Facelift for Camry

Toy­ota is gear­ing up for hy­brid pro­duc­tion, writes PAUL GOVER

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Front Page -

THE most im­por­tant Toy­ota since the com­pany’s Al­tona fac­tory opened is on its fi­nal count­down to pro­duc- tion.

Work is nearly fin­ished on ex­tra as­sem­bly sta­tions at Al­tona for Aus­tralia’s first hy­brid, a petrol-elec­tric Camry, which en­ters pro­duc­tion next year.

Toy­ota also has a mi­nor tweak for the Camry and Au­rion in the third quar­ter of this year.

It’s mostly about im­proved ef­fi­ciency and value, but there will be changes to the front and rear body­work.

Toy­ota Thai­land gave a hint about the new di­rec­tion when it un­veiled its ver­sion of the Camry hy­brid last week, though the head­light and tail-lamp treat­ments are sharper and more edgy than the Aus­tralian car.

The lo­cal Camry will get new head­lamps, most prob­a­bly pro­jec­tor beams, and will have a new type of tail-lamp clus­ter pro­duced at Hella Aus­tralia in Men­tone.

The facelift de­sign work has been done at Toy­ota Style Aus­tralia un­der the di­rec­tion of PaulBeranger and should be more ac­cept­able to Aus­tralian tastes.

But Toy­ota Aus­tralia re­fuses to make any com­ment on the up­dates, or the ex­act tim­ing of the hy­brid Camry.

‘‘Yes, there will be an up­date to the Camry and Au­rion this year, but you will have to wait to see what we have,’’ Toy­ota spokesman Mike Breen says.

Shape of things to come: the Thai-built 2010 Toy­ota Camry hy­brid in­di­cates the de­sign di­rec­tion.

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