For many car enthusiasts, we don’t typically get everything that we want in one car. Our daily driver needs to be spacious and practical, and sometimes even family-friendly. Our sports cars need to look aggressive, accelerate well, and have responsive steering. With the Camry TRD, Toyota claims to offer both, and after watching one dominate the motion-sickness inducing turns on the Tail of the Dragon in North Carolina and Tennessee, I’m convinced that they are even more capable than we give them credit for.
Handling corners like a true sports car
On the Tail of the Dragon, there are 318 nauseating turns in an 11-mile stretch. If that isn’t scary enough, the corners are composed of sharp, hairpin turns or tight corners. On one side, just inches away from the road, is the mountain. On the other is a cliff face with no railing and almost no shoulder. You wouldn’t think a full-sized passenger car would handle these roads well, especially for a front-wheel-drive car. You might be as surprised as I was.
The Camry TRD doesn’t ditch practicality
The interior of the car might trick you into thinking that the Toyota Camry TRD is a true sports car. The luxurious leather is well-stitched and wraps around a comfortable yet spacious interior. The TRD trim level isn’t any smaller than your average Camry, so you still have all of the backseat space and cargo capacity that you know and love. The only difference? Some sporty capabilities.
Almost a true sports car
One of the reasons that people love the Toyota Camry is because they are safe and reliable. Throw a 3.5L V6 under the hood and you’ll be surprised with just how sporty this four-door sedan feels. While the 14.4-second quarter-mile time might not sound impressive, it can go from 0-60mph in just under 6 seconds. For a daily drive that doubles as a fun sports car without losing usable backseats or cargo capacity, it hardly gets better than this. Sure, you could get something for the same price if you look at an older Audi or BMW, but they can be much less reliable while also costing more to repair and maintain.
For now, the Toyota Camry TRD doesn’t have all-wheel drive options, but the front-wheel-drive that is more traditional for the car is still very capable. While it isn’t rear-wheel drive like many sports cars, the responsive steering and acceleration make this car a happy medium between capable and comfortable. If you’re looking for a sporty car that you can daily drive without losing practicality, the 2020 Toyota Camry TRD is the car you won’t be disappointed in.