2012 Chevrolet Impala vs. 2012 Toyota Camry: Which One Should I Buy?

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In the battle for the family vehicle, the 4-door sedan is a strong contender that just continues to be a viable option even with the rise of the crossover SUV and the popularity of passenger vans. These sedans offer a relatively cost-effective option that still gets good gas mileage; though not as good as compact or sub-compact cars.

The Chevrolet Impala and the Toyota Camry are two of the long-standing offerings in this class and while you may think of the Impala as strictly a police car, this versatile vehicle has been a consumer car for many years and continues to have a life in that role. The Camry is the most conservative-looking sedan but offers the ongoing value and comfort that many families state are the most important things when car shopping. The Impala offers a little bit stronger and smoother powertrain, although the interior and exterior are both notably bland.

Toyota camry 2012
2012 Toyota Camry

Interior and Exterior Design

While redesigned for the 2012 model year, the Camry still lacks excitement, and probably the best thing you can say for the overall design is that it's straightforward and elegant. There are no nods to style but the comfort area is well-covered by the Camry. The Impala goes even further beyond boring, to nearly-anonymous interior which appears almost dowdy. The dated exterior design lacks excitement but there is a great deal of interior space made possible by a simplified interior layout.

Economical Options

The Camry, while boring on the outside, does offer a very exciting statistic in its fuel economy of 35 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg in the city. The Impala is technically considered a large car while the Camry is a mid-size, but the difference in size shouldn't cause the huge drop in gas mileage: the Impala only gets 18 mpg in the city and 30 mpg for highway miles. Both vehicles have a 17.0 gallon fuel tank capacity, which is more than generous for vehicles of this class.

Safety Ratings

Where the Impala really suffers is in the safety ratings. The side barrier rating for the driver, in particular, is dismal with only 2 stars of 5 for this critical safety point. The combined side rating for the front seat is also quite poor, with only 3 stars versus the Camry's solid 5/5 star rating.

If you are looking for a more solid, dependable and economical ride, you'll likely want to consider the Camry. If sheer space is what makes a difference, check out the Impala.


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Breck

19 years of experience
558 reviews
Breck
19 years of experience
Chevrolet Express 2500 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Houston, Texas
I scheduled a pre-purchase inspection and was really happy with the quality of the inspection. Breck was actually running ahead of schedule which was fine and was also well communicated. The inspection was thorough including interior, exterior and undercarriage reviews both written, verbal and documented with photos. Also, Breck identified some potential issues that could cause a real headache with the vehicle.
Jeep Wrangler - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Houston, Texas
Breck was timely and efficient. Very knowledgeable. After the inspection was complete, he took the time to ride along with me to pinpoint a noise I heard. Would definitely recommend and use him again.

Carlos

27 years of experience
278 reviews
Carlos
27 years of experience
BMW 330Ci - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Brea, California
Carlos was very thorough with his inspection on this vehicle I’m considering purchasing. He took detailed information with pictures of any defects and an estimate to have things maintenanced. Highly recommended and I may have him maintenance the car if I should decide to buy it.
Toyota Camry - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Baldwin Park, California
Professional and knowledgeable. Found problems quickly and explained to me what it means and what we can do. Highly recommend.

Jason

14 years of experience
24 reviews
Jason
14 years of experience
Kia Forte - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Brooklyn, New York
Appointment with Jason for a pre-purchase car inspection went smoothly. He arrived promptly and got right to business. Checked fluid levels, the interior, and exterior of the vehicle. Provided valuable insight and an expert opinion that will help in my purchase decision. He was professional and thorough in his evaluation.
BMW 528i xDrive - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Valley Stream, New York
The mechanic was very knowledgeable and very friendly. Gave me pointers that I can use going forwards

Pardeep

20 years of experience
620 reviews
Pardeep
20 years of experience
Ford Mustang - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - San Jose, California
He was great. Very familiar and knowledgeable when it came to my older mustang GT. Pleasure to work with and nice. Would love to have him work on the car again as I start repairing and replacing items on my list through your mechanics..
Ford F-150 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Fremont, California
Very detailed inspection, very clear report, Pardeep saved us from a big mistake. Thanks. Would use Pardeep again.

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