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We thought we picked out an SUV....but we are having doubts

buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
edited May 10 in Ford
We are really struggling with which SUV to purchase. We have a list of pros and cons and was asking for opinions

Here is our list with pros and cons:

Infiniti - great car,everything included for the price. All the bells and whistles except remote start. Cons the rear and back seats and smaller vs the Sequoia and the others and the cubic feet in cargo space is smaller Also the engine noise is pronounced. The navigation system and backup camera is superior to the others.Miles per gallon the worst of the bunch and need to buy premium. We do have an opportunity to buy a used QX56 with 18,000 on the cheap (like mid 30's for an 08- former lease trade in) but he realiability history is an issue as well. Also the closest place to do any warranty word is 45 minutes away which could prove to be a pain. Warranty is 4 years, 40,000

Sequoia-great driving, easy for me to park and drive, great room in all seats, great power. The cons are that even with the platinum we either have to pay for things like an IPOd interface kit, applique wood, sonor, and the satellite receiver. All of those do start adding up. Plus the dash is worst looking and laid out by far and the outside looks like a truck, ugly, ugly, I can over look the look of everything but it also doesn't have 2nd row heated and memory seats, or adjustable pedal.Those things are just not available even as an option. The navigation system and the dials are too far from the drivers side and we find the navigation system difficult. Warranty only 3 years 36,000.

Navigator- has everything the space, the gadits, but the dash is unappealing and really we feel odd these days driving around in such a ostentatious vehicle. A little to flashy and doesn't drive as nice as the others but like I said everything is in this care.

The Expedition- has mostly everything gadgit, just don't like the look of the outside-we have not driven this one yet. The overall cost is a lot less of the others. It is not as beast looking as the Sequoia, I just haven't warmed up to it yet. The price point for this one is a lot less.

Any suggestions and am I missing anything on the comparisons from those who have compared before?
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Comments

  • Buy the Infiniti! I have owned an Armanda, 60k plus miles the lower budget car but same platform. I loved it. No problems, not one visit back to the dealer. I than traded for an 2008, I drive a lot of miles. In 10 months, 27k and I am trading it this week for an 2009. No problems with the '08. I am a picky driver and live in the car. Ride is great, never soar or uncomfortable. I looked at Toyota, and the inside was dull, I believe the Infiniti has more room in back. We are golfers (3 travel bags) with luggage and have room.
  • Buzzy8.............I think the QX56 is going to be discontinued in the relatively near future (less than 24 months).............because I believe the Armada and Titan are going bye-bye.............just something to consider.........can anyone confirm?

    CanStacker
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    I actually read the same thing and I asked the dealer. He played dumb and told me it wasn't true and Infiniti is already in production for 2010. Then later he said he did hear something to that effect. The problem with that would be no resale and getting parts I would assume would be a problem if the car is kept for a while.
  • I had the same dilemma back in mid-September. You can see my posts on Sequoia buying experience thread around Sep 11-16. I was going back and forth between Platinum Sequoia and QX. I think you've laid out pros and cons pretty well. For me, QX interior much nicer with wood grain. Leather better. NAV system superior, CD burn option, keyless fob, and satellite radio included. On the Sequoia, 3rd row is fine for adults (not on QX), design of 2nd, 3rd row far superior - easier to get in and out, no give-up on storage space, center console in 2nd row great, regular unleaded gas, Toyota quality. Price on the Sequoia slightly less with 0% for 60. Where we differ is that the QX has more "bling" and is an edgy style that does not get raves from all. I know several people who just don't like its look. The Sequoia is more staid, but beefy. I wasn't looking to make a statement and the Sequoia met all of our needs. We've been a happy owner for 3.5 months. You've just got to decide which options are most important for your use. Good luck!
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    dookie86,

    Thanks so much for your response. Thanks for sharing what you thought and what you decided to buy. Can I ask if you looked any other SUV's and if you looked at any of the crossovers? We are really trying to give the crossovers a change but they are a tight as far as room. I will go back and look at your posting from September too....the other issue we are finding with the Sequoia is that there are a list of things we have to add which is making the cost go up....wood applique, satellite receiver (it doesn't have the satellite right now in it all all) and we cannot get an ipod assessory with the satellite...it is either one or another) and remote start we would need to add as well. The other thing was that it does not have any seat memory which comes standard in most other SUV's. Thanks for your reply.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    Buzzy, I think you laid the pros vs cons out pretty well. I did the same evaluation about 19,000 miles ago on the new vehicle I'm now driving. All of your choices offer an independent rear suspension which none of the GM products offer (not on your list).

