Toyota Camry Years To Avoid (Best and Worst)

Toyota Camry Years To Avoid – With its reputation for durability, affordability, and stylish design, it’s no wonder why the Camry has remained a top choice for drivers worldwide. However, not all Camry model years are created equal, and there are certainly some Toyota Camry years to avoid.

When scouring the pre-owned car market, it’s crucial to be aware of potential issues that certain Camry years may have faced. While the Camry generally boasts a solid reputation, some model years have been plagued by recalls or other concerns that could lead to headaches down the road.

That’s why it’s essential to do your research and identify which years are worth considering and which ones you should steer clear of.

We understand the importance of finding a reliable vehicle without the hassle. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best Camry finds in your area, ensuring that each option has low mileage and is free from any questionable history.

Toyota Camry Years To Avoid

With our comprehensive listings, you can browse with confidence, knowing that you’re getting a fair and honest look at your potential next car.

Searching for the perfect commuter car or a reliable vehicle for your family, it’s crucial to be informed about the Toyota Camry years to avoid.

With over 40 years and eight generations under its belt, the Toyota Camry has solidified its place as one of the most iconic sedans on the market.

Toyota Camry Years To Avoid

Let’s explore some of the troublesome Toyota Camry years to avoid and the reasons behind their notoriety.

2007 Toyota Camry

Topping the list of Toyota Camry years to avoid is the 2007 model. This particular year is infamous for its plethora of problems, with one of the most significant issues revolving around automatic transmission.

According to RepairPal, owners have reported instances of the transmission lagging during acceleration, which can lead to overheating and ultimately necessitate premature replacement.

Drivers have encountered issues with the check engine light, erratic shifting, and power steering malfunctions. While these complaints may not be as widespread as in other models, they are nonetheless worth considering for potential buyers.

Check Also: Problems With 2007 Toyota Camry

2008 Toyota Camry

The 2008 Camry, while seeing a decrease in the number of complaints compared to its predecessor, still harbored its fair share of issues.

Similar to the 2007 model, drivers reported transmission problems and frequent occurrences of the check engine light illuminating.

However, one of the more notable issues with the 2008 Camry emerged after the vehicle surpassed 100,000 miles, with the ignition coil prone to failure.

Check Also: Problems With 2008 Toyota Camry

2009 Toyota Camry

Moving on to the 2009 model year, drivers continued to encounter familiar problems such as transmission issues and persistent check engine light warnings.

Additionally, a lesser-known issue with the 2009 Camry involved the buildup of sludge around the engine, attributed to neglect of oil changes.

While not as prominent as other issues, this buildup can lead to decreased engine performance and potentially costly repairs down the line.

Check Also: Problems With 2009 Toyota Camry

By avoiding the pitfalls of these troublesome model years, buyers can enjoy a more seamless driving experience and avoid unnecessary headaches down the road.

Best Year for Toyota Camry

In the realm of used cars, few choices rival the Toyota Camry for its reputation of durability and longevity.

Some model years have garnered criticism for various issues, but several standout years warrant consideration for those seeking reliability and value in a pre-owned sedan.

Let’s explore the best years for the Toyota Camry based on data and consumer feedback, providing insights into each generation’s strengths and weaknesses.

1. Fourth-Generation Toyota Camry: 1997-2001

best year for toyota camry

Beginning our journey with the fourth-generation Camry, spanning from 1997 to 2001, we encounter a period marked by steady reliability and solid performance. While the design may evoke a sense of nostalgia with its boxy appearance, these Camrys laid the groundwork for future models.

Despite being over two decades old, owner reports of issues remain relatively low, a testament to Toyota’s commitment to quality.

Consumer Reports highlights the 2000 and 2001 model years as particularly dependable options, making them worthy candidates for those in search of a reliable used car.

Check Also: Problems With 2006 Toyota Camry

2. Fifth-Generation Toyota Camry: 2002-2006

best year for toyota camry

Transitioning to the fifth generation, encompassing model years 2002 to 2006, we encounter a mixed bag of reliability. While these Camrys may not stand out in terms of design, they offer a decent level of dependability overall.

However, it’s essential to exercise caution, as owner complaints increased significantly for certain years within this generation.

Skipping the first two years (2002 and 2003) and conducting thorough inspections on other examples is advisable to ensure a satisfactory purchase.

