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My Gen 5 waiting list experience

Discussion in 'Gen 5 Prius Main Forum' started by Gokhan, Feb 23, 2024.

  1. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    There's a better chance the gv'mnt will give money away for NOT buying a car.
     
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  2. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    Prius and Prius Prime will certainly continue through Gen 5 (2023–2028). After that, I am guessing that there will be a Gen 6 in 2029–2034—likely the final generation before the ICE sunset and BEV transition in 2035—but no one knows for sure.
     
  3. Winston Smith

    Winston Smith Junior Member

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    30 years ago I had a conversation with someone at the american office of Suzuki. He was in California. When our business was done he asked,"Hey, is it true that some places out near you will spray tar all over the underside of a car and inside the panels?". I confirmed that this is done, and was even pushed by my local Suzuki dealership. "That's crazy - don't they know that voids the corrosion warranty?" It was this rep's opinion that plugging the holes made for water drainage with oil or tar would trap water and cause corrosion.

    In the northeast before the more extensive use of galvanized steel in cars, with was common to see rusty cars, meaning cars with holes in the body and doors from rust after just a few years. Old Hondas and Toyotas were not immune. It's a much less common sight now.

    I know people who undercoat or rustproof their cars, but I've never had it done.
     
  4. Eagle2024

    Eagle2024 New Member

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    I drove my Prime XSE Premium home on Feb 19. It's a 2024. The buying experience wasn't what I expected, but I love the car. It's my first Prius, PHEV, Toyota, and the first time a tried to "order" a brand new car. My experience and lessons so far (and I'm interested in other's):

    1.) You don't "order" a Prius with in the color, trim, and options you want. You can't even do so through the Toyota website. The "build" function allows you to specify your preferences, then tries to find something similar in the inventory within a set search radius. The dealer I started with was less than transparent about this.

    2.) Online reviews aside, the "solar charging roof" isn't available in the U.S. That was the main reason we wanted the Premium trim. Maybe it's a gimmicky option, and would take years to recoup the $600 cost, but I really wanted the free energy of parking in the sun. The dealer didn't tell us this, and the "build" function allows you to choose one. But I couldn't find one in any inventory. Finally, a different dealer told me they're not available in the U.S. and it's unclear if and when they will be.

    3.) After waiting 3 months with the original dealer, and finally hearing it would be a minimum of 6-8 more months, with or without the solar roof (he didn't seem to know that option isn't actually available), we found one in the color we wanted, with all desired features other than the solar roof, at dealer nearby. We bought it later that week.

    4.) The car came with the standard level one charger, which is very convenient for charging anywhere with a standard 120V plug (GFCI recommended, if not required). I asked about a level 2 charger and was told that Toyota doesn't make them, we shouldn't use a 3rd party charger, and they insinuated that the battery warranty would be voided if we do. I called the Toyota hotline to ask if this was true. They couldn't answer my question and said "we defer to the dealer." The manual says the car is compatible with level 2 charging, and the dealer admitted public charging (which is generally level 2) is fine. They clarified that without the specs they couldn't recommend any 3rd party chargers. After reading other forums, I bought and installed an Enel X Juicebox 40 (my house already had the NEMA 14-50 plug). It's been great. It charges from nominal 0% traction battery to 100% in 3.5 hours at 3.7 kw (just over the 3.5 kw recommended). I'll post other battery charging and range data on the pertinent threads.

    Bottom line, I love the car even if I didn't love the buying process. My advice is to look for existing inventory that's close to what you want, and go buy it. No use getting on a waiting list for months for a car that won't perfectly match what you want anyway.
     
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  5. Peter3232

    Peter3232 Junior Member

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    I agree with your advice, though there are some addendums I’d like to add for the benefit of others.

    First, if it’s something that is within budget, I’d suggest placing “orders” at multiple dealers so long as the deposit for the order is fully refundable. This increases the likelihood of getting the vehicle and features you want, especially if a one of those things is less common (e.g., a premium color or something similar). Also, be prepared to look at a larger search area to get the specific vehicle and features you want.

    Second, it’s not uncommon to see “in transit” and “in build” statuses when checking inventory via a dealer’s website. The latter is a little counterintuitive and can also include shipment of the Prius from Japan to the United States. I mention this because if this is the case and you’re able to snag a vehicle that is “in build” status, then there is still the opportunity to remove options that are installed at the port (Port Installed Options, or PIO). Common add ons that are installed at the port include mud guards, door edge guards, and body side molding.

    Third, be flexible in what you want. For example, I initially “ordered” a 2023 Prius LE in supersonic red. After ~8 months of waiting with no luck, I was fortunate enough to find a 2024 Prius Prime SE in supersonic red that wasn’t already spoken for (and did not have a mark up). I went with this vehicle, mostly because I very much wanted the red color.

    Fourth, definitely look for federal and state rebates for PHEVs yourself. Don’t count on the dealer to tell you any of this.

    Hopefully other folks find this useful too.
     
