21 Best & Worst Toyota Camry Years (With Facts & Stats) - Engine Patrol (2024)

The Camry made its US debut in 1982 and is a perennial favorite in the midsize sedan segment.

It’s topped the sales charts as the number one passenger car for the past twenty years and is still going strong.

Not all Camry years are created equal though, and in this article we’ll separate the best from the worst years…

Table of Contents

21 Best & Worst Toyota Camry Years (With Facts & Stats) - Engine Patrol (1)

Here’s The Short Answer To What The Best And Worst Years For The Toyota Camry Are:

The best Toyota Camry model years are 2023, 2022, 2021, 2017, 2016, 2013, 2006, and 2001. The worst model years of the Camry are 2018, 2014, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2005, 2004, 2003, and 2002. This is based on auto industry reviews, NHTSA stats, reported problems, and consumer feedback.

What Are The Best Years For The Toyota Camry?

Toyota has produced a lot of great Camrys over the years, detailed below are the best of the best…

2022 and 2023 Toyota Camry

It should come as no surprise that the latest models make the best list, they are the most technologically advanced, the most refined and arguably the best looking.

There’s not much difference between these two years however the 2023 model offers more driver-assistance tech, including automatic high beams and a front-facing camera that can read specific road signs and show them on the infotainment display.

2023 Toyota Camry:

  • Edmunds: 4.7 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 3.9 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2022 Toyota Camry:

  • Edmunds: 4.8 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 3.9 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 82 / 100

2023 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“Love all the features especially the red seats”

2022 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“I love this car. It is comfortable to ride in – both front seats and back. There is very little road noise. Although I have the smaller engine it has plenty of HP for what I need from a daily driver. Pano moon roof is a nice feature. The JBL stereo system is nice. As of now I have no complaints at all.”

2021 Toyota Camry

The 2021 Camry is a top pick thanks to its plentiful standard safety tech and extrovert styling.

This model year waved goodbye to the base L model, making the LE the most affordable option for the year.

Minor updates to the exterior styling were also made, as well as the addition of new paint colors and wheel designs.

On the inside, the infotainment system comes with a new touchscreen panel that is either 7 inches or 9 inches.

  • Edmunds: 3.8 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 3.9 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 83 / 100

2021 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“I bought my 2021 Camry LE one week ago. So far I’ve driven 400 miles. This car handles excellently & is very smooth over bumps. I’m still in the break-in process but can tell this car will get 40+MPG easily on the highway going 80MPH…”

2017 Toyota Camry

According to NHTSA data, the 2017 Camry is one of the least problematic iterations ever made.

In terms of styling and features, not much change was implemented in the 2017 Camry.

Most of the major overhaul was done for the 2015 model year, including a completely revamped exterior (except for the roof panel), a more rigid build, and better infotainment options.

  • Edmunds: 4.2 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.5 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 83 / 100

2017 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“Solid, comfortable, quiet, feels like a luxury car. My car does not have an integrated GPS. The only GPS app compatible with this car is Scout GPS Link which works poorly. I ignore it and use portable GPS or Google Map in my cell phone.”

2016 Toyota Camry

The 2016 Camry is another safe bet thanks to its stellar reliability and it has received relatively few complaints.

Again, not too many changes were made since the 2015 model year.

However, one variant was added to the line-up, namely the Special Edition trim, which is patterned after the SE but with added features such as smoked taillights, a sporty-looking instrument panel, and blue interior accents.

  • Edmunds: 3.8 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.5 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 85 / 100

2016 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“I drive a lot of new and used cars. I do swap driving for dealers. The Camry is not a perfect car but for the money you can’t or would find it hard to buy something better. I have driven Camry, Hondas, Chevys, Fords, Nissan and Subaru. I find that the driving experience is better in a Camry for the comfort, and reliability amongst other things…”

2013 Toyota Camry

The 2013 Camry is a safer choice than the newer 2014 model and also many of its predecessors which are notably more problematic.

Most of the important changes to the 2013 Toyota Camry revolved around technology and functionality upgrades.

This model year received a rear cross-traffic alert feature (which operates within the blind spot monitoring system) and a new standardized 6-inch infotainment display screen.

  • Edmunds: 4.4 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.5 / 5.0
  • JD Power: 84 / 100

2013 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“The value of this car speaks for itself. I am a car nut and the Camry SE’s looks, handling, ride, 6-speed trans with paddle shifters and interior are all SUPERIOR to anything in its class…”

2006 Toyota Camry

The 2006 Camry stands out as one of the least problematic models of its time registering only 512 NHTSA complaints compared to 3703 complaints for the 2007 model which was plagued by excessive oil burning problems.

Navigation was introduced as an add-on for the top trim (SE V6), which was definitely useful at the time since there were no third-party mobile navigation apps such as Waze.

In addition, the power ratings of this model were slightly reduced as a result of new protocols and engine testing procedures.

