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Old 06-27-2022, 11:00 AM #16
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There are no "special orders", per se. Toyota isn't like, say Jeep, where you can order what you exactly want. There are only packages allocated to sales regions. You can place a deposit to get something allocated to you, that's about it.

Sometimes, a one-off will make its way into a sales region. For example, here in Canada, my preferred local dealer got a 2021 SR5 with cloth and no sunroof. They informed me that this is a once in a blue moon situation (like every 5 years). If you go to Toyota Canada's site, this configuration is simply not available here.
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Old 06-27-2022, 01:12 PM #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruby Khan View Post
Thanks.

I am mountain region.

I am going to start again with the big dealers in Salt Lake and Denver metro areas.

Thank you.
Most dealers have a online sales guy. I live in SoCal no one had what I was looking for.
I emailed about 10 or 12 dealers in Northern Cal, Nevada. Arizona and Utah.
It took six months but I found My 4Runner in Las Vegas.

It cracks me up that Toyotas Moto is " We Make It Easy On You" Only it your not picky.
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Old 06-27-2022, 02:12 PM #18
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There are no "special orders", per se. Toyota isn't like, say Jeep, where you can order what you exactly want.
Unless their entire sales program has changed since I retired in 2017, this is not true. Dealers do not want to custom order a vehicle from scratch because they don't like the customer thinking about their purchase and getting cold feet a month down the road. They will even tell you that you can't order from scratch. What they will tell you is instead of waiting for 3 months for your car, they can look into the production line orders and find something similar to what you want, modify it to be close to what you want, direct that vehicle to your local dealer and replace the original targeted dealership with another one.

But what they REALLY want to do is sell you something off the lot today. At the dealership you are dealing with dealership rules and sales men's pitches. You are not dealing with Toyota Motor Sales.

Again, with the impact of Covid, this may be temporarily suspended, but I doubt it. There is a cutoff for a current model year, probably around March. You can't special order a vehicle if they won't have time to produce it. You'd have to wait for the next model year.
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Old 06-27-2022, 09:20 PM #19
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Does Toyota allow for special orders?

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Originally Posted by ArthurKotb View Post
Unless their entire sales program has changed since I retired in 2017, this is not true. Dealers do not want to custom order a vehicle from scratch because they don't like the customer thinking about their purchase and getting cold feet a month down the road. They will even tell you that you can't order from scratch. What they will tell you is instead of waiting for 3 months for your car, they can look into the production line orders and find something similar to what you want, modify it to be close to what you want, direct that vehicle to your local dealer and replace the original targeted dealership with another one.

But what they REALLY want to do is sell you something off the lot today. At the dealership you are dealing with dealership rules and sales men's pitches. You are not dealing with Toyota Motor Sales.

Again, with the impact of Covid, this may be temporarily suspended, but I doubt it. There is a cutoff for a current model year, probably around March. You can't special order a vehicle if they won't have time to produce it. You'd have to wait for the next model year.

While the sales model of “sell in stock” is true and universal, it has nothing to do with Toyota not accepting true a la cart orders.

We can put in preference requests for actual “builds” that customers want all day long but the chances of Toyota giving us exactly what we want are slim to none. So we revert back to just looking for an allocation and swap some accessories around the build.

So it is more accurate to say custom orders aren’t a thing.


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Old 06-28-2022, 09:49 AM #20
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I heard back from my contact at Toyota. Due to Covid, right now even employee purchases are up to the dealerships. They can even refuse to participate in the employee purchase plan or they can elect to sell only what is on the lot, modify one currently in the build process or order custom. It's entirely up to the dealership.

Since this is what's happening for employee purchases I would venture the same applies for regular customer purchases. As I said before, it's the problems caused by Covid. Dealerships are not required to participate in the employee purchase plan. Dealerships set their own process and Toyota supports them.

My point is that the process to order custom does exist. It may not be at the dealership near you because of supply problems or because of that dealer's process, but it does exist.
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Old 06-28-2022, 10:26 AM #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArthurKotb View Post
I heard back from my contact at Toyota. Due to Covid, right now even employee purchases are up to the dealerships. They can even refuse to participate in the employee purchase plan or they can elect to sell only what is on the lot, modify one currently in the build process or order custom. It's entirely up to the dealership.

Since this is what's happening for employee purchases I would venture the same applies for regular customer purchases. As I said before, it's the problems caused by Covid. Dealerships are not required to participate in the employee purchase plan. Dealerships set their own process and Toyota supports them.

My point is that the process to order custom does exist. It may not be at the dealership near you because of supply problems or because of that dealer's process, but it does exist.

You’re missing the point. Even before these issues with Covid, submitting a true custom order had such a low success rate that it was and still is universally avoided at all costs. It’s not good for the customer experience to attempt a custom order only to have them rejected the majority of the time.


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Old 06-28-2022, 10:51 AM #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArthurKotb View Post
Unless their entire sales program has changed since I retired in 2017, this is not true. Dealers do not want to custom order a vehicle from scratch because they don't like the customer thinking about their purchase and getting cold feet a month down the road. They will even tell you that you can't order from scratch. What they will tell you is instead of waiting for 3 months for your car, they can look into the production line orders and find something similar to what you want, modify it to be close to what you want, direct that vehicle to your local dealer and replace the original targeted dealership with another one.

