Last post on Feb 25, 2013 at 8:28 PM
You are in the Toyota Camry Hybrid
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Camry, Hybrid Cars
#396 of 3214 Re: TC test drive - a little disappointed [anniemfuse]
Mar 19, 2006 (8:45 pm)
TCH is rated at ~192 hp which is about the same as the 3.0L V6 in camry's during the last 10 yrs.
The 2.4L ICE is rated in the high 150's hp. There is a significant difference ( subject to be tested ).
I think, annie & mary, what you might be sensing is the normal 'stiffness' in a brand new vehicle as the engine gets broken in. Normally it's at 1000 mi, then 5000 mi and again ~ 20000 mi. This engine is the same as the last gen with slightly tweaked hp. This Gen6 is about 150 lbs heavier than that last 2002 model.
However if it wasnt told to you beforehand this new Gen6 has added electronic throttle control ( ETC-i ) and a 5 spd electronic transmission.
What this means is that there is no mechanical linkage to the throttle and in the shifting. By your input on the pedal in conjunction with he sensors in the vehicle, the various computers sense what combination of fuel, air timing and gear that you will need for the specific condition you are in; i.e. City, Highway, flat, hilly, mountains, sealevel or Rockies.
This does have somewhat of a disconnected sense in that the 'bumps and grinds' that used to occur in mechanical autos is being replaced by 'whirrs and hums' if you will of the modern electronic auto. Overall this system is simpler ( less parts ) and easier to maintain. For example in your 1993 Camry there was a distributor, rotor and sparkplug wiring. In 1998 this was eliminated on all Toyota's in favor of an induction coil on each spark plug.
I'm not a techie at all but even I understand that this entire mechanical system - the distributor and rotors - is no longer there. The vehicles are simpler.
#397 of 3214 purpose, acceleration and CR
Mar 20, 2006 (1:32 pm)
I am also consider to buy TCH and saving cost is one of the reason. No, I don't drive a lot like some one and have minivan for long trips. So main usage is in the city with mixed highway and local for commuting. AS the tendancy of gas price increasing, the advantage of high gas mileage is more obvious. Plus unstable status in mideast, the gas supply could even in restriction. I forsee the gas price will soon break $3.00/g and even $3.50 in SF Bay area. Plus I can drive in Carpool lane with TCH, a plus when occasional need in a hurry.
Accleration is very subjective and should consider driving environment and need, and there is no absolute answer. But for most driving condition as I observed, 10-12 0-60 is needed and used. I am more concern about hp/lb number which really help in passing and up hill driving. Unless drag racing or frequently changing lanes for passing slower than you drive cars, you don't need so much power. However, at very rare occasion such as followed by bad guys or suspected criminal, fast acceleration will help to get rid of the follower at least till you got safer crowdy place.
AS to CR's April issue about the Hybrid vs gas, there are some assumptios that will greatly affect the outcomes. First of all, they use $2.50/g price. In SF bay area, it's higher than this so the gas saved is more than it list. Of cause, in the area gas is cheaper, the saving is less.
Second, the depreciation price is based on less than 5 years with limited survey samples. Used car buyer don't feel comfortable to buy hybrid due to insufficient reliability records and the worry of battery replacement cost. Some even think they need to be plugged to charge the electric engine (don't laugh, it's true). This could change in the futures since the last 3 years' records shown they have been very reliable(because they are all made by Japanese Auto companies?) For whom, like me, keep the vehicle more than 10 years, might want to add the new battery cost into the overall cost though, which could cost $2,000 to $3,000.
Third, they list the maintenance cost higher since owner don't trust individual garage can service the Hybrid so prefer Dealer doing it, which usually cost more. Actually they suggest the individual gerage can do it since is gas engine power system need the maintenance most. In long term, as long as the population of hybrid increase, individual garage have to learn how to service hybrid to stay in business.
Last, CR fail to mention if the compared gas versions are equipped comparible. According to the price they quote, they are not. In general, with same level of features and options, the hybrid is $1,500-$2,000 higher according to more than one resources from car magazine or on-line articles as I researched. I appreciate CR's comment as unbias but not absolutely convicing all the time nor suit for everyone. They lean on reliability, practicality, and safety. Performance, style and driving feel are not their emphasis.
#398 of 3214 Re: purpose, acceleration and CR [cooldad24]
Mar 20, 2006 (2:04 pm)
Plus I can drive in Carpool lane with TCH,
To get the HOV sticker in CA the hybrid has to get an EPA combined 45 MPG. The TCH will not qualify as the law is now written. Better get a Prius very soon if that is important to you.
#399 of 3214 Re: TC test drive - a little disappointed [kdhspyder]
Mar 20, 2006 (2:34 pm)
Perhaps you can shed on the light on something I have heard about Toyota engines. I have heard from several others that Toyota engines are made deliberately "tight" to be precise and the engine has to loosen up a bit. Have you heard anything about this or is it an urban legend?
#400 of 3214 Re: purpose, acceleration and CR [gagrice]
Mar 20, 2006 (5:02 pm)
You are right. I thought it is 40mpg and it's not true.
