If the Toyota Camry were a person it would rule the world. While not exactly class leading in most any respect (yes, it even gets beaten in reliability), the current Toyota Camry sells like the proverbial hotcakes all the while maintaining the appearance of an overheated jellybean. Like some form of automotive royalty the Camry also manages to inspire utter loyalty among owners. What does that mean? It means that once Camry owners buy one of the luscious lovelies they usually wind up buying another down the road.
Come on people, life is really short! Granted, the appeal of owning a smooth riding and easy to drive four wheeled lobotomy like the Camry has a certain appeal. But to keep buying them over and over again is just wasteful considering how many wonderful four door family sedan options there are on the market today.
While the Camry is available with a sort-of sporty 3.5 liter V6 engine offering 268 horsepower, the majority of these Toyota four doors are sold with the four cylinder engine. And rightly so as it is less expensive to buy, cheaper to insure, gets better fuel economy and still offers 179 horsepower.
Especially in light of fluctuating gas prices it just makes more sense to get a fuel efficient four cylinder when you are buying a family sedan. The six-cylinder option box should only be ticked when you are going the luxury route at BMW, Acura or Lexus dealers.
No longer are owners of cars with four cylinder engines forced to listen to a buzzing monotone coming from their engine compartment. And even though refinement levels found in bread and butter family sedans has skyrocketed in recent years, there is no reason why you cant also have a little fun driving your 2.3 children to soccer games or to karate class.
So if you are in the market for a family sedan here are some options you might want to look into before signing on the dotted line at your local Toyota dealer. All vehicles listed have four cylinder engines that can run on regular unleaded and have automatic transmissions. Also note that family cars made by companies that just left Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings or are currently working their way through them are not currently featured. This end of the market is where you find the most conservative buyersthe ones that are least likely to forgive such a huge failing.
(23 city/31 highway)The Altima has always been the prettier sister when compared to the awkward looking Toyota Camry. Lets just say the Altima is the Marcia Brady while the Camry is more like Jan Brady. But isnt it always the pretty ones that are flawed? Not really. The Altima was just named the number one midsize sedan in a quality survey done by J.D. Power and Associates. Poor Jan. Everywhere she turns its always Marcia, Marcia, Marcia.
(23 city/34 highway)Like the homely girl-next door type from a Hollywood movie, the Ford Fusion really didnt turn a lot of heads or get much attention when it was originally launched. But just like when the girl next door in that Hollywood movie finally takes her glasses off (in Los Angeles all homely people wear glasses, apparently) it seems that everyone is now finally starting to notice the Ford Fusion. With a restyle for the 2010 model year that gives it both a visual and technological boost, the Fusion now can easily claim the title as best American family sedan on the market. You can see it in the new 175 horsepower Duratec four cylinder engine with class leading fuel economy and the stylish new interior. The 2010 Fusion really has become a world class car. So much so that young people who long shunned American four doors (especially Fords) are now becoming interested in this car. Want proof? Check out the adventures one young couple as they drive across the country visiting friends and seeing the sights in their very own Ford Fusion at weddingroadtrip.com.