Even though there are 18 vehicles on display at Toyota’s 2017 SEMA Show stand, the focus has clearly been put on the all-new 2018 Camry and this race-tuned C-HR crossover.
Believe it or not, the latter is no gimmick, and Toyota is already calling this heavily-modified C-HR “the world’s quickest CUV”. In fact, it lapped Willow Springs faster than a McLaren 650S Spyder, a Porsche 911 GT3 RS and a Nissan GT-R NISMO.
As for the Camrys, top NASCAR drivers Martin Truex Jr, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Daniel Suarez each designed their own cars for SEMA, as did racing analyst Rutledge Wood.
“Our ‘Power of New’ theme at SEMA is perfect as we highlight two new vehicles in our model lineup,” said Toyota North America exec, Steve Curtis. “One, the all-new 2018 Camry, has been completely redesigned and re-imagined. The C-HR is entirely new to our lineup, bringing in a new young buyer to Toyota.”
Since there are a lot of Camrys to talk about, let’s kick things off by detailing the C-HR and explaining just how Toyota managed to make it quicker than a supercar.
The C-HR R-Tuned, which still features a 4-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive layout, has underwent a full engine and transmission swap, while a custom turbo system (23 psi boost) pushed its power output to 600 HP. Meanwhile, aerodynamic mods produce 300 lbs (136 kg) of downforce as the car is also able to generate 1.2 g of braking force and 1.7g of lateral acceleration.
Other mods include Brembo racing brakes, Toyota race tires and a triple-adjustable DG-Spec Motion Control Suspension. Add everything together and you get a 0-60 mph (96 km/h) acceleration time of just 2.9 seconds. As for its incredibly impressive Willow Springs lap time, it was 1:25.22.
Toyota Camry by Kyle Busch
In order to get this car ready for SEMA, 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Kyle Busch teamed up with designer Chuck Gafrarar and you’re looking at the end-result of that collaboration. Busch branded this car the ‘Camry Rowdy Edition’.
What makes it stand out compared to a regular Camry would be the 20″ forged custom wheels, not to mention the black-themed exterior. The car also has a bare metal finish on the handcrafted rear wing, front splitter and rear diffuser, and a chrome wrap over the roof and A-pillars.
Inside, it’s got a custom leather upholstery with red stitching and Rowdy Edition logos. It definitely looks sporty, for an every-day family saloon that is.
Toyota Camry by Denny Hamlin
Hamlin’s idea of a sporty Camry is something that would feel at home at Virginia International Raceway, while allowing you to drive it away comfortably after you’re done having fun. It features a widebody conversion with 3-inch fender flares, big 20×10-inch wheels, a white and black exterior, plus red chrome and black accents inside, to go with the black leather on the Recaro bucket seats.
Other mods include an AEM cold air intake, K&N filter, TRD-tuned stainless steel exhaust system, Tein coilover system, custom brakes and a JBL sound system, in case the 3.5-liter V6 doesn’t quite do it for you.
Toyota Camry by Martin Truex Jr
Martin Truex Jr teamed up with Motorsports Technical Center in order to build a road-going version of his #78 Camry Cup Car. Finding the right shade of black for the exterior apparently took six tries, whereas all bits of chrome trim were treated with cobalt Cerakote as all surfaces then received a matte clear coat. The design is similar to Busch’s Camry, but a little more rugged.
Even the wheels were forged as replicas of the wheels on Truex Jr’s Cup Car. Furthermore, a custom front splitter and rear lip spoiler were created to give this Camry additional downforce, whether it was for the highway or the racetrack.
Toyota Camry by Daniel Suarez
2015 NASCAR Xfinity Series Rookie of the Year Daniel Suarez wanted to create the “ultimate street-friendly yet track-ready Camry”, something both elegant as well as sporty.
As you can see, the dual-tone color scheme features a pearl-white body with contrasting black roof and A-pillars. Carbon fiber components were also strategically placed in order to drop some weight. Similarly to Truex Jr, Suarez also added a front splitter and a rear wing in order to produce usable downforce. He then went with a custom hood with aluminum ductwork, and leather upholstery for the interior, featuring the driver’s signature stitched in red.
Toyota Camry by Rutledge Wood
TV analyst Rutledge Wood’s take on the 2018 Camry might be the most attention-grabbing here. He teamed up with Real Time Automotive Solutions in order to create this widebody road-going Camry, inspired by the aerospace industry.
The car’s custom body panels were created using 3D-printing technology, making the hood, front and rear bumpers, rocker panels, rear diffuser and headlight buckets completely unique to this car. Once the multi-piece widebody kit went on, the car was painted with a custom color named “Blurple” and lowered on top of the 20″ Rotiform alloy wheels.
As for the interior, it was re-upholstered in “baseball glove” leather with contrasting stitching.