Toyota resale values dip by 3.5 percent

February 8, 2010 11:53:35 PM PST
Toyota's latest recall affects over 400,000 Prius and other hybrids worldwide. All of this is having a direct impact on the resale value of Toyotas.

For decades Toyotas have had among the highest resale values, but today, Kelley Blue Book lowered its resale estimates on recalled Toyotas by 3.5 percent from this time last week.

That means a 2009 Toyota Corolla that could have sold for as much as $12,100 last week, would now go for about $11,680.

Car industry experts say the possibility of unwanted used Toyotas stacking up on lots could lower values even more.

"I just don't forecast seeing this being a problem. Like I said I can't get enough cars as it is right now," says Scott Pettit, director of pre-owned cars at Toyota Sunnyvale.

Pettit says the poor economy has used cars in high demand, including Toyotas despite recalls for sticky accelerators and braking problems.

"I think the confidence in the product is still there. I think people just want to be reassured," says Pettit.

And Toyota has launched a media blitz to restore the faith.

"We stop production so we can focus on our customer's cars," says a Toyota commercial.

Still Edmunds.com, an industry expert, says the trade-in values on recalled Toyotas have fallen as much as 10 percent, but it predicts they will bounce back.

"Now is probably not the time to sell it. I think in the next few months this is going to be very short term and we see that the brand will come back after this, that's of course that we don't see anything else happen," says Silvia Marino, executive director of Edmunds.com.

Resale values come out every week. So we'll see if this is a brief downward trend or the beginning of a downward spiral.


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