I bought this vehicle for the Toyota name and because I didn't want a small convertible. It was recommended by Consumer Reports as well. The other mid size convertibles were either too "old' looking to me or too pricey. This vehicle allows us to bring two or three friends along. The 2006 Solara has a very smooth ride, stability and traction control, the seating is great, it's very comfortable getting in and out, and it's a pleasure on the open road, top down. There is almost no detectable engine noise. In fact the only flaw is at low speeds, 15 to 30 mph, when the gas and the transmission seem to resist acceleration enough to make it feel like its dragging before it kicks in and leaps forward.
My favorite feature has to be the quiet smooth ride with the open touring car feel. I also like that the motor for opening the top give you a little leaway when you overlook the unlocking and press the button to open the top.
If I could ask for one improvement it would be to smooth out the acceleration at lower speeds. And my second suggestion would be to continue making them beyond 2008. Well,maybe I'll have a more valuable classic, and sooner.
2006 Toyota Camry Solara Convertible SE V6 2dr Convertible (3.3L 6cyl 5A)
I bought this car on my 50th birthday. I was looking for a convertible which would go in the snow, have enough trunk room to carry my families groceries, have more than two people in the car and make me feel like a kid again. This car has it all. One summer day with the top down and the fantastic factory stereo turned up to a favorite song of the 70's, I felt like a 16 yr old in my dad's car. I don't think any other car could give me that. The only complaint, if it is one, is that on cold days going over some bumps the window glass seems to creak until it gets warm. The car looks like a more expensive and exotic model without the price tag. A hybrid model would have been perfect.
As a retired commercial aircraft mechanic, I think I know quality when I see it. Having worked on Boeing aircraft and Rolls Royce engines for thirty five years, engineering and mechanical excellence has arrived on the automotive scene. For 30k, no other convertible comes close. This car is a dream to drive. It's handeling is remarkable for a convertible chassis and suspension system. It has plenty of torque and accelerates quietly and effortlessly. Top up or down, theres very little road noise, and the trunk holds four golf bags! Test drive one, you'll love it.
Drivers seat. Engine almost completly quiet. Turning radius excellent.
Control buttons for roof/top and windows should be illuminated.Window up down controls should be illuminated Drivers seat should have memory settings for two drivers
Car is luxurious both inside and out. Ride is very smooth and cushiony. Back seats are full sized and comfortable for passengers. Styling is beautiful and car has been extremely reliable so far. Automatic convertible room is a snap to open and close. Convertible boot (cover) is stylish although tedious to install. Gas mileage is good for such a large car - about 23 mpg average when doing city and highway driving combined. Acceleration is smooth and pick-up is more than adequate.
Styling, ride, and reliability.
Car has extreme rear blind spot when roof is up and very long rear end. It's hard to judge distance from objects behind. Toyota should install a dinging headlight reminder and a better locking gas cover so it doesn't flap in wind when not closed properly. Better gas mileage would be a plus.