Just as in our last Saturday Showdown, we’re going to compare the standard gasoline version to the hybrid version of the same car. This time, the Toyota Camry. As with our Avalon Showdown, our goal here is to look at the all-new Camry in its gasoline and hybrid-electric formats and see which is best for what buyer.
Fast VS Facts
|Contenders:||2015 Toyota Camry||2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid|
|Strong Point:||Versatile, solid||Good drive, efficient|
|Weakness:||Nothing stands out||Hybrid efficiency “meh”|
Daily Use Ergonomics
Camry: 4 | Camry Hybrid: 4
Both cars have great daily driver ergonomics. They have the versatility of a sedan, with people hauling and big interiors. The hybrid loses some trunk space and seat folding space, but for most users, this is probably only an occasional frustration and not something that shows up often. For many, this will be made up for with fewer stops at the pump.
Camry: 4 | Camry Hybrid: 4
As with the Daily Use, the two cars are basically the same in family friendliness. Both offer seating for up to five, both have enough trunk space to get luggage to the airport or make a weekly warehouse club run, etc. They drive similarly around town and have the same maneuverability and parking characteristics.
Camry: 3 | Camry Hybrid: 5
Here is a huge divide. The ride comfort of the hybrid is far superior, thanks to its better weight distribution and heavier suspension to handle the extra weight of the batteries. In almost all ways, the Camry Hybrid excels where the standard Camry is only average.
Camry: 4 | Camry Hybrid: 5
Here, again, the Camry Hybrid wins out. The regular Camry, though, is pretty great, and if most of your driving is on the highway, you’ll not likely see huge efficiency gains from having the hybrid option. In town, however, the hybrid tromps the efficiency of the gasoline version. One thing to note is the price premium paid. In the Camry, it’s not nearly as marked as it is in the bigger Avalon. A new addition to the Camry this year was a lower-end hybrid package, making the hybrid premium only a little over a thousand dollars over its gasoline counterpart. That would be paid back in a couple of years easily.
In the end, the Camry Hybrid wins out. Unless you spend a lot of time at freeway speeds or really need the extra space of folding seats often, you’ll be better off with the hybrid Camry.
To read the individual reviews of the Showdown contenders, links are below for your convenience.
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