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Toyota Solara



  • har1bushhar1bush Posts: 207
    wow... I havent shopped around just yet (still waiting out a bit) but those prices sound pretty ridiculous.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    So they really offered it for $450 over invoice. The advertising is part of the invoice.
  • Two weeks ago I bought my new 2001 Solara SE V6 for invoice, no haggling. Had to shop around, and ended up going with a dealer two hundred miles away who was willing to sell at what I wanted to pay. (I expected to pay Edmund's version of invoice price, and yes that does include the advertising fee, and the dealer's invoice was actually thirty or forty dollars less. So that's what I paid.) I listed all the options I wanted, and he found the exact Solara on a lot a hundred-fifty miles away from his dealership. He absorbed the cost of fetching it to his dealership.
    Shop around, hambone32, and don't expect the local dealer can or will offer a rockbottom price.

    Zooker Gill
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    Sounds like some good advice above. Research, Research, Research. I am not an advocate of buying a car at the end of the model year, UNLESS you're going to keep it for a long time and you get a fantastic deal, because the car has already DEPRECIATED a year. Do a search for automobile buying services. I believe there are topics here in TH that discuss these services. I remember a long time ago that someone in this very group, if memory serves me, had his Solara delivered, by truck, right to his front door!

    BTW, Cliffy1 works at a Toyota dealership in VA. He has been in this topic for a long time and has been a great help and source of information for Solara owners.

    Good luck.

  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    Quick question- my aunt is thinking of selling her 1999, sand beige, Solara SLE. She wants to get a Camry because at 80+ years old, the doors on the Solara are too big for her. She has the spoiler, side airbags and traction control. I believe those were options in 99. I don't think there is any other option that I can think of right now. She has about 9,000 miles on the car. Would you say that a "ballpark" figure for its value would be about $22,000? I know that once the 2002 models come out and she gets serious about the Camry, she will have NO trouble selling it. I know several people already who are interested in buying it. There is no way that she is going to trade it in.


  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    Used car values are not really my specialty. My guess is that you would be looking closer to $20 to $21K as a retail figure. We just sold a '99 with 19K miles for $22K but also sold two others for $20500 with similar miles.

    The equipment and miles are what make that car so attractive. Combine that with the fact that whoever buys it will see that it really was driven by a little old lady should make the sale fairly easy.
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    Thanks. With only 9,000 miles, she should have no trouble getting her price.

  • hambone32hambone32 Posts: 68
    No, that would be $500 over invoice if invoice is Edmund's invoice plus $550 for dealer advertising. Don't you think that's a little high for "dealer advertising". I do. I asked him what the $550 was for he said "dealer advertising and holdback". Nope, not going for it. I used to sell cars, cliffy, and something was wrong there. They can make up any number they want to, and call it "advertising". How about the changes for the 2002's? Nobody responds to have to know something cliffy.
  • radracerradracer Posts: 96
    What the heck are advertising fees? If I put an ad in the paper for a $200 dresser am I supposed to charge the buyer the $35 it cost me to place that ad?
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    I hate this discussion but the same thing resurfaces every few month so I'll do it again. Every region in the country has an advertising fee. If you look at the Edmunds invoice data, they tell you this. They don't tell you how much it is because it varies by region. Here in the Central Atlantic Region, it is 2.1% of the base invoice. In New York and Northern CA, it is a bit higher. In Southern CA and the mid west, it is lower.

    We pay this amount and it is itemized on the invoice. If you're talking about paying an amount over invoice, you need to use the real invoice. We are NOT rebated this money. It does not pay for the individual dealer's advertising expenses. It pays for Toyota's national advertising campaigns in each region.

    Radracer, your analogy is flawed. A better one would be buying fries as McDonalds. If you were to ask what the store's "invoice" was on the fries, you would find that a certain percent was for the potatoes, some was for the shipping and handling and some was for McDonalds to advertise to bring customers to their franchised locations. When you spend your $.99, you are paying for the advertising on the national level.

    Keep in mind, what a customer pays for a car is retail. The advertising line on the invoice is part of what the dealer pays on a wholesale level. Don't confuse the two.
  • ral2167ral2167 ohioPosts: 723
    having owned toyotas and hondas, i agree the toyota invoice clearly shows the advertising fee, and i have paid it...but i wonder, why doesn't the honda dealer show advertising fees on their invoices?
  • evaddaveevaddave Posts: 156
    Where in the Philly Area are you? I bought my '00 Solara in Pottstown last year. I saw no mention of an advertising fee anywhere in the sales documents (though if you really wanted me to check, I'd dig the papers out again).
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273
    Maybe ALL car makers have this advertising fee, but if they do, it's not as evident or as controversial as Toyota's. Maybe Toyota is just right up front, in your face with it? I have never seen this fee on any cars that I have ever purchased or leased. Then again, I don't think I ever purchased a car that is advertised on TV every 5 minutes like Toyota! I think this is something that should be a part of a dealer's operating budget. If Toyota wants to advertise every 5 minutes, why does the consumer have to pay for it?

