Thomas KinkadeKinkade with copy of his painting "Coming Home" presented to USO in October 2005.
Thomas Kinkade (born 1958-01-19 in Sacramento, California) is an American painter most widely known for his mass-produced prints. He is marketed as the "Painter of Light", a phrase he has trademarked.
His prints and paintings are distinguished by their glowing, highlights and vibrant pastel colors. Rendered in a impressionist style cross-pollinated with American Scene Painting values, his works often portray bucolic, idyllic settings such as gardens, streams, stone cottages, and Main Streets. He has also depicted various Christian themes including the Holy Cross and churches.
Kinkade claims to be placing emphasis on the value of simple pleasures and that his intent is to communicate inspirational, life-affirming messages through his work. A self-described "devout Christian" (all of his children have the middle name "Christian" ), Kinkade has said he gains his inspiration from his religious beliefs and that his work is intended to contain a larger moral dimension. Many pictures contain specific chapter-and-verse allusions to certain [Bible] passages.
Kinkade is reportedly America's most-collected living artist . Relatedly, he is often criticized for the extent to which he has commercialized his art (for example, selling his prints on the QVC home shopping network). Others have complained that his paintings are merely kitsch and are without substance.
There also has been a Thomas Kinkade themed community of homes, The Village at Hiddenbrooke.
Kinkade grew up in the small town of Placerville, California, graduated from high school in 1976, and attended the University of California, Berkeley and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. On 1982-05-02, he married his childhood sweetheart, Nanette.
He spent a summer on a sketching tour with a college friend, producing a popular instructional book, The Artist's Guide to Sketching. The success of the book landed the two young artists at Ralph Bakshi Studios creating background art for the 1983 animated feature film Fire and Ice. While working on the film, Kinkade began to explore the depiction of light and of imagined worlds. After the film, Kinkade earned his living as a painter, selling his originals in galleries throughout California.
His works are sold by mail order and in dedicated retail outlets as high-quality prints, often using texturizing techniques on real canvas to make the surface of the finished prints mimic the raised surface of the original painting. Some of the prints also feature light effects that are painted onto the print surface by hand by "skilled craftsmen", touches which add to the illusion of light and the resemblance to an original work of art. Kincaid's images are also used extensively on other merchandise such as calendars and greeting cards.
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Joan Didion echoes a popular complaint that Kinkade's houses seem to be burning internally:
She goes on to make more serious complaints, comparing the "Kinkade Glow" to the luminism of 19th-century painter Albert Bierstadt, who sentimentalized the infamous Donner Pass in his Donner Lake from the Summit. Didion worries that Kinkade's own treatment of the Sierra Nevada likewise mocks the tragedy of the Yosemite Miwok Indians in The Mountains Declare His Glory.
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Didion worries that Kinkade's own treatment of the Sierra Nevada likewise mocks the tragedy of the Yosemite Miwok Indians in The Mountains Declare His Glory.  . She goes on to make more serious complaints, comparing the "Kinkade Glow" to the luminism of 19th-century painter Albert Bierstadt, who sentimentalized the infamous Donner Pass in his Donner Lake from the Summit. Aftermarket performance parts for the Camry are significantly more limited than for sportier vehicles; however, even a bona-fide supercharger has been developed specifically for the Camry. Joan Didion echoes a popular complaint that Kinkade's houses seem to be burning internally:. Toyota's in-house motor sport department, Toyota Racing Development, as well as Toyota Team Europe and TOM'S, does offer performance parts for the fourth- and fifth-generation Camry. Kincaid's images are also used extensively on other merchandise such as calendars and greeting cards. Since 2004, Tundra pickups have competed in the Craftsman Truck Series.
Some of the prints also feature light effects that are painted onto the print surface by hand by "skilled craftsmen", touches which add to the illusion of light and the resemblance to an original work of art. On January 23, 2006, Toyota announced that their 2007 version of the Camry will be entered for NASCAR's elite Busch and Nextel Cup series, starting in the 2007 season, marking the first appearance by a vehicle made by an automobile manufacturer not based in the United States to compete in NASCAR's top two series since the 1950s. His works are sold by mail order and in dedicated retail outlets as high-quality prints, often using texturizing techniques on real canvas to make the surface of the finished prints mimic the raised surface of the original painting. As the matter of fact, the South African Super Touring Camry is still being raced by a private individual in Australia in 2005, despite the car being more than 10 years old. After the film, Kinkade earned his living as a painter, selling his originals in galleries throughout California.  The Camry's popularity and Toyota's reputation for reliability means that older-model Camrys occasionally surface in amateur motorsports. While working on the film, Kinkade began to explore the depiction of light and of imagined worlds. In spite of past failures, there nonetheless exists evidence that late-model Camrys have been raced in other minor championships.
