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My MK4 Camry disappoints


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As I have stated many times elsewhere on this forum, I have 2 Camry's. both are 4 cylinder automatics.

One is a '93 Executive with 236,000 Km's on it, the other is a 97 CSi with 146,000 on the clock.

Although the newer car handles nicer than the older one, and has a nicer engine, it feels somewhat gutless in acceleration (especially with going up hills) compared to the older model and is also thirstier.

I usually get better than 11 Ltrs/100Km with the 93 model, but with the newer car it's always over 11Ltrs/100Km.

I treat both cars the same (driving habits-wise).

I have done a comparison test with Red Book, the link is here;-

Red Book Comparison

I see no real reason why the newer car is the weaker performer in my book. Yes, the newer model is 70Kg's heavier, but that's it!

What's going on? It feels like the gearbox in the newer car is not the right one, there's marks on it like it recently came from a wrecker's, maybe the dodgy dealer sold me a car with an older model gearbox fitted? Who knows?

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Comparing both car by the looks of it your 93 had the right amount of torque and power which could deliver the power with the 4cyc. Thou i have driven the 97 CSX or CSI with the 4cyc i notice its pure gutless, throttle is to heavy and every hard to push it.

From what i think you are better off with 6cycl with your 97 instead of 4cycl better drive and has power.

I dont know much on it but its experience after driving a few of them

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It's disappointing...car models should be more peppy and/or economical as they go along, not less. The older car had 2kW more output than the 97 model, but the 97 model has 2Nm more torque. Not that I would notice it. And it is thirstier than the old 93 junker...WTF is up with that?

I was thinking of getting a V6 Camry, or Vienta, or maybe even an Avalon. Basically something with a V6 engine and basic luxury appointments, power windows, trip computer, maybe 4 wheel disc brakes to boot? I don't mind a car with high mileage, as long as I can go up hills better (I take my Mum and her friends to sports activities and it's a pain going up Kalamunda hill - the car just slows to 55Km/h or thereabouts, and everyone else just flies past us). I'd also like them to open the power windows with the press of a button, not break their skinny old lady arms trying to wind the windows up and down...

I basically want a nice luxury car to play with, just hope the fuel economy isn't too savage with these 6cyl beasts!

When I had my old Supra, it delivered a solid 14L/100Km's, with almost no variation. And it had to drink Premium didn't it? More dollars.

I can afford to run a 3.0L V6 for odd trips, sure. I could afford to run the Supra no problem, as I have more money now.

Edited by Miklos73
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Ummm strange you mention proglems with the gen4 power seeings as both your cars have the exact same engine (5sfe).unless your older car was a gen2 with a 3sfe but I'm relativily sure they were discontinued in 92 so that's unlikely.

Soo my guessing is that your gen 4 has a problem of some sort otherwise they would drive in a very similar fasion.

But that all being said most 4 cyl Camrys are completely gutless anyway (Espescially AUTO'S) so as you mentioned your far better of with a V6.

Speeking from experience here I've owned a few different Camry's a gen2 I4 manual a gen3 I4 auto wich I sold within a week cause it was so gutless and my old gen2 drove better, and my current gen4 V6 manual which as much as it's no skyline or rex has plenty enough power to keep me occupied esspecially if you open it up a bit with a few mods here an there.

So all in all if ya wanna keep your gen4 there's probably something wrong with it that needs attention otherwise move on and go to a V6.

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mmm i dont know i agree it is gutless, as all 4cylins are, but my gen4 advantage 2002 model is not as non-responsive and weak as you make it out to seem they are.

reading your comments/problems, did u go check your car out thoroughly by a mechanic b4 purchasing? with only 146,000 on the clock you should be getting max 10L/100km and it should still stay quite responsive and zippy on the throttle.

i just came back from a lil getaway to apollo bay (on the great ocean rd) and i managed 4 fully sized adults, with a full full FULL boot and i found the car to be still very much zippy and, well, from the sounds of it, not as gutless as you are referring to. (i actually find it quite pleasant and powerful enough to drive). plus my mileage was great considering i was accelerating hard on the twisty rds, around 9L/100km.

just 2 remind you we have the same engine.

so i think u should get it checked out. if 4cylinder camrys are getting more than 10L/100km (providing u dont drive like a kangaroo) you know theres something wrong with it - from being under inflated tyres to a huge internal problem.

hope i helped.

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You may need to perform an ECU reset. Given the mass of these Camrys, they tend to get into a habit where they like lumbering along. Try a reset, and drive with a bit of zest to retrain it.

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I did not have this car checked before I bought it, I figured as it had relaitvely low km's and the price wasn't exactly cheap there could be little wrong with it. One can guess I very much rushed into purchasing this car...how I wish I didn't!

I had this thing serviced shortly after I bought it, but I felt no difference whatsoever in performance afterwards.

I'm thinking maybe it does have a huge internal problem, the more time passes the more things I find wrong. I know nothing of the history of this car at all. The interior is near perfect, but the outside leaves a fair bit to be desired. Scratches and dents all over, not too terrible I suppose but more than enough to offset what otherwise could make this car have higher than normal market value.

I will get this thing serviced again in the near future, will ask my personal mechanic to do this "ECU reset" (sorry - I don't know what that is!).

I have a funny feeling the gearbox may have issues, maybe it's off an earlier (MK2) Camry? Is that possible?

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I have a funny feeling the gearbox may have issues, maybe it's off an earlier (MK2) Camry? Is that possible?

Fitting gearboxes from older generations is certainly possible... I bet that in the new 200 series Landcruiser, they fitted the Aurion 6-speed auto to the 4.5L twin turbo diesel V8, whilst the 4.7L petrol V8 is using the 5-speed auto from the Gen1 Kludger (which itself was also used in the Gen5.5 Camry SE [with 3.3L engine] in the states)

I think Toyota have probably fitted the Auto from the Gen3 (Mk3) Camry into yours.

Although I drive a Gen5.5, the transmission (and engine) is the same as that fitted to a Gen4. Only in the Gen6 Camry and Aurion did Toyota fit completely new engine and transmission.


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