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2008 Toyota Solara

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2008 Toyota Solara Review

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The 2008 Toyota Camry Solara Convertible offers genuine four-passenger seating, a spacious trunk and a velvety-smooth ride for about the same price as an entry-level premium sedan. Available in three trim levels, all powered by a smooth and efficient V6 engine, the Solara Convertible offers enough variation and content to satisfy all but the most demanding enthusiasts. The power-operated convertible top works effortlessly and is padded to help isolate wind and road noise. The only other vehicle able to rival the Solara in the areas of price, passenger comfort and cargo space is the new Chrysler Sebring, a car that offers the options of a retractable hard top but cannot match the Solara's impressive resale value and overall build quality.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a convertible the whole family can enjoy, the 2008 Toyota Solara's roomy rear seat, big trunk and smooth ride will make everyone happy. The triple-layered top keeps out cold, wind noise and rain, making the Solara a year-round convertible.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The Toyota Solara does not offer a manual transmission, something many driving enthusiasts may want. With the top in place, the Solara Convertible has a rather wide blind spot to the rear.

What's New for 2008

No major changes for 2008.

Driving the Solara

Driving Impressions The 2008 Toyota Solara is a superb road car -- but is more refined than sporty. Its smooth ride is neither mushy nor devoid of road...

feel. You may find the steering to be a bit heavy in the turns, but the overall feeling it transmits is one of precision and control. Power for the Solara is provided by a new 3.3-liter V6 engine with 210 horsepower. The Solara's standard five-speed sequential automatic transmission allows you the option of manually selecting gears.

Power Retractable Top
The power retractable top requires little effort from the driver and, when in place, seals out almost all wind and road noise.

Optional JBL Audio
The optional JBL audio sounds terrific and has the power to override wind noise at high speed.

2008 Toyota Solara Details
2008 Toyota Solara photo Interior

Inside, Toyota has taken steps to preserve the roomy feel of the first-generation Solara while improving on its appearance. The instrument panel features a swooping center section that flows down to meet a wide center console. Storage space is generous thanks to the large bin beneath the center armrest and a set of console-mounted cup holders. Sport models get a handsome silver-faced finish that covers the audio and HVAC control panels, and a set of metered gauges displaying time, outside temperature and driving range, while the more luxurious SLE model features burl wood trim on the dash and doors.

Exterior

The sleek Solara convertible could easily be mistaken for a Lexus SC 430. Clearly, the stunning SC 430 had some influence on the design, which features teardrop- shaped headlamps and a curvaceous rear end. The power top does not fold flush with the rear deck, but rather has an attractive color-keyed boot. However, this creates a severe blind spot to the rear that some shorter drivers may find annoying.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The Solara convertible has a 210-horsepower V6, five-speed automatic transmission, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, air conditioning, glass rear window with defroster, power convertible top, engine immobilizer, fog lights, remote keyless entry, dual power mirrors, power windows, power locks, power seats, power driver's seat lumbar support, AM/FM stereo with six-disc CD/MP3 changer, front side-impact airbags, cruise control, tilt/telescopic steering wheel, tire pressure monitor, trip computer and alloy wheels. The SLE adds wood trim, heated seats, automatic air conditioning, JBL audio, garage door opener and heated side mirrors.

Optional Equipment

Options include navigation, rear spoiler, stability control, leather seating, power driver's seat, JBL audio with Bluetooth wireless connectivity and an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Under the Hood

The Solara's 3.3-liter V6 provides excellent acceleration, near-silent operation and relatively good fuel economy.

3.3-liter V6
210 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
220 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/26

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2008 Toyota Solara Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.3
Out of 10

Based on 562 Ratings for the 2004 - 2008 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.4/10
    Quality
    9.5/10
  • Reliability
    9.6/10
    Performance
    9.3/10
  • Comfort
    9.3/10
    Styling
    9.4/10

Very nice car for a 2 door

By on Thursday, January 14, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 105,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "very good car"

Cons: "Toyota needs a sport cp with some go to it."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Got the car for free with 3k miles.(death in family). not sure I would buy new for 28k. sport cp has upgrade Suspension, handles very good. transmission to slow and soft. have a CPU upgrade and air intake box. very quick. have been over 135 MPH. have done absolutely nothing but brakes and tires for repairs. FYI most parts on car are also Lexus parts."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

A Very Good Buy

By on Wednesday, January 13, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 155,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Purchased this car in 2005. Have nothing but fun and good times with it. Drives smooth. Take off can slow up a bit depending upon what gear you're in. City and highway driving smooth. Fast or slow, it's a definite comfort. You will get noticed and complimented especially when the weather turns warm. Turns on a dime. Washes and shines very well. Kept poly waxing on it to preserve the paint. All interiors still work. Just changed original battery about 2 years ago due to maintenance schedule or would still have it. Love this car, but purchased a highlander for practical reasons."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

Reliable but annoying

By on Tuesday, December 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 102,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
4/10
Comfort
4/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3

Crossing the Sunshine Bridge over Tampa Bay!

"Solara is a 2-door Camry. Our car guy is someone we trust, and he explained there's just not a lot that goes wrong with these cars besides normal wear and tear, if you take good care of it like we have. Honestly, I think you're better off buying a Camry! Average car overall, but no longer fits my needs. Bought it at a small local dealer for 11k upon graduating college with 60,000 miles on it because I thought it was stylish and Toyota was a reliable make. Now I have a paid-off car that I wouldn't be convenient with a child in the backseat, and it's only worth about 4k. With only 2 very heavy and huge doors, they could easily hit the parked car next to you if you're not careful or it's windy that day. The dashboard (glove box) vinyl has the typical cracking for this model and year. Backseat passengers can only enter easily from the passenger side, since the driver's seat is a slow power seat. Backseat is fairly roomy for a coupe with cupholders, but ceiling is low. The trunk is a good size and both sides of the back seat fold down. Driving the car feels heavy, like an older model Buick LeSabre, my previous car. I don't like the shiny fake wood detailing on the inside, very cheap looking. The sound system is just OK, fair amount of base if you like that. Again, you might as well get the Camry for long-term."

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Crossing the Sunshine Bridge over Tampa Bay!

Great Car, Fun to Drive

By on Saturday, October 17, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 130,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I got this car about 3 months ago with money i made this summer and have loved it since. For a coup is it very spacious in both the front and back seat, and is comfortable to drive. As far as how well it drives (it will throw people in the back seat around a bit), it has great acceleration, and corners better than anything else I have driven. I will say that I'm am having some slight head gasket issues, but since I added some head gasket fix fluid I haven't had any issues. As long as you aren't particularly tall person I would say it is a great vehicle and would recommend it who wants a somewhat sporty vehicle."

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

MY Favorite

By on Tuesday, October 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 135,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "cruisin with the top down"

Cons: "haven't found any"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This Solara is my favorite vehicle of all those I have owned. Rides like a dream, handles well, front wheel good in bad weather, looks sharp. This has been my fun vehicle, and I love it!"

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

car has been totaled

By on Friday, September 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 72,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great car. Well made, handled beautifully!"

Cons: "No longer being made"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This car was a great car. Garaged year round, minimally driven as you can see from the milage, regularly serviced and maintained. It was my summer car. Sadly, they no longer make it. I would purchase anothe if they did."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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