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

24

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  • 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....
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "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)"

    Yes, the 2nd row center console in the Plat can be folded flat independent of folding the Captain's chairs down. In fact, on long trips if we stop for a snack or lunch to go, the center console is folded flat and used as a table top. Its actually designed with shallow compartments to keep meals/snacks on the surface from sliding off during braking or turns. Additionally, the cupholder divider is removable from the front of the center console so that it can be placed on top of the center console after its been flipped into a table...rather nice design.

    "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."

    We had a similar concern coming from a Suburban where there was alot more space behind the 3rd row seat. We've taken our daughter back to college many times and typically fold either the 1/3 or the 2/3 side of the 3rd row seat down to hold more stuff on the return to school while still letting my son sit in the 3rd row section that remains up. Its worked well for us.

    "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."

    Glad to help. No sense in giving the dealer $800 when you can install an XM tuner for under $300. If the dealer offers to install the tuner for $400, its probably worth it not to have to install it yourself.

    "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?"

    Interesting...this was the only option I didn't get and it was by design although I could easily see the benefit of laser cruise. I didn't get it because I tow a boat alot in the summer. I had heard from others that they were concerned that while towing in traffic you could find yourself exiting traffic to a ramp and then the laser thinking the road was clear and unexpectedly increase speed to the pre-set. Not a good situation while towing and I elected not to get this option. That being said there have been many times on long trips that I wished I had the laser cruise to avoid the braking and cruise re-setting steps.

    Hope that helps.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,614
    i would look for a loaded low mileage used suv, there are tons out there.
    if you don't like it, maybe you lose 10k swapping it.
    on any new one you will lose 20k.
    plus with the kids beating it up, you won't be as bothered about it.
    i recommend having one of the kids in the 3rd row.
    keeps the peace.
    if you need more room for vacation. buy a hitch mount or rooftop cargo box.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    Glad to help. No sense in giving the dealer $800 when you can install an XM tuner for under $300. If the dealer offers to install the tuner for $400, its probably worth it not to have to install it yourself.

    hdfatboy,
    The line item (MSPR) cost on the XM radio in the window was $449.00 for the one we saw that had it in it. So I would think that having them add it on for $449 if it didn't have it in it would be okay for the labor and time it would take us to do it. Is it the same system if they do it or the one you did aftermarket? If it the same, I would probably think having them do it is okay.

    My husband and I talked about it all again last night.....he is leaning toward either waiting for something that comes out with everything we want (Platinum with bench seats) but if he would have to buy right now he agrees with most here that the Platinum is workable with the kids. (not preferable but workable). His concern is that he does not want to spend the money on an SUV and not have enough cargo space with the one child in the 3rd row that when we go on vacation we have to put a cargo bin on our roof. Then we might as well keep our minivan where we do not need to do that now. He also is not crazy about the idea of having a lot of aftermarket work for him to do.....he is an electrician so it is easy for him, he really just doesn't like the idea of a lot of fooling around in the dash. (it would be for the remote start, navigation bypass and the satellite radio maybe)

    I am still leaning toward the bench seats and giving up the platinum goodies for the sake of being easier with the in and out with the kids and not loosing the back cargo. If one of the kids wants to get away from the others by sitting in the 3rd row they still can. I called a few of my friends yesterday who have 3 kids and there opinion in mainly the bench seat unless the captains chairs have a walkthough in between the two captains chairs but since the center console is there, that is not possible. We are going to go to our local dealer and look at the cargo space that is left with one of the seats in use......and I can't help being nervous with one of the kids being back there for safety reasons on a long trip. There are not any government studies on the safety of that 3rd row for what I am reading.....Sorry for rambling outloud....thanks for listening and all the valuable input.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "The line item (MSPR) cost on the XM radio in the window was $449.00 for the one we saw that had it in it. So I would think that having them add it on for $449 if it didn't have it in it would be okay for the labor and time it would take us to do it. Is it the same system if they do it or the one you did aftermarket? If it the same, I would probably think having them do it is okay."

    Buzzy, if the xm tuner is already in a vehicle on the lot at the $449 MSRP its probably worth it. However if you find the vehicle you want and decide to add the xm tuner at a later time, I thought it was worth letting you know that most dealers charge $600-800 to add XM later. I didn't add xm when I purchased the vehicle because XM and Sirius were going through a corporate merger and I didn't know what changes might happen to the tuners. In the end, it was easy enough to add however for $449 its worth having the dealer handle it.

    Regarding the seating in the Platinum versus the Ltd, ultimately only you and your family can make the decision that best meets your needs. All depends on you priorities and budget. For my family, the heated second row seats, a/c front seats, TEMS adjustable suspension, 2 position memory driver seat and the Red Rock leather interior easily outweighed the loss of the 2nd row bench seat. Since you can only get these options in the Platinum, then its a relatively easy decision to make. If the options above are less important than the 2nd row bench, then its best to save the money and get a fully loaded LTD which will include every option that's in the Plat other than those noted (plus laser cruise is not available in the LTD if that option was of interest).