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  6. Gwyd

    Gwyd Junior Member

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    Solar roofs *are* available in the US, but are rare. There were a ton of them in CA when the '23s first shipped.
    This red one being built for NE FL could be mine if it had the Advance Tech Pkg and I could justify the higher car payment.

    upload_2024-3-15_9-42-41.png
     
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  7. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    iirc - solar roof option 1st came out around 2009 - but it wasn't offered with the advanced package. Toyota said it would affect the 50mpg goal, due to extra weight. Doesn't seem like that matters anymore.
    .
     
  8. Winston Smith

    Winston Smith Junior Member

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    Someday, we'll re-read your post for a $43k car and think "I can't believe cars used to be so inexpensive".
     
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  9. Eagle2024

    Eagle2024 New Member

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    Thanks, good to know. A month ago I couldn't find any with a solar roof in California, Nevada, or Arizona.
     
  10. Zeromus

    Zeromus Member

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    Hah, the sad part is the base bare bones prime in Canada is 39,500 to start before registration, taxes, etc. At least we get a 5k tax rebate, that helps a little bit.

    The saving grace is the fact that my EV charge cost is 90 cents where I live from no EV range to full, and gas is the equivalent of $6.25 a gallon, and its gonna go higher this spring and summer, and this car is replacing (long term) a long in the tooth 2003 that does around 26MPG.

    So the car payments really aren't *that* bad once you factor that in and spread out the cost over 10-15 years of ownership (knock on wood).
     
  11. Blackat

    Blackat Member

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    What's this car payment you speak of....
     
  12. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    Yeah, there were more solar roofs in the 2023 model year, but they became extremely rare in the 2024 model if any.

    The dealers can see the whole US inventory. If you really want a solar roof, ask the dealer to look at the inventory, and then they can transport the car for you at an added cost, of course with even a higher markup.

    I decided on SE after a lot of thought even though it lacks some important features such as auto-on lights because the higher trims are so expensive and it has considerably better fuel economy and longer BEV range. I narrowed down my color choices to silver, red, and black.

    That said, I am not getting one until/unless the factory rebates and dealer discounts are back because at such prices these cars a rip-off.

    Congratulations on your Prius Prime XSE Premium! It is a great car if you can afford it!
     
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  13. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    This is the car with the solar roof. It could be the only one out there:

    Toyota inventory | new-Toyota inventory search

    There are currently many Prius Primes allocated to Southern California, albeit mostly XSE Premiums and also XSEs to some extent with far fewer SEs. Most other areas in the US have hardly any Prius Primes if at all.

    These are awful marketing strategies by Toyota. The customer is the last thing in their mind, and the profit is the one thing they only care about. I miss the prepandemic days, when you could select, go, and buy a car without hassle.
     
    #53 Gokhan, Mar 15, 2024
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2024
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  14. AndersOne

    AndersOne Member

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    It could be that they go mostly to Europe, as the top trim (out of three) comes with a mandatory solar roof. And given that the top trim is quite popular they dont have so many left for the US market where its "just an option".

    On the other hand - even here there are barely any available (or not delivered - as you can order anything). Perhaps there are really some bigger issues. @Maxwell61 seems to be the only one getting one recently...
     
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  15. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Higher fuel prices with lower access to at home charging in general would also make the solar roof more popular in Europe and Japan vs the US.
     
  16. AndersOne

    AndersOne Member

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    Unfortunately the car is so expensive here with solar roof (>50k€) it doesnt really make sense for "saving money". And there is not really that much sun in many european countries (clouds) besides the "less affluent" southern ones. Im currently in Greece/Crete which is one of the sunniest places and many cars here look like 20 year old ICEs despite very high gasoline costs (~2€/l)

    Edit: Not all cars are that old but i havent seen so many "oldtimers" in a while
     
    #56 AndersOne, Mar 15, 2024
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2024
  17. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    Nice! Too bad that they don't make more.
     
  18. Zeromus

    Zeromus Member

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    Being fairly young professionals but with 2 kids under 3 and a house, we weren't able to save the full amount before the car was on the lot. When we were told a two to three year wait we figured we'd have all or nearly all of it by then. And we'll, it showed up a year early so we were only a third of the way there.

    Our other car is 21 years old, so we wanted to get ahead of it on a wait list. Wait list just moved quicker than we thought!

    In the end it's fine. It'll be paid well ahead of schedule, and we preserved our savings intended for parental leave and retirement this way. We didnt want to delay our pension retirement dates by putting money to the car vs that.

    One day we'll be established enough that our prudent savings will mean we can pay cash for cars. One day.
     
  19. Gokhan

    Gokhan Senior Member

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    I have decided to keep my blue 2021 Prius Prime Limited and asked for my $500 deposit back from Longo Toyota.

    I have only 20 more months of $656 car payments left. Moreover, the extremely high California registration fees are lower for the 2021 model year.
     
  20. Preebee

    Preebee Senior Member

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    You decided against it? NFW!!! :eek::eek::eek:

    :LOL:

    The payments on my 2019 were almost half of yours, and they continue to be almost half on my 2023. No down payment was made on the 2019, and when I traded it in, I got the same price that I originally paid for it. 2023 was MSRP and I only owe like $12k on it.
     
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