    The Infiniti is a quality vehicle with the most attractive interior. Best finish work of the 4 SUVs you're considering. Most features including HD sound system and HID headlights not available in the others. The interior is on the smallish size particularly if your family members are large. I'm 6'4 and the rest of the family are also large so elbow room in the Q is a definite consideration. Driving 45 minutes for basic servicing would be an issue for me. You'll also need to plan for premium fuel with Q which could become an issue because gas will definitely be in the upper range sometime during the next 4 years. There's also the consideration you'll likely be in the last year or 2 of this vehicle which could significantly effect its resale 4 years from now. Personally I find the Q to be the least attractive on the outside. Looks to me like 3 different vehicles they tried to cobble together with headlights that simply look odd to me. But that's just my taste.

    The Sequoia really depends on which model you're considering. I assume the Platinum is within the budget if you're looking at the Nav and Q. The interior of the Seq is not well designed for small people. You'll need long arms to reach all the way across the Nav unit. OTOH, if the family that's using the vehicle are tall, they will really value the tremendous leg room in the second and 3rd row seats, not too mention the electric reclining 3rd row seats which no other model has. I believe the 2nd row sliding seats cannot be matched by any other vehicle. It provides more leg room than you'll find in most limos....really. If you're getting the Plat, it includes the ipod interface, sonor, 2nd row heated seats and memory seat positions for the driver. Your wallet will thank you for the regular gas of the Sequoia combined with premium performance.

    The drivetrain of the Sequoia is in a class of its own. The other 3 vehicles are simply not in the same league. Power, smoothness, manumatic shifting, acceleration, braking and towing make the Sequoia the clear winner if these were the only factors being considered. IMO, the exterior is attractive and smooth without looking like I should be wearing 10 lbs of gold chains around my neck like a Nav or Escalade owner...even with 20 in wheels.

    The Nav is gaudy and underpowered and I think it will look very outdated, very quickly which will significantly hurt resale value. It only took one drive for me to know I wouldn't be buying one.

    Same issues with the Expy, just a much cheaper looking interior and more subdued exterior. Resale values are awful on this vehicle.

    You probably figured out that I bought a Platinum Sequoia. Mine is black exterior with a red rock interior. Here's a link to some pics http://www.carspace.com/hdfatboy/?50@@.5bc0e86d . I still absolutely love the vehicle after 19,000miles. Every drive is still a joy with the 381hp, 6sp tranny, flexible drive configurations with 2wd, 4wd hi (AWD), 4wd Hi with the ctr diff locked, 4wd Lo and 4wd Lo with ctr diff locked. I have had 0 service trips to the dealer other than 3 trips for oils changes and tire rotation (I purchased the Toyota maintenance plan).

    Forget the fake plastic wood dash. I originally considered it and now I've come to like the silver dash. Its still a long reach across the dash however 90% of the controls are really used from the steering wheel and a few of the knobs closest to the driver. I added xm radio myself that is fully integrated into the Nav and steering wheel controls for $279 off Ebay...best add-on to any vehicle I've ever owned.

    If towing matters, here's a review I did last year after a long towing trip http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/sequoia/143846-08-4x4-plat-sequoia-towing-- - - - evaluation/#post1096369

    Here's the things I don't like about the Sequoia and you can decide if they matter to you.

    The nanny controls on the Nav unit were intolerable to me and I purchased a controller to override the system so I can use all the features of the blue tooth phone capabilities and nav system while the vehicle is underway. Toyota...PLEASE...reel in your lawyers...they're out of control.
    The folding mirrors on the Plat should be automatic when the vehicle goes into or out of park with an override switch.
    Dear Toyota...would it have killed you to provide lighting for the exterior mirror controls and the driver's second row window switches so they can be easily found at night.
    The Platinum should have offerred HID headlights.
    The front passenger seat could have benefited from the ability to slide back another 2-3 inches for long drives. This is the one seat with the least leg room.
    As a Platinum, this vehicle should have had push button start with a smartkey.

    After 19,000 miles these are the only changes I would have recommended. Maybe others can offer additional features to a wish list for the future. I would buy another one in a minute when this one's time is up.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Hdfatboy,

    Wow! Thanks so much for taking the time to respond. It was helpful more than you know. I sat here with my husband reading all the responses over....I do have a few questions if you wouldn't mind...

    We are looking at the Limited, mainly because we have 3 kids and it just seems easier to load them into the 2nd row than have one climb into the back. Some of the things that are standard on the platinum have been the problem for us on the limited as far as options we would like to have. We don't understand how a $56K vehicle does not have memory seats or 2nd row heated.

