If you own a Toyota Tacoma, this may be the best chance you’ll ever get to unload it.
According to U.S. News and World Report, Toyota is offering to buy back Tacoma pick-up trucks from model years 1995 to 2000, at a price which is 150% of the Kelley bluebook “excellent” condition value, regardless of actual condition.
The program, which is called a “Customer Support Program” by Toyota, is the result of repeated reports of premature frame rust on the target Tacoma trucks.
However, only some trucks will qualify for the buy-back.
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Toyota will be sending notices to 800,000 Tacoma owners, directing them to take their trucks to local dealers for evaluation. If there is sufficient rust damage, the vehicle will either be repaired by Toyota or the company will offer to repurchase the vehicle under the program. If no damage is found, Toyota will extend the vehicle warranty on the frame by fifteen years, with no mileage limit.
One newspaper article profiled a Tacoma owner taking advantage of the program. He bought his truck used, with 200,000 miles on it. He brought it in for inspection, and the rust damage was sufficient for Toyota to offer to purchase it under the program. He’ll get $12,600 for a truck that is ten years old, and likely would bring only a quarter of that amount as a trade-in.
So, is there a way to make a quick buck? Buy a used Tacoma at market and then sell it to Toyota?
One thing’s for sure, though: if you’ve got a Tacoma that passes inspection, you’re coming out on the losing end of this deal. Not only do you not get to sell your truck for more than it’s worth, but the publicity attendant to the Toyota campaign is sure to drive the resale value of the Tacoma through the floor.