Without question, the Toyota Camry hybrid electric car was the most fuel-efficient of any hybrid tested. Let’s not forget that in addition to the fuel economy, the Camry hybrid changed it’s design inside and out. Therefore, this car is a new breed to create a standard.
MSI while this hybrid XLE rated at 39 miles per gallon (MPG) the best, it was an understatement.
This car performed on average in the 40 MPG with styling of a Lexus.
Luxury Feeling Additions to the XLE With respect to another Toyota owned brand Lexus, this XLE had many lower end versions of a Lexus today. The look and feel of the car was leather with accent stitching. The sound system was all there and seating was premium leather feel. It had all the luxury controls of a Lexus for the driver and passengers. It did include rear cameras for backing up, SolarTech glass so it doesn’t get too bright or hot.
With its Hybrid Synergy Drive powertrain, the Camry Hybrid XLE rated EPA with 43 mpg city/39 mpg highway/41 mpg combined fuel economy. However in ECO mode on a decently warm day but not too warm. As well as in EV Drive mode allows the driver to go all EV home. So under certain conditions, to run the Camry Hybrid solely on the electric motor for up to 1.6 miles at lower speeds (below about 25 mph). The 62 MPG test includes coming home at lower than 24 mph.
So a driver-selectable ECO mode optimizes throttle response and air conditioning output to help prioritize most fuel economy. This 2014 Camry Hybrid meeting AT-PZEV (Advanced Technology Partial-credit Zero Emissions Vehicle) standards.
So through its unique transaxle, the Hybrid Synergy Drive system combines output. Output from the 2.5-liter Atkinson cycle four-cylinder engine and a small high-torque electric motor. The system produces a combined 200 horsepower and varies power between the gas engine and electric motor. It also can combine both, as needed. A 7.6-second zero-to-60 acceleration time places the Camry Hybrid’s performance between the four-cylinder and V6 models. Lower rolling resistance tires, available for the first time in 17-inch size, also help boost fuel economy.
Furthermore, the Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) system on the intake camshaft enhances torque. It’s an electric water pump, a roller-rocker type valvetrain and a variable-output oil pump help to cut internal friction. All combining for boosting economy. A water-cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system helps to ensure the lowest possible emissions at all vehicle speeds. Thereby once again contributing to fuel efficiency.
Again, so by cooling and controlling exhaust gas injected into each cylinder. This system eliminates the need to richen the air-fuel mixture to control cylinder temperatures.
Similarly and in pursuit of greatest efficiency, there are situations where the gas engine in the Camry Hybrid shuts off. Well all in for electric propulsion I say. Furthermore and air conditioning with power steering systems driven electrically. The proven nickel-metal-hydride battery, in the trunk area, features enhanced air-cooling. Its compact size, along with locating the DC/DC converter within the engine compartment, results in a trunk that is 2.1-cubic feet larger than in the previous-generation Camry Hybrid.
One of my favorite parts of a hybrid EV is regenerative braking. It’s the test that’ll tell ya how dynamic is this car. Well here are the basics. The Camry Hybrid converts the electric motor to a generator that captures the kinetic energy from the still-turning wheels when the brake applied. Thereby storing it in the hybrid battery pack.
Yet also putting the shifter into “B” (which I did) uses the system as a form of engine braking for enhanced control on steep descents.
In addition, hill-start assist control helps prevent the vehicle from rolling backward. Especially when starting off on an incline when the brake pedal released.
As a result, a Hybrid-exclusive instrument cluster with System and fuel consumption indicator helps the driver. It also helps to run the car as economically as possible. Instantaneous fuel economy shown with LEDs (light emitting diodes) around the outside of the average fuel economy gauge. The car’s Multi-Information display graphically shows fuel economy in real-time. Also it can also show energy flow and cruising range information.
The Green Living Guy, Seth Leitman is a green living expert, celebrity and Editor of the McGraw-Hill, TAB Green Guru Guides. Seth is also an Author, Radio Host, Reporter, Writer and a Environmental Consultant on green living. The Green Living Guy writes about green living, green lighting, the green guru guides and more. Seth's books range from:
# Build Your Own Electric Vehicle by Bob Brant and Seth Leitman (2nd and 3rd editions)
# Build Your Own Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle by Seth Leitman
# Build Your Own Electric Motorcycle by Carl Vogel
# Green Lighting by Seth Leitman, Brian Clark Howard and Bill Brinsky
# Solar Power For Your Home by David Findley
# Renewable Energies For Your Home by Russel Gehrke
# Do-it-Yourself Home Energy Audits by David Findley
# Build Your Own Small Wind Power System by Brian Clark Howard and Kevin Shea
# and more green living books to follow.