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Toyota Solara



  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    Being that you are out of warranty, it may turn out to be ANYTHING! After trying to get feedback about issues with my Solara from THIS site, I suscribed to, when I had multiple problems with my Solara, and it proved helpful when explaining the problems to the service saying, "I have a clunk when going around a corner, and I have the TSB for that problem, or similar problem. Would you please check that, without charging me the $75.00 inspection fee, Mr. Toyota service guy???"
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    Does this apply to your car...

    Recall 00V154000: Rear Axle Hub Failure

    Vehicle Description: Passenger vehicles. Due to improper heat treatment, the rear axle may not have adequate strength in some areas. After extended use of the vehicle, the rear axle shafts could fail or break.

    Dealers will inspect and replace the rear axle hub assemblies.

    Owner notification is expected to begin late June or early July 2000. Owners who take their vehicles to an authorized dealer on an agreed upon service date and do not receive the free remedy within a reasonable time should contact Toyota at 1-800-331-4331. Also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Auto Safety Hotline at 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
  • jcole5jcole5 Posts: 2
    While finding water inside my car after hosing it down,I went to 2 toyota service depts.They informed me that since the solara has no window frames water will always enter the cabin when aimed at the top of the door windows under the black roof trim.A DSM also informed me the all new solara will be coming out in 2004.My girl just bought the 2002 Camry LE and in our amazment the car doesn't come with a lighter or ash tray even with her fully equiped side air bag package.The car is not as quiet as the solara.
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    Yeah, the door seals stink, cuz the car is designed to have the top cut off!?! Mine are worn, and will price when I go in for next 3,000 mile oil change. Solara is quiter than most, until soundproofing deteriorates. I lost a chunk of something in the back of the car that appears to be sound proofing in the rear wheel well. Will price that too!
  • The clunking sounds like something is loose, like the suspension or a body part. My car is a '99, so it doesn't fall under that service bulletin. I was wondering if anyone else has this
    "loose body part" clunking sound from inside the trunk.
    Thanks for you response.
    Jim in Ohio
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    The 2002 Camry LE is a 4 banger, no?W/O the frills of the older design Solara, like stra-foam in every crevice. Cigarette lighter and ashtry, please! Who uses the ashtry anyway. I am constantly dodging flying lit cigarettes, especially at rush hour!?! Ash tray is probably one of those parts Toyota cut back on, to make the car with half of the number of parts as their previous, better rated models. Ashtray! LOL!!!
  • ezshift5ezshift5 West coastPosts: 857
    ............miles and the only problem to date has been a defective driver's side power window switch (warranty replaced at 8500 miles). No sludge, no surge, no cheet. 35 miles per gallon Twinn Falls to two gears are overdrives, right? My sole negative would be the stock shocks tend to permit bounce/dive under spirited driving conditions. $24980 OTD in Placerville = few regrets.
  • maemarkmaemark Posts: 11
    I have a potential problem and want to know if anyone else has seen this.
    I have an 02 SLE ragtop. If I do not drive it for a week or so, I experience this problem. I start the car, and when I put it in gear, nothing happens! It is like the transmission or torque converter has failed. In a few seconds, the car starts to move, but sluggishly. In thirty seconds to a minute, or so, the car operates fine.

    I took the car in to be looked at by Toyota for this problem. The senior tech told me that this is normal. That the new technology transmissions require a warm up period for 30-60 seconds after being idle for a few days. I have never had a car with this problem (?). Comments?
  • suvshopper4suvshopper4 Posts: 1,110
    "The senior tech told me that this is normal. That the new technology transmissions require a warm up period for 30-60 seconds after being idle for a few days."
    Sure sounds like a load to me.
    But I really don't know. Maybe someone else here could explain why (if it's true).
    Good luck.
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    Where are you? True or something you would MOST likely hear from an "award-winning Chrysler 5-STAR" dealer?? They all do that!! ;-)))

  • canccanc Posts: 715
    I fortunately haven't had that problem... maybe others here will say otherwise about their car.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    You need a second opinion from a good transmission shop.

    The dealer is true about the warm-up, but it is mainly for the heating up the catalytic converter. It does it by not shifting into overdrive for the first few miles.
  • Hi-

    I bought I 2002 Black SLE Solara in October. Took it in yesterday to Firestone to have tires rotated (12,000 Miles). They called and told me that the front tires were badly worn on the outside (alignment/toe issue). Since I bought the car, I too have noticed that it drifted side to side (drove me crazy) but got use to it over the past 9 months and assumed it was normal based on other comments from Solara drivers. The dealership is looking at the front end this week.

    1) Has anyone had this problem with the front end alignment balding the tires?
    2) Should Toyota replace my front tires since their alignment issues caused the balding? I don't want to spend money on new tires in 2 years due to premature wearing. Thoughts?