The success of the book landed the two young artists at Ralph Bakshi Studios creating background art for the 1983 animated feature film Fire and Ice. It only achieved moderate success as the competition comprised of other more suitable machinery, for example BMW 320i's prepared by Team Schnitzer. He spent a summer on a sketching tour with a college friend, producing a popular instructional book, The Artist's Guide to Sketching. So far, the one and only time a Camry that has been used by a works Toyota team as a race car is during the 1990's, where Toyota South Africa commissioned a third-generation Camry, built according to FIA's Class-2 Super Touring regulations, to be raced in the South African Touring Car Championship. On 1982-05-02, he married his childhood sweetheart, Nanette. Due to the Camry's size and market orientation, it is not a suitable candidate for professional motorsports activities. Kinkade grew up in the small town of Placerville, California, graduated from high school in 1976, and attended the University of California, Berkeley and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. The Camry received an "average" theft loss index in yearly reports generated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) for every year between 1992 and 2004 except 1997, when it received a "worse than average."  Each of these reports only covers the previous three model years (e.g., the 1992 report covers 1989-1991 Camrys).
. In 2001, for example, the second-generation Camry was the most-stolen vehicle, whereas the fourth-generation Camry was the 79th most stolen. There also has been a Thomas Kinkade themed community of homes, The Village at Hiddenbrooke. for several years. Others have complained that his paintings are merely kitsch and are without substance.  This can be partly attributed to the fact that the Camry has been the top selling car in the U.S. Relatedly, he is often criticized for the extent to which he has commercialized his art (for example, selling his prints on the QVC home shopping network). The Camry is reportedly the most stolen car in the United States.
Kinkade is reportedly America's most-collected living artist . . Many pictures contain specific chapter-and-verse allusions to certain [Bible] passages. IIHS rear-crash performance was rated as marginal for Camrys with cloth seats and poor for Camrys with leather seats. A self-described "devout Christian" (all of his children have the middle name "Christian" ), Kinkade has said he gains his inspiration from his religious beliefs and that his work is intended to contain a larger moral dimension. NHTSA rollover performance is listed as five stars for 2001 models and four stars thereafter. Kinkade claims to be placing emphasis on the value of simple pleasures and that his intent is to communicate inspirational, life-affirming messages through his work. The IIHS website notes that although Toyota changed the design of 2004 Camrys to improve side performance, the changes would not significantly impact the crash performance of vehicles without side airbags.
He has also depicted various Christian themes including the Holy Cross and churches.  Three out of the nine categories were scored as poor, including Head protection, driver, Injury:Head/neck, and Injury:Torso, rear passenger. Rendered in a impressionist style cross-pollinated with American Scene Painting values, his works often portray bucolic, idyllic settings such as gardens, streams, stone cottages, and Main Streets. However, side crash performance without airbags was only two stars in 2002 (NHTSA)  and poor, the lowest score on the IIHS scale. His prints and paintings are distinguished by their glowing, highlights and vibrant pastel colors. . He is marketed as the "Painter of Light", a phrase he has trademarked. Similarly, IIHS side impacts with airbags was rated as good overall with good in most categories.
Thomas Kinkade (born 1958-01-19 in Sacramento, California) is an American painter most widely known for his mass-produced prints.   It was also again listed as a BEST PICK in frontal crashes. Where I Was From. Westminster: Knopf. The fifth-generation frontal performance was similar to that for the fourth-generation. Didion, Joan (2003). The fifth-generation Camry was tested for front, side, and rollover crashes (NHTSA) and rear, side (with and without side airbags), and frontal offset crashes (IIHS). .