  • Edmunds: 4.7 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.7 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2006 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“If the car is taken care of it will last. I purchased my 2006 Toyota Camry 2.4 liter for $1,100. At the time of purchase the vehicle had 279k miles. I was really unsure at first about purchasing this car because of the amount of miles it had BUT there were no major issues with the vehicle as it had been maintained well…”

2001 Toyota Camry

We wouldn’t necessarily advise opting for a car this old but the 2001 model was undeniably well built, you can even find models on the used car market with over 290,000 miles on the clock.

If you are considering a 2001 model make sure the car has been properly maintained and the owner can provide documented evidence of this.

The value package was the most noteworthy addition to the 2001 Camry as it provided the owner with air conditioning, power mechanisms for the windows, locks, and mirrors, and variable intermittent windshield wipers.

  • Edmunds: 4.7 / 5.0
  • Kelley Blue Book: 4.6 / 5.0
  • JD Power: NA

2001 Toyota Camry, Edmunds review:

“First off, this car is a steal. The amount a person saves in gas, maintenance and upkeep for this car is through the roof. Anyone who is on a budget will be pleased to know that the Camry saves ALOT of money in the long run. Parts, labor are relatively cheap compared to other cars…”

Consumer Scores For Best Toyota Camry Years

Below is a table that presents all the consumer ratings of the best Toyota Camry model years from reputable vehicle websites:

Model YearEdmunds’Consumer RatingKelley Blue Book’s Consumer RatingJD Power’s Consumer Rating
2023 Toyota Camry4.7 / 5.03.9 / 5.0NA
2022 Toyota Camry4.8 / 5.03.9 / 5.082 / 100
2021 Toyota Camry3.8 / 5.03.9 / 5.083 / 100
2017 Toyota Camry4.2 / 5.04.5 / 5.083 / 100
2016 Toyota Camry3.8 / 5.04.5 / 5.085 / 100
2013 Toyota Camry4.4 / 5.04.5 / 5.084 / 100
2006 Toyota Camry4.7 / 5.04.7 / 5.0NA
2001 Toyota Camry4.7 / 5.04.6 / 5.0NA
21 Best & Worst Toyota Camry Years (With Facts & Stats) - Engine Patrol (2)

Related: Toyota Camry: 11 Common Problems (Useful Guide)

What Are The Worst Years For The Toyota Camry?

Despite its strong reputation for reliability, the Camry has been on the receiving end of some complaints over the years.

You may want to steer clear of the models listed below…

2018 Toyota Camry

The 2018 Toyota Camry experienced several powertrain and braking issues, leading to inconsistent driving experiences across the board.

Owners have complained in their droves about jerkiness when driving, issues with gear changes and loss of brake power.

The 2018 Camry had a total of 83 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 715 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Shifting roughly
  • Braking malfunction
  • Condenser punctures easily
  • Navigation system dependent on external device

2014 Toyota Camry

The 2014 Toyota Camry got off to a shaky start due to its transmission issues.

According to owner reports, this caused excessive vibration of the vehicle and hesitation when changing gears.

Despite repairs, a number of complaints state that the vibration was still felt.

The 2014 Camry had a total of 90 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 518 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Torque converter failure
  • Shifting delay
  • Vehicle shuddering
  • Musty smell from air conditioning
  • Paint chipping

2010, 2011, and 2012 Toyota Camry

The 2010, 2011, and 2012 Toyota Camry models had a variety of issues, but the problem that stood out the most was due to its speed control.

According to numerous reports, these models were known to accelerate at random.

Here’s what the owners had to say:

“Twice while driving last week the car abruptly and on its own, accelerated to a very high rate of speed. The first time, I was able to slow it down. The second time I pumped on the brakes several times, without result. I kept pumping and it was very difficult to stop. Several more attempts and I was able to stop the car.”

“I was braking on turning into a parking spot but instead of braking, it was like I had hit the accelerator. I kept stomping the brake but it would not slow down only accelerated. The car went up over the curb into a metal fence and almost hit a brick wall.”

The 2012 Camry had a total of 148 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 706 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Transmission failure
  • Vehicle shuddering
  • Foul smell when you turn on air conditioning

The 2011 Camry had a total of 170 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 710 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Excessive oil consumption
  • Shifts hard
  • Melting dashboard
  • Transmission failure

The 2010 Camry had a total of 160 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 712 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Rear window shattered
  • Melting dashboard
  • Shifting Erratically

2008 and 2009 Toyota Camry

CarComplaints.com calls both the 2008 and 2009 model years of the Toyota Camry “clunkers”, which means that there are a lot of problems and manufacturer’s defects experienced with both models.

Unfortunately, even vehicle models outside of recall campaigns experienced a lot of significant issues, leading to several complaints from car owners.

One annoying issue that was widespread was the sun visor would not stay up and would obscure the driver’s view.

Both models racked up significant complaints.

