Toyota: Bad Economy, Bad Car Sales, Cheap Financing

Toyota, long resistant to the sort of interest-free financing deals that their domestic counterparts survive on, is offering 0% interest financing on 11 of their vehicles, including Corolla and Camry, the Tundra full-size pickup truck, Matrix; RAV4, Highlander, FJ Cruiser, 4Runner and Sequoia SUVs; Sienna minivan; and Tacoma pickup truck.

Toyota experienced a 32% slide in U.S. sales in September.

Toyota offers interest-free loans on 11 vehicles [Reuters]
(Photo: blue_j )


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  1. Crabby Cakes says:

    I was surprised to see Camry and Corolla on there, I figured it would only apply to their SUV’s and full size trucks.

    • SayAhh says:

      @undefined: Camry, yes; Corolla, no: I bought my 2002 Corolla for $0 down, 0% APR for 36 months when it was new, December 31, 2001. Now, as for the Scion tC: unfortunately for frugal shoppers, they’re still selling well…

      On the other hand, barring any total-loss accidents in the near future, the next vehicle I plan to purchase would either be a 100% plug-in electric (new Tesla) or a super-high MPG vehicle, like the Aptera.


      • proskills says:

        @SayAhh: I don’t think the plug in Aptera will be available for quite some time, but the 100% electric version was supposed to go into production in December of this year.

  2. chiieddy says:

    I know this isn’t related, but I just saw this over the wires. Could someone here comment?

    • Crabby Cakes says:

      @chiieddy: OMG, this ruined my week more than the goddamn bail out.

    • lodleader says:

      @chiieddy: that blows

    • JohnDeere says:

      @chiieddy: conspiracy. the banks are paying to close down consumerist.

    • djsyndrome says:

      @Crabby Cakes: the Matrix isn’t selling well, but the Corolla is, so yes, that’s a bit surprising.

      The only Toyota vehicles missing from that list are the Land Cruiser, Avalon, Solara (might be rolled under Camry), Prius (duh) and Yaris (double-duh).

      • Crabby Cakes says:

        @djsyndrome: I just figured they’d use it as a ploy to get rid of all the gas guzzlers that no one’s buying. But Camry and Corolla? That’s a good deal.

        Seriously, I need to STOP. RIGHT. NOW. I’ve almost paid off my current car and I DO NOT need a new car right now.

        • djsyndrome says:

          @Crabby Cakes: no kidding. My Matrix has three payments left and I’ve been eying the new design since it came out. I’m almost at 140k miles, but the stupid thing will. not. die.

          • theblackdog says:

            @djsyndrome: What, and you want it to die, especially while it’s not paid off? :-P

            • djsyndrome says:

              @BertonCapys: two options:

              -if you’re still (very) early in the loan, pay extra each month. This will go towards the principal and you won’t wind up paying interest on it.

              -refinance through your credit union or bank for what you still owe on the loan. If you’re already well into your loan, though, the damage has been done – they’ve already collected most of the interest from you.

              Good luck!

          • Crabby Cakes says:

            @djsyndrome: I’ve got a mother-fracking Mazda 6i. It’s been trying to die since the day I bought it! Should have gone with a Toyota in the first place, like everyone said. But it IS almost paid off and the thought of jumping into another loan, especially now, is none too enticing.

          • atypicalxian says:

            @djsyndrome: Really? I have an ’06 RAV4 that I really do not like (the car runs well, and I like my sunroof, but all the details suck). I was considering a Vibe, which is the same as a Matrix but $1K cheaper, but 0% financing may induce me to give it a look, and I was looking for feedback on the Matrix from someone who owned one.

    • @chiieddy: Don’t go, Consumerist!

      One of the comments made by the publisher was:

      Sites such as Consumerist, whose success has been measured more in traffic and recognition than in revenue, now need to cover their costs.

      Honestly, I would have never found the other Gawker blogs without finding Consumerist first. Consumerist was my Gawker gateway drug.

    • TVarmy says:

      @chiieddy: It looks like the news isn’t as bad as it looked at first blush. Consumerist isn’t getting shuttered. Instead, it looks like Gawker is laying a lot of their bloggers off. Still bad news, but at least the blog isn’t going away entirely.

      • atypicalxian says:

        @TVarmy: As Gawker has become the new DailyKos, I’m not shedding a lot of tears over it (although I’m not happy about anyone being laid off).

        Defamer was my gateway drug to this and Lifehacker.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      @chiieddy: who would like to join me in clicking on ALL the advertising content on the site please?
      would it help or is it too little too late?

    • heathenkitties says:

      @chiieddy: Oh, man, this SUCKS. :-(

  3. exkon says:

    Why couldn’t this apply to their Scion brand as well?

    I want a TC at 0%!!!

  4. bobpence says:

    Will they do the 0% on the purchase plus balance from my Nissan loan?

