual and a five-speed auto, but most left the factory with the self-shifter under the bonnet.

On the road the Camry was a rather benign device, it did everything that was called for without in any sense being sporty. The steering was light, but still accurate enough, and the lightness made it a comfortable drive around town.

NOW

Despite setbacks in recent times when it has had to recall some cars Toyota still has a reputation for building sound, reliable cars. It's well justified as the Camry has few faults, and nothing that are of a major concern.

There has been only one recall in Australia involving the sixth generation Camry, and that was for a faulty electric window switch in 2012. The switch could feel sticky, and in the worst case could overheat and melt.

Check the owner's manual on any car you're considering buying second-hand and make sure the recall repair has been carried out. While you're at it check the car's service record to make sure all servicing has been done according to the book.

You might also like to check if your potential choice has been a renter or a fleet car in an earlier life. Camrys were a popular choice as company hacks and rental cars, and while that shouldn't exclude them from your consideration it's best to be wise when buying one of these cars. They sometimes have a hard life and can at times be driven by people who don't care about their welfare.

SMITHY SAYS

It's hard to dislike the Camry, it does everything well enough to be your first choice family car.

Toyota Camry 2006-2011
Price new: $33,000 to $39,900
Engine: 2.4-litre 4-cylinder, 117 kW/218 Nm
Transmission: 5-speed manual, 5-speed auto, FWD
Economy: 8.9 - 9.9 L/100 km
Body: 4-door sedan
Variants: Altise, Ateva, Sportivo, Grande
Safety: 4-star ANCAP

COMING UP

Do you own a Mercedes-Benz C-Class? If so tell us what you think of it by sending your comments to Graham Smith at grah.smith@bigpond.com or Carsguide, PO Box 4245, Sydney, NSW, 2010.
 

Pricing

Year Price From Price To
2011 $5,700 $12,870
2010 $5,100 $12,100
2009 $4,400 $10,010
2008 $4,000 $9,130
2007 $3,700 $8,470
2006 $3,400 $8,910

View all Toyota Camry pricing and specifications

Pricing guides

$6,999
Based on 119 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$2,990
Highest Price
$11,990

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
Altise 2.4L, ULP, 5 SP AUTO $3,700 – 5,940 2006 Toyota Camry 2006 Altise Pricing and Specs
Altise Limited 2.4L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $3,600 – 5,830 2006 Toyota Camry 2006 Altise Limited Pricing and Specs
Altise Sport 3.0L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $4,400 – 7,040 2006 Toyota Camry 2006 Altise Sport Pricing and Specs
Ateva 2.4L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $4,100 – 6,600 2006 Toyota Camry 2006 Ateva Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
8
Graham Smith
Contributing Journalist

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