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2004-2009 Toyota Prius Prices Paid and Buying Experience



  • Thanks, CK! I'm in NorCal, and was told that only package #2 is available. That's #1 plus Vehicle Stability Control. I don't want any junk either, especially not outrageously priced floor mats. I asked the broker already to take it off; he says that's the way the car comes from the manufacturer. I'll ask him again, not so nicely this time, if I have to.

    Unclear whether he's being straight with me. Why would MSRP be listed as $22,175 and THEN there be an additional $199 on top of it? I'm all confused. :(
  • Thank you, Virgil. I'm getting that sense of crookedness from the broker fer sure, and unfortunately I've already signed up with him and there's no going back. Other co-workers have had a pleasant time with the broker, so I'm a bit disappointed I'm having to negotiate with him like I would with a dealership. (Avoiding negotiations was the whole POINT of going with him!) Argh.

    Yeah, on Toyota's site, the MSRP doesn't list floor mats, so I don't understand what the deal is. Good idea to print it all out and pay the broker a little visit.
  • Well, unfortunately that is the case. The carpets are added at the port of entry as a CF option, only there is nothing optional about the option and you can't delete it. You can only refuse to pay for it. I have a Prius and I like the vehicle but Toyota's marketing ploys are nauseating compared to the very straightforward marketing by Honda. So, it is an unoptional option and it is not a part of MSRP. They cost $186 in 2006 and apparently they have been bumped to $199 for 2007. The other options that you could not unoption in 2006 was the rear bumper applique and the locking wheel nuts. What is annoying about the carpets is that they are of mediocre quality. Consequently, I made the dealer supply free Toyota black rubber mats that are designed for the Prius and are of excellent quality. They run about $100 at the dealer parts desk if you order them subsequent to the purchase.

    So, the bottom line is that it's a scam, but as scams go these days, it's a relatively benign one. Grin and bear it.
  • Ahhh, thanks for the insight, cruising. So this is a Toyota scam, not one being perpetrated by my local auto broker? Strangely enough, that makes me feel better. :) I'll make a bid for some extras then, to make up for the insane mats. I appreciate all the help in getting the true info!
  • Ok...I'm confused.

    In my research I have found that the matts, window tint, toyoguard, interior lighting, etc. are NOT included in BASE MSRP, but are added to MSRP just like the broker said.

    If I search inventory on Toyota, I can find them with certain accessories from the factories, others without. The basic matt ($199) seems to be on a large percentage, some including the trunk matt (MSRP $249).

    Check out the Toyota page and you'll see that the 100 or so vehicles that come up in your region on a certain package level vary several hundred in MSRP.

    Am I missing something???
  • Now I'm confused too, Jonathan! When I "build a Toyota" on the Toyota Web site, the base MSRP is consistently $22,175. How do I check inventory on vehicles coming into my region?

    I've been told by one dealer that Toyota just sends them all cars, of various types and packages and colors. It's up to the dealer to find buyers. In other words, it's not like the dealers can specifically tell the company what orders they have. Maybe Toyota randomly puts accessories in vehicles and tells the dealers, "Take it as it is. That's what you're getting." And then the dealerships have to, well, deal with it.

  • ck90211ck90211 Posts: 129
    I second Cruising's opinion on Toyota marketing, especially in CA. In SoCal everything has floor mat (some with added Cargo net), but in NoCal just about every Prius has floormats and bumper applique built into the price. I also tried to price a 2007 (on Toyota website), and noticed SoCal buyers must buy higher pkgs than NoCal buyers.

    For the hack of it, I plugged in different zip codes, and found that Toyota drew a line somewhere between Bakersfield and Visalia. If you are north of it, you get screwed with more mandatory options, but cheaper package cars. If you are south of it, you get stuck with less mandatory options, but more useless BLING's.

    I had thought Toyota dealers are the only slime. Now I think Toyota marketing is slime too.
  • Hey, folks. First, thanks to all the posters. I am a newbie and learned a lot reading this stuff over the last couple months. I just today picked up my '07 Barcelona Red Pkg 2 from Grossinger City Toyota in Chicago. Paid MSRP minus $200 Costco discount. They gave me very fair value for my trade. Didn't try to stick me with extras. They knew I wanted it by Sept. 30 and they busted their humps to get it for me. Red was my third choice but now that I have it in my garage, I really like it. I'm looking forward to applying all of the mileage "tricks" folks in the forums have talked about.

    Anyway, just letting everyone know it is possible to get an '07 by the "deadline."
  • Let me reproduce what I am seeing...

    Go to
    Click Build & Price and use 33781 as ZIP
    Click Top Right 2007 Prius (Bottom is touring)
    Next Step
    Package 6
    View Inventory

    At this moment I see 26 cars in the SE USA.
    Notice the spread on into each and see that the reason is the features...
    Some have matts, some don't. If they do, they are an addition over base MSRP.

    See what I mean? Seems Toyota predetermines what accessories it will have from the factory...(or at least some of them)
  • Hey, Mike

    Congratulations on your '07! Is it a Touring? It sounds you got a fair price for it; good to know about the Costco discount. Thanks for sharing that. Can you recommend the person who you have closed the deal with? We are also in Chicago and are looking for a Red Prius with navi.