The NHTSA gave the Camry four stars in side impact tests when fitted with side airbags and three stars without.   Additionally, the IIHS website lists the 1997-2001 Camry as being a BEST PICK in frontal crash tests. The fourth-generation Camry was tested for frontal and side impacts (NHTSA) and frontal offset (IIHS) crashes, but scored significantly better than the third generation in all frontal tests. .
 In comparison, the similar-vintage Honda Accord fared similarly (although somewhat worse) , the Ford Taurus did notably better , and the Nissan Maxima performed much worse.  The IIHS scored it acceptable overall, with three out of six categories listed as good and the other three listed as acceptable. NHTSA gave the vehicle four stars for the driver and between three and four stars for the passenger, depending on the year. The third-generation Camry was tested only frontal (NHTSA) and frontal offset (IIHS) crashes.
Similarly, the IIHS scores crash performance with a four-level grade (Good, Acceptable, Marginal, and Poor) in multiple categories and overall. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) scores crash ratings as one to five stars for front and side crashes. Both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)  and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)  publish crash information for the third-, fourth-, and fifth-generation Camry. For more information see: Toyota Camry Hybrid.
Standard features include remote entry and start, side torso airbags, knee airbags and side-curtain airbags.The Camry Hybrid will be built at the company's Georgetown, Kentucky plant, with about 45,000 projected per year. However, the Camry Hybrid will utilize a 4-cylinder gasoline engine as opposed to a V6, a setup that will produce 192 hp (143 kW). It will use a Hybrid Synergy Drive setup similar to that of the Toyota Prius, Toyota Highlander Hybrid and Lexus RX 400h, which mates Toyota's 3MZ V6 with an electric motor. For 2006, Toyota will create a hybrid gas/electric Camry when it is redesigned as the 2007 Toyota Camry called the Camry Hybrid.
The CE and LE trims have similar hubcap designs like the gen 5 02-04 models. A keyless entry/remote starter is optional on the V6-powered XLE. A navigation system with cell-phone link and heated leather seats are available for the SE and the V6-powered XLE. A spilt-folding rear seat is not available on the SE trim.
The V6 will be available with a 6-speed sequential transmission. It will also have an optional 3.5 L V6 making 268 hp (200 kW) with three trims: LE, SE, and XLE. The new Camry has a 2.4 L I4 making 158 hp (118 kW) with 4 trim levels: CE, LE, SE, and XLE. It will be a 2007 model introduced at the 2006 North American International Auto Show  along with its identical hybrid twin, the Camry HV.
The next-generation Camry will be completely redesigned and made in Georgetown, Kentucky. In August 2005 the Altise Sport model was reintroduced (V6 auto only) together with Altise Limited (four-cylinder and V6) that replaced the Altise and has additional features. The Toyota Link system is a state-of-the-art satellite and mobile SMS GSM communications system that gives the driver access to roadside assistance and emergency help via the electrochromatic rear view mirror. The Grande and Azura models have Satellite Navigation (GPS) as standard equipment, and were the first Toyota models in Australia to be fitted with the new Toyota Link system.
The Grande however was fitted with the standard suspension rather than the sports suspension as fitted on the Azura model. When the revised range was launched in Australia and New Zealand in September 2004, the Grande model was reintroduced which together with the Azura model, were the top-of-the-range models. Power output on the Altise Sport, V6 Sportivo and Azura models was 145 kW (194 hp) compared with the 141 kW (189 hp) of the standard V6 models due to the variable back pressure exhaust system that boosts low-down torque and top-end power. The brakes, body panels (which would only fit on the Australian and New Zealand made body and chassis), headlights, seats and suspension were all locally developed after 10000kms of extensive testing in New Zealand under the supervision of Toyota engineers.
The Australian and New Zealand models were significantly different from the other Camry models around the world and had around 77% locally developed components to suit Australian/NZ roads and driving conditions. The Australian and New Zealand Camry Sportivo corresponds roughly to the American Camry SE. In 2003, the V6 Altise Sport model was introduced, which is basically the Altise model with the sports suspension that was fitted on the Sportivo and Azura models and was available in manual and automatic trasmission. Only the Altise and Sportivo models may be fitted with a manual transmission— all other models are equipped with an automatic transmission.
