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2004-2009 Toyota Prius Prices Paid and Buying Experience

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  • rcinmdrcinmd Posts: 139
    I am probably a touch older than the average Prius buyer, or maybe not....I drove the Touring and base back-to-back, and within a nanosecond realized it was the Touring for me, mirroring your observations. Also the Touring is much more planted on the highway, showing absolutely no signs of being blown about by trucks either on the interstate, or when passing in opposite directions on a two lane road.

    This is my first automatic trans vehicle in 35 years....it's nice, but I do miss that involvement. I have my Vanagon, Alfa, and Fiat though if I want to stir gears.
  • doris5doris5 Posts: 3
    Would you let me know where you purchased your 08 Touring #6 with mats? Thanks. I'd be happy to send you my e-mail address.
  • prusaprusa Posts: 43
    This will be my first automatic (working on a good deal at this time) and I can't wait to drive it. By the way, how much did you pay for your Touring Pkg. 6? I would like to know if the internet manager is really giving me a good deal. Can you tell me what is rear bumper applique? I am a women who doesn't know much about cars.
    PRUSA
  • Travelled 1,000 miles from Tampa to Falls Church, Virginia to get exactly the color and equipment I wanted. I wanted Package 6 in Silver. Dealt with Yaw Aryirebi via telephone first at Bill Page Toyota. Nice guy to deal with....very responsive. Saved the cost of the trip. Love the car. With gas approaching $100 per barrell, I see $5.00 per gallon by summer of 2009. Buy now before they are not available.
    If Government would renew incentives for buying fuel efficient cars, we could solve our oil problem much quicker.
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    Sorry if you've been waiting for a response. I wasn't checking in.

    Just picked up my car. Silver pine mica color.

    Exactly $30,000 OTD (tax is 7.25% in my county, I think). Check my former mail for the exact amount I paid in tax.

    They slid and slid and slid on the warranty so I finally got it. They slid and slid on the polish and Scotch Guard but I didn't get it.
    Final price for warranty was $1150 for a platinum warranty (everything covered except for wear items like windshield, tires, wiper blades, etc.) 6 years/100k miles. Remember though that the first 3 yr/36 is already covered by the basic warranty, so really you're buying an extension, years 4-6/miles 36k-100k.

    The warranty is tranferable one time. So if you plan on selling your car before the warranty is up you have a very valuable selling point. Very valuable. You can tell the buyer, "There is nothing wrong with the car that I know of. But if something were to happen it is totally covered." Sell the car near the end of the warranty for best value, imo. As a person I'm very skeptical, but at $1150 I think the warranty is very much worth it for the resale point of view alone. Though Toyota is a great brand there is a lot to go wrong on the Prius, also.

    The dealership, Toyota of Santa Maria, CA, about 2.5 hours north of LA is fantastic. So professional. The Internet manager/sole salesman, DT, is a lambchop. Just a totally trustworthy decent guy. (What has happened in this world that car salesmen are far more decent than flight attendants??)
    The car is quiet, decently powered, solid on the road. Complicated toys!! But I have a ten year old daughter so everything will be OK by late tomorrow afternoon.

    One possible regret. Touring tires are quite a bit more expensive than Basic tires. Before committing to a touring pretend you are buying replacement tires and check costco.com or tirerack.com to see if you are satisfied paying so much to replace tires. (I love the Michelin Primacy tires I just put on my Civic). I must say the Touring rides very well compared to my Civic.

    Good luck. Buy a Giant Suede electric bike with the money you save and substitute some of the miles you'd be driving a car. 2000-3000 mpg.
  • he rear bumper applique is a typical Toyota ripoff but there is nothing you can do about it because it is applied at the port of entry and it is a no-option option. It's a
    protection sheet below the trunk lid and on the top of the bumper.
  • Car Man,

    I've been offered the following lease on a 2008 Prius Model 1224A (PKG 3)from Boch Toyota in Norwood Massachusetts:

    term: 48 months
    money factor: .00275
    17,000 miles per year
    residual value: 10,316
    MSRP: 25,289
    agreed upon value: 22,619
    GAP insurance: 595
    Acq fee: 550
    doc fee: 298
    title: 84.5
    gross cap cost: 24,146.5

    monthly payment: 349.52
    tax: 17.48
    total monthly: 367.00

    Any comments on this deal are greatly appreciated!!!