  5. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    Wow. I was just about to buy a Toyota, but liked a Nissan better. I’m not regretting that. The Toyota would’ve been at least $2,000 more than the Nissan I purchased.

    • "I Like Potatoes" says:

      Well CRAP!….just bought a Sienna last month and got 6 point something loan – with a 800+ credit score. That sucks. Good think I only financed 10,000.

  6. robb9 says:

    Ahhhh… Welcome to the real automotive industry Toyota. GM sold almost 100,000 more cars than you did in September. This is what happens when you lie to your customers.

    • nataku8_e30 says:

      @robb9: Unfortunately that 100,000 number is only in the north american market, where GM has managed to continue to maintain a pretty sizable lead over Toyota. Internationally, my guess is they’re still pretty close.

    • Corporate_guy says:

      @robb9: What lie?

      • robb9 says:


        Where do I begin… Oil sludge is normal would be the first one they told me regarding my brand new 2007 Toyota Camry. Both the dealer and Toyota customer service told me this.

        Sweeping safety related concerns under the rug in japan.

        Horse Power numbers are grossly inflated as were MPG numbers for the Prius until the EPA finally made them change it in 2008.

        My cousins Tundra was not experiencing tailgate issues so said Toyota and the Dealer. This is an issue they have yet to fix for him… The list goes on.

        I sell Saturns now and I’m not exactly happy about it. But so far the service from GM has been improved upon. I might buy one of these cars that i sell because my customers love them.

        • AdvocatesDevil says:

          @robb9: HA! Someone who sells for a domestic car company hates those nasty foreigners stealing his business? Too funny.

          • robb9 says:


            Damn those foreigners. i hate them…. wish they would all go away. I want to load them into the back of my Honda Accord (which I traded my lemon camry for) and drive them all back to Japan.

            Way to put the ASS in assume.

          • robb9 says:

            @AdvocatesDevil: I would also like to add that Toyota didn’t steal any of my sales last month. It looks like the Chevy Malibu actually stole from Toyota.

        • jamar0303 says:

          AE86, people, can’t go wrong with that.

          • Sixxtwo says:

            @jamar0303: THIS! I have had 3 of them and all of them went over 200k. One of them went to 450k. The 4-ac is indestructable! (yes AE86, not AE88)

            Also inb4 InitialD fake drifto-wannabe. Owned the cars before I knew/cared what the show even was.

        • samurailynn says:

          @robb9: I don’t have experience with any of the things you’re saying Toyota lied about, but I do have experience with a different lie. They said my Corolla would only get 32 miles to the gallon highway driving. Instead, I have sometimes gotten up to 40 miles per gallon, and usually get about 30 (instead of the stated 28) miles per gallon with city driving. Those lying bastards.

  7. AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

    I’d still have to get approved for the loan, right?? I have a car loan right now, and I’d love to get a newer car w/o the high interest rate on it.

  8. theblackdog says:

    If this applied to the Yaris, I might consider it.

  9. Corporate_guy says:

    They already had this for 36 month loans. They just expanded the zero percent all the way up to 5 years. 5 years was 2.9%. But as someone who bought one in May at 2.9%, this pisses me off.

  10. robdew2 says:

    Typically don’t “0%” loans just have the hypothetical interest rate in the price of the car?

    /me wishes he could refinance his Tacoma he bought last fall.

  11. BertonCapys says:

    Ugh… I have crap credit (working very hard to repair it and doing a good job thus far) and got a horrible rate from Toyota when I bought my Yaris. 21.9%

    I’ve asked them for a break in the rate but they always say no.

    Any ideas on how I can get it lowered?

    I pay so much on f’ing interest, it’s insane!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Wonder if any other automakers will follow suit.

  13. Saboth says:

    Oh wow, finally Toyota and maybe Honda will offer employee pricing or 0% financing? My time may have come!

  14. vitonfluorcarbon says:

    Will this also apply to the Hybrid Camry? The Hybrid is one great performing car, and does not cost that much more. If I could get one at a price near invoice and zero percent financing, then it is tempting. We just bought a new Yoda this spring making everything in my driveway a Yoda.

    Maybe I’ll just hold out. The next gen synergy drive system is out next year and deals may be even better. Of course if we slip into major recession, the dollar will plummet even farther and companies like Toyota may just decide to focus energies on places where currency is worth something. They avoid some of this by producing a large majority in this country with local content but would still rather earn something more substantial than the unmighty dollar. Any other thoughts?

    • djsyndrome says:

      @vitonfluorcarbon: Toyota’s website isn’t updated with the new offers yet, but the previous ARR offers (0% up to 36 months, 1.9%/48mo., and 2.9%/60 mo.) excluded the Camry Hybrid.

  15. howie_in_az says:

    BMW is having a similar financing offer for their vehicles, ranging from 4.9% to 0.9%.

    The 335i sedan, 550i sedan, M6 coupe, M6 convertible, M3 sedan, and M3 convertible can all be had for 0.9% (M3 coupe for 1.9%).

