We bought a bright red coupe automatic about 3 years ago when it had 57k miles on it. Now it has 84k. I've replaced the brakes, tires, spark plugs, battery, and a starter, all wear items (except the starter). The car is exceptionally smooth and quiet (like a sewing machine), the leather feels like the leather in a Avalon or Lexus, gas mileage is good (mid 20's), and has never let us down. This has been a great car for the kids to drive. It also makes me feel like a teenager when I drive it (long doors, sporty feel). It is not terribly powerful (135 hp), but it does not overwhelm a young driver with power either. It also has a surprising amount of back seat room.
Looks, leather interior, sunroof.
I'd like 2-3 more inches of headroom (tall waisted), and the arm that holds the seatbelt up should be a bit higher (comes to below my shoulder).
I bought my 2000 Solara used in '02 (with 61k) and had it for 10 years (ended at 162k).
I had a 89
93 Civic before buying my 1st Toyota.
Both were often in the shop so I bought this b/c of the Toyota reputation and it never let me down.
In 10 yrs all I did was replace the brakes & battery twice, the alternator and the air conditioning.
It rode smooth until some asshat hit & totaled it.
It was even pretty good in the snow!
If anyone is looking to buy a Solara I would highly recommend it--and trust me I'm not a "car guy".
My family was always American car owners. Now everyone owns a Toyota.
Well, except me, I bought a Lexus w/ all the $ I got for its high resale value!
The classic exterior.
The comfortable interior.
The fact that I rarely had to do anything with the car other than put gas in the tank and oil in the engine.
Sometimes in cold weather the audio system would freeze up and I couldn't change the radio station.
And when the air was on high it would
occasionally drip water on my feet.
Bought new in 2000. I've had 15-20 vehicles over my lifetime. This is clearly the best vehicle I've ever owned. Put 135k on it before giving it to my daughter and her husband. They'll probably put 100k on it and sell it to someone who will get another 100k or more. Reliability is freaky good. Replaced a battery, the exhaust, etc. as expected over the long period of time owned. No quality issues whatsoever.
-Smooth ride. -Quiet ride. -Very good for tall drivers. -Great design. -Unreal reliability. -Good power (V6). -Excellent interior layout (cabin storage, etc.) -Excellent comfort.
-More power. -Better mileage. -Yes I know these are in conflict!
We bought the car new and drove it for a good 10 years. The only reason we decided to let it go is we're now working on our second baby and unfortunately a 2 door car will no longer fit in with our expanded family. Considering for how long we've had it we were thankful to only have to deal with routine maintenance and a few minor problems (the O2 sensor had to be replaced, the passenger viser mirror broke off after 5 years, and occasionally the driver side window motor will stick if the weather is very humid.) But the engine has been impeccable, and I joked with my husband on several occasions we should just keep the car for another 14 years so it can be our child's first car when he's 16.
6 cylinder, sunroof, styling, huge trunk!
The fake wood trim on the interior warped and broke in several places in the last few years. A lot of body roll on sharp curves.
I had a '96 Camry that was totaled and my mechanic was selling a 2000 Solara with 125k on it for the right price. I had to put in a clutch and repair suspension the first year (as can be expected at 130k plus miles), since it has been amazing. I've put 50k on the car, and it drives smooth, the steering is tight, and it gets great gas mileage. I highly recommend it.
Stick shift, handling, ride quality.
A little more room in the front seat, I'm 6'4 and can feel cramped occasionally.