The V6 Camry SE is very affordable luxury and performance.
The car eats up the miles effortlessly and comfortably, but the V6 has very good pickup and acceleration when merging or passing.
With the SE the suspension is quite firm and sporty, you do feel the road through the seat of your pants. The upside is very tight, precise handling and very quick response through the sport sized steering wheel.
Interior fit and finish is very good. This vehicle has the upgraded cloth interior which is a major step up from the standard LE. The SE also gives you very nice looking silver trim and instrumentation, which while still plastic doesn't look "plasticy".
All controls are well laid out, and very intuitive to use. The layout is so uncluttered that at first glance you'll think you are missing something - but it is just a nice clean design.
Although I've heard a lot of negatives about the exterior design I think the look compares favorably with a Lexus ES300. It doesn't have the sporty look of a Nissan Altima, but it is a very classic design that will hold up well.
The only downside so far has been the OEM Bridgestone Turanza's that came on the vehicle. These have turned out to be terrible on any amount of snow or ice, and have severe hydroplaning problems when wet.
I had the tires siped by a local shop, and this has made a significant improvement in grip. I plan on upgrading to a high quality all-season before next winter, or a dedicated winter tire on some basic steel rims.
So far at 7,500 miles gas mileage is averaging about 22-25 mpg for highway driving. I attribute this to a lead foot and the fact that it engine won't be fully broken in for a couple of thousand more miles.
I always knew that Camry's were considered very reliable transportation.
With the 2002 and up model year and the SE option you can have reliability and performance in a very attractive package.
Now the aftermarket just needs to catch up with some body kits, and you could add 17" or 18" wheels and be fighting off the kids at the stoplights!