Finding the perfect vehicle that would best suit your preferences and personality is never a problem with the Toyota automobile fleet. Toyota Motor Corporation offers the widest array of vehicle choices second to General Motors in the whole automotive industry but is the biggest car company in Japan. Toyota Tacoma, Corolla, Supra, Celica, Prius, Tundra, Camry, Matrix, Highlander, MR2, Land Cruiser, Sienna, Echo, Sequoia, Avalon, 4x4, Starlet, Avensis, Hi-Lux, Previa, Tercel, and RAV4 are just the few models you can choose from if you want something that would stand the test of time and that would never leave you hanging during crucial and unexpected moments.
The Toyota Solara is another Toyota product that would certainly bring fun and enjoyment for your driving or comfort and convenience for your ride. The Toyota Solara is a subsidiary of the mid-size family car Toyota Camry. Camrys, especially the hardtop models were sold as the Lexus ES 250, ES 300, and ES 330. Moreover, the Toyota Camry, which was produced staring 1980 until now, has 5 generations already and it was on the fourth generation Camry when the Solara came along specifically in December of 1996. In 1999, Toyota Camry Solara emerged with two body styles to which are the coupe and the convertible. They are distinct with the earlier Camrys in terms of styling and appearance. A different driving experience and functionality are what the Camry Solara has to offer.
Whatever Toyota Solara trim you have now, whether it is an SE or an SLE trim, because of the everyday use and beating while on the road, it would surely come to a point of deterioration like any other car, as to its parts. Toyota Solara parts are definitely important players in keeping the power, performance and even reliability of your Toyota Solara's in perfect condition.
Guide to Keeping Your Toyota Solara Convertible in Top Shape
The Toyota Solara only had a short run, but there are still many of this model running on the streets today. Built for sporty drivers, this Toyota vehicle is an ideal companion for cruising around town, for road trips with friends during summer, or simply for doing daily errands in style. If you have the convertible type of Solara in your garage, you probably know that it will demand a different kind of TLC compared to its coupe counterpart. So how can you keep your Solara convertible working well for a long time? Here are some tips:
- Give your car some sun protection.
The same way you protect your skin from the sun when you go out, you must also protect your vehicle from the sun's rays—especially if you frequently drive with your top down. If you have leather seats, be sure to apply conditioner to them every now and then; this will keep cracks from developing. You can also cover the seats with a seat cover every time you're going out in the sun with your top down. For your dashboard, there are various protectors available in the market, and they're very easy to use. Lastly, always park in the shade as much as possible.
- Use the right cleaners for your convertible top.
The two most common materials used to manufacture convertible tops are vinyl and fabric. Depending on the material of the top, you will need a specific type of cleaner formulated for the said material. Vinyl should be cleaned gently as it is sensitive. When choosing the right cleaner for your vinyl top, be sure that you read the labels and avoid a cleaner with silicon ingredient—it has a drying property that can cause premature wear on your top. Fabric is easy to clean, as long as you get one that is formulated for this material. However, what you need to remember with a fabric top is that you must treat the material after a while. Fabric tops are treated at the factory to give them water-repellent property. As you drive with the top on, however, the fabric slowly loses its water-repellent characteristic. Therefore, you will need to treat it so that you will be able to continue using it without problems.
- Remember that it's all about proper use.
As with all other cars, the longevity of your ride will be largely determined by the way you drive it and maintain it. When it comes to your Toyota Solara, maintenance will involve replacing wearing parts at the correct interval, paying attention to signs of damage, and attending to problems right away. To keep the top in good shape for a long time, one of the things to remember is to avoid folding it when wet—always allow it to dry first, as moisture can damage not only the top material but also the mechanism that controls the top's movement.
By following all these tips, you can expect your vehicle to work well for many more years to come.
Toyota Solara: The Sport-Oriented Midsized Sedan
Aimed at the consumers who are entering their peak earning years, Toyota designed the Solara; an all-new midsized sedan which was pleasantly styled and well-built. The Toyota Solara was both available as a convertible and a coupe. With a reputation for building reliable and fun-to-drive vehicles, the Solara was a popular choice for a midsized two-door sedan. People loved the Solara for its great value and reasonable price.
The Late 1990’s: Debut of the Midsized Two-door Coupe
Built after the Toyota Camry’s mechanical platform, the Solara made its debut during the third quarter of 1998. Designed to replace the Toyota Camry Coupe, the Solara was fitted with a 4-cylinder 5S-FE 2.2-liter engine, with 135 horsepower and 147 lb-ft of torque. It also offered a 3.0-liter 1MZ-FE V6 engine with 200 horsepower to boast. Partnering with JBL Audio, the Solara was the first vehicle in the Toyota lineup to feature a premium stereo option and a single-slot, in-dash CD player, and cassette deck. The Solara’s SE models offered 15-inch steel rims and hubcaps, while the Sports Package offered a retuned suspension, steering, rear lip spoiler, perforated 8-way power adjustable leather seats, and an upgraded 16-inch alloy rims.
Early 2000’s: Enter the Solara SLE Coupe Convertible
The Toyota Solara SLE coupe convertible was added to the lineup in 2000. Fitted with a 3.0-liter 1MZ-FE V6 engine, this coupe convertible sported a new grill pattern, a chrome logo on its steering wheel, taillights, fog lights, and a 4-bulb headlight system. The JBL head units in the Solara SLE coupe convertible was upgrade to a 6-disc in-dash CD changer with a cassette deck. A remote-controlled trunk, Mustard Wood interior trims, heated leather seats, black pearl emblems, a leather-wrapped shift knob, a 3-spoke steering wheel, and a redesigned center cap on its wheels were some of the new features on this coupe. In 2002, the 2.4-liter 2AZ-FE VVTi engine was introduced to the Solara. With 157 horsepower and 162 lbs-ft of torque, the new engine improved the coupe’s performance and reduced its emissions.
Mid 2000’s: Introducing the Multi-Mode Transmission Technology
In 2004, the Toyota Solara was completely redesigned and it featured a curvier body. Built from the 2002 Toyota Camry’s platform, the Solara’s new body was heavier than its predecessor. A 3.3-liter V6 engine with 225 horsepower was included in the new Solara. The coupe offered a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic transmission. The Multi-Mode Transmission or MMT was a 5-speed automatic transmission designed for the Solara’s new V6 engine. An XM radio and navigation system was also offered on the new Solara.
2006: The Solara SE Sport
A restyled Solara was introduced in 2007 and it featured LED taillights, standard spoilers, and reverse lights built into its bumpers. The SE Sport, on the other hand, had its own unique spoiler, redesigned grill and headlights, smaller fog lamps, and new Toyota badges. Optitron gauges, blue backlighting, a new steering wheel design, auxiliary port connectivity, and a voice-activated navigation for the SLE V6 models were some of the features added to the Solara. The 2.2-liter 2AZ-FE I4 and the 3.3-liter 3MZ-FE V6 engines still powered the new generation of Solara sport coupes.