    Regards,

    Kelley Connolly
  • Is December the best time to buy in terms of discount/finance deal etc.?
    I am interested in getting a Prius but not until March 08.

    Does it make sense to wait?
    Thanks in advance for any advice.
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    I don't know what the inner workings of car dealerships are. I've read that salespeople get anxious about making their quotas near the end of the month and that that is a good time to deal.

    With gasoline prices spiraling up I'd say sooner is better than later. We're at $3.46/gallon, San Luis Obispo county average, for unleaded regular and the cheapest I've seen this week is $3.33. I read an article that speculates that prices will reach $4.50 by next summer. Small-car salesmen tell me that every time there's a spike in gasoline price they make a lot of sales. I could picture lines out the door at Toyota by then.

    As you can see by my previous post I just got an 08 Touring and I paid about $1400 below msrp when you factor in the retail price of the mats. My bet is that I would not be able to get that deal in March. But it's just a hunch based on the trend for gasoline.
    :confuse:
  • Hi,
    I agree with Bob entirely.
    Here in So. Cal. the price of gas is about the same as SLO and there are Prius cars everywhere, far different from when we first bought in 3/05.
    We bought two cars in Feb 07 and are very happy.
    Hard to predict supply in the future but with oil @ $100/brl or so the demand should be consistently high.
    Carl
  • Anchovy or Carman,

    Can you tell me more about the MF? or point me in the right direction for research.
    I am trying to understand how a MF of .00245 equates to a 5.9%.

    Thanks in advance
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    Glad to hear that you agree, Carl. Here's a consumerreports.com article that answers the original question of when to buy. But it doesn't address the question of the gasoline price spiral.

    http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/cars/best-time-to-buy-a-car-1204/overview/ind- ex.htm

    I did take their advice and buy a end-of-model-year Civic in 2002. Got $3,000 off the msrp. Very happy camper. There may be some 07 Prius still around--don't know.

    Off to LA today in my new Prius. (My electric bike doesn't quite have the range).

    Bob
  • Hi,
    Longo Toyota still shows some 07s on web site.
    C
  • Bob/Carl,
    Thanks for your advices.
    Supplies seem to be plentiful right now in Bay Area. Toyota Sunnyvale is advertising Prius Pkg2 at $22588.
    That's like $800 over invoice. Is this a good deal or should I negotiate some more.
    Am I running the risk that as inventory goes down towards Dec that they will hold up prices higher?
    Philip
  • You want to negotiate a bit more i think
    Here is what I got from Expressway in Dorchester

    Option 5 (yours is option 3)

    term: 48 months
    money factor: not known
    15,000 miles per year
    residual value: 12,636
    MSRP: 26,464
    agreed upon value: 24,464
    monthly payment: 342.45
    tax: 18.00
    total monthly: ~ 360.00
  • Philip,
    Check out this and other forums and make the best "educated guess" you can as to supply/demand = price.
    What worked for me.
    I decided exactly what I wanted with regards to options/color.
    Determined what I would pay.
    Emailed local dealers using the Toyota website.
    Told them I would buy the car immediately. I asked that the dealer plz not respond if they would not agree to my price.
    When the first dealer agreed I bought the car the same day.

    The car is great. Getting an ulcer buying it is not good.
    Carl
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    $800 over invoice is about what I paid for my 08Touring#6. Remember that dealer holdback is about $600, so they are making a margin of about $1400 on the car. That doesn't seem unfair given all the costs involved in running a dealership.

    Of course, how much they make is their business, not ours. Our business is figuring out the lowest price we can pay. From what I've read herein $800 over invoice is about as good as it gets for Prius in this CURRENT market. But do what it takes to content yourself that this is a good price. Like I said, I bought a new last-year Civic in 2002 (that is, 2003s were already for sale) for $1600 below invoice.

