The most advanced car ever built in Australia, Toyota's Hybrid Camry, has been officially launched to the market.
Australia's first locally built hybrid car, Hybrid Camry is poised to slash fuel bills and reduce environmental impact compared with other similar-sized family cars.
The secret behind its seamless power and exceptional fuel economy is the world's leading hybrid technology, Hybrid Synergy Drive.
Using just 6.0 litres of regular unleaded petrol to travel 100km*, Hybrid Camry is almost 32 per cent more frugal than the automatic petrol Camry - which was already the most fuel-efficient Australian-built car.
For someone travelling 20,000km a year in a Hybrid Camry, the savings on fuel alone will be 560 litres or $14 a week based on a pump price of $1.30 a litre. The savings rise to more than $16 a week with fuel costing $1.50 a litre.
Tailpipe CO2 emissions will be reduced by almost 1.3 tonnes a year.
The savings will be even greater for the significant number of buyers expected to downsize from a large locally produced six-cylinder car.
A Hybrid Camry can travel almost 300km further on a single tank of fuel than Australia's best-selling car and almost 400km more than the next best-selling Australian-made car - despite both the rivals having bigger fuel tanks.
Hybrid Camry has carbon-dioxide emissions of just 142 grams/km * - similar to that of a 1.3-litre compact car with around half the power.
Australia's two most popular six-cylinder cars emit 55 and 66 per cent more CO2 ^.
Maximum power output from the combined 2.4-litre petrol engine and 105kW electric motor is 140kW - almost 20 per cent better than a petrol-only Camry.
Other technology advancements for Hybrid Camry have significantly improved the car's ride and handling with local tuning of the suspension and steering.
It is the first built-in-Australia car to combine electric power steering, electronic brake control, regenerative (electric) braking and electric air-conditioning.
Toyota Australia's senior executive director David Buttner said the substantial savings for the environment and the hip pockets of Australian motorists would multiply over the years.
"Hybrid Camry makes a compelling case for itself as an alternative to conventionally powered family sedans," Mr Buttner said.
"Consumers will get all the performance, space and comfort of a top-rated family sedan. At the same time they will get fuel economy that trumps that of petrol-powered light and compact cars.
"It rates among the best diesels in its class for fuel economy, yet produces substantially less greenhouse gases and other harmful substances.
"We expect Hybrid Camry will achieve the maximum five-star rating on the Federal Government's Green Vehicle Guide compared with just 3.5 stars for the best of the mid-size or large diesels.
"Hybrid Camry is the future of Australian motoring. It brings hybrid technology to mainstream car buyers," Mr Buttner said.
"It will attract a significant number of people moving from a large six-cylinder car because they regard size and performance as important.
"Hybrid Camry provides a lot of automotive virtue, especially with prices under $40,000." **
Mr Buttner said the 3,200 employees at the company's Altona manufacturing plant were the real heroes of the Hybrid Camry project.
"Our people have worked incredibly hard to bring this car to market just 20 months after the project was announced in Japan by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd," he said.
"This incredibly quick turn-around is possible because Toyota Australia is an integrated, self-sufficient company with capabilities in all areas from design and engineering through to manufacture and sales."
Cumulative global hybrid sales now exceed 2.2 million vehicles including 1.6 million Prius and more than 175,000 Hybrid Camry.
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