Last post on Dec 23, 2011 at 7:28 PM
You are in the Toyota Solara
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Toyota Camry Solara, Convertible
#237 of 1166 Trying to buy a Toyota - an exercise in company arrogance
Jun 26, 2004 (2:04 pm)
I'm glad y'all were able to get your Camry Solara convertibles. I've given up on Toyota. When they first came to the US to sell in the early 1970s, they were begging folks to buy, and the deals and cars were excellent. We were one of their first customers and bought a Corolla Station Wagon for $4000. Loved it to death and never had any problems (except when some idiot put cardboard in the gas tank -- but that's another story). After seven years with a body that was rusting out my husband insisted we needed a four-wheel drive car and I sold it for $2500 cash. Every since, we have been trying to buy Toyotas (minivan, convertibles, SUV)and basically we've found that arrogance rules at dealers all over the country (we've lived in 10 states). This latest go round was for the Camry Solara convertible. No dealer in the Birmingham, Alabama, area would allow us to test drive one and informed us that everyone was just buying them "off the sticker" which is Southern for no test drive and sticker price, no deals. Gee, guys, I have never and will never pay sticker price, even for a Toyota. We ended up with a gorgeous convertible by another manufacturer with all the bells and whistles and some features Toyota didn't offer for less and love it. Since we keep our cars an average of 8-10 years, trade-in price isn't a big deal for us. Point is, though, if you want a deal (of sorts) you will probably only get one at a small dealership in the sticks that might have some inventory and you might even have the choice of more than one color. But don't count on it. Toyota makes a great product but they just seem to want to wear out their welcome. I hesitated to comment on this site since we aren't current owners of a Toyota, but just thought you should know that what you're experiencing has become the norm. And, yes, as far as fixing a Toyota, you have to be persistent. They're great cars but too many dealers don't have folks trained to do a proper job -- a holdover from the old days. By the way, my youngest son and his wife just bought a 2004 Camry at a fantastic deal but that was due to overstock in our area. I know they'll love their car because they know what to expect.
#238 of 1166 Re: Trying to buy a Toyota - an exercise in company arrogance [southerngal #237]
Jun 28, 2004 (4:57 am)
Lemme guess, you ended up with a Sebring...great, enjoy it..BUT understand, if Chrysler dealers were granted about 1 Sebring per month, you would more than likely experience the same buying experience. I have been on these threads for what seems like centuries preaching the basic economic theory of supply and demand. You cannot blame the dealer or the mfr. for that matter for a product that is in very high demand in the marketplace.
I remember doing deals on ML320's back in the late '90's when there was a 4 month waiting list and the dealer told the consumer what color they were most likely to get. That is just the way it was. Today, dealers are choking on ML350's.
This weekend, while i was waiting for an oilchange, i saw a ragtop with a $7500 markup on the SOLD line. I guess someone really had to have it!
#239 of 1166 Re: Trying to buy a Toyota - an exercise in company arrogance [southerngal #237]
Jun 28, 2004 (9:45 am)
I have to agree with Tyre. I mean please, these people are out there to make money.
Scenario: You are going to sell your used xyz model car. You know it's in high demand so you put it in the paper for high blue book (or more!). If you know there many people just waiting to get their hands on the car for the full price, you are going to "be arrogant" and brush off the person that calls you offering lower right?
And, let's be honest, since you got the Sebring you really aren't the kind of person who would see the value in the Solara. I've rented many, many of those and trust me, you won't be keeping that one for "8-10 years" (and loving it, anyways).
#240 of 1166 Just an update
Jun 28, 2004 (5:06 pm)
Hi. There won't be a lot of controversy, yelling, screaming, sniping in this post.
I just want to say I am absolutely in LOVE with my new car. I have had it since June 12, a red sle with grey interior and black top.
As I have gotten used to it a little, I am really happy with the pick-up, brakes, and general luxury feel. I am stared at constantly, which was a little strange at first, but now am getting used to it a little. I've only seen one or two others on the roads in Indy, so people are naturally curious. I hope that it stays a rarity, it's kind of fun.
Everything works well, it feels solid, and I'm getting about 27 MPG (even with the top down). This is with 87 octane and mostly freeway driving.
Just thought I'd let you know. If you're considering one...buy it. I paid about 600 under sticker...but I would have paid full sticker. However...I don't think I would have gone over sticker. It's a cool car, but come on! Once you're in the low 30's you have other options.
Good luck, and keep us posted on problems that pop up!