    07s may be $1,000 less than 08s. If you drive high miles it may be worth it. If you drive low miles the 08 is the better deal for $1,000 more than the 07. Try finding an 07 AT invoice, if you want to go that way.

    If I were timing the market, I GUESS I'd buy the day after Christmas, at this point. But that's just an intuition on my part based on the CR article. Oil prices seem to be stabilizing today at about $94/barrel.

    BTW, I highly recommend the platinum warranty, (I paid $1155, 6year/100k), not because you'll need it, but because it is transferable, one time only. If you sell the car within the warranty period you'll more than recover that money, imo.

    Good luck.
    Bob
  • Thanks for the insight Bob.

    I forgot about the dealer hold back, I was thinking that dealers would not advertise their bottom price anyway, so there is room for negotiation. Like you, I wouldn't begrudge dealers for making some profit for expenses, salaries and so on.

    I think I will wait a while and see how oil prices and inventories play out.

    I still have 4 months lease on my MB, so wouldn't want to have a new Prius sitting in my garage doing nothing. Either way it will cost money and even if I have to pay a bit more in March, it couldn't beat about $2K for MB lease, plus lease & depreciation for the Prius.

    BTW, how should I start my inquiries with the dealers, tell them upfront that I am interested in leasing or get to the buy price first?

    Also can anyone explain to me the money factor that I keep hearing in lease talk?

    Thanks in advance
  • I bought a 2008 basic package #6 in San Francisco for $26,000 including carpet floor mats. No extended warranties. No bumper applique. OTD was about $28,500.
  • prusaprusa Posts: 43
    Hey Bob,
    Are you regreting not buying the Non-Touring? I am not sure if I should buy Touring or Non-Touring Pkg. 6. I did check the price for the Touring tires and they are expensive. The difference between the Non-Touring and Touring is about $300.00. Any suggestions? If anyone out there has gone thru the same let me know. I have to make a decision soon.
  • Responding to the comment: "The difference between the Non-Touring and Touring is about $300.00."

    This may well be true, based on the MSRP. But when I was purchasing my car, on 9/29, my options were:

    * pay invoice minus $300 for 2007 Non-Touring;
    * pay invoice for 2008 Non-Touring;
    * pay sticker for 2008 Touring

    I opted for 2008 Non-Touring. So, the jump for Touring was much higher than the $300 you mentioned, because, due to limited availability of Touring, it was going for much more than the invoice price.

    This was in September ... have the facts changed so much in the past 7 weeks?

    'hope this helps. Thanks.
  • acdiiacdii Posts: 753
    A little known fact, Cars with built-in navigation systems actually are showing a lower resale value than the same car without it. The reason being is nav systems are constantly changing, pretty much on par with how the PC market is, new ones are popping up every day. To upgrade a built in unit is very expensive, and because if this, people arent willing to pay for an out of date system. Keep that in mind when you decide to buy a higher end package. If the only reason you are looking at a higher end package is for the nav/bluetooth, save your money and get a mobile unit, those are not that expensive and can tie into existing car radios along with providing bluetooth functions.
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    I can't justify the Touring. It was exactly $500 more than the basic. For that you get spiffy wheels (I'm 56, guys), a sporty (or is it just stiff?) suspension and bigger wheels with bigger tires making a bigger footprint. The bigger footprint provides more traction and stability but certainly has some impact (unknown) on the mpg. The tires seem to cost a good $200 more to replace and seem to wear quicker to boot. I might do better when I replace the Turanzas with the new and very excellent Michelin Primacy. They are great tires. $400 a set on my Civic.

