The Toyota Camry isn’t exactly a showstopper, but it’s still an attractive, practical car. This best-selling midsize sedan has always offered a smooth ride, decent fuel economy, and plenty of legroom and headroom for five adults. However, buying a brand-new Camry might be too heavy on your wallet. Purchasing a used model can help you stay within your budget.
But with so many used vehicles to choose from, how do you decide which is best? Here are two Consumer Reports-approved Toyota Camry models you can get for $15,000 to $20,000.
Consumer Reports recommends these used Toyota Camry models
Both the 2016 and 2017 Toyota Camry get Consumer Reports‘ nod in “Best Used Cars and SUVs for $15,000 to $20,000.” The 2016 model costs around $15,775 to $19,925. And the 2017 version starts at about $18,100. However, if you opt for a higher-end trim, you might pay a bit over $20,000.
Both model years offer the same roominess in the front and back seats, along with above-average handling and ride quality. But what sets these two models apart from older years are improvements Toyota made.
They boast an easy-to-use touchscreen, enhanced noise control, and better crash-test ratings. Also, fuel economy is among the best in the segment. The 2016 and 2017 Toyota Camry get 19 mpg in the city, an impressive 38 on the highway, and 28 mpg overall.
What do the 2016 and 2017 Toyota Camry models offer?
Consumer Reports has only a few complaints about the 2016 and the 2017 Toyota Camry models. One is that acceleration times aren’t as good as some rivals. Both models reached 60 mph speed in 8.6 seconds. Also, the 2016 version had some issues with its smog rating, with a 5 out of 10. The 2017 model saw a slight increase to 6/10.
CR has plenty of praise for both, though. Each earned 5/5 in predicted reliability and 4/5 in owner satisfaction. And though their 2.5-liter four-cylinder motor, paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, generates only 173 hp, it gets the job done. Even the 3.5-liter V6, producing 268 hp, is surprisingly fuel-efficient, CR notes.
When it comes to comfort and convenience, the Toyota Camry also earns above-average scores. Cargo capacity in both models is 15.4 cubic feet, spacious enough for four large suitcases. Cloth upholstery comes standard, but leather is available.
Other vehicles on Consumer Reports’ list
Toyota has several models on the list besides the Camry. For $15,775 to $18,050, you can also get a 2017 Corolla, earning top ratings for reliability. Or you can pick a 2018 Prius C, 2017 Prius Prime, or 2016 Prius V.
Among large cars, you can get a 2015 Toyota Avalon for about $16,300. As for midsize SUVs, you’ll find a Toyota 2011 4Runner and a 2014 Highlander for about $16,900.
If you’re interested in a luxury car, several cost less than $20,000. Choose from a 2013 to 2015 Lexus ES, 2013 GS, and 2011 to 2012 LS, which you can get for $16,100 to $18,750. Acura has a few on the list as well. For example, you can find a 2015 TLX for as little as $17,275. You might even get lucky and find one with the large tech package.
But if a Toyota Camry is on your shopping list and you’re not sure if you can afford a brand-new one, consider a used model. The 2016 and 2017 models offer the best value.