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Toyota Camry SE
Toyota is finally going to catch up to the competition

Toyota is known for producing boring family sedans and SUVs that appeal to a large audience. The company is also known for its fuel efficient Prius family of hybrid vehicles. Vehicles like the Prius/Prius c manage to achieve 50mpg on the highway thanks to a fuel-sipping gasoline engine backed with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and an electric motor/battery.

Toyota has largely ignored making significant advances in its traditional gasoline engine/powertrain department; with efficient transmission/engine offerings lagging the competition (the Toyota Corolla still uses a 4-speed automatic transmission when the competition has moved to 6-speed units and CVTs).

However, no longer will its traditional vehicles take a backseat to its hybrids according to Takeshi Uchiyamada, Toyota's product development chief. "By 2015, through improvement in the engine and powertrain alone, we aim to achieve a fuel-efficiency improvement of 10 percent to 20 percent on the models adopting the improvements," said Uchiyamada.

The Toyota Corolla still uses an archaic four-speed automatic transmission and lags behind the competition in fuel economy

Competitors like Ford have already embraced direct injection and turbocharging across much of the produce range (see EcoBoost), and Toyota is following suit. Toyota plans to introduce a direct injection version of its 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine (this new engine will first see duty in hybrid models). The engine will also find its way into vehicles like the Camry, RAV4, and Venza.

In addition, Toyota will also introduce a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine that will likely take the place of the 3.5-liter V6 currently found in midsize Toyota sedans and crossovers.

Toyota is also looking to add 6- and 8-speed automatic transmission to its vehicles. This should help vehicles like that aforementioned Corolla with its archaic transmission boost fuel efficiency ratings. The company will also add CVTs to more of its models, a move that has long been championed by Nissan. Nissan provides CVTs in everything from its tiny Versa subcompact to the large Pathfinder crossover.

All of these moves largely see Toyota playing catch-up with the rest of the automotive industry. Toyota has for too long placed all of its fuel efficiency eggs in the hybrid basket, while neglecting its bread and butter vehicles. With the competition now fiercer than ever, it now looks as though Toyota has finally realized that not everyone wants to purchase a hybrid in order to get increased fuel efficiency.

Source: AutoWeek

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RE: They could all take notes...
By SRHelicity on 10/4/2012 12:01:11 AM , Rating: 3
The oil companies could be selling gasoline in the U.S. at 1.00/gal. including all state and federal taxes and still making a nice profit but they have no incentive to do so when they have a Cabal and industry monopoly - supported by the Criminals on the Hill.

Uh, we have a GLOBAL market for petroleum. The oil companies WILL NOT sell oil for $1/ga in the USA out of the goodness of their hearts if they can sell it for $5/ga for use in Europe. C'mon now. A large part of the reason for building the Keystone Pipeline is to aid the exportation of oil from Canada to international markets.

In addition, we do NOT get most of our oil from the middle east. For starters, about 42% of the oil we use in the US is drilled in the US; we import ~58% of the oil we use. In recent years, we get nearly TWICE as much oil from Canada as we do Saudi Arabia. In fact, most of the crude oil that we import comes from the Western Hemisphere. In other words, we ALREADY do get the majority of our oil from right here in the USA or imported counties in North and South America. If you add in all "western" countries, we get ~75% of our crude oil from non-Middle East countries.

The US consumed 18.83 million barrels of crude oil per day in 2011. Only 1.5 million of that came from Saudi Arabia, and much, much less came from Iraq and other Middle East countries. If the oil companies wanted to be gracious to us, they already would be selling us gasoline from USA-drilled oil for $1/ga.

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