I got a letter in the mail today from my local Toyota dealer. I've gotten similar letters in the past, including one from a Mazda dealer a few years back. I'm not going to type out the entire wording of the letter, just the important data points and some of the fine print: Dear xxx,
Blah blah blah, you're invited to a private event exclusively for Toyota Highlander owners at [local Toyota dealer name].
[Date / time of event] (this coming Saturday)
As An Invited Guest
Special Toyota Pricing & Reimbursement Arrangements To put it simply [my name], because you own a Toyota Highlander - you will be given a significant amount of money! And this Saturday, the new Toyota of your choice may be available for less than your current Toyota Highlander. Let me explain.
Your Toyota Highlander Will Never Be Worth This Much Again! $18,353** Which is $7,159 More Than The Estimated Trade-In Value!
Plus, An Additional $500* This Saturday Only - Toward A Select New Toyota!
[Other perks listed, including: $0 Down, 0% APR for 72 months, Free $10 Target Gift Card just for showing up, and an entry into a drawing where someone might win $5,000 cash]
Blah blah blah, only a few customers are being made aware of this event.
Signed their General Sales Manager
It's my wife's car, I don't have it at home with me right now, and I don't remember the current mileage. I know we bought it with higher-than-normal mileage, so I'll have to do the math.
I do see already that their assessed value seems off, because I went to KBB.com and plugged in all my details (and plugging in 70K miles, even though I know ours is quite a bit higher) and KBB estimates a dealer trade-in for Very Good condition to be between $12,931 and $15,034 ($14,008 average) and for Excellent condition to be between $13,669 and $15,746 ($14,708 average), whereas the letter would have me believe that the KBB estimate for a 70K mile Highlander of my model/options to be just $11,194.
Higher-mileage 2010 Highlander Limited models seem to be going for $16-17K on CarMax.
If I guess high, and say we have 120K miles, KBB.com indicates a dealer trade-in value between $10,378 and $12,531 ($11,455 average) for Very Good condition. So, KBB thinks that a 120K model is worth about $2,553 less than a 70K model of the same condition. So KBB is dinging me about 5 cents/mile for everything over 70K miles.
On the back of the letter from my Toyota dealer, there's nothing too suspect in the fine print except this: They specifically indicate that all mileage over 10K/year will be assessed at 20 cents/mile. So using the example above, that 50K mile overage would cost me $10,000 in trade-in value! So is that how it is likely to unfold? I go there, show them the letter touting a $18,353 trade-in value, and them deducting $10,000 from that because my car has 120K miles on it?
I imagine that others have received similar letters before, so I'm curious to hear if any of you took the time to look into it and how it all turned out.
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posted: Mar. 7, 2017 @ 3:25p
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Mar. 7, 2017 @ 3:34p
posted: Mar. 7, 2017 @ 3:33p
I get letters from the dealer saying how much they absolutely need to buy my wifes car and will pay a premium for it since its so high demand blah blah blah. They don't go so far as promising an inflated trade in value.
Its just a sales gimmic to get you in the door.
Yes I assume you're right that the trade in you'd actually be offered is far less than what their mailer is promising. Or they'd just rip you off 5 other ways.
Basically that's spam mail from a dealer, there is probably some finer print about that not all cars are worth their KBB value. Also during events like this you will pay more for the car you want to offset the value paid on trade in. Go there get your $10 gift card (If it isn't too far away) and then leave.
You know... they know your address and that you own a Toyota Highlander. Its probably from a service record. They probably also know the mileage on the car. THey may even cook these offers specifically and direct them specifically at people like you who have higher mileage so that the offered value is always much higher than what people would really get due to the high mileage.
jerosen said: You know... they know your address and that you own a Toyota Highlander. Its probably from a service record. They probably also know the mileage on the car. THey may even cook these offers specifically and direct them specifically at people like you who have higher mileage so that the offered value is always much higher than what people would really get due to the high mileage. Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.
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