    Now you mentioned the Satellite Radio (we like Sirius) which is interesting because it is not listed as a line item on the sticker (meaning no receiver) ...we asked the salesman and he said that it can be hooked up afterward but that you cannot have the IPOD interface at the same time. With how you installed it yourself through what you purchased through Ebay, is it all internal? Meaning do you have the satellite capabilities through the Navigation system? Can you use the Ipod interface with the system you installed? Also the Navigation system seems difficult because the lady talking is looking for certain commands...can you use the pushbutton version and not use the voice part? Can you do some kind of bypass and watch the DVD from the navigation screen (I believe certain techs now how to do this but because of liability issues they will not tell you) In general in comparison, it seems like the backup system and navigation system seem inferior, I am just not sure that while it is in use it becomes better than it seems. Also, was anything said to you about updating the navigation system? Is it a hard drive that is updated or a disc? If a better system comes available, is it as easy as a download?

    I also wanted to ask if you had the remote start? Is it worth it to add it as an aftermarket option? I also wish they had the push button start....

    I have to ask about the future for SUV value and replacement parts cost in the long run when everything is so oversized. We have looked at a few crossovers and really want to like them but it has less space and I haven't seen a full sized 2nd row middle seat yet. Tomorrow I am going to test drive the Buick Arcadia. We seem to be getting frustrated and sometimes consider keeping our minivan for another year or 2 but wanted to see if good deals are to be had in the SuV market. Value will be upsize down fom day 1 especially in the SUV side.

    thanks so much, we really do appreciate the help in making this decision.
  • nedzelnedzel Posts: 787
    "We are looking at the Limited, mainly because we have 3 kids and it just seems easier to load them into the 2nd row than have one climb into the back."

    I think you'll have more peace in the truck if one of the kids is in the way back. And chances are, one of them will prefer to sit back there out of reach of their siblings anyways.
  • steverstever Ex Yooper, en route to New MexicoPosts: 40,506

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  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    I have heard other people say that, so far the kids are good sitting next to each other, we always usually keep the 3rd row folding down for cargo and going on vacations we usually need the space in the back. I guess it all depends how easy it is to get into the back. None of the dealers in our area (100 miles square) have we ever seen a platinum, only limited or SR5, so it is tough to see if it would work.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Very timely article, thanks! I can relate with the mini van thing. We have looked at the Audi Crossover, Cadillacs and Mazda. All very smooshy (if there is such a word). We are going to test drive the Buick Enclave tomorrow. Thanks for the article

    too bad there is no rebates for Toyota.....
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    Here's some additional thoughts:
    "We are looking at the Limited, mainly because we have 3 kids and it just seems easier to load them into the 2nd row than have one climb into the back." I agree with the other poster. Depending on the age of the kids, as they age they will want more separation. My 14 yr old actually prefers to ride in the 3rd row even when no one is in the second row. He folds the 2nd row seat down and has leg room to really stretch out. Access to the third row is quite convenient since the 2nd row Captain chair slides far forward giving easy access to the third row even for adults. I hesitated on the captains chairs howver I have found them to work out very nicely. All of my previous Suburbans had 2nd row benchs.

    "Some of the things that are standard on the platinum have been the problem for us on the limited as far as options we would like to have. We don't understand how a $56K vehicle does not have memory seats or 2nd row heated."
    That was one of our motivations for going for the Platinum. I wanted the air conditioned front seats, driver memory seat, heated 2nd row seats, adjustable suspension and the Red Rock leather interior. These were all "must haves", so my only choice was the Platinum.

    "With how you installed it yourself through what you purchased through Ebay, is it all internal? Meaning do you have the satellite capabilities through the Navigation system?" Yes, all components for the XM Radio (Serius and XM are now one service since the 2 companies merged last year) are inside the dash (other than the antenna which is on the roof) which requires opening things up abit however its much easier than you might expect since the entire dash is held together with push clips. Essentially, with the exceptiuon of a single screw, the dash can be opened by simply "pulling" it open. The instructions are actually quite easy. Here's a link to get a sense of what's involved. (You might want to preview the install before your husband...you'll understand after reviewing it:) http://www.tacotunes.com/installation/tundradash/index.html The XM service is fully functional through the Nav unit from either the dash controls or the sterring wheel controls.

    "Can you use the Ipod interface with the system you installed?"
    Since the ipod connection in the Platinum is unaltered I can't see how it would be affected however I don't use an ipod.

    "Also the Navigation system seems difficult because the lady talking is looking for certain commands...can you use the pushbutton version and not use the voice part?" Other than the first day, I've never used the voice controls... more of a hastle than its worth. I use the Nav buttons on the dash however many of the functions are deactivated by Toyota once you are underway. I used the following product to override Toyota's restirctions. If you're opening the dash for the XM tuner, this device would be a simple install at the same time. http://www.pinemountainfirearms.com/pmf/tundramods/NavSpeedPulse.aspx

    "Can you do some kind of bypass and watch the DVD from the navigation screen (I believe certain techs now how to do this but because of liability issues they will not tell you)" DVDs can be viewed on the front Nav screen however only when in Park with the Parking Brake on. I've not seen any modifications that works with the factory rear entertainment system and the Factory Nav unit to view videos while underway. (Probably not a very good idea if you ask me.)

