I have an '88 LE wagon as a driver, and wrecked '88 DX and '90 DX wagons for parts cars, all navy blue, 4-cyl, automatic. A professor of mine also has a navy blue '90 DX wagon, and two other people I know have '87 and '89 DX wagons respectively.
We favor the wagon variant of the '87-'91 (2nd-gen) Camry. Great thing about wagons is that NOTHING can touch them for cargo space per fuel economy (I get 30+ with the 4-cyl.), and they're less likely than the sedans to get stolen.
Depends on what you're looking for in a Camry. The 2.0 four is an extremely reliable, extremely efficient engine, with a surprising amount of pep. A stickshift will make it somewhat of a sporting experience. The six has got some decent guts, especially if you can find one with the manual trans. Yes, that's right, they did in fact make a 2nd-gen Camry in a V6/5-spd. combo. I know someone who had a friend with one- apparently the thing was stonking fast. I do not know if that was available in a wagon or not. If I could find a V6/stick Camry wagon, I'd jump on that in a heartbeat. I'm actually looking for a nicer one right now...mine's a bit rusty.
I bought my current one for $1100 and have driven it 17,000 miles. It currently has 173,000 on it and shows no signs of dying soon. I've heard these cars can do 300,000+ with only basic maintenance. The 2nd-gen Camry really was something of a breakthrough from a reliability standpoint.
Also, you can get a strut tower brace for these off eBay for $15!
I think there's an enthusiast site called Passing Lane but the URL escapes me.
If you ever need parts or advice for it, let me know!
My gf has an I4/auto and it is extremely reliable. She has had it for about 3 years now and the only things that she has had to do to it (other than oil changes, etc.) were to replace some tires that had apparently been on there for 10+ years and a brake job. I've been driving it lately because my cars in the shop and I get ~34mpg on my daily commute to school. It does have a problem with shaking some but I hear that's pretty common with these, even my mechanic's mom's camry shakes some (I just think of it as a free, weak shiatsu massage
I'm actually looking at getting one to replace my car as a daily driver.
Why don't you check out Toyota Cressida?
It's more fun than Camry. Supra engine, with fully (heated mirros, real climate control, etc.) loaded interior. Rear wheel drive. Pretty much the same reliability as Camry. It might be a bit harder to find, but often found in excellent shape.