The 2009 Camry had a total of 478 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,521 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Excessive oil consumption
  • Sun visors breaking
  • Melting dashboard
  • Defective exterior paint
  • Engine failure

The 2008 Camry had a total of 256 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,183 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Excessive oil consumption
  • Dashboard melting
  • Engine light goes on, car lurches and dies

2007 Toyota Camry

“Avoid like the plague,” states CarComplaints.com, and rightfully so…

Among all the model years on this list, the 2007 Toyota Camry takes the cake as the most problematic vehicle based on data from CarProblemZoo.com and CarComplaints.com, amassing almost 5,000 problems in total.

The biggest issue noted here is excessive oil consumption which was accompanied by a burning smell and engine cooling problems.

The 2007 Camry had a total of 1,020 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 3,703 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Excessive oil consumption
  • Burning oil
  • Dashboard material melting

2003, 2004, and 2005 Toyota Camry

Much like some of the other notorious model years on this list, the 2003, 2004, and 2005 Toyota Camry models were perilous due to unreliable vehicle speeds.

Reports stated abrupt stalling, sudden acceleration (and even deceleration), and unresponsiveness to driver inputs which was a safety hazard to the owner and the drivers around them.

The 2005 Camry had a total of 125 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 993 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • The brakes did not stop the vehicle
  • Major internal engine damage
  • Transmission failure

The 2004 Camry had a total of 58 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 976 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Check engine light on
  • Knock in the steering wheel
  • Oil loss due to bad head gasket and bolts

The 2003 Camry had a total of 148 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 970 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Engine died
  • Stripped head bolts
  • Knocking noise when turning steering wheel

2002 Toyota Camry

Awarded by CarComplaints.com with the notorious “Beware of the Clunker” title, the 2002 Toyota Camry is known to be problematic due to vehicle speed control problems, unintended car acceleration, and a non-responsive accelerator pedal.

The 2002 Camry had a total of 193 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 1,231 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

Common problems:

  • Transmission failure
  • Stripped head bolts
  • Car overheating

Related: How Long Do Toyota Camry Hybrids Last? (12 Important Facts)

What Years Have The Most Complaints?

There are several Toyota Camry model years, both old and new, that have received numerous complaints through the years.

Take a look at the complaints and problems for each model year of the Camry below.

Model YearComplaints
(CarComplaints.com)
Problems
(CarProblemZoo.com)
2022 Toyota Camry117
2021 Toyota CamryNA35
2020 Toyota Camry8134
2019 Toyota Camry17293
2018 Toyota Camry83715
2017 Toyota Camry26150
2016 Toyota Camry45198
2015 Toyota Camry75319
2014 Toyota Camry90518
2013 Toyota Camry56331
2012 Toyota Camry148706
2011 Toyota Camry170710
2010 Toyota Camry160712
2009 Toyota Camry4781,521
2008 Toyota Camry2561,183
2007 Toyota Camry1,0203,703
2006 Toyota Camry47512
2005 Toyota Camry125993
2004 Toyota Camry58976
2003 Toyota Camry148970
2002 Toyota Camry1931,231
2001 Toyota Camry45410
2000 Toyota Camry30654
1999 Toyota Camry64767
1998 Toyota Camry51745
1997 Toyota Camry21683
1996 Toyota Camry12568

What Problems Do Toyota Camrys Have?

  • Excessive oil consumption
  • Vehicle shaking
  • Burning oil
  • Dashboard material melting

Related: 9 Most Common Toyota Camry Problems (Explained)

What Are The Best Alternatives To The Toyota Camry?

The Toyota Camry is considered one of the best midsize cars in the market.

The Camry secured the 4th spot (ahead of the Nissan Altima and the Subaru Legacy), with a great score of 8.0 out of 10.

Make & ModelScoreMSRPFuel Economy (MPG)
Honda Accord8.9$26,120 – $38,050City: 22 – 30 /Highway: 32 – 38
Hyundai Sonata8.2$24,500 – $34,750City: 23 – 28 /Highway: 33 – 38
Kia K58.2$25,090 – $31,490City: 24 – 27 /Highway: 32 – 37
Toyota Camry8.0$25,945 – $36,370City: 22 – 28 /Highway: 31 – 39
Nissan Altima7.9$24,750 – $34,450City: 25 – 28 /Highway: 34 – 39
Subaru Legacy7.8$24,395 – $37,695City: 23 – 27 /Highway: 31 – 35
Chevrolet Malibu7.4$23,400 – $33,500City: 22 – 29 /Highway: 33 – 36
Volkswagen PassatNA$27,575 – $30,575City: 24 /Highway: 36

Source: cars.usnews.com

Related:

References

https://www.caranddriver.com/toyota/camry

https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/toyota/camry

https://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/Camry/

https://www.carproblemzoo.com/toyota/camry/

https://www.edmunds.com/toyota/camry/

https://www.kbb.com/toyota/camry/

https://www.jdpower.com/cars/2022/toyota/camry

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