    Hopefully that helps in your decision-making.
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    hdfatboy,

    Everything you have answered has helped us with our decision making.....wouldn't have gotton this far without you!! :)
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    For my family, the heated second row seats, a/c front seats, TEMS adjustable suspension, 2 position memory driver seat and the Red Rock leather interior easily outweighed the loss of the 2nd row bench seat

    another question that came to mind...I see that rear height control suspension is listed as a option that can be added...is that the same as TEMS? and I know you mentioned that the laser cruise is not available on the LTD but also notice it is listed as a option.. do you know if it is uninstallable in the LTD even though it is listed as an option?Thanks as always
  • buzzy8buzzy8 Posts: 31
    oops, I meant to say installable in the LTD, not unistallable....
  • Guys...not to counteract anyone, but I ran into many dealers willing to install the Toyota XM receiver for $500. It varied a little between $450 and $550. In the end I purchased the unit myself from Toyota for $349 and asked for the installation instructions (TIS) from the service department. I then took it to one of my trusted audio shops and they quoted me $75 to put it in......well worth the savings in my frustration and time to do the work myself. My local dealer quoted me 2.5 hours of install time at $95 and hour, so that's why I went with an independent shop.

    Another thing I have mentioned previously was that I went with the captains chairs and purchased the center console for second row........since this is an after thought the truck did not come from factory ready for console to be installed......this is what I have run into on it (be wary if you decide to go this route)
    First....there are no mounting bosses under the carpet to screw the console into, so it will have to be drilled custom.

    Second....the captains seats in LTD have arm rests where the console is located meaning that you either leave the console out or have the console installed and you remove the armrests to accommodate the fit.

    I'm going to have the armrests removed and see how it looks. I will have to make sure there is a plug to cover the hole from the armrest bolt and will post some pics after I get it done.

    I just didn't figure on this amount of extra work after the fact and I'm getting frustrated.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "I see that rear height control suspension is listed as a option that can be added...is that the same as TEMS? and I know you mentioned that the laser cruise is not available on the LTD but also notice it is listed as a option.. do you know if it is uninstallable in the LTD even though it is listed as an option?"

    The rear suspension height control and TEMS adjustable suspension are 2 separate things. The rear height control is optional on the LTD and standard on the platinum. This feature can raise the rear of the vehicle upto 3/4 inch from normal or lower it down 3/4in from normal. However the vehicle will automatically return to normal height as soon as the vehicle exceeds 18mph. I see this feature as having limited use unless you are towing a trailer.

    If you tow, then you can align the tow ball of the Sequoia to a trailer by observing it in the rear view camera on the Nav unit. As you approach the trailer hitch, you can lower the rear of the vehicle and align the ball with the trailer receiver and then raise the rear of the vehicle to raise the trailer ball into the trailer receiver. Quite trick and if you have done alot of trailer in the past, you'll really understand how great a feature this is. Once you drive away, the vehicle will automatically put the ride height back to normal. I'm not sure of other circumstances when the manual ride height adjustment would be helpful.

    TEMS adjustable suspension is an entirely different feature and is exclusive to the Platinum and cannot be added to the LTD. This suspension uses entirely different shocks and electronic sensors to adjust the comfort of the suspension. I wasn't sure at first if a 6000lb suv would really benefit from this feature however I'm really glad I have it.

    Essentially this feature provides for the suspension to have 3 Setting. "Comfort" "Normal" & " Sport". I find I much prefer the firmer suspension of Sport for local roads where there are more curves and I prefer the comfort of Normal for long highway trips. I find that the Comfort setting is to "soft" of a ride for my taste.

    I've read where othere's that have tried to compare the non-TEMS to the TEMS suspension found the LTD/SR5 to have the factory suspension set somewhere between Comfort and Normal. Based on that, I am particularly glad I have the TEMS since the majority of my driving is in Sport mode.
  • hdfatboyhdfatboy Posts: 324
    "Another thing I have mentioned previously was that I went with the captains chairs and purchased the center console for second row........since this is an after thought the truck did not come from factory ready for console to be installed......this is what I have run into on it (be wary if you decide to go this route)
    First....there are no mounting bosses under the carpet to screw the console into, so it will have to be drilled custom."


    Are you trying to add an aftermarket console to the second row of your LTD or the console from the Platinum?

    I've not heard of anyone that was able to install the Platinum 2nd row console into the LTD. In addition to the missing brackets, have you decided what you're going to do with the 2 holes you're going to have in the front of the console? These holes represent where the switches are installed in the console from the factory to adjust the heat for the Platinum 2nd row Captain Chairs.

    My guess is that these "switch holes" are cut at the factory, since the switches are wired with the seats at the factory. Since there are no heated 2nd row seats in the LTD, I'm unsure how the switch holes in the console will be handled...maybe dummy switches or some type of plug/cover for the hole?
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