    Other than that, 0 issues with my car. I agree, paint is soft and scratches/chips easier than most cars, but oh well.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    I'm here. I lurk more in this topic than I post but I'm here. As for the transmission delay, that actually is something I am aware of and it is normal. The tech in question overstated the time, but if you jump in, start the car and immediately put it into gear, it will crawl. If you let it idle for long enough to put your seatbelt on, it will not happen. I discovered this while selling cars and moving them around the parking lot. Minor adjustments to driving habits overcome it.
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    If you think that is normal, it's time to test drive another car! I have never had a car that had that problem, not even with a Chrysler transmition!?! Good thing none of us seem to be using our Solaras for get-away cars, cuz while waiting for the tranny to warm up, nobody would get anywhere! ;^) IMO, there giving you the shaft!

    Tires bald at 12,000 miles!?! My input about the drift/pull, and alignment issue is it will never go away, as I have found at 38,000 miles. I did not get premature wear from it, as it was aligned about every 6-8 weeks for the first year, and I just gave up. Michelins are shot at 40,000 miles, but what did I expect!?! They retail for around $130.00 to replace, per tire, if I chose to use the same brand. I posted about my last alignment, with the dealers new $80,000 something $$ machine,which gives them a printout of the specs using lasers, etc. The "SAI" (I believe) was out of spec (see GOOGLE), and highlighted in RED as it was recommended by the new machine that those specs were dangerous and could cause loss of control of the vehicle. That was after the alignment!!! The service advisor told me they could not fix it, cuz they did not know what it was. I drives straighter for a few hundred miles after alignemnets, but never like any of the loaner cars I get, or renatl cars I use frequently. My 2 cents, get used to it, or sell it.

    Cliffy, since my transmition does not seem to have this crawl, is there something wrong with it????When I returned from Europe after being there a week, I had the taxi drop me at my car, I jumped in, and headed out for a soda with ice, as I had difficulty find ice cubes in Europe (Super size Coke Lite)! My car started and moved with no hesitation. There was a loud bang when starting, but no tranny hesitation!
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    I'm not talking about the 30 to 60 second lag that the poster's tech described. I'm talking about shifting into gear IMMEDIATELY after starting. You will note the the RPMs start out fairly high at start up. If you shift during this time, something happens in the transmission that causes it to crawl. It is not a defect. It is a design characteristic. Most likely, you have never shifted into gear this quickly and would be unaware of this.
  • maemarkmaemark Posts: 11
    I picked my car up and had another discussion with the tech. Cliffy's description is perfect. If the car has been unused for 5-7 days, it will crawl for a while until it operates normally. The tech actually said a few seconds to a minute. He assured me that they checked the tranny out and all is well. They may be right, but know I have the beginnings of a record in case it does develop into trouble late.

    My car is basically great. No left pull, no hesitating, booming base fixed, rides, drives and looks great. I'm planning on keeping it a long long time so I need it to be good for a while.
  • cliffy1cliffy1 Posts: 3,581
    The longer it sits, the longer this "warm up" will take (again, we're talking a few seconds here). Another thing I can suggest if this ever happens again is to stop, take the car out of gear momentarily and put it back into gear. You will hear the engine RPMs drop. When we are moving the cars on the lot and they have sat a while, we find this gets it back to normal function.
  • Does anyone have any information on the new redesigned 2004 Solara due out this spring? That is exactly when I intend to buy and I need to know which model I want to get! The only info I can find so far (which is basically nothing is at
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    Thanks. I still keep my eyes open in here because my 80+ year old aunt still has her 99 SLE with every option except the moonroof. Not one problem. Think she only has about 13 or 14,000 miles on it. She still wants to sell it and get a Camry because the Solara doors are hard for her to handle in her 1 car garage getting in and out of the car. This car would be a gem for someone.

  • canccanc Posts: 715
    I too have to add that I'm also extremely satisfied with this car.

    The hesitations, or chugging, that I referred to in my previous posts, have been checked out at the dealer. No problems whatsoever anywhere. I had the chance of driving it again lately for a long period of time, and I noticed that it only does it at 70 km/h, and according to Toyota techs, this is the point where it goes into overdrive, so if you cruise steadily at this speed, it would probably start "gear hunting", not knowing if it should downshift or not.

    I'm still amazed at how quiet and comfortable this car really is. Whenever I get into other cars and then get back into my Solara, I realize how serenely quiet it is! I wonder if the new Camry is as quiet as the Solara. Did anyone get the chance to compare?

    On a completely different note, I saw this Aerostar proudly bearing a giant "NOS" logo in the back glass. Hmm, it just looks weird on a minivan.
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    Your tranny searching gears, is then similar to what I refered to before. Cruising at a constant speed, then out of nowhere, RPM's drop(you posted not noticing this), then after collecting ones whits, it drives fine for a little while. Mine doesn't seem to do this frequently, but after reading thrugh your posts, the problem seems more similiar than I thought before.

