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Old 29th August 2013, 10:13   #31
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

I am a little skeptical about the after sales and service that is available for such vehicles. At nearly 35 lacs OTR, this car will get really tough competition from its european counterparts. Then again, its a fairly new technology in our country. Remember the huge price cut the Civic hybrid came under.But, the company discontinued it because of the losses it faced.I believe, even the Camry will have to be put under the hammer to do wonders in this cut throat competition. The government should bring in new policies and laws for green vehicles in our country. When a certain height can term a car as an SUV, why don't they try and save the planet instead by promoting such wonderful technologies. Hats off to Toyota for bringing in their Hybrids to India. VW, are you listening?
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Old 29th August 2013, 10:48   #32
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Vid6639, Thanks for the wonderful review. Pictures are a class apart. When I see that they are being invited by Toyota for a review about Camry, I see Team BHP is reaching newer hieghts. Congtartulations to Team BHP!
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Old 29th August 2013, 11:22   #33
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Nice and precise review. For a layman, understanding what goes on under the hood and boot of a hybrid Camry could never have been made any easier!

The Toyota Camry has been a favorite worldwide for a reason. Comfort is the key and the engineers at Toyota seem to have mastered it and then some more. The Hybrid with its extra bulk is fortunately no different and that's a good thing for the chauffeur driven. The pricing seems to be on the higher side, but for the G3's (Go-Green-Gang), this is the right pick over the similar priced German gas guzzlers.

Last edited by 9thsphinx : 29th August 2013 at 11:23.
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Old 29th August 2013, 11:24   #34
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Good review. Some thoughts:
What's stopping T from assembling the Prius in India and offering another hybrid at a lower price point? States like Delhi reduced taxes of fully electric vehicles like Reva. Does the reduced tax apply to hybrids also?
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Old 29th August 2013, 13:16   #35
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

A brilliant car but letdown by a irrationally prohibitive sticker price. Toyota can hope to see figures similar to the previous Prius which did not sell more than 1 or 2 pieces a month. But it's a move in the right direction by the car manufacturer to at least introduce such vehicles in their portfolio which go towards alternate energy.

A very nice review Vid and kudos to Tbhp once again for the detailed review.
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Old 29th August 2013, 13:30   #36
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Just to clarify on the Civic's Hybrid system which is called IMA (Integrated Motor Assist) vs Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive.

Honda uses a Parallel Hybrid system which has the electric motor sandwiched between the transmission and the combustion engine. This is known as a mild hybrid with the electric motor supporting the petrol engine. In the Honda you always need the combustion engine to move the car. The engine shuts down only when you are not pressing the gas i.e. when coasting or braking. During those times the motor acts as a generator and charges the battery (regenerative braking). So even if you are crawling in city traffic or on highway, the petrol engine is doing the work. The electric motor comes into play when you need more power/quicker acceleration. That is why the Civic Hybrid had a very small 1.3L engine. The electric motor was making up for the rest.

Toyota on the other hand uses the series parallel hybrid system which can run on electric power and needs the petrol engine to charge the batteries or give extra power.

2 completely different systems actually. So the benefits of the Camry are much more than in the Civic.

Honda has recently introduced the Accord PHEV in the US of A. This is a similar setup to the Camry but uses a much larger battery pack that allows more use of electric power and almost cuts off the ICE in city driving conditions.

Last edited by Vid6639 : 29th August 2013 at 13:37.
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Old 29th August 2013, 14:50   #37
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

The Civic's hybrid system is definitely flawed in comparison. Drive a Civic Hybrid in traffic and you'll end up frustrated with the jerks. It is not a seamless experience at all.

@ Vid : The 2014 Accord (coming in October 2013) apparently has a better EPA rating than the Camry. It can also be driven in full electric mode.
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Old 29th August 2013, 15:03   #38
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Great Review, Rated 5 stars. The price tag of 30 big ones is very high for an Indian Market to pay just for getting a Hybrid. It is high time the government starts subsidizing the Hybrid technology.

