Last post on Jul 14, 2012 at 1:34 PM
You are in the Toyota Solara
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Camry Solara, Coupe, Convertible
#1852 of 3978 Paint Chipping
May 14, 2002 (10:53 pm)
Some might believe its the price you pay for a better environment. But if you design a car that you know is prone to more chipping by design, then maybe there are other non-toxic additive that could strengthen the paint. Or maybe potential customers could be advised of the potential risk up front and be presented options to protect their investments such as the 3M Scotchcal film or a car bra. After recently spending many hours cleaning and applying Zaino I found over 50 new chips on my car. This can't be a norm consumers should accept, or Toyota for that matter. I had a 1999 Camry Sedan for 11 months that did not experience anywhere near the number of chips that my Solara has. I sure would like an answer from Toyota other than "road chips are normal part of wear and tear". Other than the excessive chipping, my Solara has been the best car I've owned to date!
#1853 of 3978 Strut Tower work
May 15, 2002 (12:03 am)
ScottGB, I had the strut tower work done. The rattle was ignored the first time I went in. Then they pulled the wheel off and ordered the parts. If you are persistent, you will get it fixed. It will make a big difference. Good luck Tony
#1854 of 3978 3-M protective film
May 15, 2002 (7:11 am)
I had a 3-M "Invinca Shield" installed when my Black Sand SLE Conv. was about two months old. I am fairly handy with cars and tried to do one piece myself before giving up and having it professionally installed. It has plusses and minuses. It has done a good job of preventing chips in the year I have had it on the car. No real chipping problem and I wash the car by hand at least once a week. I had it installed on the leading edge of the hood, the lower grill openings and the mirrors.
The bad part is that the parts do not fit precisely. Even the professional installer was not pleased with the final job. There are some small wrinkles, some overlapping seams etc. if you are a perfectionist about how the car looks, you definitely need a professional to install this stuff. There are other brands that advertise a more precise fit, and may be worth investigating. I think they area all the same 3M film, but may be cut better.
The stuff is basically invisible from more than a few feet away, but up close, you can see it and some of the flaws.
Overall, I think I am happy with it, but it is not perfect. My $0.02 worth!
#1855 of 3978 K&N airfilter
May 15, 2002 (11:18 am)
I installed a K&N air filter in my 2002 SLE and can't really feel any seat of the pants difference. Love the car though, incredible refinement and could easily have been marketed as a Lexus SC300! That JBL system really honks with solid pounding bass. Gripes are the spongy feeling brake feel. Feels like the car carries so much weight and momentum when stopping. Took a while to get used to it at first. Also some creaks on the passenger door on occasions. What's with the trunk release button placed by the glove compartment door! Steering feels awfully slow when attacking tight switchbacks but then this is more of a touring luxury coupe so I can live with it. Makes an excellent long distance cruiser with superb seats.
May 15, 2002 (11:52 am)
Seems to me placing the trunk release button inside the locking glove box makes it so that the trunk is inaccessible to someone who only has the valet key.
#1857 of 3978 mimi,Pearl White..ezguy...
May 15, 2002 (4:03 pm)
Pearl White is a lovely color, I know it had some probs bleeding through the plastic, in the bumpers, and is very difficult to correct.
ezguy, that the way the Solaras are. They look nice, and drive nice when you do the test drive, but after you get used to the new car feel, the ride is almost like you are in a boat, with about as much control!?! Very front heavy, especially in rain and snow, with mucho momentum when stopping. Tech that moved my car into service bay told me the brakes feel soft, in an effort to have me replace, but they were just replaced the last vist. I then got the disc/disc, needs no maintenance, that probably how they are!?!
#1858 of 3978 chugging on ethanol
May 16, 2002 (8:50 am)
I've been doing some experiments lately with the type of gas I'm using with my Solara SE V-6. The Solara owners' manual states that Toyota recommends ethanol gasolines as long as the amount of ethanol blended with the regular gas does not exceed 10%. Fine, I said to myself. The dealer said that I should be sticking with premium, mostly because of improved gas mileage, better performance, smoother idling, and quicker startups. I kinda cringed on using premium, since I'm used to using ethanol. Ethanol has lower emissions that regular gas, and it cleans the engine while you drive.
I was using premium at first, but then I switched to ethanol, and I've been using it for the past 4-5 tanks. Now I've noticed that the car "chugs and tugs" a bit when I slowly accelerate. There's no difference in RPMs. It also does that when I'm going around 45 mph. Now I thought this must be because the ethanol fuel cleaned the engine, and my fuel filter's getting clogged. So I call my dealer and asked for a price quote on a fuel filter change. They said the fuel filter on Solaras are lifetime, and don't need replacement. He asked me what kind of fuel I was using, and so I told him this whole story, and he said I should either go with regular, but premium's the best. He said that some engines really don't like ethanol, like the Toyota Supra.
Any thoughts on this? I'm thinking about switching back to premium, and I know that according to past discussions here, the extra price of premium is warranted by the extra mileage I can get from the same amount of gas.
I pamper my car, and I really think it's one of the best cars out there. Like ezguy said, it feels like a Lexus. In any case, your comments or experiences would be appreciated. Thanks.
May 16, 2002 (9:09 am)
Thanks for the K&N comment. Did you measure before-and-after mileage by any chance?
May 16, 2002 (10:25 am)
Are you sue you just arent chugging, cuz of the winter blend gas? That's what I blamed my chugging on, after Shifty made mention of it in one of the threads. I do, however only use Shell, or Mobil premium, mostly Shell. A friend used to use cheap gas, and it clogged something in her car that cost several hundred dollars, and the car would not go over 25 mph. Not sure about Solara having a lifetime fuel filter, unless Toyota only expexts the life of the Solara to be about 60,000 miles. From my many wonderful experiences, that may be correct! LOL
#1861 of 3978 I really doubt that you need premium fuel
May 16, 2002 (4:15 pm)
I've read many articles that firmly state that unless your owner's book specifies premium fuel, it will not do you any good. It will not improve mileage, give quicker starts, idle smoother or help in any way (except the oil company's profits). The guy who sold me my 2002 Solara proudly said that the Camry and Solara use regular fuel, vs the Lexus ES, GS and others that reqire premium.