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2015 Toyota Camry Video Preview

2015ToyotaCamry1The 2015 Toyota Camry isn’t “All-New”, but it is heavily refreshed.  It is one of the most comprehensive mid-cycle model refreshes in Toyota history.  Toyota claims about 1/3 of the vehicles’ parts are new and from the outside, only the roof remains unchanged from the 2014 model.  This major refresh is made necessary in part by strong competition from the all-new Hyundai Sonata and Subaru Legacy that are both vying for best-in-class honors this year.

The new gaping maw treatment  up-front on SE models is a more aggressive look than before, and the new XSE trim (photo, right) adds an upscale sport version that the Camry previously lacked.  Perhaps the black grill is a bit large and devoid of much detail other than mesh, but the treatment is definitely an improvement overall.  The LE and XLE versions are less aggressive, but more stylish and less bland than before.  Hybrid models (photo, below) are also carried over and offer exceptional fuel economy.

2015ToyotaCamryHybrid1

 

You can check out all the fine details at Toyota’s Camry webpage, but I want to focus on safety, carseats and kids in back.  One major drawback of this popular family sedan is that the full array advanced safety features is only available in the Advanced Technology Package on the XSE V6 and XLE V6 trim levels.  That boosts the price to nearly $35,ooo, a full $10,000 more than the least expensive 2015 Subaru Legacy with the top-rated Eyesight system of advanced safety features.  That’s really a shame, because the 4-cylinder LE model is otherwise quite competitive; great value, good fuel economy and a nicer front grille treatment than the SE/XSE trims.

On the plus side, the 2015 Camry has already secured a Top Safety Pick rating from the IIHS, with top results in all their crash tests.  With the optional Technology Package, it earns a Top Safety Pick+ rating, though it has only a Basic frontal crash warning system.  It lacks an autobrake feature found on some competitive systems.  At this time, the government has not completed side impact testing on the 2015 Camry.  The NHTSA did complete the frontal crash testing and the new model earned 4-stars for the driver and 5-stars for the front passenger.

As for carseats, here’s a quick overview:

Thank you to Toyota USA for the preview of the Camry, Sienna and Yaris.

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Britax Advocate G4 $249.99

Advocate G4 Review HERE

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Britax B-Safe

Save $60 for a great rear-facing only infant seat in Red!

Britax Boulevard G4 $199.99

Boulevard Review HERE

BV G4 

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Britax Roundabout G4 $139.99

ABC Expo 2014: Strollers! What’s New from Orbit Baby, Baby Jogger, UPPAbaby & Quinny

Orbit Baby O2

Orbit Baby:

Orbit doesn’t have anything new this year on the car-seat front, but they do have a very cool new stroller in the works: The O2 Hybrid is a combo jogging/regular stroller compatible with Orbit stroller seats, bassinets, and car seats using Orbit’s patented SmartHub system. 

The stroller uses a piston system to raise or lower the seat depending on the situation. In City Mode, the seat is higher up, giving the baby/child a better view of the world, and giving mom/dad a better view of the child. It provides for easy steering for malls or casual strolls.

In Performance Mode, the seat sinks down and back, lowering the center of balance for the stroller to make it safer and easier to steer when running with a locked front wheel.

You can see here how the seat rises and lowers:

The stroller features an adjustable handle; red- and green- coded pedicure-friendly brakes, and a design that allows it to stand when folded.

The O2 Hybrid should be available in Summer 2015 for $600 standalone or $900 as a travel system.

Orbit Baby O2 jogger stroller rf Orbit Baby O2 jogger stroller rf reclined

Baby Jogger:

Vue Double (Coming Spring 2015)

Baby Jogger Vue Double Baby Jogger Vue Double side

Baby Jogger Vue Double Baby Jogger Vue Double

Vue Single

Baby Jogger Vue Baby Jogger Vue with Nuna Pipa

Vue Lite (Coming Spring 2015)

Baby Jogger Vue Lite Baby Jogger Vue Lite Red Baby Jogger Vue Lite inside

City Mini

Baby Jogger City Mini Baby Jogger City Mini

City Select

Baby Jogger City Select

UPPAbaby:

2015 VISTA is updated and this model can comfortably hold 2 MESA infant carseats, or two bassinets or 2 toddler seats. Or any combination of those, facing in any direction. Truly an amazing engineering feat!

UPPAbaby Vista 2015 2015 Uppababy Vista

2015 Legacy (Coming Spring 2015)

2015 Uppababy Legacy

Quinny

Moodd

Quinny Moodd Stroller DSCN5537 DSCN5538

Quinny Yezz Stroller

Quinny Yezz stroller Quinny Yezz

BUYER BEWARE – Illegal “Car Safety Seats” for Children

Illegal Chinese Car Seat - death by bunniesParents – if you see something for sale online that claims to be a “child safety seat” or “booster” or “car seat” but it comes from a manufacturer that you have never heard of and it doesn’t say that it meets federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS) please be suspicious and do some research. It may be a legitimate product but it may also be an illegal death trap.

Currently Amazon is FLOODED with products from China claiming to be child restraints that are being sold by 3rd party sellers. Please don’t be duped into thinking these are a safe alternative to a car seat or booster seat that meets FMVSS 213 standards. As much as the seller wants you to believe that this product is “Compact and reasonable design make it enjoy the safety of traditional child seat”, it is neither safe nor reasonable.

A few examples of what’s available through 3rd party sellers today on Amazon:

Child Safety Car Seat 3 Colors Portable /Kids/infant/children Baby Car Safety Booster Seat Cushion Multi-function Chair Auto Harness Carrier 5-15kg

Sold by ZheJiang PT Car Accessories Manufacturing Company

Illegal Chinese Car Seat - no name

Child Car Seat 6 Colors Vehienlar Thickening Seat Cover Car Portable Annbaby Child Safety Seat Infant/baby Car Seat (Dark Blue)

Sold by ZheJiang PT Car Accessories Manufacturing Company

Illegal Chinese Car Seat - vehienlar

docooler Convertible Car Safety Booster Seat Cover Cushion Harness Carrier for Baby/Kids/Infant/Child/Toddler

Sold by Docooler

Illegal Chinese Car Seat - docooler

Bluesky Home Need Child Safety Seat for Car (Auto Thick Cushion Cover Harness Protector)

Sold by Willtoo(TM)

Illegal Chinese Car Seat - bluesky

I could keep going because there are even more products than this on Amazon right now but hopefully I’ve made my point.

A few years ago Jennie got her hands on one of these types of products and did a lovely “review” of it:

YIREN-Trouble: A Review of an Illegal Chinese Car Seat

Illegal Chinese Car Seat

I know most of our readers don’t need any further convincing that putting a child in one of these contraptions in a moving car is a really, really, bad idea. But just to highlight how bad the outcome really could be – check out this video courtesy of Surrey County Council & Britax.