    "it seems like the backup system and navigation system seem inferior, I am just not sure that while it is in use it becomes better than it seems." The backup video system is excellent, particularly for towing to align with the tow ball. Also the adjustable suspension allows you to raise and lower the vehicle to make it easy to attach to a trailer tow ball. The Nav by compariosn with my Garmin Zumo is utterly out of date however with the override device referenced above it is acceptable.

    "Also, was anything said to you about updating the navigation system? Is it a hard drive that is updated or a disc? If a better system comes available, is it as easy as a download?" If you mean the electronics, I have not heard if a new generation of Nav unit is coming however this Gen is relatively new so I doubt a major upgrade is coming anytime soon. If you mean the actual DVD data disc for the maps, those come out annually however the changes are somewhat minor from year to year and you may only need to update every couple of years. They run a couple hundred $ from the dealer and are also available on ebay for less.

    "I also wanted to ask if you had the remote start? Is it worth it to add it as an aftermarket option? I also wish they had the push button start...."Forget about the Toyota remote start. Once again the lawyers got overly involved and require the driver to restart the vehicle by shutting the engine as soon as the door is opened. What's the point? Go aftermarket for this option. I didn't bother to get remote start however I have had them on previous vehicles and they are nice.

    "I also wanted to ask if you had the remote start? Is it worth it to add it as an aftermarket option? I also wish they had the push button start...." Plan on fast depreciation even for a quality SUV like the Sequoia. However there will always be folks that need a powerful SUV for towing boats, horse trailers, RVs etc. IMO the Sequoia is the best on the market and the Platinum is better then even the higher end luxury SUVs if power, ride, space and comfort are your primary decision factors.

    Best of luck in the decision-making....

    FYI...here's a link to a test drive forum between the Platinum and the Limited http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/sequoia/137515-test-drive-2008-platinum-vs- -limited/
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Hdfatboy,
    Thanks again for your response...I have to say how helpful it has been. I agree that the Platinum is the way to go as far as getting in all of the options we are looking for but we just can't wrap our head around the one child sitting in the back. Here are the reasons....we have a 6, 8 and 10 year old, I know they will get bigger but I just can't invision being in a parking lot with all of their backpacks and gear in hand while 1 of my kids takes one of the seats flips it forward while the other 2 wait, then the 2nd child will flip it back and then both would climb in....or I could do it but by now, I am comfy in the drivers seat of my mini van already. I know I am over dramatizing the whole thing but right now they all just file in the 2nd row. Ir could just be that I am not able to invision the Platinum and whether or not one of them could just squeeze by the seat without flipping it, it just seems like an extra step to what we have now. Also long trips, we would loose cargo space with all the luggage because we do not have the ability to flip the whole 3rd row down.

    The other problem is where to find a Platnum and since there are so few, I am sure the dealer will not as willing to deal.

    Thanks so much for your help!! Oh, and the ability to watch the DVD while driving is just for long trips for the benefit of the passenger.....me! We still want to check out the Buick.....I will keep checking in. Thanks so much for all the valuable info.

    Oh, and I want to make sure I understand your previous post....that the front seats come air condititioned as well? (I couldn't find that in the specs).

    Thanks!
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Oh and I wanted to edit my response about flipping the 2nd row seat to climb in the back. I reread you post and you mentioned the seat sliding forward to climb into the 3rd rown instead of flipping the seat so like I mentioned before it could be a whole lot easier than I am envisioning because I haven't seen a platinum. We have been to every dealer in a 100 mile radius of here and have not seen one yet. I just really wish the platinum had the 2nd row bench because then one of the kids could still go in the back or have the option of the 2nd row. Infiniti told us that they could convert a captain's chair QX56 into a bench seat but the salesman told us a lot of things that wasn't true. Thanks again.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    Buzzy,

    Obviously you know the needs of the family best. For ours, the design of the captain chair and how it slides forward works as conveniently for kids as it does adults. At 6'4 I have no problem comfrortably getting in the 3rd row and the seating is by far the best on avy SUV on the market. Nothing is even close for leg room because of the electrically recling 3rd row seats.

    My recommendation is to find an LTD with captain's charis and check out whether the 2nd row sliding mechanism meets your needs. The Captain chairs function the same in the LTD and the Plat however there is no console in the Ltd. The Plat's 2nd row console cannot be removed because the controls for the 2nd row heated seats are built into the front of the console.

