Toyota Malaysia has revealed the facelifted 2022 Toyota Camry, which is still fully imported from our neighbour, Thailand. The question now is, should you upgrade, or should you pass? To help your wallet decide, here are 6 upgrades that you need to know about Toyota’s flagship sedan.
Subtle exterior polish
To the regular joe, the facelift and the pre-facelift models might look identical. But, there are subtle design changes to the facelift model that really completes the “beautiful monster” look.
The front bumper now sports a new lower grill with the same seven horizontal strips, but with only the bottom 5 running the full width. The grill also looks like it’s floating with the bumper holding it on either side. On the pre-facelift, the grill looked like it was housed inside the lower bumper. The grill still looks like a big gaping mouth, but the new, sportier design does hide it somewhat. You also get a more prominent C-shaped chrome trim where the horizontal strips meet the bumper.
The 18inch rims get a new, sportier design with five Y spokes and a dual-tone finish. It comes wrapped in Bridgestone Turanza T005A tyres. Just a side note, the spare wheels are space savers this time around.
Finally! The Dynamic Force engine
Yes my friends, Toyota has finally retired the tried and true 2AR-FE 2.5L naturally aspirated four cylinder in favour of its brand new A25A-FKS 2.5L Dynamic Force four cylinder engine. Having previously debuted in the RAV4 and Lexus ES 250, this engine was designed from the ground up to complement the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) modular platform.
The Dynamic Force or D-4S (S stands for superior) uses a hybrid system of direct fuel injectors and port fuel injectors to get the most performance and efficiency out of the engine. When the engine is operating between a low to medium load, like cruising speed, both injector systems are employed to create a stable combustion process. But when engine load increases, like during hard acceleration, the engine will primarily employ the direct fuel injection system. Injecting the cooler fuel vapours helps to chill the intake air inside the combustion chamber, increasing charge efficiency and reducing knocking.
Another upgrade this engine gets is Variable Valve Timing – intelligent by Electric motor (VVT-iE) for the intake camshaft which uses an electrically controlled actuator to maintain the camshaft timing. This provides a faster and accurate timing control at low engine speeds and temperatures, and also greater total range of adjustment thanks to the electric actuation. The exhaust camshaft still uses a VVT-i, which incorporates a hydraulic actuator.
As a result, it produces 25hp and 18Nm of torque more, for a power output figure of 206hp at 6,600rpm and 253Nm of torque at 5,000rpm.
New Direct Shift 8-speed automatic gearbox
Replacing the 6-speed automatic gearbox is the new Direct Shift 8-speed automatic gearbox. Other than providing the engine with more ratios to work with, it is more compact than the 6-speed unit.
There is a new clutch system that sits between the transmission and torque converter, called a lockup control multiple disc clutch. When the clutch is disengaged, the engine power is transferred via the fluid flow, smoothening gear shifts. Engaging the clutch will cause the engine power to be channelled directly to the transmission, giving the driver a more direct driving feel.
Upgraded driver and rear seats
The 2022 Toyota Camry is now equipped with 10-way power-adjustable seats for the driver with two memory positions this time. The new Camry also retains the programmable car key function that allows you to save different positions for the steering column, driver seats and side mirrors to each of the two keys. Therefore, the Camry will configure the driving position based on which key is used to start the vehicle. As for the passenger seat, it still retains the same 8-way power adjustment with shoulder switches to allow the rear passenger to push the seat forward for better legroom.
The biggest upgrade comes from the rear seats, which can now be reclined electrically. You adjust the recline via the new centre armrest control panel which also houses the climate control for the rear as this Camry now comes equipped with triple-zone climate control. Controls for the powered sunshade and the audio system can be found here as well.
Infotainment system with Apple Carplay and Android Auto
Replacing the old flush-sitting eight-inch unit is a bigger nine inch (every inch counts), freestanding JBL system which brings with Apple Carplay and Android Auto for the first time in a Camry, but unfortunately there is no wireless Apple Carplay capabilities.
To accommodate the new infotainment system, the aircon vents have been moved below the system as opposed to being above the system like before. Thankfully, Toyota Malaysia has kept the wireless charger. Also included as standard is a front digital video recorder (DVR), which you may or may not find aesthetically appealing.
Toyota Safety Sense 2.5
Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 brings a suite of upgrades of the predecessor’s version, notably is that the radar guided adaptive cruise control now works at all speeds, which means it will bring the car to a complete stop. To resume, normally in other vehicles in this class, the driver needs to press the resume button or tap the accelerator pedal, so I’m assuming that is the case for the Camry. Adding to that is the lane centring assist to keep you in the centre of the lane when the adaptive cruise control is switched on. Furthermore, the system is now able to slow down for bends and will also accelerate when you turn the signal indicators on, as you might want to overtake.
The rear cross-traffic alert now gets auto braking and the Camry comes with Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS), which is similar to Perodua’s pedal misoperation control. Basically, it uses the front camera to detect if there’s an object in front and mutes the accelerator pedal input if you accidentally stomped it, preventing you from crashing into the object. Finally, autonomous emergency braking now works with pedestrians at night and cyclists during the day.
These new safety features are in addition to the systems that was already available. The long list includes Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Automatic High Beam, Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, hill start assist, front and rear parking sensors and a tyre pressure monitoring system. Lastly, the Camry is equipped with dual front, side, and curtain airbags, plus one for the driver’s knee for a total of seven airbags.
2022 Toyota Camry Pricing
A price increase is to be expected with all these new features and Toyota doesn’t disappoint. The 2022 Toyota Camry will set you back a cool RM199,109.50 on the road, without insurance and inclusive of the 50% sales tax exemption up until 30th June 2022. However, most Camry buyers won’t bat an eye since the outgoing model was priced at RM196,888.00.
With the amount of improvements Toyota has made to the 2022 Toyota Camry, an extra RM2,000 is more than justifiable, in my opinion. There is also the optional welcome light for the front door for RM990.00, which compared to the total price of the car, is insignificant and I would include this option.
The question around the office was “would you buy the Camry or the VW Arteon?” I know they are not competing in the same price class but share your opinion regardless. Call it a fantasy battle if you will.