#401 of 3214 Re: TC test drive - a little disappointed [micheals]
Mar 20, 2006 (5:08 pm)
I suspect it's the combination of gas padel tightness and the "feel" of acceleration. The former could due to electrical throttle compare to mechanical one in older models. And the feel of accleration could be more relax in the newer model due to better isolation, lower wind noise and CD. The 5 speed AT is more refine than the old AT-4 that doesn't sound and feel working hard enough. The test result shown it get at least 1 sec faster 0-60. The 93 has 125hp vs 160hp (158 in new calculation) in 2004 and later.
#402 of 3214 Re: TC test drive - a little disappointed [micheals]
Mar 20, 2006 (5:21 pm)
When I bought my first Camry back in 1989 the dealer told me then that I could expect the vehicle to 'loosen' up at 5000 mi and be quicker/smoother. Then again at 20000 mi. I'd never had a Toyota before so I was skeptical. It was never a rocket but it was smoother after 5000 mi.
From what I understand this is pretty common in a lot of vehicles that after the initial breakin period the whole machine is smoother and more responsive. This makes sense to me from a novice's point of view.
In test driving thousands of Toyota's new and used I'd have to say that those with the maintenance done properly are actually significantly smoother and quicker than any new off-the-truck similar model. '...with the maintenance done properly..' is the key phrase.
#403 of 3214 Re: TC test drive - a little disappointed [kdhspyder]
Mar 21, 2006 (7:54 am)
Thanks for the explanations. What you said makes sense. I will pay more attention to the sudden acceleration issue in my next test drive. Your explanation about how the engine has changed also might explain another thing I noticed - very different sounds compared to my Gen3 Camry. The '07 TC had a high pitched whirring sound at idle and low speeds (didn't notice it at higher speeds).
So I briefly reviewed all the other options for a new four-door sedan meeting my criteria (very quiet ride, comfortable for a 5'4" woman, reliable, loaded with safety features, traction control, 4-cylinder, preferably a Japanese manufacturer, preferably a hybrid but good mileage alone might be OK). I re-reviewed the Corrolla, HA, HAH, Mazdas, and Altima which meet some criteria, and VERY briefly looked at Lexus and Acura just long enough to get sticker shock again. I briefly wondered if I should have just gotten an '06 TC but that's a moot issue now. I came full circle back to '07 TCH 4-cyl.
#404 of 3214 Re: purpose, acceleration and CR [gagrice]
Mar 21, 2006 (8:50 am)
"To get the HOV sticker in CA the hybrid has to get an EPA combined 45 MPG. The TCH will not qualify as the law is now written. Better get a Prius very soon if that is important to you."
Not to mention that they are only issuing 75000 of the decals, so the HOV deal will run out this year, probably before summer.
#405 of 3214 Why I think I want a TCH
Mar 21, 2006 (8:50 am)
Everybody makes decisions in different ways and using different criteria. For me this next car purchase (hopefully a TCH in May or June) will be the result of some rational thinking and some emotional response. Actually more emotion than rationality. (I don't really want to admit that.)
The rational side:
- I only considered cars w/ high reliability track records
- mid-size sedan meets my personal transportation needs better than smaller car; also safety needs (larger car size)
- I want a car with decent fuel efficiency, loosely defined by me as "more fuel efficient than most cars on the road" but not exactly data-based.
- I prefer a more comfortable ride than good road feedback.
- I prefer the feel of the Japanese cars I have driven to the feel of German (Jetta, Passat), Volvo, Saab, & various American cars [I travel and rent cars a lot and try for variety]. I have never driven a Hundai or Kia.
- I have a tendency to drive too fast and need a car that doesn't enable that by making it utterly delightful
The emotional side:
- A "luxury" car (e.g. Acura, Lexus, Infiniti) seems excessive for my personal values.
- On the other hand, I want my creature comforts for my sore back; I like a spacious seat and decent right armrest (like the sliding one on the XLE), so I don't want a smaller or too-spartan car.
- I prefer to fit in rather than stand out
- I have some identity caught up in the car I drive, and Camry says to me "a choice no one would question", "practical", "good financial choices" which seem like acceptable projections at this point in my life [my sports car days are over]
- the TC seems to represent a good balance for me between "cheap" / "self-denial" and "self-indulgent"
- I cannot bring myself to buy an American car
- I just plain want a hybrid - it fits my values as an environmental scientist and also as a soul who wants to leave a better planet for our children. This is not a decision based on cost.
- I REALLY like the fact that Toyota made a 4-cylinder Hybrid aimed at greater FE as opposed to Hondas approach to create a higher powered car using hybrid technology and also to only offer it in a 6-cyl. (The Prius is too weird looking for me and the ride is not as quiet or comfortable as the TC.)
- I like the fact that Toyota is doing what Detroit isn't: increasing fuel efficiency ahead of the regulators and expanding the number of FE car options, and I want to reward that with my business.
- I just plain want a new car even though I know it loses $3K the minute you drive off the lot. I've been driving a '93 TC 4-cyl LE for 14 years now.
- I like cars that stick with a generation/style for a few years rather than constant tinkering (e.g. Altima, RAV)
So....I haven't captured it all but these are some of my personal reasons for wanting a TCH.
Please be kind.