    I ordered my Platinum from the dealer vs shopping for vehicles on the lot. I wasn't in a hurry so I send out emails to the nearest 15 Toyota dealers I was willing to drive to. I gave them the exact specs I was looking for and let them know I was only interested in replies that included an "out the door" price with exact options, shipping, taxes and title included in the email response.

    5 dealers didn't reply...several gave prices at msrp. ..several were at $1000 off msrp....several were at $1000-2000 over the dealer's invoice and one was at $500 over dealer invoice. I went with the $500 over and it was the smoothest auto transaction I ever did. Never left the house while shopping for the sequoia until I went to sign the contract.

    I bought my Platinum the week before Christmas of 2007 and took delivery in late February 08. Economy and auto market are entirely different today but that's how I bought mine back then. I'm confident the same approach today would work even better with far better pricing although I have no idea how long the wait would be on a factory order but the savings would definitely be worth it if you have the time.

    Yes...the front seats in the Platinum are both heated and air conditioned. Since I got a black Sequoia with red rock interior, I figured the seats would get hot in the summer. The cooled seats are excellent and I'm really glad they came with the Platinum.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    hdfatboy,

    We did what you suggested and found a platinum....we went to the dealer in our town that we have been working with (we have purchased 3 of our last 4 cars from them) and told them that we were interested in the platinum. The looked on the computer and found us a dealership that had 4 of them in Maryland (we live in PA)....so that is what we did today. My husband drove it and we even had our 10 year old try and slide the seat forward. It really was a breeze. Just the extra step of folding it forward and then the next child getting in would have to slide it back to sit in it. (still trying to wrap my head around that as you can see). The one we looked at had the factory installed burl wood trim. It actually looked nice with the tan interior. It had everything in it except the laser cruise control which the dealership said is very rare to see that in a Sequoia. It had the remote start (which seems like a joke-wish there was an override for that one), skid grid and satellite radio. It had an MSRP of $60,000. We really did like it, the only issue is of course haggling over the price now.....(and for me getting used to the idea of the captains chair issue). The one we test drove had $7,000 miles on it and was a demo vehicle...my husband mentioned to someone inside the dealership how much they were willing to move on it and the sales manager said that it would be the listed MSPR of $60,000 :confuse: .... Our goal at this point with a 2008 is 75% of MSRP for a 2008 in this market. I just wanted to let you know that we took your advice and are glad we did....I will keep you posted...Our dealership told us that they can give us a deal even if we located one we want at a different dealership. We would rather work with our local dealership since we have a good relationship with them from previous cars we purchased.

    Thanks!!
  • Buzzy8,

    I think you guys will get your price provided you continue to be patient and hold your ground. I just purchased an 08 Ltd after looking and watching the market for 3 months. I buy things for a living and I can tell you that I research items to death before I make a purchase. I knew from the start I would end up in the Sequoia because I owned a 04 Ltd and had put 90K miles on it. The only reason I was considering the upgrade was because the deals were so good. I would recommend doing a little more searching using www.cars.com and see if you can find any other Plats within a reasonable driving distance for you. My dealer wasn
    t willing to work with me and thought that because I lived in Central Missouri that I would be restricted to buying from them because of the limited selections......they were wrong. I did as one of the previous posts mentioned and put my quotes out there using the internet before I stepped one foot into a dealership. You'll find out very quickly there are deals to be had. I had difficulties getting the options I wanted because my wife and I wanted a limited in the Cassis Pearl w/sand beige interior...with Nav, DVD, XM, and second row bench. We wanted the second row bench so that when all the seats were folded down it would create a nice area to carry our three boxers. We don't have kids, but our dogs fill this gap nicely for us. Problem we encountered was that the second row bench was not in the option package with the Nav and DVD, so we ended up settling for the captains chairs and I worked out a great deal with the dealer to install the center console in the second row.

    Let me urge you to be careful about adding options with the dealer. Make sure you ask for Toyota Factory equipment to ensure it will interface correctly and be covered under warranty. I say this because I had a dealer tell me they could install the Nav and DVD on a ltd that had the second row bench. I agreed and then found out the day of the install that the equipment was all aftermarket and would not work with the steering wheel controls, such as bluetooth for my phone. It also would not be covered under the Toyota warranty so if you bought the vehicle from one dealer and then went back home and tried to get service from your local dealer to resolve anything on the after market equipment he would not be able to do so and would have to bring in people trained to work on it...resulting in charges back to you.

    I'll quit rambling on now and just say this.....my wife and I both love the truck. It rides exceptionally well and I have already towed some heavy loads with it with ease. The backup camera is great and ensures a quick trailer hookup every time. The sonar works great and allows for a lot of clearance when parking.

