U Spy 2018 Toyota Camry With A More Rakish Body, But Will It Be Enough?

Look what Carscoops reader ‘Mattman’ came across on the road: the new generation 2018 Toyota Camry mid-size sedan that’s expected next year. “I saw these earlier today”, he told us. “There was a [Lexus] LC500 in front, two cladded sedans and a [Toyota] Prius in the rear”.

It’s not much of a secret that Toyota is prepping a successor to the seventh iteration of the Camry in markets outside Japan. In fact, earlier this week, the carmaker unintentionally spilled a few beans on the new model’s appearance after an Instagram photo of next season’s NASCAR Toyota Camry racer revealed behind (supposedly) closed doors leaked online, essentially previewing the production car’s fascia.

That NASCAR racer’s pointier schnozzle (or should we call that a beak?) that’s also featured on the latest Prius, flanked by slimmer headlamps, appears to match the shape of the tester spied here. Yes, the car is heavily camouflaged, but besides the familiar proportions, the pictures suggest a slinkier body with a more interestingly styled rear end sporting tapered shoulders.

Toyota plans to move the Camry to their new and lighter TNGA modular global platform, which we first saw on the latest Prius, that promises better handling.

Like many other new mid-size sedans these days, Toyota is believed to offer the 2018 Camry exclusively with four-cylinder engines in the name of fuel economy, with an updated 2.5-liter unit sitting at the base and the Lexus’ 2.0-liter turbocharged mill likely placed at the top as a replacement to today’s 268hp 3.5-liter V6. A frugal gasoline-electric hybrid will round out the powertrain line-up.

Toyota will need to get a lot of things right with the new Camry, as it will have its work cut out to reverse, or at least minimize, the decline seen in all family sedans this year, with mid-size sales at a five year low in the USA, despite a 0.5 percent increase in the overall market. From January to August, deliveries of the current 2017 Camry were down 8.6 percent at 266,746, compared to last year. At the same time, the RAV4 posted a 15 percent increase to 230,942 deliveries and threatens to overtake the Camry, which has been America’s best-selling car for 14 years straight.

Thanks to Mattman for the scoop!

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