  16. EdaPirate says:

    How about buy an older car that you can pay off quickly, there’s a guarantee for 0% interest.

    America has gone finance crazy, see the sub prime mortgage crisis for reference. (yes I’m American)

  17. Barney_The Plug_ Frank says:

    Sounds like a great deal! Toyota makes outstanding cars. This is going to put a serious hammer to the US manufacturers–not that they already have had enough blows.

    • narf says:

      @danno50: “Outstanding” is debatable. Just MB and Volvo doesn’t hold the market on safety anymore, Toyota doesn’t hold the market on reliability and durability either, and have been just as apt to deny they have issues as some other makes. Late 90’s to present, major engine sludge issues. In the 90’s, they denied a lot of issues their V6 had … we should know. At work, we had a ’92 V6 pickup that needed an engine every 90-100k miles. Totalled at 250k, but it was doubtful it would’ve made it to 300k without more work anyways. That compared to the ’89 Ford that we got rid of in ’05 with 720k miles (2nd engine, 2nd tranny, a lot of scars, and one seriously beat up driver’s seat), or the ’97 Ford we got rid of last year with 290k miles (all original powertrain, one alternator, one steering box, but that was it).

      The deep discounting hasn’t moved that many of the Toyota trucks/SUVs, so I doubt that extending the 0% is going to help them out any bit. It may move some more Camrys and Corollas, but only for those who were willing to overlook the dull driving experience.

      (None of this really matters to me anyways, as I’m not in the market for a new vehicle. My Chevy with just under 200k miles is doing just fine.)

    • Barney_The Plug_ Frank says:

      @danno50: I own a 06 Toy. Corolla and a 05 Volvo XC-90. I love the driving experience of the XC 90 but it tends to be a “shop queen” and you feel like you are going to be sodomized when it goes in the shop. You’re right, the Corolla provides an uninspiring driving experience; however, the thing runs like a clock. Maintenance is inexpensive and replacement parts are abundant–as the Corolla is the new VW bug or peoples car.

  18. papahoth says:

    Honda which stayed away from big cars, trucks and continues to focus on green technology, continues to do quite well.

    • robb9 says:


      Honda is doing really well. I really like the new Accord. I wish I would have waited to buy the 2008 instead of jumping the gun on the 07. Still a great car. Their design language could use some work though. They are not very attractive.

  19. electrogeek77 says:

    Good timing. We’re looking for a truck, and we have to take the Prius in for an oil change anyways, so we’re going to sniff around for more information.

  20. I generally hate everything toyota has made since the supra, but I really REALLY would love to have me some FJ Cruiser.

    Tundra is still a piece of crap.

    • EBone says:

      @RamV10: Bought one Friday. Love it.

      • @EBone: FJ Cruiser or Tundra?

        I drove my dodge to the toyota dealership to look at the camry with my girlfriend this spring. The salesman tried really hard to get me to trade the it on a Tundra, and didn’t try at all to sell us the camry that we were there to look at. We ended up not buying the Camry, but I did pull out a tow strap and offer to hook hitch to hitch with the tundra, even telling the salesman that I would buy it on the spot if it won. He balked, we left.

        • EBone says:

          @RamV10: FJ Cruiser. Sorry, I wasn’t very clear. First Toyota since ’95. Everything else I buy is either Honda or Acura.

          Anyways, been looking at the FJ for a while, and Friday the paper had an offer for 0% or $5K of MSRP on all FJ Cruisers in stock at a local dealer. As I only financed six grand, I took the $5K off and still got 4.6% financing.

          • @EBone: Wow that’s really nice. I’d love to have one for a toy, but right now I doubt it’s in the cards. My girlfriend thinks that they’re fugly, so maybe I should update that ‘doubt’ to “it’s definitely not in the cards”.

            She doesn’t have any taste anyway, she hangs out with me.

  21. satoru says:

    There’s an odd thing with Japanese cars I’ve not been able to figure out. Traditionally they’ve been more reliable and last longer than their American counterparts (though this difference these days is getting much smaller if not non-existent at this point).

    But the kicker is, in Japan the system insurance/safety is specifically designed such that owning a used car is cost prohibitive. Basically what happens is that after about 3 years you need to go through a yearly inspection. This doesn’t sound bad except for the fact that this ‘safety inspection’ costs THOUSANDS of dollars, and is virtually impossible to pass even if you bought a new car 3 years ago and put it in a garage for the entire time. Then you have to pay for all the insane things they make you fix. Of course new cars are exempt from these ‘safety inspections’ for the first 3 years. So you basically reach a point where buying a new car is either cheaper, or at least in the same ball park as maintaining your old car.

    So considering that most people are just going to buy new cars after 3-4 years why do they even bother to make them last so long? They should just put in the built in warranty time bombs that Volvo’s have so that everything falls apart 1 day after the warranty expires. It’s ironic that Japanese cars have such a high reliability reputation, when in fact no one in the home country would even benefit from this.