31st Aug 2010, 09:47

I've had a lot more problems with my Highlander than my Trailblazer, but there is no way I would describe the Toyota as anemic. There must have been something else wrong with the one you test drove.

Highlanders have 4 TSB's on power train issues.

If you are one of the lucky few who did not have trouble with a Highlander, I sincerely wish you luck with your next Toyota purchase. Of the thirty some odd TSB's on the Highlander, about 3/4 of them should have been recalls IMO.

31st Aug 2010, 19:53

There were so many things wrong with the new Highlander that we test drove that I strongly suspect it also had engine problems as well as the bad brakes and trim falling off. It accelerated much more slowly than the V6 Ford Escape we drove.

1st Sep 2010, 09:48

2:01... if assembly workers accept lower pay and less benefits, it also affects the local community. My neighborhood had many domestic autoworkers making decent income. Spending in my town with businesses no doubt is less, and hopefully when I downsize, someone can afford my home in a nice middle class neighborhood vs turn it into a rental. It goes beyond the cheapest car you can find to park in your driveway. I'd rather pay a little more and help my local community. Having more features, better ride and warranty is another plus.

1st Sep 2010, 10:44

Gee, the Toyota gets to 60 in 2 SECONDS less time than the Escape does. I really think you just don't like imports. Please, just drive your domestics and stop quoting misinformation! I would gladly meet up with you and drive the Highlander V6 while you drive the Escape V6. We'll do a race, and whoever loses buys the winner the truck they are driving.

Just let me know when and where you want to buy me my new truck!!

1st Sep 2010, 21:25

It did with us. A piece of trim on the dome light fell off in a Toyota and a piece of dash trim fell off in a Scion tC. (both are made by Toyota). A friend had a similar experience in a Mercedes CLK. It DOES happen (at least in imports).

2nd Sep 2010, 12:21

I have seen this happen but it usually is caused by lack of care by prep people at the dealer or by customer abuse while on test drives. I hardly think any car, including the cheapest cars out there, are designed so that they will fall apart as brand new cars. There are other reasons for these issues to occur. If you test drove the car alone with no salesman then that would be a big clue as to how their cars are treated when they are taken out. Everyone is a lot harder on a car when they are alone. You know... when you like it after the test drive you suddenly want a different color so you don't get stuck with the one you just beat to death!

2nd Sep 2010, 22:06

Nope. The salesman was along, red-faced and apologizing the whole time. Import dealers refuse to allow cars to be test driven without a salesman along (unlike domestic dealers) because they fear the cars will self-destruct and they will have to call for help (this actually happened on one test drive in a Kia Sorento). When I test drive a Ford, I simply walk in, say "Give me the keys to that red Mustang" (or whatever) and take it out alone as long as I want. They know the cars can take anything anyone can dish out.

3rd Sep 2010, 07:08

Any new car I test drive, a salesman rides with me and photocopies and leaves my license copy at the dealership. I suspect because of carjacking and never seeing the person again with a brand new car Maybe a secondary lot with a very old car. The old car you drove in on could be stolen even. Seems pretty stupid to allow a test drive solo. The brand new Trailblazer SS I drove had no parts falling off, new and later.

4th Sep 2010, 18:14

I'm very well known as a car enthusiast and member of several local car clubs in my area. As a result, I'm very well-known to a lot of dealership managers and salesmen. Because of this, I can simply walk in, ask for a drive-out tag and keys to any car I'm interested in, and keep it as long as I want. I've kept three over an entire weekend. Of course this is NOT standard procedure, as there is always a risk of a car being stolen. The sales personnel know me well enough to know that I flatly refuse to even consider buying any vehicle if I can't give it a real test drive and check out the full potential of its performance, braking and handling. Any person buying a car without doing this (whether a salesman is along or not) has no one but themselves to blame if they buy a car and discover later that it doesn't perform as they'd like.

Car dealerships also know that no potential customer could come remotely close to abusing a car as severely as their own employees do. I worked at a dealership some years ago, and fondly remember the parking lot burn-outs and drag races that many of the new cars were put through by salesmen and staff members.

6th Sep 2010, 04:06

Another way I like is to rent newest ones for a day or weekend. I have rented many different ones that caught my eye. It's an even better way to shop new. Even when I have a newer car with no current issues, it's a great way to try them beforehand. Some have weekend specials, and I have asked for a luxury car upgrade and gotten good breaks.

On vacations we rent cars, and have bought the ones we liked later. If you are on vacation and have a car for a whole week, you know if you like them or not. We drop them off at the airport or have Enterprise pick them up locally. The whole family can relax and give you feedback if they want one. It's actually not expensive to try a few, especially if it's a high ticket item such as a car. You are also away from high pressure salesmen and sales managers, and away from a dealership environment. On vacation you get a different relaxed way to drive, park, go through cities, different types of roads and see how everything performs and works. Driving a 1/2 mile at a dealership listening to someone tout all the good points distracts vs solo.

6th Sep 2010, 17:57

Commenter 04;06 definitely has the right idea. Taking a car out for a whole weekend test drive is a great way to get a good idea of a car's performance. No 15 minute test drive (with or without a salesman present) can give you any hint of how you'll like the car on a daily basis. If I can't spend an hour with a car driving it where and how I want to, I flatly refuse to buy it.

I was recently checking out a car for a friend, and the salesman was along. He started to tell me where to go with the car, and I just simply said "no". I took it where I wanted to. I always do.