  • Confused -- It's really not complicated. Cost is what the dealer pays Toyota Inc (or Honda Inc, or Ford Motor Co., or BMW), plus smiling salesmen, showroom rent, utilities, inventory interest cost and a bunch more. Price is what you pay the dealer. He wants to recover all costs and make a profit on top of that. You want the car at the lowest price, period. How far the dealer can/will go in cutting price varies, but it is rare that he will not recover his costs. When negotiating, it helps to know what his costs are, so you can judge whether his price quote is truly rock-bottom. But whether 'advertising' cost is listed separately or the accountants have buried it somewhere in the vehicle cost, it is a very real cost of every car sold. (Every branded product sold, McD's fries included, for that matter.)

    Zooker Gill
  • gpoltgpolt Posts: 113
    The new, 2002 Camry will receive a larger 4 cyl engine this fall (2.4L). I'm assuming it is the same base engine as that in the Highlander. Having driven the current 4 cyl Solara, the extra 20 hp would be a very welcomed addition since the curremt Solara 4 cyl is underpowered. Remember that the Solara is heavier than the Camry. Toyota Customer Service (800 331-4331) is useless when it comes to - well just about everything, especially about releasing info on new models until, perhaps 6 months after the cars hit the lots. Perhaps Cliffy will impart his knowledge.

    Fastdriver, for what its worth, in the Washington/VA area, used '2000 loaded V6 5 speeds with 15K miles are going for $17,500
  • radracerradracer Posts: 96
    We all know that invoice is not what the dealer pays.
  • radracerradracer Posts: 96
    If you're going to make US pay advertising fees, then shouldn't we make YOU pay them again when we trade in our cars? Toyota charges the dealers the advertising fee, not the customers. I guess Nike should charge everyone an extra $5 on their $30 shorts to pay for Tiger Wood's salary and mark it as "advertising fee".
  • A $30 pair of shorts probably cost about $5 to make in some 3rd-world country sweatshop. So, yes Nike, along with every other manufacturer, increases the prices of their products to absorb their costs of being in business. That's how a company makes a profit on what they sell. It's a basic economics principle. You can't sell something and not attempt to cover your expenses. If you don't, you will be out of business.
    At least Toyota is being honest and letting the customer know that this expense is built into the price of their vehicles.
    Whether a manufacturer invoices this expense or not, you the consumer do pay for it. Guess what, we probably also pay for the "free" tank of gas they put into our new car, the furniture in their building, etc, etc. You even help pay for the salary of the sales guy who sold you your car.
    I know it sounds like Toyota is pulling a fast one, but they aren't. Just remember the next time you drop $70 on a shirt with one of those guys riding a horse on it, that it probably really cost about $10 to manufacturer that shirt. Part of that other $60 pays for their advertising in GQ, on TV, etc.
    If you don't like it, don't shop retail. Build your own. :D
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    You've almost got it. The dealer isn't charging you anything for advertising. You made the "mistake" of asking to see an invoice and didn't like what you saw. Since you negotiated a price relative to invoice, you felt like the dealer (or Toyota) was charging you. The fee is to the dealer, not the consumer. The fact that you paid the price you did was because the dealer was trying not to loose money.

