VIDEO: The Toyota Camry Wagon is the quintessential family car

We hope everyone is having a good Thanksgiving. Holidays, family get-togethers, road trips. These are the domain of the station wagon, and what better steed for the occasion than the longroof version of the 1992 Toyota Camry? The third-generation clan carrier was one of the sleekest wagons to come out of the 90s, but this contemporary Motorweek review disagreed vehemently. Here’s how a Camry Wagon was viewed at the time of its launch.

It’s cute how Motorweek thought that in 1992, at the dawn of the SUV-pocalypse, that wagons were making a comeback. The were wrong about that, and also wrong about how ugly the Camry was. But even if you think it’s best to put bag over it, there are functionality advantages you can’t argue with.

It’s one of the last Japanese wagons offered in the US with a hidden, rear-facing third-row seat. When the second row folds down, the headrests even have a clever storage solution that doesn’t involve complex spring-loaded contraptions. It has dual rear wipers.

The base engine is Toyota’s trusty 16-valve, 2.2-liter inline-four, making 130 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque. It gets 21 city, 27 highway mpg, and comes in two trim levels. The DX started at $16,898, and the LE at $18,798 (but fully optioned ones with a V6 could get close to the mid-20s).

Driving-wise, the third-gen Camry is a surprisingly nimble city car and very comfortable highway cruiser. It’ll never be confused with a Miata, or even a similar-period Accord, but it has way more feedback than its modern equivalent. It’s sad such cars are no longer made. We would kill for a new car with such cargo capacity, visibility, and functionality.


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4 Responses to VIDEO: The Toyota Camry Wagon is the quintessential family car

  1. Lupus says:

    I truly love them. Here in Central Europe the wagon was a lot less popular then the saloon. Currently the wagon wersion is extinct. Theere are a fes sedans of that generation on the market, but they are mostly in horrible state. They are (where) so reliable that owner didin’t wanted to sell them and used & abused them till technical death. In terms of visual apearence… Yeah… Common Japanese limo from that era. Just compare the front facia of Camry VX10, Legacy BD & Mazda 626. They look like siblings. Witch i find cool. 😉 I’ve searched for such Camry for daily driving few years ago, but unfortunetly a Legacy BH stood in my way 😉

  2. BlitzPig says:

    One of my customers bought one brand new when the VW Vanagon mit Waserboxer proved to be an unreliable and expensive to maintain POS.

    He still has it, and has never purchased another VW.

    Like all Camry cars, it is solid, reliable, and utterly boring transport. Which is what most people want out of a car.

    • Deb says:

      It’s not boring at all, The Camry wagon, while built for cargo, also has a sleek, longline body, and at 4.75m long is an impressive looking car. It sill looks modern today, and unlike useless and expensive suv’s made of plastic, the Camry is still around, and reliable as ever. I’ve had 3 Camry wagons, and they were the bext cars ever built.

  3. Chuck says:

    My grandmother bought a 1996 v6 Camry Wagon that stayed in the family until 2011, what an absolute work horse and such a pleasure to drive! Loved being taken to tennis practice in the rear facing third row seating.

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