    I had a chance the last time my Solara was in for service to drive the all new Toyota Camry. Sorry, the time before last. Last time I had the Corolla. Felt like a new car, but Camry LE model felt "cheap", like too much sheet metal upfront, and nothing under the hood, but space or air. I remember being able to see under the hood, near the windshield as I was driving. Between the new Camry, and the old Solara, I would of course go with the new, simply cuz it's new! As far as quiet or serene, it smelled nice like a new car, and the windows went up faster than my Solaras. It did not seem to have as much sound dampering, as the Solara did, when it was new.

    Anyone know how to get rid of the "spots" in the rear window of the Solara??? The green tinted window, isbeginning to look like bubble wrap. They are getting progressivly worse, and don't come off with Windex. Any suggestions?
  • canccanc Posts: 715
    What do you mean by that?
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    The rear window of my Solara has started (or always had, but not noticed) spots, in the green tint color, which are most apparent around sundown, when driving home, looking through the rear window, visable from inside and outside. They are uniform, and all over the rear window. They are the size of an old Kennedy 1/2 dollar. Does anyone elese notice these, and/or are they "NORMAL" like the transmition gear searching intermittantly, or the car crawling, if it is drivin too soon after starting it???
  • canccanc Posts: 715
    The spotting you're talking about is very normal. If I understand what you mean here, you only see the "spots" when you look at the glass from a certain angle, right? I've seen all higher-quality glass in cars to have this--yes, Lexus, Cadillacs, Lincolns, Camrys, Accords, you name them! I think it's the tinted glass that's just made like that. I will notice them when I look at them from an angle, but never when I'm driving. It has never been a distraction in this and other cars that had the same kind of glass.
  • evaddaveevaddave Posts: 156
    Are those the same spots that you see on all tinted windows when you wear polarized sunglasses?
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    I wear Black Iridium lenses, for exceptional Light Blockage, but without an unreasonable loss of clarity. Iridium lens coatings are engineered to block glare and heighten contrast. A great choice for those of you lucky to perform in marvelous conditions.

    Polarized are unique lenses which work similar to a Venetian blind: they only let light in at certain angles. Polarized lenses work by eliminating either the vertical or the horizontal vectors of unpolarized light, thus reducing glare. With this reduction, objects become more distinct and we see our surroundings more clearly.

    I prefer the iridium, and have not had polarized since the 70's. I do not believe these are the same spots, but I will see if I know anyone with a pair of polarized, or go buy a pair and see.
  • ral2167ral2167 ohioPosts: 723
    had a 1999 solara bought new--- 5 speed V6-- nice car but was my first car with leather seats and the dog slid around too much and she liked to ride-- the coin box was atrocious-- sold it and now ride a 2001 accord coupe-- V6 LX (the EX comes with the dreaded leather seats, so got the LX)-- nice car as well-- hugs the road much better than the solara-- solara had better radio, and more of a cushioned/quieter ride-- all depends on what you look for. accord head rests dont tilt forward like solaras, but the center arm rest is much better in the accord. new accord coming out in 2003-- from the pictures i see it appears gas tank will remain small-- at about 400 miles in the accord i need to fill up, whereas in the solara i recall going about 460 miles or thereabouts....

    the solara has one brutal coinbox-- that was my main beef with the car. happy motoring. gooooo browns!
  • webguysterwebguyster Posts: 434
    RU the same Ral??? that was complaining about the coin box a few years ago!?! I also admit, that it must have been an oversite, or a joke, to have such a coinbox, or looked good on a diagram, before production, but thats what the ashtray is good for...coins!

    I was looking at an Accord recently, but it is so similar to the Solara, I feel like it would be the same car. I think Accord has more masculine look to it, than Solara. I am checking out the Matrix, for a potential 2nd car pocket rocket car. Have not driven one yet, but looked at one up close, and it has more plastic, than metal, almost!?! And the local dealer MSRP's are all $20,000 and up! Not sure about the quality of a "North American" Toyota, after my experiences with my Solara.
  • canccanc Posts: 715
    After a scorchingly hot day today, I have to say that I'm very disappointed. I thought the chugging/surge problem to be a thing of the past, but the annoying problem came back again. It seems it's worse when it's really hot outside. Anyway, I'm going to call my dealership tomorrow and ask that they fix this once and for all... even if it takes leaving the car there for a couple of days. I'm just getting sick of going to the dealership so often (I never did that when I had my Chrysler!), and all of that amounts to lost productivity. I bought a Toyota for the peace of mind I'd get, but so far I'm really not getting it. Honestly, Chryslers are looking very much appealing again, or even GMs.

    Discouraged in Ontario...
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