But what they REALLY want to do is sell you something off the lot today. At the dealership you are dealing with dealership rules and sales men's pitches. You are not dealing with Toyota Motor Sales.

Again, with the impact of Covid, this may be temporarily suspended, but I doubt it. There is a cutoff for a current model year, probably around March. You can't special order a vehicle if they won't have time to produce it. You'd have to wait for the next model year.
Yes, you can place special orders but it is up to the dealer. I am a case in point. Last May (2021), I ordered a RAV4 hybrid. Ordered exactly what I wanted (color, trim level, options, and accessories). About two weeks later Toyota gave a production date of July 27. Just before the production date, I got the temporary VIN. Then after the production date I got the permanent VIN. I got my RAV4 about a month later.

I visited every Toyota dealer in northern Utah, but all the others refused to place an order. Only my local dealer would place an order.

All through this process, my dealer kept me informed, even telling me that my name was on all documents as part of the order.
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Old 06-28-2022, 11:16 AM #23
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I had the same problem... been trying to find a dealer to place a custom order since JANUARY and every single one I reached out to said they "don't participate in custom orders from the factory" anymore. Very disappointing... especially when Toyota USA customer service says they accept any and all custom orders from dealers!
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Old 06-28-2022, 07:44 PM #24
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For the 3rd of 4th time, in these times of Covid, custom orders are highly unlikely to be accepted by a dealer or even to be fulfilled by the plants. I'm not speaking about a custom order right now, since Covid got rolling in 2020. The pandemic put the brakes on the global supply chain. That doesn't mean the process doesn't exist.

If Covid had not happened, you could put in a custom order (depending on the dealership). Can you do that today? Not likely. Could you do it for next year or the year after? Magic 8 Ball says to ask later; much later.

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Old 06-29-2022, 10:35 PM #25
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Quote:
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For the 3rd of 4th time, in these times of Covid, custom orders are highly unlikely to be accepted by a dealer or even to be fulfilled by the plants. I'm not speaking about a custom order right now, since Covid got rolling in 2020. The pandemic put the brakes on the global supply chain. That doesn't mean the process doesn't exist.

If Covid had not happened, you could put in a custom order (depending on the dealership). Can you do that today? Not likely. Could you do it for next year or the year after? Magic 8 Ball says to ask later; much later.

I placed my custom order in May 2021, a year + into Covid. My dealer continues to place custom orders. My salesman told me just a couple weeks ago that he had placed an order for himself, a RAV4 XSE hybrid.
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Old 06-29-2022, 11:44 PM #26
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Y'all are conflating a true custom order with what they're doing 99% of the time which is matching allocations. They are two different things, but it's easier to tell a customer it's an order than have to explain what the whole allocation process entails.
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Old 06-30-2022, 11:35 AM #27
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Y'all are conflating a true custom order with what they're doing 99% of the time which is matching allocations. They are two different things, but it's easier to tell a customer it's an order than have to explain what the whole allocation process entails.
Exactly. A custom order is what you do with a mercedes or bmw. Dictate specific options and then wait 6 months for it to arrive. It's actually how I ordered my 2010 Touareg TDI back in the day.

It's why BMW/Mercedes/Other luxury cars do less submodels (i.e. ORP) and more individual options.

This is not what Toyota does.
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Old 06-30-2022, 06:59 PM #28
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I used the Toyota quote form to contact a bunch of regional dealers.

What I learned is that no one acknowledged the "build" details that the Toyota website suggests have been forwarded to the dealer.

I had to reiterate what vehicle and options I wanted. Most of the time I had to repeat the details again after the salesperson demonstrated that they did not read the contents of the first few emails in the exchange.

I have formed the opinion that none of the salespeople want to guide you through a six month process when they have no idea if they will even have a job next Friday.
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Old 06-30-2022, 07:30 PM #29
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Quote:
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I used the Toyota quote form to contact a bunch of regional dealers.

What I learned is that no one acknowledged the "build" details that the Toyota website suggests have been forwarded to the dealer.

I had to reiterate what vehicle and options I wanted. Most of the time I had to repeat the details again after the salesperson demonstrated that they did not read the contents of the first few emails in the exchange.

I have formed the opinion that none of the salespeople want to guide you through a six month process when they have no idea if they will even have a job next Friday.

That can be summarized even further as the salespeople just being too lazy to read the details in the sales lead. It’s not unique to the Build & Price inquiries. One of the banes of my existence as a sales manager is just getting the sales team to do the basics properly.


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Old 10-13-2022, 03:53 PM #30
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One of the banes of my existence as a sales manager is just getting the sales team to do the basics properly.


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I believe it!

I know the thread is a few months old, but it is relevant to my (and possibly others'?) current situation.

I have been exchanging emails with different dealerships and they are REALLY good at sending me info on units I don't want. At least they are able to keep the model straight, but when I specify a white 4WD without 3rd row seating and I get "Here's one for you" which lists a black, RWD, 3rd row seat equipped unit, and they don't even capitalize my name, I have to wonder how they stay in business.

I asked one clown for his sale manager's contact info and he said he wasn't allowed to give that out. So, you won't give me info I need and now I can't even talk to a supervisor?

I'm very interested in a new 4Runner, but not if it's the wrong color with the wrong options.

Is there any other business model that makes it so difficult to spend $50K? Sheesh!
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