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2013 and Earlier - Toyota Highlander Prices Paid and Buying Experience



  • In NJ, purchased it today for $34,035 OTD when you factor in trade-in of $13,000. Purchase price of $31,900 (including destination) before tax and fees. MSRP of $36,016. Thought it was a good price and fair trade-in. Was suppose to get a better deal but dealer gave me $500 lower on trade-in versus what was promised over the phone, but lower purchase price by $100.

    Have to say that even though I think I got a decent deal, it was an unpleasant buying experience overall. Had to fight for everything and was told different amounts over the phone. Basically, dealers overpromising and underdelivering on what they said. All somehow a ploy to get you in the store in my opinion.
  • Forgot to add that I had the option of 2.9% financing for up to 60 months or $500 rebate. Took the $500 and paid all cash.
  • I got my 2011 Cyprus Pearl Highlander Limited this afternoon at World Toyota in Atlanta, GA. The model we got has nav/rear DVD/tow with a sticker price of $41,448. We went in with USAA pricing of $35,800 and ended up getting it for $34,717.98 ($37.8k OTD). We financed for 0% over 36 months.

    It was a very pleasant buying experience, and I would recommend World Toyota for anyone in the greater Atlanta area.
  • I am shopping for 2011 Highlander Ltd in SE Michigan, looking to use 1.9% financing. I got a price quote from a local dealer thru USAA's car buying service. The quote is $35,529 for a limited, 4wd with JBL, special paint, tow pkg, mats, x-bars....which seems great.

    But I'm not technically a USAA member, their website allows you to log in and create an account to see pricing, and it sent me an email certificate for I get this from the dealer, or do I have to actually be a member and will he ask me for a membership number/card?
  • They don't require any sort of verification that you are a USAA member. You can get the same price at or if you feel more comfortable doing it through one of the other car buying services. Just remember that you can always negotiate lower than what the car buying services quote you, but it does give you a very good starting point (which is probably better than what most people end up paying).
  • pilotman5pilotman5 Posts: 20
    edited November 2010
    actually I just went through per your suggestion (since we have an AMEX) and it offered us the exact same price, $35,529. Edmunds suggested pricing is $35,471. These are both almost $1,000 over invoice, which seems fair to me.

    I might push for another $500 off, so its a $500 over invoice deal, but it seems pretty good pricing for a 2011 model that was just released, and frankly I don't want to spend my time over the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays haggling with multiple dealers in hopes of saving $500.

    So Suburban Toyota of Troy is offering the $35,529 price and the quote I got from Serra Toyota in Farmington Hills, Michigan was $37,289 for the exact same vehicle, which is $1,760 more!!!!!

    I'll let you know what I wind up with.
  • Pilotman5 -

    So, this is a front-wheel drive limited edition? Do you have NAV etc. on this? Let me know how it's loaded and the price that you paid. I may have to get the car from out of state...

    Not sensing that the houston area dealers are willing to negotiate much. Also, any financing specials on the 2011 Highlander?


  • my quotes are all for 4WD, not FWD Highlanders.

    I'm not having much luck getting any better pricing. There is $500 cash back for 1.9% financing for up to 60 months good through 11/30.

    Suburban Toyota of Troy has two limiteds in stock, a black and silver.

    The black has NAV and Rear Entertainment, the quote they gave me was MSRP 42,495 and sell price of $38,462

    The silver has NAV (not sure what else) MSRP $41,039 sell price of $37,316.

    I'm not interested in the NAV so that's why I'm posting these for you. Good luck.
  • I am about to go to world toyato this weekend to lease the same highlander. why did you get 4wd instead of 2wd for atlanta? isnt the gas mileage a little worse.

  • Ok, can someone please explain this to me:

    USAA, AMEX car buying service have MSRP of $37,155 and Invoice of $34,359 for 4WD Limited.

    Edmunds has MSRP of $36,345 and Invoice of $32,817.

    What gives? Am I missing something?

    Toyota website says MSRP is $36,345 and so does the vehicle sticker, so I'm guessing USAA/AMEX car buying numbers are just plain wrong, and its nearly a $1,500 difference in invoice....????!!!!
  • lorenc1, I think you are getting myself and Pilotman mixed up. I bought mine in Atlanta (@World Toyota) and did not get the AWD. Pilotman is looking in Michigan where the need for AWD is much greater. I did get nav/rear dvd/tow for $34,717.98 ($37.8k OTD). It had a sticker price of $41,448. We financed for 0% over 36 months.

    Pilotman, I think the difference in invoice pricing comes from edmunds not including destination and various dealer fees into their calculation. You can see what USAA/Amex includes in their "invoice" price at

    I had the dealer show me the invoice and it lined up with the USAA/Amex pricing almost exactly. Can you get your dealer to show you the invoice?
  • pilotman5pilotman5 Posts: 20
    edited November 2010
    Ok, just keep in mind that USAA/Amex car buying service gives you a different invoice price as compared to Edmunds.

    A 2011 Highlander Limited 4WD invoice price on Edmunds is: $32,817 + $2,188 (Nav) + $176 (tow) + $810 (destination) = $36,479.

    Same vehicle on USAA/Amex is: $34,359 + $2,188 (Nav) + $176 (tow) = $36,723. USAA/Amex does not break out destination fee of $810, but something is wrong....granted in this example the difference is $244, but in my example above its much greater.