    Over 100k miles the costs are: $500 for Touring, $400 differential for 2 sets of fancy tires and $350 additional for gasoline (5% worse mileage) at current prices ( a wild guess). That's $1250. You may get a small amount back when you go to sell it but I'm thinking not much more than $100-200. I can't see the $1,000-worth of value. And when gasoline goes up I'm sure I'd rather be getting 46mpg rather than 44mpg, if I'm guessing right.
  • prusaprusa Posts: 43
    So....your advise is to go for the Non-Touring. I really appreciate your expertise. I like the look of the Touring, but in the long run the Non-Touring is the car for me. I I have all week to hunt for the best deal and will let you know if I was able to buy the car.
  • Hello everyone,

    It is certainly nice to know that there are people who care about the environment and are willing to purchase greener cars.

    Does anyone know if the Package 3 is available in Los
    Angeles (or anywhere in CA for that matter as I will drive to get it), Also, what should this package add to the price of the car given current incentives going on? It seems you get either a package 2, or a 5 or 6 here.

    The option I want is the 9 speaker stereo. I understand it is not advisable to put an aftermarket system in these cars but that may have been salesperson bluster.

    Thanks.
  • I read through this MONSTER thread on Thursday and Friday after I started my contact with dealers in the RFQ. I wish I had actually done so earlier, and I would have taken the suggestion to email dealers with my terms and advise them not to contact me back unless it to to accept those terms.

    I did, however, get a vehicle at what I think is a fair price. (I'm certain to be corrected if I am wrong.)

    I bought a base model 08 (I'll upgrade it myself, tyvm), added an aftermarket leather package and $1350 or so TTT. $24,4 OTD.

    I'm located in Milwaukee WI and used Heiser Toyota. The entire experience with this dealer was wonderfully pleasant. I learned a few tricks and am certain I could have done even better (and hope to in a few years when I replace my wife's vehicle.)

    What do you all think? hot or not?
  • Friend: By March 2008, gasoline will be $4.00 per gallon in most of the country and your ability to get a Prius will be practically nil. If there is one available it will be throw up green or some weird combination and the dealers will be charging outrageous "add ons". My advice, get the car now and the colors and equipment you want. I just travelled 1000 miles to get the car I wanted and I truly love it.
    Sailorman
  • bennbbennb Posts: 143
    On the contrary ... if you peruse other boards you'll find that the tires on the base model Prius wear out MUCH faster than the Touring ... plus the tires are of higher quality on the Touring as well. That is the opinion of the majority of Prius owners from what I've read ... and believe me I've really checked into it.
  • bob104bob104 Posts: 94
    I don't know what the difference is in wear on the original tires; I'm just saying that, later, when replacing tires, 195/55/R16 (Touring model) tires are $50 more, each, than 185/65/R15 (base model). I reason, from my Civic, (185/65/15) that you'll be replacing tires at about 35k and 70k. That's $400-600 for 100k miles. I chose the conservative figure of $400.

    What I'm saying is not that the original tires aren't worth it; I'm saying that each subsequent tire change will cost you $200 more with the Touring than with the base. It appears that R16 tires just command a higher price than R15s. If you feel you need a better tire then maybe the R16 are for you. Most people seem to want the highest mpg-tire (smallest, safe footprint). I compared prices at tirerack.com and costco.com.
  • I've been pricing the '08 Prius via Internet sales departments at dealers and have apparently hit what appears to be the bottom of the price range. It is a bit confusing figuring out MSRP for the '08 models as the Toyota.com website lists a "base:" model without packages. According to the website, this option has an MSRP of 21, 610 (in my zip code area) and does not include power steering. After speaking with several dealers, I have been told it is impossible to purchase a '08 Prius without power steering, which evidently means the base model is actually a '08 Prius with package 0. This has power steering, but little else in the way of options. On the Toyota.com website, package 0 has an MSRP of 22,985. The dealers are telling me their invoice (not MSRP) is evidently 21,847.. Having said all this, the lowest price I've been able to get on an '08 Prius in the area (from a larger dealer) is 22,250. When I bounced this price back to the other large dealer who has been competing for my business, he told me to take this price from the competing dealer as he couldn't beat it.

    Any thoughts on all this? I'm especially interested in why there appears to be a discrepancy between the Toyota.com website (with the lack of a true base model that doesn't have power steering) and what is being sold on the lots here in Oregon. One dealer verified this is confusing for his customers...
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