#241 of 1166 Re: Just an update [indyken #240]
Jun 29, 2004 (4:47 am)
Totally agree, even at $32.2k w/nav, the car is a bargain. Although, at this pricepoint, there really is not anything else in the marketplace that is a worthy comparo. The Europeans are in the low $40's and there is nothing from our soil that compares. Sure, you can get a Sebring at a great discount, but you get what you pay for. One thing that is pretty much guaranteed with a low production run is the fact that you will not see yourself coming and going on every street corner.
Last (reported) week Toyota built 725 Solaras, if they are building at a 25% conv. to coupe ratio, they only built 182 convertibles.
For comparos, Cadillac built about 110 xlr's last week. How often do you see one of them?
As long as the numbers are flying, DCX built about 1150 Sebrings and just under 1200 PT Cruiser droptops last week.
Btw..these numbers are provided weekly in the Automotive News.
#242 of 1166 RE:Trying to buy a Toyota - an exercise in company arrogance
Jun 29, 2004 (5:42 pm)
I had to laugh at all the controversy I apparently created. I WAS NOT being facetious when I congratulated y'all on your new Toyotas. Yes, Toyota was very savvy in its marketing of the Solara convertible, both for waiting to introduce it mid-year and limiting its production run. No, I do not resent them trying to make money. To correct your one error, these cars are made on good ole US soil -- and good for Toyota! I'm also impressed that y'all went to my profile to figure out what convertible we did buy. As for keeping it a long time, I heard the same thing when we bought a 1992 Ford Mustang convertible and kept it 12 years. It is the car we traded in and I had to pry my husband out of it. There was only one identical to it in the Birmingham, Alabama, area. My point was that I have always loved Toyotas and I have been very disappointed in the company not showing at least some loyalty to those of us who gave them their start in this country's market. Silly little ole me. Anyway, buying a car isn't, for me, a competition. I use Edmunds.com to find a car that will give me what I want for good value. Dealerships do make a difference. The largest Toyota dealership here is known by my friends who own Toyotas as "the dark place." So, you should feel very good if you have a good dealership. I truly do wish y'all well and would really like to see some pictures of your cars. But I'm afraid to sign onto this site again lest I whip up a frenzy once more. One last thought. At least my comments made y'all actually stop and think about the happiness yours cars are bringing you, and isn't that a good thing? Now you know that, regardless of price, you feel good about the money you spent and the pleasure you're getting. So, for now, happy riding.
#243 of 1166 Rear windows
Jun 29, 2004 (7:48 pm)
Is it just me, or does anybody else cares that you cannot roll the rear windows independently. When the roof is up, one kid wants the window down and the other one wants it up. We have had the car a week and just love it. Took a cruise to Coronado Island this weekend and just drove around. Felt great.
Tyresmoker-can you please provide a link to Automobile News. Thanks
#244 of 1166 Re: Rear windows [redhot #243]
Jun 30, 2004 (5:28 am)
Automotive News is a trade pub not generally available to the public. if you go to automotivenews.com, i think the production table is available on a pdf on a section of their "free" site..most of the content is password protected.
Also, i carefully worded "US soil" as a reference to the now defunct "big 3", since DCX is owned by the Germans.
As far as the windows, the kids should be thrilled that ma & pa kettle bought such a cool car to cart them back and forth to little league!!
#245 of 1166 Re: Top Problems [owl #219]
Jun 30, 2004 (1:06 pm)
I'm located in Phoenix, AZ. We have the same top problem with our 2004 Solara Convertible on the passenger side. Our dealer had no hesitation in contacting Toyota re this problem after taking a couple days to look at it closely and the new top has been "on it's way" for 6 weeks now. Much longer than the 2 weeks we were told it would take. My question is has anyone had this top problem fixed by Toyota and is the new top working properly?
#246 of 1166 Re: Top Problems [topper #245]
Jul 01, 2004 (4:45 am)
No fix yet. I'm in Washington, D.C. area. I'm not sure if I'm relieved to hear that others are having the same delay problem or not. Although they have told me that Toyota has now decided the more frugal (and supposedly better approach) to repair this problem is to replace the cable I've been waiting now for almost 2 weeks for the new cable. I'm waiting til Tuesday and contacting Toyota directly to complain. I'm also going to complain and demand until they provide an extended warranty since the vehicle is only 2 months old and I consider a top malfunction on a convertible a major component. Who knows what will happen 3 years from now after standard warranty has expired. It's very frustrating to say the least. Keep us posted on your wait and/or repair.