    The heated seats don't seem to get as warm as in my older Sequoia, but work sufficiently.

    I haven't tried the DVD yet, but I'm sure the puppies will love watching it on the next long trip. For you guys it will be great because it offers the AC plug so you can plug in a console game system and turn the kids loose playing Wii, XBOX, or PS3.......system also comes with 2 wireless headsets, so you don't have to listen.

    One thing to note on the Sequoia that no other SUV has....the power rear glass. My dogs love this because I can roll it down and they can stick their heads out and stop traffic....don't suggest this for the kids.

    I have the rear height adjusting suspension which levels the vehicle out when loaded....works great.

    16+ cup holders....nuff said there.

    It has a tight turning radius of 39ft allowing it to turn on a dime and making it a breeze to park.

    It does seem more suited for people with long legs, short torso's, and long arms!!
    Makes you wonder who was smoking what illegal products when they set up the interior.

    There are a lot more things that I can't even remember to mention right now.

    Good luck with your purchase and don't let your dealer push you into paying for delivery of a vehicle if they have to go get it......remember this - all dealers will tell you they aren't making anything on it, but they are lying.

    Squeeze them as much as you can then walk out if they don't meet your price. There are a lot of Sequoias on the market right now and they have to get them moved out by March for the 2009 models to hit.

    Sorry for rambling!
    Mike
  • Just a quick FYI....I did a search on Cars.com and looked at a radius of 250 from Pennsylvania and found 91 Platinums.
    Not knowing where you guys are located it could change somewhat, but I remember you said you were in PA.
  • hdfatboy,

    Saw you mention "The nanny controls on the Nav unit were intolerable to me and I purchased a controller to override the system so I can use all the features of the blue tooth phone capabilities and nav system while the vehicle is underway. Toyota...PLEASE...reel in your lawyers...they're out of control."

    Where did you purchase the controller to override the system? and can you post a link for me? I would like to do the same.

    Thanks,
    Mike
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Thanks Mikey...I do remember your previous posting of email the dealers ....I just haven't done that yet because are not totally settled on the PLat or Ltd. (the 2nd row bench being the issue with 3 kids). If you look at my previous posting you will see me discuss that issue at nauseum. So once we have that narrowed down I will do what you said. Shouldn't we go to the local dealer we are working with first to see if he will willing to give it to us for the 25% off MSRP before we get other offers from internet dealers? Now when you went on Cars.com, did you then have to put in the radius of how many miles you want to be searched, then it comes up with the individual dealer and then you look at their inventory? or is there an easier way?
    I agree about the aftermarket issue. If we go with the Ltd. We will have to have the factory install, Satellite Radio (or go with the underdash one that Hatboy mentioned) the wood dash and possibly the remote start (unless we find an aftermarket that we can do ourselves where the engine does'nt shut off when you get in and start the car. The platinum aftermarket wouldbe the wood burl and an aftermarket ipod interface which we would do ourselves (we heard from one salesman that you could use a splitter with the navigation system and it may work.

    Thank so much for the help...don't worry about rambling on, I read every word!

    We are going to church now, we are going to have all 3 kids climb into the 2nd row bench seatof our 2000 minivan , and not have one of them go into the back......Can you see I am still struggling with the captains chairs? ;)

    Thank you!

    Oh and ps.....do you know how that works that if we find one on our own at another dealer and then take the internet price to our local dealer (we reall like them) I assume they choose to match it or not and if they don't, we would be it from the other dealer? What are dealer told us yesterday is that they have a network of dealers that they will swap cars from and that he can make the same deal with another dealers car just like one sitting in their lot? Is that true?
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    hdfatboy,

    One question (we forgot to look at this when we were looking at the platinum yesterday) but does the center console flip down flat at all? We were just wondering if we had the option of putting all 3 kids in the 3rd row and flipped down the 2 captains chairs if they fold flat into the floor along with the console? Thanks!
  • I'll try to answer these as accurately as I can.

    Question: "Shouldn't we go to the local dealer we are working with first to see if he will willing to give it to us for the 25% off MSRP before we get other offers from internet dealers?"
    Answer: I would try to get your local dealer to work with you if they can get you in the price and vehicle your looking for, but don't feel obligated....remember it's your hard earned money and don't feel guilty about paying less from another dealer if that's what happens. With the internet leveling the playing field they should all be able to give you the same price for the vehicle.