The Altise, Ateva, and Sportivo are available with either the 2.4 L VVTi four cylinder or the 3.0 L V6 engine, and the Azura was only available in V6. In Australia and New Zealand, the 2002-2006 Camry is available in four different trims: the Altise, Ateva, Sportivo and Azura, . Daihatsu continued with its twin Altis model for the Japanese market. Unlike the first generation Solara, the SLE trim could be had with the four-cylinder engine.
In addition to SE and SLE trims, a new SE Sport was offered. The V6 was coupled with a 5-speed automatic transmission. The 2.4 L engine was still offered, however, a new 3.3 L V6 was optional. Again, styling from the Camry was radically different, taking design cues from the Lexus SC 430.
The second generation Camry Solara was introduced in August 2004. Interior upgrades to the Camry included a rear center head restraint, a storage bin in the door, optitron gauges, and standard leather seating on XLE V6 models. A new trim level was added (the standard model) priced lower than the Camry LE. In late 2004, the 2005 Camry was introduced with new upgrades such as a chrome grille (though the SE had a sportier grille), a new taillight design, and new wheels.
However the Solara did receive the same 2.4 L I4 engine now available on the Camry. The 2002 Camry Solara remained on the fourth generation chassis, and received only minor styling upgrades to the front and rear ends. Any model may be equipped with a V6 or an automatic transmission, although the manual transmission is not available on V6 models. Both the LE and SE models are available with a manual transmission when equipped with the four-cylinder engine now up to 2.4 L and 163 hp (122 kW).
In the United States for 2002, the basic CE model was dropped but the SE sport model was reintroduced. It is 2.5 in (64 mm) taller and has a 2 in (51 mm) longer wheelbase than the previous model. In contrast to the fairly squat fourth-generation Camry, the fifth generation is a decidedly tall vehicle. However, the front end of the car is relatively short, leaving a great deal of the length to the cabin, a technique adopted by compact cars.
The styling of the fifth-generation Camry is somewhat similar to the fourth-generation model in that both have gently curved surfaces accented by sharp creases. This model was launched in most export markets, including the United States, as a 2002 model year car. In September 2001, the latest Toyota Camry was released as a larger sedan (taking styling cues from the successful Vitz, Corolla and Solara coupé) only, but without a station wagon for the first time (a similarly styled wagon was sold on the Japanese home market however, as the Toyota Mark II Blit). Towards the end of the model run, the limited edition Intrigue and Advantage sedan models were launched.
The Vienta V6 range was discontinued due to the launch of the Avalon sedan in July 2000 and two new models were added to the Camry range: the top-of-the-range Azura V6 sedan and the Touring Series V6 sportswagon model, both of which were available in automatic transmission only. In September 2000, the revised Camry range was launched. The VXI model was basically a V6-powered version of the 4-cylinder Camry CSX model. The Vienta line up consisted of VXI and Grande sedan models and the VXI wagon.
The Camry V6 Touring Series sedan model was launched in March 1999. The Camry V6 models consisted of CSI and Conquest, with the wagon models only available in automatic transmission. The line-up of 4 cylinder Camry models consisted of the CSI, Conquest and CSX models (automatic transmission only), all three variants were available in sedan or wagon. In Australia, unlike the previous generation, the nameplate Camry was also applied to the V6 variants, while the Vienta V6 range was revised as the "upmarket" models.
The Camry V6 was again on Car and Driver magazine's Ten Best list for 1997. This was the first Camry to be sold as a Daihatsu; the Daihatsu Altis was identical to the export version of the Camry. Manual transmissions were only available on the CE trim level and any Solara model. Power was increased slightly to 133 hp SAE (99 kW) for the 5S-FE 2.2 L I4 and 194 hp SAE (145 kW) for the 1MZ-FE V6.
The XLE was available with either the 2.2 L I4 or the 3.0 L V6 engine, although the Solara SLE was only available with the V6. Both the LE and the XLE trims were carried over from the previous generation. In the United States, the four door Camry SE was dropped and the base model was renamed the CE for the 1998 model year. The Solara was available in SE and SLE trim, corresponding roughly to the sedan's LE and XLE trims.
In contrast to the third-generation Camry two door, the Camry Solara was a significant styling departure from the four door. The Camry Solara was added in both coupé and convertible form in 1999. The Lexus ES 300 was again built from the Windom, which uses the Camry chassis. This "split" continues today.
