About Me

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My passion is also my business, as I am with the Toronto based Hav-A-Kar Auto Group. I sell or lease any make of car, van or truck available in Canada. My interest in all things "car" has helped me with my many clients in Ontario over the past 20+ years. Please give me the opportunity to assist you.

Friday, May 23, 2014

May 23: Oh baby, how far you've come

1958.........step right up folks to see the new to America Toyopet Crown. Something a little different from that far away island of Japan (you remember them, right?). A right sized alternative to the big American land yachts. Sure, it's economical, but really who cares, since gas is so darn cheap.Be the first in your neighbourhood. Your city. Heck, probably your state.

Flash forward to 2014........


Not much resemblance, but then nothing else looks like it did over 50 years ago, either. But what we have here, is the 2015 Camry. Newly rebodied in order to keep it up to date. The main point here is that in the United States, now the 2nd biggest car market in the world, thanks to China's new found wealth, the Camry is the best selling car. Well over 400,000 leave the dealers' showrooms each year. Nothing else is close. So do you think this redesign is important? Lots of interesting lines, on what has been a reliable, but very boring car. Want handling? Buy an Accord or a Mazda6. No matter, the good folks still line up for this A to B transportation.

How did the Camry achieve this lofty position? How did it start? Ok, another history lesson is about to begin........


Here is the first use that I could find of the Camry name......the Celica Camry 2000 GT. We know the Celica as a sporty coupe, but in the '70's, apparently it had a more diverse range. But the Camry name was used in Japan, before it became its own car and was introduced to North America in the early '80's.......


I remember an acquaintance pulling up in that not so great looking fastback and telling me what a great car it was (before the rust set in). Hard to believe this was the start of something so very big. The break through model? An easy choice.......


The 1992 Camry was considered to be a junior Lexus and it even looked like the bigger Lexus LS. Very high quality in all respects (materials/reliability), that Camry has yet to fully duplicate. It was here, that it began its ride to the top of the charts and has been there for several years.

Toyota didn't get to be where they are by being stupid, a bit complacent maybe, but not dumb. The competition is so good, cars like the Mazda6, the Accord, the Altima and the Sonata, should be ready to take a run at the king. But obviously, Camry customers want boring reliability over excellent handling and stunning looks. That being said, Toyota has just changed the world's best seller Corolla and now has increased the emotional factor in the Camry. Will this change be more than skin deep? Good question and one that will have to wait for those first road tests. Will it matter to the loyal Camry customer? Probably not, but still, smart thinking by Toyota.......stay tuned.

Before I take my leave, one more pic of an early Toyoda (yes, that is the correct spelling) from way back in 1951........


Part old Ford, part old VW Beetle. My how things have changed.

Until next time.......



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