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stompe

Is It Me?

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I thought we do pretty well for Europe as they do seem to get some bare bones specs.

Compared to Japan or Asia we get a raw deal it appears though.

I think the UK car companies still live in the 1970's where you are expected to pay extra (and usually over the odds) for every extra. Now that might work for BMW owners but it is easy to add spec to a car these days and the more the merrier. It does appear that if Toyota give with one hand, they take something else off instead. Why can't they just fully load the cars? Because they like things as they are.

Thinking about this, they did pull their fingers out a bit when Japanese grey imports were all the thing 10 years ago, but have slowly let things slip again. Reactive rather than proactive?

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You'd want to check out the poverty spec cars they dump on us here in Ireland!

My GenII was an English import. My present GenIII is an English import. I have two friends who drive Lexus LS430's, and those cars are English imports too.

The kicker here is, not only is it cheaper to import from the UK than buy local, but the spec is always that much higher as well.

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Definitely!

In the Gen 2, most of Europe got heated door mirrors (even where they didn't ever need them!) and smart start/entry - something we didn't get until Gen3.

Some countries even got electric elements in the Gen 2 heating system to help defrost the screen, warm the cabin and use the engine as a heater a bit less - now wouldn't that be great on the plug-in?

In some countries some models have electrically adjustable front seats with memory buttons - not even an option here

Nothing new though - in the 1970s British Leyland sold whole models in some other countries that we never got here - anyone seen an Austin Victoria for example? Or a straight six Marina that the Aussies got?

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The Austin Apache/Victoria was the Austin 1100/1300 with the front and rear redesigned by Michelotti - Apache was built in South Africa and Victoria by Authi in Spain.

The Australians also experimented with a V8 Austin 1800, but stayed with the Austin/Morris Tasman and Kimberley (the 1800 with redesigned front and rear), and the Leyland P76 (2.6 six cylinder and 4.4 V8).

How about the Toyota Wish - a six or seven seat MPV, larger than the Verso.

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Options have their pros and cons. For the Prius Gen 2, I was relieved that we did not get Smart key or the Thermos bottle storage, both result in extra 12V Battery drain and the latter was the subject of yet another pump recall. We did get the better suspension and handling than 95% of the USA Gen2s (approx 5% were the Touring model) and 16" wheels.

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Oh there are a lot of nice Toyotas from Japan we don't get, including many not so nice ones. Trouble is, the UK market has to have models that are sold in Europe and what might sell here might not be wanted in Greece or Hungary. A lot of the Japanese Toyota models do seem to be RHD only - great for us, not so for our European friends.

Shame.

What happened to that cracking Toyota people carrier? Now it's just 7 seats crammed into a glorified estate car. Great for young kids, not so great if you want more. The Japanese market have loads of proper 7 seat options.

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<snip>

What happened to that cracking Toyota people carrier? Now it's just 7 seats crammed into a glorified estate car. Great for young kids, not so great if you want more. The Japanese market have loads of proper 7 seat options.

I suspect you mean the Previa? I have its smaller btother, a six-seater 1997 Toyota Picnic (See picture #4). Over the past few years I have kept an eye out for a modern car to replace it. I have never seen anything to compare with it. The individually reclinable and movable middle seats, removable rear seats, elevated driving position, huge rear door and the lack of the huge breakwater between the front two seats has been a God-send in terms of transporting people, sports equipment, white goods, furniture and rubbish to the dump.

A VERY hard act to follow.

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They still make them, the Toyota Previa and Toyota Estima and Estima Hybrid. The latest Estima certainly has Prius inspiration in its design.

They used to sell like hot cakes, then the price went up, then they didn't sell so well and then they were dropped. Probably all due to this average fuel economy standards nonsense and a 2.4 litre people carrier drags it up, so why not sell a 1.6 Verso 7 seater instead.

I'd rather have an Estima for my £26k than a Prius+.

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Think the main reason Toyota dropped both the Previs and the Avensis Verso in Europe was more to do with the fact Toyota couldn't compete in terms of volumes with the Ford Galaxy/VW Sharan/Seat Alhambra market leaders, and the heavy discounting - especially with the Galaxy.

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Shouldn't believe everything you read on Wiki :)

But the heavy discounting on the end of line Galaxy/Sharan was years ago and only for a few years. Why not bring it back now? Always seemed such a missed opportunity and the fact that so many people have since purchased 'grey' imports shows there was a demand there - and they're not cheap either.

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Shouldn't believe everything you read on Wiki :)

Not just on Wiki. That applies everywhere.

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