2007 Toyota Camry SE with upgraded B-package 3.5 litre V6 from North America
Sublime, a Lexus GS300 with a Toyota badge
Nothing; it's a Toyota!
The body is very sporty and serious looking. My car has the upgraded “B” package, which gives a black honey comb grille in the front, a spoiler on the back “which is very similar in style to that of the BMW M3 trunk lip spoiler”, and lower body additions on the front, sides and rear.
The windows are accented by a strong line of chrome trim that runs horizontally along the bottom edge of both windows. I love cars that have a strong horizontal line running through them from front to rear - this car has a very prominent one.
The front of the car looks like a bull to me with its demonic headlamp configuration, which has headlights that are illuminated rings when the daytime running lights are on, and a bulging nose with that black honeycomb grille. The B package also added built-in fog lights to the front bottom spoiler.
I got mine in the charcoal gray colour. I love the colour because the paint has a sparkling ingredient in the paint and gleams when washed, but does not show every dirt spot like black.
The B package also added 17 inch 6 spoke aluminum alloy wheels that look amazing. From the factory the car comes with low profile Michelin tires which hold the road under acceleration and corning very well. It has been cold here the last couple days (- 3 Celsius) and the car’s tires did lose a bit of traction over some icy patches. I was impressed with how quickly the cars traction control system (VSC) sprung into action keeping me in a straight line under acceleration - no torque steer whatsoever.
The car’s ABS (anti-lockup braking system) was equally impressive when coming into an icy corner a bit too fast. I must admit, this is a heavy (about 4500 pound) solid car, and 120 km/h feels more like 70, and I have come into a few corners too fast because I didn’t feel my speed inching up. It’s a constant struggle to keep my car from going over the 60 km/hr speed limit in town, I have to push the gas pedal with about 0.5 to 1 inch to go 60 once up to speed.
The B package also added a very long and wide electric moon roof which works very well with no rattling of whistling at any speed. Mirrors are heated. I drove an old Acura Integra before this, and have noticed people staring at this car everywhere I go. It’s a real head turner.
The power is scary. The only other car I have been in that accelerates like this rocket was a 2002 Aston Martin. The first time I took it for a test drive, I tromped the accelerator on an on-ramp to the highway and it pinned me to my seat and threw my head back.
The 3.5 liter V6 pumps out about 270 hp and 250 pound feet of torque. That is more than enough to recreate that roller coaster feeling when you stand on the gas.
It has a 70 liter tank and gas prices here seem to hover around 95 cents per liter. I average 70 km per day and it cost me about 50 bucks a week to run. In spite of this cars blistering performance it still gets 40 miles to the gallon on the highway, and 29 in the city. If driven sensibly I’m sure I could get away with 45 dollars a week in fuel expenses, but it’s so hard not to let loose and watch the speedometer fly.
0-100 km/h acceleration in 6.1 seconds (Road and Track’s results). But what I find even more impressive is the amount of power at your disposal to pass cars at speeds of 80 km/h and higher. The second day after getting the car I decided to pass a car doing 80 km/h, I pressed the accelerator about half way down, and almost hit the rear left of the car ahead of me because the car bolted forward faster than I thought it would. Passing people in this car is effortless.
To do 120 km/h I only rev at 2,000 RPM! And to go 80 km/hr I rev at 1,500 RPM!!! Thanks to the 6-speed transmission. The engine redlines at 6500 RPM, and has a buzzer to warn you when your at the redline. My car also comes with the sport semi-automatic transmission meaning I can manually tell it when to shift up or down a gear, and it will hold the gear you want until you indicate the next change. Switching between manual and automatic mode is done by moving the shifter to the left, and can be done at any speed, which makes passing other cars all the more fun. Around town under normal driving conditions, I don’t have to rev over 2000 RPM in any of the gears.
The transmission is very quick to change up through the gears - which saves a lot of money on fuel. The transmission is extremely smooth and does not do any jerky gear changes.
Braking is effortless as well. The brake (and accelerator) pedal has ZERO dead space, meaning if I touch the brake and press it in half an inch, the brakes are already applying that amount of braking force. It has massive disc brakes in all four corners, and brakes with tremendous force considering its heavy weight. The B package also adds anti-sway bars in both the front and rear, and the car also has McPherson gas struts.
I think the best way I can describe the interior is to have you look at a 2007 Lexus with black leather seats. The material and assembly quality is excellent with no loose, bendy, or rattling parts. My interior is black with leather, and chrome trim.
The audio system was upgraded with the B package and got a more powerful JBL sound system. I can’t remember how many watts it is, but I can tell you the sound is mind blowing. The system does not have a sub-woofer, but the clear audio performance will shake you, your car, and annoy the person beside you at a red light without effort. The audio system has a well-rounded sound without being bland, with plenty of clear un-muffled bass response.
I’m 6’4” 220 pounds and fit comfortably with a bit of adjusting of the power (and heated) front seat. I “just” fit, and that’s it. This is the first car I have ever sat in where my shoulders did not hang over the sides of the seat; the seats are extremely comfortably and really hug you. The power seats also have an electronic lumber support which is awesome. Anyone over 6’4” can forget it.
That said I also fit in the back seats if I slouch a little. The rear seats are VERY spacious and comfortable. My girlfriend is 5’1” and also fits comfortably thanks to the power seats, and a steering column that is both height-adjustable, and telescopic. The steering wheel has the audio controls, and hands free phone controls, which work seamlessly with blue tooth capable phones.
Also built into the ceiling mounted console are 3 garage door openers which replace the handheld pager sized one, and the moon roof controls. The center console is illuminated via white backlighting, and displays outside temperature, as well as remaining fuel, engine temp, speedometer, tachometer, and your current gear when in manual sport shifting mode.
The rear view mirror has a compass built in, and automatically dims when a car’s lights are shining at you from behind.
In summation, the car handles like a suicide rocket on rails, as it coddles you in Lexus comfort and toys. After taxes and all the other fees of buying a new car, this will cost you $47,000 in Canadian dollars. My advice is that you take one for a drive; words just can’t explain how this car makes you feel. I step out my door every morning with a big stupid grin on my face as I hop into my demonic luxury rocket.
If I totaled it in a wreck tomorrow, I would be at the dealership the next day buying another. And in the event of a crash, I have the knee, front, and curtain airbags to protect me. Did I mention the curtain airbags would even deploy if they sense the car is going to roll over? The technology in this car is astounding. This review barely scratches the surface.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 6th April, 2007
17th Apr 2007, 00:02
I am the author of this original review.
I'd like to make a correction to my review, the camry's motor revs at about 2200 RPM to do 120km/hr, rather than 2000rpm.
17th Apr 2007, 15:10
Have you had the transmission problems with the flare and hesitation that many have reported on other Internet locations?