2002 Toyota Camry XLE 2AZ-FE from North America


A good ride so far


Check engine light came on at 58,000. Disconnected the battery and it went out. It came back on at 60,000.

General Comments:

I've had no problems with rattles, squeeks, or pulling to the left. The Michelin tires that came on it were getting worn so installed a set of Proxes TPT directional tires. I change oil at about 5000 miles, and about a day before going in for a change I put a half quart of Marvel Mystery Oil in the crankcase. I also use MT-10 in the engine oil. This maintenance procedure has served me well as my 88 Camry clocked over 420,000 miles.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st February, 2004

2002 Toyota Camry LE 4 cylinder from North America


A smooth, quiet, ultra-reliable, but rather boring car


Nothing has gone wrong with the car - we have changed the oil only. On a recent safety inspection there was no indication of any imminent problems.

General Comments:

Car is much smoother, faster, quieter with better brakes than our 1994 model. However, seats are too hard and I have difficulty driving for more than 2 hours without a break - this was also my major complaint with the 1994.

As well, although car is tight and quiet in warm weather it is quite prone to various "plastic" squeaks in cold weather. This is a problem that our 1994 did not have.

Great trunk and interior room although car is only slightly larger than 1994. Car is higher, and you sit higher than 1994.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th December, 2003

2002 Toyota Camry LE 2.5L from North America


Still regret trading my '93


Shifter felt like it was gravel.

Wet weather traction leaves something to be desired.

General Comments:

I traded in my '93 camry on a Grand Cherokee and regret it to this day. My '03 camry has tons of room, but I think that it's weight hurts it's performance. It doesn't seem any quicker than my '93 and in the rain it takes effort to not spin the tires when turning from a stop.

Overall I love this car, just not as much as my previous Camry. Everything about this car is adequate, but my other one seemed to fit like a glove and handle everything I could throw at it.

Only problem was my shifter was like a stick in gravel. It was replaced by a local dealership and has improved but still could not be called smooth.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th October, 2003

2002 Toyota Camry XLE 3.0 from North America


Toyota, A Quality Real-Lemon.Sour.Sour


We got the car brand new and it showed three miles on the dash. It has the 3.0 automatic XLE fully loaded red.

The first thing that went out at 5000 miles was the electric moon roof. It had a broken gear in it. Fixed with the warranty.

At 6,000 miles we took the car to have it serviced and they noticed that it was 1/2 quart low on antifreeze. So they said that could be normal so they filled it up to full at no cost. Then my son started to check it every time we got fuel for it and only 400 miles later it was low again. I called and they told me to bring it in. I missed a day of work again. They checked every thing and said it must be normal. Filled up again and off I go.

400 miles again same story. I took it back and they had the big shop boss look it over. He said it had no problems with the cooling system because I told them it never overheated. They filled it up with anti-freeze and I went home.

It was low 500 miles later and I took it to another Toyota Dealership and told them of it all. They actually worked on it. They changed out all the freeze plugs and made sure the "heater-core" was good.

Same old story-500 miles later back again. This time they said it had to be a bad head gasket. So they put 2-new head-gaskets on it.

This still didn't fix it. We took it to a private shop and they checked everything and came up with nothing except a loose head-gasket bold. He put a new bolt in it, but 500-miles later it was still low again.

We learned to live with it and we were scared to drive the car too far away, but it had good power and drove like new.

Then at about 15,000-miles the car finally gave out and overheated and white smoke blew out of the hood and tail pipe. It laid down on me right as I pulled into work one afternoon. One of the head-gaskets blew out. Toyota put a whole new engine in the car this time because it damaged it so bad from overheating.

Our water problem was solved, but with the new engine came all new problems like the bolt for the alternator came loose and left me calling for a tow three weeks after the new engine. Toyota said after such a big job as an engine changing it is normal to have a few bolts work out.

Then not even to 16,000-miles the top of the engine started to leak out oil all over. It caused lots of blue smoke and the first time I called 911 on the freeway. I thought it was on fire. So the firemen called a tow truck to take it back to the dealership. Toyota put new head oil top pan gaskets on the car at no cost.

At 18,000 miles the transmission started to slip. We took it in and the transmission cooling line was too far over close to a part and wore a hole in it and started to leak out. The fluid fried in the transmission from us driving it so low, but Toyota said drive it. The transmission shifted harsh after this and it took a bit longer for it to go into D from N. They put 8oz of some extra special fluid in it to "heal it". I know the transmission is hurt and will go out soon. It happened all at once one day. We always look at the driveway to see if it leaked any anti-freeze every-time before we left the house and we never saw it drip any transmission fluid or anything.

At 20,000-miles the quick oil change shop informed me that the air filter element was full of oil and that the car was smoking out blue smoke and 4-quarts low on oil. He filled it up with oil. We drove it back to the dealer the next day and they got into a fight with my husband and finally told us that it was a used engine with 28,000-miles on it, but that didn't matter. They broke down the top of the Engine and found a bent valve and some air oil "blow-by" lines that were in the wrong place. They replaced the entire exhaust system and sensors as well. They fixed it all.

Then at 22,000 miles the back head-gasket blew back out on the on-ramp to I-40. Thank God for cell phones.

I missed another day of work and had the car took in and got a free rental.

3-weeks later they are done with new head-gaskets and it ran like new again.

The car has about 24,000 miles on it now and we are trading it off before something else goes wrong.

We are getting another Taurus. A New 04-Taurus and Ford is giving us $15,000 trade in. We told them of all the problems and they said they would wholesale it out to an auction. They didn't want to sell it to one of their customers.

We miss our old Taurus that got us 79,000-miles of no problems before we traded it for out Camry-Lemon.

General Comments:

Other people that we know have had only small problems with the Camry. We were told by Toyota that our problems are like 1-10,000++ Camrys. He told us that we had one of the first 2002. They offered us a new one at an even trade, but I don't think I could feel safe in another one. I want something like our old car.

The Camry does ride well and feels tight and has a good size trunk, but maybe a quality problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 12th October, 2003

12th Oct 2003, 17:31

You were extremely lucky with your first Taurus and extremely unlucky with your first Camry. It's much easier to get a bad Taurus than a bad Camry. My Taurus almost sent me to the poor house. I'd bet on another Camry.

21st Oct 2003, 13:21

I have owned a Taurus and I have owned a Toyota. My Toyota was 100% worse than any problem every experienced with my Taurus. The only thing wrong with the Taurus after 10 years ownership was the AC evaporator was replaced twice, the first time under warranty. My Toyota needed a whole new engine after only ONE YEAR!!! My Toyota needed a whole new set of tires at 15,000 miles!!! My Toyota needed a brake job at 20,000 miles!!!