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Toyota Solara



  • The styling of the 2004 Solara has been described as similar to the 2003 Lexus SC430.

    Is it also suggested the dimensions will change?

    Per the Edmunds comparison section:

    The 2003 Solara has an overall length and wheel base of 191.5 and 105.1 inches, respectively. It seats 5 with rear leg room of 35.2 inches and 13.8 cubic feet of luggage space.

    The 2003 Lexus SC430 has an overall length and wheel base of 177.8 and 103.1 inches, respectively. It seats 4 with rear leg room of 27.1 inches and 8.8 cubic feet of luggage space.

    We apparently will know much more later this month.
  • One poster suggested it looks like the SC430, if you squint. I wonder if thats like last call in bar/nightclub lighting, after a few drinks???;0)
  • rubicon52rubicon52 Posts: 191
    I have owned 2nd generation (1988), 3rd generation (1995), and 4th generation (2001) Camrys (OK, the 2001 is a Solara). The 3rd generation Camry (92-96) was my favorite. Nice styling and quality materials in the interior. Mechanically, all generations of Camry are so good it's tough to make distinctions. In 1997 I could definitely see the decontenting.
  • pbcpbc Posts: 44
    Question for you Canadians or Northern American Solara owners. I'm going to have to replace my tires by the end of the summer (now have 75000 km on them).

    Looking for a tire with better handling than the current Michelins, but winter performance is a must as well!

    Any opinions out there?


  • because of the limited tires that fit the OEM rims, many posters have upsized. Many reported that the used Dunlaps. IMO thy are probably as good as the Michelins, and 1/2 the price. Michelins have a tendancy to start out as good tires for the first few thousand miles and then lose almost all wet/snow grip. I am a fan of the "You have a lot riding on your tires" commercials, and try to not let cheapness be my weakness.
  • Purchased yesterday, Toyota Certified used 2000
    Solara, subject to inspection. Mechanic said "good mechanical condition". Body shop said it had extensive Bondo repairs. I checked 128-point inspection list and it does NOT cover body repairs. Maybe they need a 129-point inspection. Caveat emptor!
  • Thats too bad. Toyota is not know for their customer service, consistantly ranking at the bottom of the J.D. Power Awards, so good luck. The current Solara is a dent magnet, so perhaps thats all your bondo whoas.
  • tk865tk865 Posts: 52
    cover frame damage (even if it's been repaired), as well as damge that (and I'm not as certain here) exceeds 3 body panels... Everything I'm about to say assumes no frame damage. If there is frame damage, dump it quick! You said the contract was subject to your inspection... Did you get a "too good to be true" deal? If so, the dealer probably sold it cheap b/c the wanted to get rid of the "bondo car." If the agreed price was fitting for a perfect car, and you still like the car, try to work some more price out in light of the bondo. If the UCM missed it, the egg on his face will likely lead to a better price so he can move his mistake and not explain to the GM why the car came back. Terry in "Real-World Used Car Values" could probably tell you the right amount of price hit it should take. Just tell him where the bondo is, and how much of it there is. I've seen some people who are really picky about their cars have bondo'd repair work to fix shopping cart dings, hail damage, etc. See if based on location you can come up with a likely cause. If it's all in one place, a minor collision seems likely - especially a parking blunder (into a pole, etc). If it covers the car, top, sides, front, back.... Well.... Ex-wife and a baseball bat? Hail? Had rocks chucked at it? I guess what I'm saying in a long and windy way is that a car can have paint work and still be a great car, even worth certifying. A car with frame damage, or other serious collision damage, should not be certified. Has the window glass in the car been replaced?
  • maemarkmaemark Posts: 11
    I have a 2001 Ragtop, 22K mostly smiling miles.

    I recently asked the local Toyota shop about a full transmission service including replacing all ATF with a synthetic. The reply was, don't do it. I got some story about the fact that Toyota offered a "partial synthetic" in the 2003 model year, and that this led to burned clutches and malfunctioning valve bodies.

    I really believe in Synthetic lubes, and cannot believe that there is no acceptable replacement for the Dextron II/III used as OEM.