Looking at the exterior of the car. I can't help but notice the amount of chrome. The bonnet, below the tails lights, above the rear reflector & where not. For me a little less chrome would have done better.
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Old 29th August 2013, 15:14   #39
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

This indeed looks promising. Although the price is very much up there with the BMW and Audi.
Loved the pictures and yes, it looks like a Lexus inside out. But that grab handle in the seat, looks like something bus owners would do and is that safe, jutting out right in front of the passenger..what in case there is a accident like getting hit from behind?
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Old 29th August 2013, 15:16   #40
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Thank you Vid6639 for another clinical review. Toyota should be lauded for bringing in the Camry Hybrid. Although at this price point there will only be a handful of buyers. For Hybrid cars to really make a difference the Indian Government should wake up and give tax breaks to green technology. Only then we shall see these cars in the monthly top-selling charts.
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Old 29th August 2013, 15:58   #41
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

"You don't get washers here, as LED headlamps don't need a washer spray by law:"

Washers are meant to keep headlights tidy, How does type of lamp assembly dictate need for a washer? Which law are we referring specifically?
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Old 29th August 2013, 17:21   #42
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thilak29 View Post
"You don't get washers here, as LED headlamps don't need a washer spray by law:"

Washers are meant to keep headlights tidy, How does type of lamp assembly dictate need for a washer? Which law are we referring specifically?
I believe european law states that HID lights need washers. The reason is when the outer clear plastic is dirty, light from HID source gets scattered much more than Halogen or LED. Scattering in effect increases the glare to oncoming traffic.

Yes it keeps it clean but since it is not mandatory they haven't kept it as well.
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Old 29th August 2013, 21:17   #43
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Excellent review! Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by avira_tk View Post
Toyota pricing is off the charts for the segment, pricing closer to Superb Diesel should have helped. The difference with the petrol Superb top end is nearly 7 Lakhs, it will take a long time to recover any Hybrid associated benefits with this.

Hybrid is here to stay, maybe 5 years from now, we will have this as a choice on regular cars. 38 Lakhs OTR in Bangalore in 320d pricing, most people will get the BMW /Audi instead of this.
The difference in cost between a gasoline and hybrid car is too much even in the US. I think a Prius costs 2-3 thousand dollars more than a V6 Accord. To get a break-even just from the fuel economy (when compared with a similar car like Corola / Civic), it would easily take a decade or so. But there are several other advantages in buying a Hybrid there. Some of them that I know of:
- Income tax benefits for Hybrid car buyers
- Car pool lane can be used even if the Hybrid has just the driver
- Reduced rate / free parking in many places

So for Hybrids to sustain in India, IMO, buyers should see a lot more benefits other than just fuel economy unless you are an environmentalist.

Interesting Note: Skoda Superb 2.0 diesel's emissions is just 120 g/km. (Source: http://www.thegreencarwebsite.co.uk/.../skoda/superb/)
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Old 29th August 2013, 23:44   #44
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Thank you for one another excellent review Vidyut. I used to travel little over 100 Km in Toyota Camry 2.5 HV Navigator every day for my office commute in Thailand for few months. The premium interior equipment's are at par to the standards of BMW, Audi and Mercedes. Looking at the similarity from images I believe even Thailand should have got Japanese spec Camry.
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Old 30th August 2013, 10:20   #45
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Default Re: Toyota Camry Hybrid : Official Review

Vidyut, a big Thumbs up for such a detailed and outstanding review. Manufacturing this car in India is indeed a bold move from Toyota. But i guess they are thinking 2020 and want to be a major player in this segment. This is indeed the beginning of a Hybrid revolution in India. As far as pricing is concerned, i guess the government should play a role in reducing taxes as it is a win-win situation for the car owner, environment, oil company and subsequently the government's import bill.

I have travelled to many parts of the world and trust me people buy Toyotas like Hot-cakes. Once i was chauffeured around in the current non-hybrid Camry and was shocked to experience the astounding refinement levels that this car offers. It was being driven at triple digit speeds and yet it was so quiet, composed and blissful.
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