Like many, I wish the Solara was still around in the 99 style. It has been a terrific car. Purchased in Jan 2003 with only 29K mi. Still have it and drive it in July 2017 now with only 209K. For t...
Like many, I wish the Solara was still around in the 99 style. It has been a terrific car. Purchased in Jan 2003 with only 29K mi. Still have it and drive it in July 2017 now with only 209K. For the first 12 years, had only minimal maintenance, operations, and repair bills. About $1,500 per year cost of ownership (fuel, oil, o/m/r, insurance, etc.). Amounts to about $0.20 per mile or less. Quite good and less than many cars. (Yes, I keep meticulous records.)
The last couple of years have been a bit tough: broken internal door mechanism; bad brake jobs; HVAC control unit has gone out; and struts need to be replaced. Oh yeah, a rim-busting pothole meant all new tires and a repaired wheel. Sounds bad, right? Well, I might have reached the economic end of ownership, but I still love it and have even considered spending the 4K needed for the control unit, struts, and timing chain.
Just a great car. Lots of space (not even qualified relative to a coupe); trunk is larger than the Avalon's. The fold down seats provide extra functionality. Auto climate control, auto-dimming rear view mirror, no need for heated/cooled seats because the perforated leather seats are so good.
It is a cruiser, though. Owned a Jetta just before the Solara. The Solara looks sporty but decidedly drives as a cruiser. The recommended tires are a bit on the soft side (contributes to the cruising feel). For a '99, this car was ahead of its time for us members of the hoi polloi who couldn't afford luxury but could afford a Solara ... and the many Lexus upgrades that came with it. A Camry it is not.
Hey, have I said that I love it, yet? The only thing better would be the convertible of the same model year.
Have even considered finding a '99 in good ole CA and shipping here.