    Let me put it another way. You didn't stroke your check to Toyota Motor Sales did you? You didn't see the Certificate of Origin did you? The car was not shipped from the factory to your door was it? That means you paid a retail price for the vehicle. Perhaps not the "suggested retail" price, but a retail price none the less. When you asked to see what the wholesale price of the vehicle was, you saw that the dealer paid an advertising fee for the right to own the car. You felt like you were being asked to carry a burden that was not yours. If the dealer thought he could get away with it, he probably would have said "no problem sir, I wont charge you for the advertising" but would have asked for an amount much higher over the "Edmunds Invoice" to cover what he actually pays.
  • I am looking to buy a Toyota Solara SLE. However,
    I have noticed that the dealer's are overstocked in that car and I understand there is a manufacturer's rebate of $700.00. I was wondering if the high supply and low demand means something about this relatively new vehicle(3 yr old). Can anyone clue me in? I have test driven both the Solara and the Accord Coup and I like the drive of the Solara much better but all those cars in the lot and not many that I see on the road makes me hesitant. Any ideas folks?????
  • har1bushhar1bush Posts: 207
    There could be many reasons why there maybe a lot of solaras in stock... the many reasons I can think of are: 1) where you live... here in CA there are plenty of solaras on the road; 2) which dealer u visited... once again, depending on the region and the way the dealer handles things there, there could be many or little solaras in stock. Besides, why hesitate just because you don't see as many solaras on the road? You know Toyota makes great cars and how ironic issit that you're complaining about there being too few of what you want when there are tens of thousands complaining that their next door neighbors all have a Camry or an Accord. If you like the Solara, take it! You can't go wrong
  • Thanks for your input. Do you own a Solara? I was just wondering since you did not hesitate to recommend it to me. Thanks for letting me know how popular it is in California. Maybe New Yorker's haven't caught on yet.
  • har1bushhar1bush Posts: 207
    no i dont have a solara...yet... but i've had plenty of experience with toyotas (my current pickup has 110000 miles and still running smooth). Plus, just going by the reviews, you could tell that the car has all the right components. I'd say the only viable alternatives are the Accord coupe and the Acura CL. I'd say if u have second thoughts, take a look at the base CL model if you'd be willing to put up another grand. Even though the CL costs a little more, it really costs pretty much the same as a loaded Maxima, but comes with things that the solara nor the maxima has, such as, xenon headlights, memory seats, power passenger seat, rear bucket seats (those could be a positive or a negative), roadside assistance, 3.2L V6 (more power), and 5 speed automanual tranny. I'd say $1K more is well justified over the Solara. But the solara does fit the bill very well and i doubt you will regret anything by getting the solara. :)
  • automophileautomophile Posts: 780
    The Solara is a great buy. I traded in my Lexus for the Solara because the Solara is MUCH more comfortable, and drives exactly the same! In 2-1/2 years I have not had a single repair. The car is extremely smooth and quiet at all times, and is a great looking car. I added a little more wood trim to the inside, and it even looks like the Lexus.

    Regarding the other cars you mentioned, by comparison the Solara will provide a smoother ride, and has a much roomier back seat, if those features are important to you. There is actually more knee room in the rear of the Solara than was in my Lexus.

    You can't go wrong with any of them, but there are differences. Good Luck!
  • airrideairride Posts: 2
    I have a new 2001 SLE convertible... more fun than should be legally allowed!

    One of the things I have noticed with a 1000 miles on the car now is wind noise from the left(driver side) top, while the passenger's side is extremely quiet.

    I've had the dealer check it out, and didn't find any problem. Wind noise was comparable to the other car on the lot.

    So, why would the noise be much louder on one side of the car vs. the other?

    Other than that, I LOVE THIS CAR! Since it's illegal to drive with the top up, it's not a huge issue!
  • mayzcrazemayzcraze Posts: 7
    Any advice is more than welcome...I'm in the market for a new car and am considering the above choices. The CL seems like a dream but I have heard horror stories about the paint quality and shoddy panel fitting. Performance-wise, the CL wins hands-down, but what is the best bang for the buck??? Overall quality and driver satisfaction??? Would appreciate any comments...THANKS!!!
  • trd81trd81 Posts: 2
    anyone know if 19' rims would fir on a solara?
  • har1bushhar1bush Posts: 207
    Sounds like you got it down as far as the CL goes... Price-wise, I think that all three of these cars carry similar values -- pay more for the CL, and you get more... pay less for the Accord, and you get less. In terms of build quality and dependability, nobody seems to beat Toyota. But, Honda and Acura arent far off at all.

    Now, concerning your inquiry about the CL... I would give the benefit of doubt that Acura would have likely fixed the problems of body panel misfits because the CL just came out for '01 and first year models do usually have some bugs. However, seeing that it's the end of the year, and that you are likely to run into a car built recently, maybe Acura did fix its problems (look at the JD Power's initial quality survey for the TL -- it finished in the top 5). I would say that the CL is somewhat of a gamble, however, because it IS technically still a first year car.

    To make this short, the Solara vs. Accord seems like a matter of preference. Solara has a better ride, but the Accord handles better. Solara has more room, but the Accord is more driver oriented. Solara costs a bit more and needs premium fuel (recommended) while the Accord only sips the good ol' 87 octane. etc. etc. You can't go wrong with these cars... see what kind of deals are out there and just go for it!~
  • hud116222hud116222 Posts: 46
    Everyone has their preferences in cars concerning handling, space, etc.. I just passed 2,000 miles on my 01 Solara SE-V6 Five Speed. I can say that I have never driven or ridden in a smoother or more quiet car. I am completely impressed with it. I don't even mind the coin box that has been the subject of great derision in this forum. :) My golf clubs fit easily in the trunk, too. In short, I don't anyone could go wrong with the Solara.
  • I got a quote from a dealer on the Solara SLE V6 and she said she could give it to me at $300.00 above invoice which sounds good especially with a $700.00 rebate afterward. However, what Edmunds calls their destination fee ($455.00) she calls a Delivery processing and handling fee. Then there is a charge of $407.00 for what she says is the delivery fee. Does Edmunds leave that out or is she giving me a story? Any answers? I am from NY by the way.
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