By Nitish Rele

After a major re-do inside out last year, the best-selling car in the United States continues as is in 2016. The 2.5-liter inline-4 cylinder engine in the Toyota Camry develops 178 horsepower and 170 lbs.-ft. of torque, plenty to cruise on the highway or dodge traffic in the city (the other power train is a 3.5-liter V-6 cranking 268 hp and 248 pounds-feet of torque). The sedan is equipped with an effective 6-speed auto transmission and a sport-tuned suspension for nippy and attentive handling. It helps that engineers used sound-insulating materials to further reduce noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) levels in an already-quiet ride.

Projector-beam halogen headlights with black trim bezels flank a smoked chrome upper grille hosting the familiar Toyota emblem. Satin-chrome accents deck up the interior with its center stack, custom-tuned JBL audio system, 4.2-inch TFT screen between the tachometer and speedometer, and a wireless charging system for select cellphones. Trunk space is a cool 15.4 cubic feet. Standard goodies include eight-way power driver and four-way front-passenger seat, a/c, leather three-spoke tilt/telescopic steering column, 60/40 rear seat, two 12-volt power outlets and a 6.1-inch touchscreen for navigation, audio and phone controls.

Dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag and front knee airbags are fitted at no extra charge along with side-impact door beams, four-wheel antilock brakes, Electronic Brake Distribution with brake assist, vehicle stability and traction controls, rearview camera, front/rear crumple zones and tire pressure monitoring system.

This bread-and-butter vehicle for and from Toyota is an agile, sporty and tidy ride that seats five with comfort. The Japanese carmaker’s reputation for durability and reliability can only help to keep the recently fine-tuned midsize sedan at the top for several years to come.

Test-drive the Camry at Courtesy Toyota of Brandon at 9210 E. Adamo Dr. in Tampa. For more information, call 639-8045.

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