2015 Toyota Camry: Up Close

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Just three years after Toyota redesigned the Camry, the family sedan has gone under the knife again for 2015. The result is a car with all-new styling that actually looks all new, and it seems to be in direct response to the increasing prevalence of bold-looking competitors like the Ford Fusion and Mazda6.

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The new front end is the most daring element of the 2015 Camry, which debuted at the 2014 New York International Auto Show.

By Mike Hanley | April 16, 2014 | Comments (3)

2015 Toyota Camry Photo Gallery (24 Photos)

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Toyota last updated its best-selling sedan for model-year 2012, and the Camry is getting another makeover for 2015. The sedan grows in length by 1.8 inches this year, and Toyota says it's new from the ground up — the only carryover component is the roof.

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The sedan's overall look is sportier; a wider, more prominent grille and available LED low- and high-beam headlights are hard to miss.

Check out the gallery below; Cars.com photos by Evan Sears.

By Jennifer Geiger | April 16, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Toyota Camry: First Look (56 Photos)

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Competes with: Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata

Looks like: The Toyota Highlander's grille found a new home

Drivetrain: 2.5-liter four-cylinder, 3.5-liter V-6, six-speed automatic transmission; hybrid with 2.5-liter four-cylinder and CVT

Hits dealerships: Fall 2014

Toyota didn't wait long to redesign the Camry, the best-selling sedan for the last 12 years. The Camry was previously tweaked for the 2012 model year. This time, though, Toyota says it has rebuilt the Camry from the ground up with more than 2,000 new parts. The roof is the only unchanged part of its exterior, according to the automaker.

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Much of the 2015's focus is on a sportier experience in both the style and driving performance. The current Camry SE trim level is the sportiest variant, accounting for 45 percent of Camry sales, which Toyota took as a hint that its buyers want sportier models. A new XSE trim level tops the SE as the most sporting with unique hardware, while the Camry Hybrid now has its own SE version.

By Joe Bruzek | April 16, 2014 | Comments (10)

Best Hybrids for the Money 2014

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Gas prices remain historically high and volatile, and one of the most successful ways automakers and American motorists have adapted is by embracing hybrid technology. Though a few full-size hybrid trucks from GM have been discontinued, 2014 sees as many models as ever. No matter why you may want a hybrid, you might want to know how well it meets its mission.

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To determine if a hybrid's added expense is worth the cash, we devised an efficiency-cost rating. It's simply the EPA's combined mpg rating divided by the base price (meaning MSRP plus destination charge). We then multiply that result by 1,000. This formula can be applied to any type of vehicle, hybrid or not. A high mpg rating and low price provide a high efficiency-cost rating. A higher score is the better score.

We don't account for equipment levels, quality judgments, cost of ownership or any variances from EPA mileage estimates. The goal here is to pay the least for the most mileage, barring all other considerations.

By Joe Wiesenfelder | April 14, 2014 | Comments (10)

Recall Alert: 2009-2010 Toyota Corolla, Matrix, Tacoma, 2008-2010 Toyota Highlander, 2006-2008 Toyota RAV4, 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris

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Vehicles Affected: Approximately 1.3 million Toyota vehicles including model-year 2009-2010 Corolla, 2009-2010 Matrix, 2009-2010 Tacoma, 2008-2010 Highlander, 2006-2008 RAV4 and 2006-2010 Yaris

The Problem: Electrical connections to a spiral cable assembly can be damaged when the steering wheel is turned. This could lead to the driver's airbag being deactivated, failing to deploy in a crash. If this damage occurs, an airbag warning light will illuminate in the instrument cluster.

The Fix: Dealers will replace the spiral cable assembly with an upgraded version.

What Owners Should Do: Toyota will notify owners by mail, but no date has been given for when the notices will be sent. Concerned owners can contact Toyota at 800-331-4331 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov for more info.

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By David Thomas | April 9, 2014 | Comments (7)

Toyota Recalls 1.8 Million Vehicles in U.S.

Update: Links to both U.S.-related recalls are listed below.

Original Post: Toyota is recalling 1.8 million cars, trucks and SUVs in the U.S. and 6.39 million globally over two separate issues.

The larger recall includes popular models like the Toyota Corolla, Highlander and RAV4 over a cable assembly that connects to the driver's airbag. If it fails the airbag might not deploy. This recall also involves the Pontiac Vibe, built alongside the Toyota Matrix, but is unrelated to GM's recent ignition switch recall.

A separate recall involves the Toyota Yaris and Scion xD and could lead to a driver's seat not staying in place during an accident.

You can read more about the recalls at USA Today and get full details on the U.S. models recalled at the links below.

Recall Alert: 2009-2010 Toyota Corolla, Matrix, Tacoma, 2008-2010 Toyota Highlander, 2006-2008 Toyota RAV4, 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris

Recall Alert: 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris, 2008-2010 Scion xD

By David Thomas | April 9, 2014 | Comments (0)

$40,000 3-Row SUV Car Seat Challenge: the Highs and Lows

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Large families basically have two choices when it comes to what to drive: a three-row SUV or a minivan. Both have their merits and handle cargo and passenger room differently. During Cars.com's recent $40,000 3-Row SUV Challenge, I spent a few days getting to know seven of the contenders in the midsize crossover class, driving them, climbing in and out of them, and installing car seats in their second and third rows.

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Although they all have to offer a large amount of room in order to fit that third row, it's obvious that not all SUVs are created equal. When it comes to car seats, there were some very clear winners and losers, with the Honda Pilot and Hyundai Santa Fe leading the pack, and the Chevrolet Traverse and Mazda CX-9 bringing up the rear.

By Jennifer Geiger | April 9, 2014 | Comments (1)

2014 Toyota Highlander Photo Gallery

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The 2014 Toyota Highlander finished third in our $40,000 3-Row SUV Challenge. "The Highlander pairs a handsome cabin with good technology, but that third row is a joke," said one of our judges. Check out our gallery below to inspect the Highlander's styling, interior and family-friendliness.

By David Thomas | April 6, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Toyota Highlander's Center Bin Swallows 60 Juice Boxes

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A Toyota spokesperson told me that the redesigned 2014 Highlander could fit 60 juice boxes in its center console bin. Naturally, I was incredulous. That sounded outlandishly cavernous, even for a family hauler.

2014 Toyota Highlander: Car Seat Check

The only thing to be done was to get ahold of a new Highlander and test this claim out myself. When I first gazed upon the Highlander's new console bin, I was more incredulous than ever. It looked to be a normal size, with sliding cover doors being its only distinguishing characteristic. "There's no way this thing can fit 60 juice boxes," I thought.

With 60 juice boxes in our possession, my oldest child and I embarked upon our mission. Still disbelievers, we loaded 20, then 20 more and finally 20 more into the bin. It was amazing! All 60 boxes fit perfectly without any arduous maneuvering on our part! The Toyota PR folks weren't bluffing!

By Courtney Messenbaugh | March 28, 2014 | Comments (1)

Recall Alert: 2003-2004 Toyota Avalon

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Vehicles Affected: About 119,000 model-year 2003-2004 Toyota Avalon sedans.

The Problem: Certain circuits within the airbag control module may be susceptible to damage if exposed to electrical noise from other electrical components. In some instances, front airbags or seat belt pretensioners could inadvertently deploy. This is an expansion of an earlier recall.

The Fix: Toyota will notify owners by mail and dealers will add an electrical noise filter to the airbag control module for free. The automaker did not specify a timeframe.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Toyota at 800-331-4331 or go to www.toyota.com/recall for more info.

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By Matt Schmitz | March 27, 2014 | Comments (1)

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