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Experiencing pain in hips and legs in new Camry

Hello fellas and gals…I’m back again. I had recently asked the question about my '18 Camry and the tires. Well…another issue has appeared and that is causing me to have pain up and down the back of my legs and hips while taking long trips. I’ve had the Camry almost 3 weeks and it has started to hurt during the last few days and hasn’t improved. Ive tried to adjust my drivers seat in so many ways possible and it hasn’t gotten better. I think it’s too low to the ground and I can’t really raise the seat much since it has a sunroof and I am 6’5" tall. I’ve never experienced that in my other vehicles and it’s disappointing. It’s a nice car but I’m seriously considering trading it in. My previous car a 2011 Sonata was the perfect car for me. I may be considering a '18 Sonata since the seats are similar to the 2011. I’m just mad I didn’t consider the Sonata while browsing for a new car and deciding on the Camry. Has anyone experienced what I am dealing with? The car is paid off so I have no issue trading it in…am I crazy?

If you do end up trading it in for something else, see if the dealership will let you keep the car for an extended test drive so you can drive it for long distances. If they don’t, check with a rental agency to see if they have one you can rent for a week or 2


While I am certainly not familiar with your particular problem I will throw out my 2c worth. I have found that the angle of my legs and back are critical for my comfort and on several vehicles I have shimmed the front seat mount and found a great deal of improvement in the comfort. And I don’t believe the shimming ever exceeded 1/2 inch. I added washers until my legs were resting on the edge of the seat rather than being held above the edge of the seat due to my long legs.

I seemed to recall preferring the comfort of Sonatas to Camrys and many other comparable cars several years ago. It was a highly under rated car in my opinion.

Given your personal sensitivity to the seat dimensions and its relationship to the floor and pedals, suggest to rent the car for a couple weeks first to verify you’re satisfied the problem won’t be repeated with your next purchase. I should say at this point I have pains in hips and legs and don’t even own a Camry … lol …


It took me decades to find a car with a seat that suits my problem back (bad discs). I can drive it for hours and my back feels perfect. And so I plan to keep that car forever.
If the Sonata does that for you, stick with it.

I experienced the same problem you are having now in a1993 Oldsmobile 88 that I purchased in December of 1995. The car seemed comfortable when we did a test drive, but my legs cramped up if I drove it on a trip of more than 50 miles. The car had a power seat, but I couldn’t find a comfortable driving position. For long trips, we preferred driving our 1990 Ford Aerostar and left the Oldsmobile at home.
A couple of months ago, I purchased a 2017 Toyota Sienna. I thought that it would be as comfortable as the 2011 Sienna which I had owned. Both the 2011 and the 2017 are the same design. However, for the first 1000 miles in the 2017 Sienna, I experienced leg cramps. The seating position didn’t feel normal. Yet, when I would sit in the 2017 Sienna and then go sit in the 2011 Sienna, the seats and driving position felt the same. I think the problem was that I felt nervous driving the 2017 Sienna. The engine seemed sluggish and the brakes on the new Sienna didn’t seem as effective. However, the 2017 Sienna seemed to take a while to break in. We drove the 380 miles to visit our son in the new Sienna and I didn’t feel any leg cramps either going or coming. Perhaps after you drive your 2017:Camry, it may seem more natural and you will be more relaxed and the leg and spine.cramps you are now experiencing will diminish.
I’ve had both the experience of owning a vehicle where I didn’t think I would be comfortable but with time things improved, and a vehicle that I never found comfortable on long trips…

Wife and I have different pains, now my number one is to put a giant clip on the seat belt, the small amount of seat belt kills me, and solution 2 is a funky seat pillow like this, it is for us use it or suffer, even in the new rav4 I need it or my hip is toast for a 4 hour drive.

Reading the changes for 2018 in the new Camry, the maximum seat height has been lowered a full inch. That is enough for me to not even consider a new one.

I had a 2005 Camry with a similar problem. I am only 6’ tall but most of my height is in my legs, wingspan is 6’3". I found that the key is thigh support, you have to lift the front of the seat up higher than the back, try this and see if it helps. Somehow I find that the Japanese are not good with thigh support.
Also agree on your observation on Hyundai’s, we have 3 of them and all of them have better seat comfort than the Toyota.

If your wallet is in your back pocket, take it out. For some people that makes a difference.

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After trying every seat and back pad on the market, I had to trade a brand new Corolla in after only two months because it was causing me severe pain in my back. I lost a large chunk of money in the transaction, but mentally “wrote it off” as a heath expense. I’ve never regretted it for a moment.

My suggestion is to take the time to find something that will work for you and trade the car in. If it’s causing you this much trouble now, it isn’t going to get better… but if you keep it your health will get worse. It ain’t worth it.

How long is a long trip? You might consider getting out for a walk when th you pain starts. The trip might take 10 minutes longer, but you won’t have the couple-a-three grand loss in a trade. My MIL has back problems and we stop after about 2 hours when we all go to her son’s house. She walks, we get gas or sometimes food, and we are on our way in about 15 minutes.

