It’s hard to believe that the Toyota Camry is currently 37 years old, but it’s still going strong in its newest iteration. And if you’re in the market for a Camry, it can be tough to choose which trim level is right for you. For the 2021 model year, Toyota says that are 17 different Camry configurations to choose from, since you can opt for 5 different trim levels in a variety of engine and drivetrain choices. However, we tested out the Camry XSE for a week and realized that it could be the best one to buy. Here are five reasons why.
If you like your family sedan a little more lively in the turns, then you’ll be happy to know that the Toyota Camry XSE comes standard with a sport-tuned suspension. No, it doesn’t provide a crazy, jarring ride or Toyota 86-like handling characteristics, but we found that it does give the mid-size sedan just a little more sportiness without sacrificing very much comfort.
Fuel-efficient engine choices
The Camry XSE is available with either a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine or a hybrid powertrain, which consists of a 2.5-liter engine connected to an electric motor. If you want more power, then there is a 3.5-liter V6 engine available, but if fuel efficiency is what you need, then you’ll like that the four-cylinder Camry can achieve an EPA-estimated 28 mpg in the city and 39 on the highway, while the hybrid version can get up to 44 mpg and 47 mpg, respectively.
The optional all-wheel-drive system for the Camry debuted for the 2020 model year and although it might only be reserved for those in snow states, it’s still a great option for everyone to have. The system itself has the ability to transfer up to 50 percent of the engine’s torque to the rear wheels when the front wheels start to slip. However, under regular driving conditions, the system’s electromagnetic-controlled coupling system disengages the propeller shaft to run power through the front wheels and save fuel.
19-inch black alloy wheels
The XSE trim level is considered the “sportier” one of the bunch, aside from the racier TRD trim, which means that it does have some sporting queues to add to its more aggressive look and feel. As such, Toyota added these 19-inch gloss black wheels that contrast well with any of the body colors available for the car. They also add a little more width over the standard wheels, thus increasing the car’s handling capabilities.
While the standard roster of features on the Camry XSE is impressive, we especially liked the optional ones that our tester came equipped with. Most notably, our Camry was outfitted with the “Driver Assist” package that consisted of a 10-inch head-up display, bird’s eye view camera, rear cross-traffic brake assist, and ventilated seats.
To top things off, our Camry XSE also had a panoramic moonroof, a navigation system, a heated steering wheel, and, best of all, a premium JBL sound system. We highly recommend any of these features if you opt for the Camry XSE as they further add to the car’s uber-comfortable driving experience.