    Anyone (Cliffy?) have any advice on this? I only want to drive this rig about another 150K miles, so I thought the Synthetic ATF was the way to go.
  • Relax, it's a Toyota! If all you want is 150k more out of your car, you should be able to put generic tranny fluid in her! Remember the car's mechanical components are engineered to last, and I believe the trannies come outa' Japan, already built. Maybe the car sales guy in the forum can verify it.

    Anyone think that Toyota's brand of tranny fluid is acceptable. My baby just got 45k tranny service for $100.95 American, and it only seemed to take about 2 minutes after oil change, and a defective $60 lamp clamp fixed. Jiffy lube would have charged $45.00. Considering I don't do any of the work myself, did I get my huevoes yanked? $82.00 hour labor?

    Has anyone heard of a story coming out of Milwaukee, WI, that Toyota Motor Corp., put a computer virus into a diagnostic program, to currupt various Toyota/Lexus computers, to get back at anyone that called Toyota, Torrance, CA, to complain about the sludge problem of yester-year?
  • maui2k3maui2k3 Posts: 13
    I currently own a 1999 Mercury Cougar and have been looking for a new coupe but have not been blown away by the current crop of coupes in the 25-32k range.

    The Mazda RX-8 is cool, but I am skeptical about the Rotary engine and no trunk space and low amt of torque.

    The Accord Coupe is just not in the picture - very unimpressed with the styling.

    G35 Coupe is a possibility, but still somewhat above the range I want to spend since the price is roughly 35k with the premium pkg and auto.

    Acura CL has a nice engine, but very bland styling so that is out...

    Already had a Mustang and the new ones are not out for another year plus.

    So my best hope for a new coupe in the range I want to spend is the Solara. Does anyone know if they will add more HP to the Solara than the 4 door Camry? Better handling and performance? Better interior than the 4 door Camry?

    I know these answers will likely come this Thursday, but this car definitely has my attention if they gave it a sc430 type look...
  • rubicon52rubicon52 Posts: 191
    Can someone confirm or deny what maemark (post 2669) has heard about synthetic ATF being unsuitable for a Solara automatic transmission. Just replaced the factory ATF with synthetic ATF in my Solara. Thanks.
  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    I can't believe not a single spy pic has been leaked. The unveiling is three days away! This is amazing!
  • I had not given them a deposit so I just returned the car, following the advice of the body shop.

    Where is "Real-World Used Car Values"?

  • tk865tk865 Posts: 52
    ditto on the spy pics..... best cover up ever. Real-World USed Car Values is under the "Smart Shopper" section of the boards. Also, if the body shop thought the damage was severe enough to merit returning it, good deal. I know we have had a car or two we bought at auction in good faith, and either found frame damage during the inspection, or had it found afterwards by the customer. It shouldn't be a problem for the dealer, because most auctions will have to buy the car back from the dealer. All the dealer loses is the time. (And possibly a sale if the customer feels lied to). Sometimes, professionals though they may be, they can miss something on a car. If you're a student of human facial expressions, you simply HAVE to see the look on the face of a UCM who just realised that "Lo-mile Cream puff" he bought from Grandma Kettle for over book has frame damage. File that one under "Sometimes the dog gets bitten."
  • I'm not sure this has been mentioned or not but it appears that the 04 Solara coupe will be announced this week and be at dealers sometime May/June. Still don't know about the convertible yet though.

    First runs are going to be V6's in SE and SLE trim.
  • Kirstie@EdmundsKirstie@Edmunds Posts: 10,675

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  • coolguyky7coolguyky7 Posts: 932
    If the Solara is half as impressive as the 2004 Prius, which was unveiled today, it will be a great car!

    BTW...the new Prius is absolutely amazing in its design. It seems Toyota has beat GM to electronically controlled systems that GM shows off on its Hywire car.
  • Here it is: - =20030417a

    Definately see alot of the Lexus SC but yet some Pontiac too. Holding out on my opinion till I see more photos.
  • looks like a cross between a Pontiac Sunfire and a 2nd gen Hyundai Tiburon. i'll have to see one up close to give it a thumbs up or thumbs down.
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