I had this exact problem, many years ago, with my '92 Accord. It seemed that the seat itself was decent enough in terms of comfort, but it was set so low to the floor that my legs had to extend straight forward in such a way as to cause severe sciatic pain in my lower back and my right leg if I drove for more than 25 minutes or so.

A few decades later, my lower back condition is worse than it was in the days when I drove that Accord, but I can drive for 4 or 5 hours in my Outback Limited with no sciatic pain. The major difference–aside from some difference in basic seat design–is that the seats in the Outback are at “chair height”, whereas sitting in the driver’s seat of my Accord was sort of like sitting in a beanbag chair, just a few inches from the floor.

Rod Knox’s suggestion of shimming the seat mounts is a good one, but this approach might potentially affect your “relationship” to the airbag, and that might give you less protection in the event of a crash. There might not be any real solution to this problem other than trading for a different car. Just be sure to explain to salespeople that you need an extended test drive of a few hours in order to have assurance of seat comfort.

what car is it? I love my Mazda 6 for my wretched spine (scoliosis).

Back in a 1992 issue, Consumer Reports tested a Buick Roadmaster, Oldsmobile 88 and a full size Mercury. For comparison, they borrowed a 1952 Buick Roadmaster. The 1952 Buick Roadmaster was judged to have more comfortable seats and a better driving position than other cars in the test. I think cars have lost something in creature comfort since 1992. Is it any wonder that consumers have gone to SUVs and pickup trucks?
I think the downhill slide of automobile comfort began in the late 1950s. My dad was ready to buy his first new car. He had a 1954 Buick which he really liked. We all went to the Buick dealer and tested a new 1959 Buick. We all decided that our 1954 was more comfortable to ride in. We also tested a 1959 Oldsmobile and came to the same conclusion. Ultimately he bought a Rambler Classic. It had much better seating and more trunk space than the bigger cars.
Mrs. Triedaq before we retired, was on the road quite a bit to recruit graduate students. She found the Ford Taurus more comfortable than the other cars in the university fleet. Our own vehicles are a Toyota Sienna and a Toyota 4Runner. We like the seating position and find either vehicle comfortable on long trips. If I ever buy another car, it will be a Mazda Miata. If I am going to be uncomfortable, I’ll at least have something fun to drive.
I suggest that the OP forget about another car and go to an SUV, a minivan, or even a pickup truck.

Very true- that’s why my next car will very likely be a CUV, like a Mazda CX-5.

What amazes me is that while the average height of the population of is increasing, the seats in automobiles are more confining. Airplane.seating is even worse. The seats on the school bus I rode,.a Superior body on a 1946 Chevrolet chassis were more comfortable.than the sests on the aircraft operated on commercial flights.

Back in the 60’s, I found Ford to have the most comfortable seats for me anyway. They seemed to fit better. Our 61 Merc was very comfortable followed by my 59 Pontiac. I never have leg pain in my Pontiac on long drives, but with the Acura, I have to take my billfold and check book out of my back pockets or my leg falls asleep.

Maybe someone has a diagram of the proper ergonomic seat position for driving. For me its hit and miss and takes a while if anyone messes with my seat position. I need the seat up high enough first and then need to tilt it to take the pressure off my thighs-I think. Also, I fully deflate those dang bladder bags in the back or its like having a brick against your lower back. I know this is contrary to the ergonomic office chair concepts, but hey if it hurts I stop.

Airplane seating is absolutely abysmal. They’re taking aircraft bodies that I suspect were designed for two-isle-three and configuring them as three-isle-three. What they’re doing now is an abomination. And they don’t even feed you anymore, save a tiny bag of fake cheezits. I flew from LA to Baltimore nonstop last year without a meal.

I love old movies and TV shows, and I get a kick out of seeing passengers on airplanes in comfortable seats with legroom being fed meals. I remember those days. Today’s airlines couldn’t care less about their passengers, to the extent of PLANNING to “bump” paying passengers (by intentionally overbooking) and dragging them off the airplane if they’re already seated and the airline decides at the last moment that they need to seat.

I’m not an advocate of more regulation, but I AM an advocate of severe penalties for the CEOs of senior managers who abuse their power… and clearly airlines are abusing their power.

As regards autos, I’ve long felt that these modern molded-foam seats are horrible… and trying to compensate with airbags for lumbar and other seat areas is a failure. The industry have largely forgotten how to design seats. Comfort is tough to find now.

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@the_same_mountainbike. The only time I had a comfortable ride on an airplane was a flight on Southwest airlines. I was asked to sit in the seat by the emergency door. It had more legroom than the other seats. When the flight attendant asked me if I could operate the door, I told her that I had operated emergency doors before. When she looked surprised and asked me when I had opened an emergency door, I told her that when I rode a school bus in elementary and junior high school, I sat in the back seat. When the driver stopped to pick up other kids, I would open the emergency door, jump out and have a quick smoke, and then get back in the bus. She then advised me not to go out for a smoke while we were in the air. She did let me keep my seat by the emergency door.