2004 Toyota Camry LE 2.4 from North America
Nice and comfortable car, but not as convinced about Toyota quality as I used to be, anymore
Right after purchasing the car (for about 9000$ including tax) I noticed that it was emitting a large exhaust cloud after the car had been standing for a day or two. After maybe 10 seconds, the visible exhaust was almost gone. I returned to the dealership under the 30 days / 1000 mile warranty. They changed some valve stem seals.
About 2 miles of driving after picking up the car at the Californian dealership, I noticed that the engine was vibrating a lot. When opening the hood, I also noticed that the engine RPM was going up and down without anyone touching the accelerator. The engine almost stalled a couple of times as well. Back to the dealership we went, and this time they removed carbon buildup from the (/a?) throttle body.
From then on it has seemed to be fine. I could not notice any visible smoke at startup after the repairs.
These issues happened despite a so called 160 point inspection prior to our purchase.
These issues were fixed under warranty. The people at the Toyota service center appeared very friendly and professional. Nice, when you get in car trouble!
Very comfortable. Little noise from the engine. We are a family of 5 people, the kids presently being 17, 14 and 11 years old. They seem to have good space for a 5 seater.
The automatic transmission is very smooth.
Gas mileage has thus far been measured to 26.25 to 26.5 MPG under various driving conditions in, and around, San Diego.
The original sound system also seems to be of high quality.
The reasons that I have become unsure about Toyota is because I had problems with the two last ones (Sequoia + this one, bought in the US), but absolutely no issues with a '95 Corolla back in Norway. (I have been wondering if the latter 2 have been US built, and if that means a lower quality than some other cars sold under the Toyota brand name.)
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 4th October, 2015
11th Oct 2015, 03:15
Thank you for fixing your valve seals. While I'm not necessarily an environmentalist, my lungs wish that the guy who parks at the same train station lot I do would invest in those ;)
You will never regret your investment - bad valve seals kill catalytic converters.
12th Oct 2015, 15:47
The Toyota Camry is a great bang for your buck used car. For me the 05-06 (4 & 6 cylinder) is one of the better used car bargains. But finding a low mileage now for sale won't be easy. Many are well over 140,000, and up and up. Also never pay over Kelly Blue Book for one. And checking for odd engine sounds and smoke from the tailpipe is a must for any buyer when the engine is cold started, among of a lot of other items.
Last but not least, you have to get the car up to speed on the freeway to check for all types of other problems used cars have. Buying from a private party could have saved you thousands of dollars if you know what to look for when buying a used car. But having a warranty from a dealership can be priceless when you miss things on a used car.