    Moreover, the $244 difference obviously isn't due to the destination fee alone....must be some other, unknown dealer fees being added in.

    There is a $1,542 difference in invoice pricing, and if we assume the USAA invoice is higher because it includes destination, that can't be the only answer, since destination is $ if we add $810 to USAA price, the invoice price is STILL NEARLY $732 MORE then Edmunds....!?!!

    That's fine, it gets me close enough, but just beware there is some missing data with Edmunds and USAA....
  • pilotman5pilotman5 Posts: 20
    edited November 2010
    ok, I'm finally done. Here's my deal

    2011 Highlander LTD 4WD with mats, special paint (blizzard pearl), mudguards, navigation and tow for $37,076, not including tax and doc fees.

    So, according to USAA/Amex car buying service, invoice for this vehicle is $37,178 so I am getting it for $102 less invoice (keep in mind I am not including $500 cash rebate, because I am doing 1.9% financing instead).

    According to Edmunds, invoice is $36,446 so I am getting it for $630 above invoice. Either way, its a great deal, and I'm very happy....

    I tend to think the USAA/Amex invoice pricing is suspect, because if I took the $500 rebate I would be buying at $602 below dealer invoice.....

    Good luck everyone.
  • I looked at the MSRP of highlanders on World Toyato lot in atlanta and got mixed up. How should i approach getting your deal since we want a highlander with the same mrsp give or take $100. I do not know about USAA pricing. would saying another customer just got this deal work?
  • steven1357steven1357 Posts: 69
    edited November 2010
    I think (?) that the differences are due to what each pricing service thinks that the Dealer ought to make in profit (advertising reserve, etc., etc.). So, they add these additional amounts into the "invoice" price. So, if you pay above the "invoice" price, you are just adding that much more profit that goes to the dealer.

    The "invoice" price that the dealer shows you is not his true actual cost for that vehicle. It includes some amounts that are just pure profit to the dealer.

    I have not seen the Edmunds pricing method in a while. But as I remember it back when I bought my 2010 Highlander Limited in late December 2009, it did include some of those amounts.

    What you need to do is get the actual MSRP on the vehicle & options it includes from the Toyota website & list those in 1 column. Then get the "actual cost" for each of those items from someone independent (I used the Consumer Reports pricing service). To that actual cost, you can add a reasonable profit for the dealer. That is the purchase price you should start at.

    Instead of comparing what you paid to the "invoice" price, you should compare what you paid to the MSRP. The smaller the amount you paid is when compared to the MSRP, the better deal you got.

    On December 23rd 2009 I paid right at $ 5000.00 less than the MSRP for my 2010 Highlander Limited 2WD. It did not have the Nav system nor towing package.

    That purchase date was not intended to fall just before Christmas. It just happened that my negotiations ended on that date when I got the price I wanted.
  • why would USAA/Amex and Edmunds include an unknown, built in profit in their invoice pricing?

    How do you know your Consumers Report pricing is accurate? I am a subscriber and also used that service, it their numbers were almost identical to Edmunds.

    Comparing what you paid to MSRP is much less accurate then what you paid over invoice.

    I always offer a certain amount over invoice, period. I don't care if I get a car for $10k under MSRP, as long as I know where I stand relative to invoice that is all that matters.

    Sometimes you get below invoice with rebates, etc.

    Are you implying that Edmunds and USAA's invoice pricing are inaccurate and/or include dealer profit? Why would they do that? They are as independent as CR.
  • Just go in with the USAA or AMEX print out. If you don't qualify for either of those programs and don't feel comfortable trying to use those to get your pricing, I think you will be offered the same price if you go through and it is available to the public. I am not sure if I am allowed to recommend specific salesmen, but I worked with someone that shares a name with the eldest daughter on the simpsons at world toyota and she was very easy to deal with.

    Pilotman, I agree with you about the invoice pricing shown on usaa. According to usaa the vehicle I got has an invoice of 37.5k and the sold it to me for 34.7k (before tax/tags)? There is no way unless toyota is providing some major incentives to dealerships. I am fine with anything < $1000 over invoice and I still feel that I got a really good deal.
  • Just bought 2011 Highlander FWD v6 Limited with following options:
    navigation, towing package, side molding, premium carpets and vehicle shield package. The MSRP was $39,493. The invoice price came to $36,464. Dealer showed me the invoice. I paid $36K with 0% financing for 36 months - Approximately $450 less than invoice.

    Compared the invoice prices at Edmunds, & KBB & & invoice adds $1133 as regional marketing fees while other websites don't include this amount to the invoice price. I tried my best to deduct the regional ad fees from the dealer invoice without much luck. The dealer is Charles Maund Toyota at Austin TX. Haggled with several Toyota dealers around Austin. Most of them were saying $500 to $750 over the invoice. Finally, got a good deal with Charles Maund Toyota. Hope this helps for those of you who are still shopping for a HL.
  • mdp5mdp5 Posts: 1
    edited November 2010
    I'm negotiating a deal for a new HL Limited RWD with Nav in Arizona. MSRP is $38786 plus tax and title. Invoice is $35093. The price I am at is $33900 which includes $1000 cash back for not using their financing (which makes no sense to me). How am I doing?

    Also, do you know what the new Toyota deal will be in December? Does it make sense to wait?
  • FWD = is that front wheel drive or four wheel drive?
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