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3. Sixth-Generation Toyota Camry: 2007-2011

best year for toyota camry

Regrettably, the sixth generation of the Toyota Camry, spanning from 2007 to 2011, falls short in terms of reliability.

Despite accolades such as Motor Trend’s Car of the Year for the 2007 model, these Camrys have garnered a reputation for performance issues and frequent complaints from owners. ranks the 2007 edition as the most complained-about Camry ever made, emphasizing the need to steer clear of this generation altogether.

Check Also: Problems With 2011 Toyota Camry

4. Seventh-Generation Toyota Camry: 2012-2017

best toyota camry year

Turning our attention to the seventh generation, spanning from 2012 to 2017, we find a return to form for the Toyota Camry.

With minimal owner complaints and consistent praise for reliability, these models represent a winning choice for used car buyers.

Consumer Reports awards every year of seventh generation its highest ratings for predicted reliability, giving them a double thumbs-up as a used car option.

Check Also: Problems With 2017 Toyota Camry

5. Eighth-Generation Toyota Camry: 2018-Current

most reliable camry year

Finally, we arrive at the eighth generation, beginning with the 2018 model year. While these Camrys boast bold and aggressive styling, their reliability remains somewhat uncertain, with mixed rankings from Consumer Reports.

It’s advisable to exercise caution, particularly with first-year models, and prioritize examples with remaining factory warranty coverage for added peace of mind.

The aforementioned generations represent the best years for the Toyota Camry, there are a few standout models worth considering individually.

Check Also: 2019 Toyota Camry Problems

The 2004 Camry earns high marks for reliability, drivability, and overall customer satisfaction, making it a solid choice for those seeking a dependable sedan.

Similarly, the 2013-2015 Camrys, part of the seventh generation, stand out for their impeccable reliability and minimal recalls, making them highly desirable options for used car buyers.

Toyota Camry Problems

Overall, it remains a reliable car, but there are a few recurring issues that owners should be aware of.

Toyota Camry Problems

Let’s explore some of the common Toyota Camry problems reported over the years, providing insights into their causes and potential solutions.

Excessive Oil Consumption

One of the most prevalent issues spanning various model years is excessive oil consumption.

Owners have reported instances of their Camrys burning through oil at a faster rate than expected, despite the absence of any leaks or other visible issues.

This problem appears to be inherent to the engine’s design, affecting both older and newer models alike.

Transmission Issues

Transmission problems have plagued the Toyota Camry, with reports of slipping out of gear, rough acceleration or deceleration, random shifting, and delayed engagement.

These issues can significantly impact the car’s performance and safety, warranting attention and potential repairs from qualified mechanics.

AC and Heater Issues

Owners of certain model years, particularly the 2012, 2013, and 2014 Camrys, have reported problems with the air conditioning system, including a musty smell emanating from the vents.

Some have even experienced mold growth, leading to a class-action lawsuit against Toyota.

Additionally, issues with the AC compressor and heater have been reported, though these are typically resolved by replacing the affected components.

Malfunctioning Door Locks

A common problem observed in the 2011 Camry is malfunctioning door locks, often occurring around 85,000 miles.

Owners have reported instances where doors fail to lock or unlock properly, posing a safety risk.

The most common solution involves replacing the door lock actuator, a relatively straightforward and affordable fix.

Brake Issues

Finally, issues with the braking system have been reported across various model years.

Problems include unresponsive brakes leading to collisions and brake lights illuminating randomly.

While these occurrences are relatively rare, they underscore the importance of regular maintenance and inspection to ensure the safety and performance of your Camry.

Check Also: Toyota Camry Transmission Problems

Toyota has a strong reputation for producing dependable cars, and while issues may arise, they are generally infrequent and easily addressed by qualified technicians.


The Toyota Camry is generally regarded as a reliable and durable vehicle, prospective buyers need to be aware of potential issues that may arise with certain model years.

The transmission problems to AC and heater issues, understanding the common problems associated with the Camry can help buyers make informed decisions when purchasing a used vehicle.

Such as the seventh generation (2012-2017), stands out as reliable choices, and others, like the sixth generation (2007-2011), should be approached with caution.

By researching and understanding the best and worst years for the Toyota Camry, buyers can navigate the pre-owned car market with confidence, ensuring that they find a dependable vehicle that meets their needs and expectations.

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