    Question: "Now when you went on Cars.com, did you then have to put in the radius of how many miles you want to be searched, then it comes up with the individual dealer and then you look at their inventory? or is there an easier way?"
    Answer: I first put in my zip code and then a radius search....I was willing to drive 500 or more miles to save a few thousand dollars. I did find the best deals in the country up your way...especially in DC/Maryland and had actually put a deal together with DARCARS, but had a dealer in KY match pricing at the last second and saved me the extra drive. It will not give you dealer listing, but will allow you to sort the findings by those closest to your zip and by price. Once you click the search button it will give you two options...one is to look at invoice pricing and the other is local inventory. I choose local inventory and then once it opened the page I clicked at the top on "Modify Search" right under the CARS.COM logo. It will open a drop down menu and if you look over to the top right of your page you will see a link called "More Search Options" select this and then you can put in Keywords like Limited, Platinum, Cassis Pearl, etc.... This will narrow things down for you and then once you the vehicle your looking for there will be a link on the page to "view dealer inventory", so you can see all they have. Dealers with only one or two Sequoias will be less willing to deal than those who have 10 or more.

    I wanted to comment on your post about the Satellite radio and iPod adapter. The factory installed XM/Sirus, will be hidden under the dash.....there is no factory XM/Sirus that is mounted where you can see the box......don't be fooled by this. It must be integrated behind the dash hidden from all view. As for the iPod adapter...you don't need it. The Sequoia comes with a "AUX" plug on the dash and you can simply plug in a 2.5mm jack into it and play your iPod through the AUX button on your stereo.....the 2.5mm cable will only cost you $10 max from walmart or someplace like that. Basically it's the headphone plug at both ends of the cable.....also called a Male-Male plug. The cost of the iPod interface is a rip off. One thing to note, If you plug your iPod up to the cigarette lighter for power it will put off a humming sound in the stereo.....as long as you operate your iPod/iPhone on it's own battery the sound will be flawless. I have used both my iPod and iPhone for music and it is perfect this way. You simply have to use the iPod itself to change the songs etc.......also set the volume of your iPod to about 50-75% of full, then adjust the volume on your stereo accordingly.

    I have had remote starts in the past and you will be fine to find an aftermarket one as long as it will work with your existing key fob.

    Dealers do have certain dealerships they trade with from time to time and in those cases they will do the swap with no extra costs. My dealer did this for me in KY because of the bench seat issue I mentioned earlier. Make sure they don't charge you to do the change....if they do it, they are simply trying to take you for more money. I would recommend finding a vehicle first and then ask the dealer if they will match pricing......get it in writing before you tell them where the vehicle is located.

    Good luck!
    Mike
  • If you look at the brochures it appears to show the console opening up more into something like a laptop table, etc.....Since I don't have mine installed yet I can't speak for sure, but I believe it folds flat....or as level as the seats when they fold down.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "Where did you purchase the controller to override the system? and can you post a link for me? I would like to do the same."

    Here's a thread outlining how I and others installed the override controller http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/tundra/110944-diy-all-nav-functions-all-ti- me-9/

    Here's the site where the controller can be bought (and instructions on how to make it if you're electrically inclined.) http://www.pinemountainfirearms.com/pmf/tundramods/NavSpeedPulse.aspx

    I'm very satisfied with this install. I installed a small switch in the cubby below the climate controls. The switch is completely out of sight yet easy to switch on when needed. 99% of the time the switch is in the off position. When I need to get a phone # from the phone book or use any of the features of the Nav unit while underway, I flip the switch on and everything works as it would if I were stopped (and if Toyota's attorbeys were alittle less anal about controlling everyone's life to the lowest common denominator).

    I'm really glad I installed the switch because if I hadn't I would have ripped the Nav unit out by now and thrown it on Ebay. Saved alot of money with a $50 device from Wilee.

    Good luck...its worth the effort.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "The looked on the computer and found us a dealership that had 4 of them in Maryland (we live in PA)....so that is what we did today. My husband drove it and we even had our 10 year old try and slide the seat forward. It really was a breeze. Just the extra step of folding it forward and then the next child getting in would have to slide it back to sit in it. (still trying to wrap my head around that as you can see). The one we looked at had the factory installed burl wood trim. It actually looked nice with the tan interior. It had everything in it except the laser cruise control which the dealership said is very rare to see that in a Sequoia. It had the remote start (which seems like a joke-wish there was an override for that one), skid grid and satellite radio. It had an MSRP of $60,000. "

    Buzzy, please be careful. This dealer sounds like he's trying to load a vehicle up and then find an unsuspecting buyer that doesn't know better and have them pay for the add on's whether they wanted them or not.

    There are lots of Platinums out there and there will be alot more as Spring rolls around. If you really have to buy now, please don't let the dealer know that.
    Here's a posting from another forum where I posted the exact steps and the actual email addresses for dealers (east of the Mississippi) so that you can let other dealers know of your interest without having to drive around. http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/sequoia/119932-how-get-great-deal-08-plati- num/ If you follow these steps, I'm very confident you'll have exactly what you want at the absolute best price beforte next weekend.