In addition, the Vista's sheetmetal resembled a tall, formal sedan, while the Camry became sleeker. The Vista began departing from the Camry, remaining 1700 mm wide and eventually forming the basis of the growing Corolla. The Japanese Scepter ceased to exist as the Japanese Camrys adopted the 1795 mm wide platform. In 2000, the sedan models received a mid-model upgrade to the front and rear fascias, but remained otherwise similar to the 1999 models.
This generation was launched in the US for the 1997 model year. Many people thought the Toyota RAV4 SUV in North America led to the demise of the Camry wagon. It continued as a sedan and station wagon (called the Camry Gracia in Japan), though the latter model was not sold in the United States. The fourth-generation Camry was launched in Japan in December 1996.
Towards the end of the model run, limited edition Getaway and Intrigue sedan models were launched. The Ultima sedan was renamed the Grande model, and manual transmission was now available in the CSI and Touring Series sedan models. The V6 models were simply known as the Vienta. The 4 cylinder range consisted of the CSI and CSX models.
In July 1995, the facelifted model was launched in Australia and was now built at the new Altona plant. In 1994, the range was revised slightly, where the Executive models was renamed CSI and the CSI was renamed the CSX model. In 1993, a new sedan model called the Touring Series was launched which was fitted with sports suspension. The Camry Vientas were available in automatic transmission only.
The V6 range was known as the Camry Vienta and also consisted of the Executive, CSI and Ultima sedan model. In Australia, the Camry 4-cylinder models consisted of the Executive, CSI and Ultima sedan models (automatic only). The third-generation Camry was on Car and Driver magazine's Ten Best list for 1992 and 1993. (The Japanese version of this page lists this as a 'fifth-generation' model.).
The same year, the Japanese home market saw a revised, 1700 mm wide Camry and Vista, with different sheetmetal, on the same platform. This vehicle would be dropped for the next generation, although it would later be replaced by the Camry Solara (discussed below). In 1994, Toyota released a coupe version of the Camry with styling very similar to the four door version. This is a similar car to the then new Windom, which formed the basis of the Lexus ES 300 in foreign markets, equipped with a 3.0 L V6 engine.
The Vista continued in parallel, available in addition as a hardtop sedan. The third-generation Camrys had rounded features and a very curved silhouette. This was a departure from the second-generation models which, although they had many more rounded panels than the first-generation Camrys, were nevertheless generally slab-sided in shape. It shared the rounded-body-panel look of many imports of similar vintage: the Toyota Corolla, Honda Accord, and Nissan Altima, to name a few.
Toyota in New Zealand sold these models as the 220 and V6 respectively, the smaller-engined car filling the gap of the departed Corona. Some other countries followed the 2.2 L and 3.0 L engine choice. In addition to the DX (also sometimes called Deluxe) and LE trims, 1992 saw the addition of an XLE luxury trim and the SE sport trim—presumably introduced to compete with the Nissan Maxima SE. In that market, both the four and six-cylinder engines received upgrades in displacement and power: the four was upped to 2.2 L and 130 hp SAE (97 kW), and the V6 to 3.0 L and 185 hp SAE (137 kW).
In the United States, an automatic transmission became the only option on all but the base and sport-model Camrys, whereas previously, a manual transmission was available on nearly all trim levels. The wider export model was called the Toyota Scepter in its home market. However, in Japan, the 1992 Camry was a different vehicle, which shared its doors and fenders with the exported model, but was limited to the 1700 mm (66.9 in) width required to fit into a lower tax bracket (the 'number 5' bracket). This model marked the transition away from an inexpensive four door vehicle into a larger, more luxurious family sedan.
The third-generation Camry (first sold in 1990 in Japan; in the US as a 1992 model year car) is regarded as the first to break into the large-car market, or what Toyota billed at the time as "world-sized". The second-generation Camry was extremely popular in the United States and it is not at all uncommon to see examples on American roads. The ES 250 was essentially the Japanese-market Camry hardtop. The 2.5 L engine and Camry chassis was repackaged as the upscale Lexus ES 250.