  • riposteriposte Posts: 160
    South East Toyota is the distributor for the south east (obviously, right?). They are allowed to offered different option packages, and even different brands of wheel upgrades than non-SET zones. I believe the pricing is even different in some cases.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    This is an excellent example of why you have to be cautious with the Edmunds TMV figures on what people are paying for their vehicles. Their TMV for the Prius shows anywhere from $1500 to $2000 over MSRP. But you sure don't see anyone involved with these forums paying that inflated price.
  • ck90211ck90211 Posts: 129
    Mike, Congrats on new car. Red is gorgeous, and more visible on windy, wintery day in Chicago. You are the first one I have seen who got a 07 in Midwest. Most others who gotten 07 are in OR and CA. So it's an encouraging sign for others hoping to get an 07 before 9/30 east of Mississippi.
  • All:

    AFter compromising on both package and color, I finally have my Prius. I ended up going with a local dealer who gave me the best deal on my trade-in. I know the salesman too. I also got the car in time to beat the Sept. 30th deadline. Yay!

    I dropped by the dealer on my way back from an appointment on Monday and he had one, but it was marked sold. We put an '07 "on hold" for me (arriving in 6 to 8 weeks), but then he called me that afternoon and said the 2006 was now available if I wanted it. It was red and one package higher than I wanted, but I was sick of waiting and really wanted to beat the Sept. 30th deadline.

    I picked it up Tuesday night and so far it has been perfect. I've never had a car with so many cool features. It is the Barcelona Red, package HI. I got it for $27,462.13. That includes the sales tax. The MSRP was $26,321.

    I believe the car mats that everyone is talking about were fairly non-negotiable. I didn't even try. They gave me such a good deal on my trade-in, I didn't figure it was worth it for a couple hundred dollars. :)

    So far, the only annoying thing is the backup beep when the car is in reverse. It is pretty loud. I'm hoping there is a way to turn it off, or at least down. I'll be checking my manual when I get a chance. Still haven't programmed my garage door opener into the rear view mirror controls yet either. Way cool.

    I'm still learning, but so far the controls seem pretty intuitive.

  • All:

    Just wanted to add that this is what one of the dealers told me when I was complaining about the availability of colors, packages, some dealers having alot available, others having none.

    He said that for the Midwest "region" for the next quarter, only a little over 1,000 Priuses have been allocated. Only about 136 of those have the HG package I was looking for. I also originally wanted Seaside Pearl. Don't know how many of those were that color. He also said that Toyota customers were mostly conservative (really?) and blue was the least popular color. He was probably just trying to talk me into a different color. He also said that dealers have to "earn" allocation of Priuses. This particular dealer had just been allocated 20 and he said that was more than any other dealer in the area. He also said the people were coming from Chicago to buy at their dealer. Don't they all think they are #1? LOL.

    Just thought I'd throw that info out there.

  • HI! I just bought my first brand new car, and its a silver 2006 Prius with the Navigation/Bluetooth package. I must say, as my first new car buying experience, I am now extremely disappointed. I am in the Baltimore/Annapolis area. The salesman was very nice to me the day I came in to look at a used prius on the lot, then pressured me into putting a sizable deposit down. The car came in and they were very pushy about how I should buy the extended warranty and lojack, even though I insisted beforehand I didn't want it. Anyway, although I have called with several phone calls since, with questions, the original salesman is now cold and rude!

    If I loved the car, this would not matter so much. But, I am embarrassed to say, I think I made a mistake. I know every one loves these cars, and I am very much concerned for the environment, but I do not feel comfortable driving this car. I would really like some feedback on this.

    I find this Prius does not handle well at highway speeds, the steering seems extremely loose, some of the dash lights seem to go on mid-drive for no apparent reason. In addition, I have to have the air conditioning on non-stop because the air inside the car is always humid! It has been i the 60's down here lately, not hot. I can't figure it out!

    Conclusion: I am unhappy with this Prius, and I wish I had not bought it. After only 150 miles, I want to either return it to the dealer, where I will probably lose 5,000$, or sell it with an ad.

    Any suggestions, advice, comments? Please??

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    Sell it yourself. Give a sob story about being shipped overseas for 3 years. You may get your money out of it. You will lose the tax credit. There is some stipulation in the tax code about keeping the car for 3 years I believe it is. Maybe you can trade it for a Camry Hybrid and not take such a big loss.
  • Gagrice: Thanks for the input! I'll put an ad up today. Re the tax credit: If you have to keep the car for three years to get the tax credit, does that mean you have to wait three years to report it as a credit? If not, how would they know that you are going to keep it for three years into the future, you know?
  • Gagrice: Thanks for the input! I'll put an ad up today. Re the tax credit: If you have to keep the car for three years to get the tax credit, does that mean you have to wait three years to report it as a credit? If not, how would they know that you are going to keep it for three years into the future, you know

    Precisely... although there is a requirement on paper that you retain ownership of the vehicle for three years, you receive the tax credit when you file your CY2006 return and unless they put a tickler question on your subsequent returns, there is no protocol in place that would feed subsequent sale information into the Infernal Ripoff Service.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    It would be difficult for them to know if you sold the hybrid before 3 years. One of those things to not get caught doing.
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