The Toyota Highlander has earned its reputation as a reliable, spacious, and feature-rich 3-row SUV. Getting one doesn't have to empty your wallet. If you want to learn more about the Toyota Highlander, you can do a quick online search.
Why Opt for a Toyota Highlander?
Before exploring options to cut costs, it's essential to understand why you'd want a Highlander in the first place. Known for its longevity, safety features, and well-designed interior, the Highlander offers a solid mix of utility and luxury. Recognizing what draws you to this vehicle will help you pinpoint features you can't compromise on and areas where you can afford to be flexible.
Consider a Used or Certified Pre-Owned Highlander
One of the best ways to get any vehicle for cheap is to consider the used market.
Used Highlander: An older model (5-10 years) can often be purchased for around $15,000 to $25,000, depending on condition, mileage, and features.
Certified Pre-Owned (CPO): Toyota's CPO vehicles are no older than six years and come with a comprehensive warranty. They range from about $25,000 to $35,000, offering a nice middle-ground between new and used.
Dealer Promotions and Manufacturer Incentives
Dealerships and Toyota often run promotions that can make a new Highlander more affordable.
Cash Rebates: These discounts are applied directly to the price and can save you a significant amount.
Low-APR Financing: Occasionally, zero-percent APR financing is available, which can save you a lot in interest over the term of the loan.
Select a Lower Trim Level or an Older Model Year
The Highlander comes in several trims, each offering a different set of features.
L: This is the base trim level, which comes equipped with features like an 8-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and several active safety features.
Limited: If you're looking for more luxury, the Limited trim offers leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, and a JBL audio system but comes with a higher price tag.
By opting for a less luxurious trim, you could save thousands.
Leasing as an Alternative
If you're not set on owning your Highlander, leasing is a good way to reduce your monthly payments, although you'll have to return the vehicle at the end of the lease term.
The Art of Negotiation
The listed price is rarely the final price, and this is where your negotiation skills come into play.
Invoice Price: Research the invoice price of the Highlander, which is what the dealer paid for it. Aim to negotiate up from this number.
Multiple Offers: Make sure to get price quotes from several dealerships. This not only gives you a better understanding of the market but also provides leverage in negotiations.
Online Tools and Resources
Use online resources like Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, or TrueCar to compare prices and see what others in your area are paying. These platforms can also alert you to any available rebates or incentives.
Trade-Ins and Down Payments
A trade-in can significantly lower the price of your new Highlander. Ensure you know the value of your current car before you discuss trade-ins. Additionally, a higher down payment can reduce your monthly installments and interest.
Consider Your Financing Options
If you're not paying in cash, you'll need to look at financing options.
Shop for the Best Loan Rates: Your dealership might offer financing, but that doesn't mean they offer the best rates. Compare with other financial institutions.
Down Payments: A larger down payment will decrease your loan amount, potentially qualifying you for lower interest rates.
Timing Your Purchase
Dealers have quotas and are more likely to negotiate prices at the end of the month, quarter, or year. Keep this in mind and try to time your purchase accordingly.
Acquiring a Toyota Highlander on a budget is entirely feasible if you know where to look and how to negotiate. Whether you're considering a new, used, or CPO model, your chances of securing a great deal improve significantly when you're well-informed and prepared. From selecting the right trim level to understanding the best time to make a purchase, each decision you make brings you one step closer to driving home in your very own Highlander, without breaking the bank.