The Kentucky plant also began producing Camrys in 1988, where three trim levels of the second-generation Camry were made: the unbadged base model, the DX, and the LE. In 1991, anti-lock brakes became optional on the V6, LE, and wagon models. The V6 featured dual overhead camshafts, much like the upgraded 130 hp JIS (96 kW) 4 cylinder. In 1988, all wheel drive (called All-Trac) and a 160 hp JIS (118 kW) 2.5 L V6 engine were added as options for the first time.
At this point, it was still regarded as a midsize car. The second-generation model debuted in 1986 for the 1987 model year, and included a station wagon but dropped the hatchback. Additionally, the vehicle size and available options were characteristic of Japanese-designed cars of the time; the Camry was a small, inexpensive sedan with solid but spartan construction and competed indirectly against larger American counterparts. The design of the first-generation Camry fit well within the box-shaped trends of the early 1980s.
In contrast to the rear wheel drive Celica Camry, the Toyota Camry was a front wheel drive vehicle built on an all-new platform. In North America, the Camry was available with a 92 hp SAE (68 kW) 2.0 L I4 engine or a 74 hp 2.0 L I4 turbodiesel engine, and could be purchased with either a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic. A twin was announced at this point: the Toyota Vista. At this point, Camry was positioned above the Carina and Corona, two other mid-sized models made by Toyota.
There were limited exports, predominantly to right-hand-drive markets. In 1982 for the 1983 model year, the Camry became an independent model line, and was sold as a midsize four-door sedan and five-door hatchback. The Celica Camry was also exported to a number of markets using the Carina's name, and it replaced the second-generation Carina in those markets. During its model cycle, over 100,000 units were sold in Japan.
Although it has an identical 2500 mm (98.4 in) wheelbase to the Celica, the Corona, and the Carina, it is longer than the Carina but shorter than both the Corona and Celica. This is the most sought after version of the Celica Camry in the secondhand market today. Towards the end of its model lifecycle, Toyota introduced a sports version of the Celica Camry equipped with the 16-valve DOHC 2.0 L engine from the Celica. The car used the rear wheel drive Celica platform (which was shared by both the Corona and Carina) and was powered by either a 1.6 L 12T-U engine producing 88 hp JIS (65 kW) and 128 N·m (94 ft·lbf) or a 1.8 L 13T-U engine producing 95 hp JIS (70 kW) and 147 N·m (108 ft·lbf).
Originally launched as the Toyota Celica Camry in January 1980 for the Japanese home market, this model was essentially a second-generation Toyota Carina with updated body-styling and a front-end that resembled a 1978 Toyota Celica XX (known as the Celica Supra in export markets). It should also be noted that the Japanese-language version of this article follows the convention that includes the 1980 to 1982 model. This article follows the former convention. A fewer number of sources state the first generation to have started in 1980 as the Toyota Celica Camry.
Most sources note the first generation Camry to have been produced as a 1983 model. There is some dispute over the generational naming of the Toyota Camry. The Camry will no longer be available in Europe from 2006. In Europe, the Camry's success was always limited due to excessive size (which put into competition with the Opel/Vauxhall Omega and Ford Scorpio) and low-build quality when compared to the European-developed Carina E and Avensis.
In Australasia, the Camry sells well in comparison to the top-selling family cars, the Ford Falcon and General Motors' Holden Commodore. In Japan, its only competitor is the Nissan Cefiro (and afterwards, the Nissan Teana), but Nissan consistently outsells Toyota in this market segment. In China, both the Nissan Teana and Honda Accord (some of Camry's main competitors) are produced locally, and hence have a price advantage against the imported Camry. In most parts of Asia, the Camry remains competitive against the Honda Accord, with the exception of China and Japan.
 . In US, most recent comparisons have placed the car against the Nissan Altima, Mitsubishi Galant, Mazda6, and the Chevrolet Malibu; and although the Camry isn't always the clear winner, it nevertheless remains a solid competitor. North American sales figures between the Accord and the Camry are usually comparable, indicating that consumers in the Camry's target demographic are more interested in the smoother ride and quieter performance of the Camry. The Camry's perennial competitor, the Honda Accord, is often described as sportier and has traditionally been equipped with a few more performance-oriented options.
