Toyota launches the all-new Camry Hybrid in India

India's first automotive launch of 2019 happened today with Toyota bringing in the new Camry Hybrid to our shores today. Currently in its eighth generation, Camry is offered here in a sole Hybrid variant and priced at an introductory pan-India ex-showroom price of ₹36.95 Lakhs. Incredibly for a Toyota, that's cheaper than the outgoing Camry!

Based on the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) that also underpins the expensive Lexus ES 300h, the Camry ditches the staid styling elements it's been known for and adopts the brand's latest design language. The fascia has been given an aggressive treatment that's dominated by a V-shaped grille and a huge trapezoidal air dam that almost occupies the whole bumper. The car features sharp LED projector lights up front and big wrap-around taillights at the rear. The aggressive front end aside, the rest of the car gives an impression of understated elegance which is what most customers in this segment look for.

The interiors are a total departure from the earlier Camry. The dashboard features a refreshingly modern design with a Y-shaped center console grabbing eyeballs. As one would expect from a car in this segment, the Camry comes fully loaded with a plethora of features. Standard kit includes 10-way power-adjusted front seats with ventilating function, 3-zone climate control, sunroof, rear seats with power recline and trunk access, 8.0-inch Human Machine Interface infotainment system with 9-speaker JBL audio, rear armrest with touch control switches, Heads-up display, wireless smartphone charger, cruise control and full leather upholstery. 

Toyota's commitment to safety continues with the new Camry featuring 9 airbags, Anti-lock Braking System with Electronic Brake-force Distribution and Brake Assist, Vehicle Stability and Traction Control System, Parking Assist, Tire Pressure Monitoring System, speed-sensing auto lock, impact-sensing fuel cut-off and ISOFIX and top tether anchor for child seats. 

The 2.5-liter gasoline hybrid engine under the hood has been carried over from the previous-generation model but the power and torque figures have been tweaked. In the new model, the engine generates 176 horsepower at 5,700 rpm and 221 Nm of torque between 3,600 to 5,200 rpm. The Hybrid System Motor Generator delivers 118 horsepower and 204.1 Nm of torque. Transmission duties are handled by a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with paddle shifters. Toyota claims an ARAI-certified fuel efficiency of 23.27 km/l, thanks to the hybrid system working its magic. 

Toyota's prowess in the premium segments are second to none in India and the Camry Hybrid will have no problems convincing its target clientele. Yes, its main rivals like the Skoda Superb and Volkswagen Passat are priced lower but they lack the 'Hybrid' tag the Camry comes with. Honda's Accord is a hybrid too but comes with a price tag that's even higher than the Camry. In effect, Toyota would have no problems selling the few hundred units the Japanese head-quarters would have earmarked for India.

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