    Lastly, here's a Platinum spec sheet with the dealer's cost for a Platinum. You should absolutely pay nothing more than dealer's cost and probably at least $1000 less than cost in today's market before incentives are applied.
    http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/members/heatwave3/albums/08+platinum+sequo- ia+black-red+rock+combo-60/07-sequoia-platinum-invoice-1-259/
    http://www.tundrasolutions.com/forums/members/heatwave3/albums/08+platinum+sequo- ia+black-red+rock+combo-60/07-sequoia-platinum-invoice-2-258/

    For that dealer's platinum with 7000 miles on it, my guess is you shouldn't be paying over $40,000 for this used vehicle. Edmunds has dealer retail for a used Plat with 7K miles at around $43K retail, $40K direct sale. I wouldn't spend over $41k for that used Plat. if it helps.

    Good luck and let us know how things turn out.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "One question (we forgot to look at this when we were looking at the platinum yesterday) but does the center console flip down flat at all? We were just wondering if we had the option of putting all 3 kids in the 3rd row and flipped down the 2 captains chairs if they fold flat into the floor along with the console? Thanks! "

    Buzzy,
    The center console in the 2nd row has a lever on the back of the console that allows you to flip it forward so that it lies flat with the 2 captains chairs when they are folded down. With the 3rd row seats folded you will have a flat surface from the back of the front seats to the rear hatch.

    Regarding the dealership, I've bought a significant number of vehicles from all types of dealers over 30 years. To be honest, none of them should be trusted. They really only have one single goal in mind and that is to size up the customer and exact the highest potential price from that customer regardless of the cost of the vehicle.

    That's not a good or bad thing, its just the way it is. Therefore my recommendation is to let as many dealers as possible know the exact vehicle with options that you are interested in and have them send you their best price in writing by email. Those that refuse should be ingnored.

    If you then want to take the best price to your local dealer to see if they'll match it, then by all means test them out. In the end, you need to look out for your family and their finances, not the financial well-being of a particular auto dealership. Sounds harsh however there will likely be over 1000 auto dealerships that close shop this year and you need to be more focused on your own bank account than theirs. There's likely to be alot of shenanigans by dealers in the coming months as many of them reach their final financial gasps. Don't get caught up in one of their last ditch efforts to take advantage of buyers.

    My apologies in advance to any and all auto dealership employees that are offended however I say it like I see it and and unfortunately the seeds of demise of many dealerships were sown decades ago.
  • Thanks HDFATBOY!!

    Does this void the warranty on the vehicle in any way?

    I paid for the extended warranty and would hate to screw it all up.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    I'm probably not the one to go by regarding the impact on warranties. I do know that there are many state laws that prevent manufacturers from voiding warranties for unrelated changes that an owner might make to a manufacturer's product. Namely they can't refuse warranty work on the drivetrain because of upgrades or modifications to the Nav unit such as adding an XM tuner or the override controller. OTOH they could potentially withhold warranty work on the Nav if they believed an owner's add-ons intefered with the factory option. In the end, its easy enough to remove the controller if needed.

    I have an extended warranty from Toyota and was not concerned. Or at least my concern was overidden by my need to use the Nav unit while underway.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Thanks again as always hdfatboy...we are in no rush so we can take our time....we have a minivan that works fine (and a Camry and a Tundra and an old BMW) but we are really only trying to get a great deal and take advantage of the market. If we do not get a great deal we are holding off.

    I wish we played with that center console in the Platinum but when you fold it flat does it require that the chairs be folded at the same time ?(you mentioned that it folds flat with the captains chairs but does fold independently)

    We also failed to look at the Platinums cargo space the is left when the 2/3 part is folded down. We are going to go to our local dealer to look at that on the Limited as I am sure it is the same. We have a ton of luggage when we go on trips which is another issue to work through on the Platinum.

    I am so glad you explained the aftermarket Satellite so we know that getting that as a line item and finding one that has it is not important as it can be added later.

    Oh, and do you have laser cruise control? If not do you miss and if you do would you miss it if it wasn't there?

    thanks!
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Mike,

    I did find what you mentioned on Cars.com...wow! I really makes it much easier to see what is out there....bettter than how I was looking. It seems from what our local dealer is saying is that they have other Toyota dealerships they work with and trade...not sure how they do that on their end? We were just always under the understanding that dealers are able to make a better deal with what is sitting on their lot.

    Appreciate the info on the IPOD. I know not to look for this option or the satellite or remote start and to install it aftermarket. Such helpful info.....just have to settle on the Limited or Platinum....
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