Thereafter, the car is assembled locally and known as the Toyota Kaimeirui, which sounds closer to "Camry". The Camry was imported into China as the Toyota Jiamei until 2005. . It is also assembled from CKD-kits at Toyota's local partners in Malaysia and Taiwan.
As of 2005, the Camry is produced at Toyota plants in Japan, Australia; and Georgetown, Kentucky, USA, with CKD assembly operations in Vietnam, Philippines; and Thailand. The continued success of the Nissan Cefiro (and afterwards the Nissan Teana) meant that some customers are willing to pay extra taxes for a larger family car, and so this marketing strategy continued. The introduction of the A32-series Nissan Cefiro in 1994 may have prompted Toyota to change its strategy, despite the poor sales of the Scepter, basically a RoW third-generation Camry, which was sold between 1992-1994 (only 4,885 units sold in total). Both arguably aimed at the higher-end of the market than the Camry.
This put the Camry at a disadvantage as its size is placed at the lower-end of a higher tax category, which included cars such as the Crown and Aristo. The Vista is sized according to domestic vehicle tax laws, and the Camry (now called the Camry Gracia) are not adapted, sold identical to foreign market cars. Both models still share a large number of components, but the fourth-generation split was the more significant than the previous re-engineered splits. For the fourth-generation Camry, Toyota decided to split the Vista from the Camry.
These modified-for-Japan models were called the Vista, which became separate from the Camry in 2000. These versions of the Camry are bounded by a certain set of dimensions which would otherwise be unsuitable for export markets. Prior to the fourth-generation, Toyota adapted the Camry's design to suit Japanese tax laws and domestic market requirements. After the introduction of the fourth-generation Camry, sales in Japan dipped.
Because there is no station wagon version for the fifth generation Camry, the Camry sedan and the Avensis station wagon are sold side by side in markets like New Zealand. Following long-term poor sales, the Camry was withdrawn altogether from Europe in 2004, leaving the smaller, UK-built Avensis as the top-of-the-line sedan. Toyota positioned the Camry as a BMW 5-Series rival, yet it lacked the cachet to compete. The Camry was less popular in Europe, where the design was considered bland and incompatible with European driving habits.
The Camry is rarely optioned above the Avalon or ES 330, but a fully equipped Corolla slightly overlaps with the base-model Camry. It is considered a sub-luxury midsize sedan. The Camry is positioned directly below the Toyota Avalon and the Lexus ES 330 In its two largest markets, Australia and North America. It is Toyota's bread-and-butter vehicle, so its marketing and sales strategy is cautious, aimed squarely at the center of buyer demographics; as most Camry buyers are not car enthusiasts.
The Camry is consistently ranked as one of the most popular vehicles in the North American market. . The name comes from the English phonetic of the Japanese word "kan-muri," which means "crown.". Since 2000, Daihatsu has sold a Camry twin named the Altis.
The Holden equivalents were not successful even though they came from the same factory as the Camry. The second and third-generation Camrys were rebadged to be sold as the Holden Apollo in Australia. Some models have been offered with all wheel drive. This means the engine is transversely mounted to drive the front wheels.
Other than the original Celica Camry, the Toyota Camry has always been an FF layout vehicle. The Camry underwent major redesigns and upgrades in model years 1987, 1992 (1990 in Japan), 1997, 2002 and an anticipated redesign is planned to be launched in 2006 for model year 2007 in the United States. An offshoot of the Camry, the Camry Solara, has been available as a coupe and a convertible. It is primarily configured as a four-door sedan but at different times has also been available as a five-door hatchback, two-door coupe, and a station wagon.
The first model line independently named the Toyota Camry was launched in 1982 for the 1983 model year. The Camry name was first launched in 1980 with the Toyota Celica Camry. An upbranded luxury version of the Camry is sold under the Lexus ES nameplate in the United States and is called the Windom in Japan. In Japan and Asia, its main rivals are the Nissan Teana and the Honda Accord.
It has not sold as well in Europe and Japan - many critize its design as ill-suited for European and Japanese tastes. The Camry sells very well in USA, Australia and a number of Asian markets. The United States is the Camry's biggest market, where it competes with the Honda Accord, the Nissan Altima, and the Ford Fusion. The Toyota Camry is a popular midsize car manufactured by Toyota in Georgetown, Kentucky, USA; Australia; and Japan.