Toyota expands its hybrid vehicle lineup by unveiling the new Crown Signia and Camry crossovers
Toyota has expanded its hybrid lineup with the introduction of the new ninth-generation Camry on Tuesday evening and the all-new Crown Signia crossover. The two new cars will be sold with hybrid engines only.
The new Camry, as before, will be available with either front- or all-wheel drive. The current generation Camry midsize sedan can be purchased with either a hybrid powertrain or all-wheel drive, but not both.
Stephen Beattie, vice president of Toyota Canada, said hybrid technology “is the only technology where you can get returns during the first period of ownership of the car.” “We have found that when people can choose one of our hybrid cars, they will choose the hybrid over a conventional car.” Toyota plans to phase out all of its gasoline-only car options as different models are replaced by new generations.
The 2.5-liter gasoline engine of the current Kentucky-built Camry Hybrid, which ranges in price from about $34,000 to $44,000 depending on trim level, is essentially unchanged for the new car. However, the hybrid powertrain is the fifth generation of technology from Toyota, which was presented here in Malibu, California, for the first time on the eve of the 2023 Los Angeles Auto Show. It uses two electric motors that are lighter and more compact than before to produce 232 horsepower, which is an increase of 30 horsepower over the previous all-wheel-drive, all-gas-powered car.
The new Camry will also be manufactured in Kentucky, at Toyota’s plant in Georgetown, which will become the company’s largest manufacturing facility in the world with about 10,000 employees. The car has a retuned suspension system for more agile handling and both Sport variants will be sold with a sports suspension system. There will be four trim levels available and the appearance has been redesigned to make the car look sleeker and sportier. One significant change is to the seats, where engineers changed the shape, density and length of the seat cushions to make them more comfortable for longer periods of time.
All new Camrys will come standard with Toyota’s Safety Sense 3.0 technology, which includes automatic high beams, dynamic radar cruise control and steering assist. They’ll also have standard blind-spot monitors and rear cross-traffic alert, while more sophisticated technology like lane change assist and parking assist will be an option for more expensive trims.
However, the new Toyota Crown Signia will be sold only in one fully loaded version. It will replace the Venza, which will be discontinued after this year. Toyota calls the Crown Signia an SUV, but “this is really a crossover,” Petty says. “The hip point (the height of the seated driver’s hips above the ground) meets a happy medium between a true SUV and a crossover.” Its seating position is also about five centimeters higher than a Crown sedan, making getting in and out easier.
Made in Japan, the luxury Crown is meant to be the equivalent of a traditional city doctor’s car: a comfortable, well-equipped car without being flashy or in your face. The current sedan’s price ranges from about $55,000 to $65,000 for its two trim levels.
The crossover is powered by the same 2.5-liter engine and hybrid drive system found under the Highlander Hybrid’s hood and produces 243 horsepower, and will be sold as an all-wheel drive vehicle only.
Both cars will be available next spring. Pricing will be announced closer to release.
The writer was a guest of the automaker. The content was not subject to approval.
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