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Toyota Australia reviewing LandCruiser 300 price gouging concerns

Rare, low-kilometre LandCruisers are listed tens of thousands above retail. Toyota says it will look into any dealer engaging in such conduct.

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Mike Costello
Mike Costello
News Editor
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Toyota Australia says it would take a dim view toward excessive prices being advertised by franchise dealers – as examples of near-new LandCruiser 300 Series’ listed with massive markups proliferate in the classifieds.

A small number of (what are listed as) dealers as well as private sellers appear to be exploiting high levels of demand and ongoing short supplies for the big 4×4 – resulting in truly eyebrow-raising markup requests amounting to tens of thousands of dollars above easily accessed pricing information on Toyota’s own site.

Most of the wildly overpriced LC300s in question are marked in Carsales as ‘dealer used’ stock – fewer as private on-sellers – although we’re told at least one of these dealers is not in fact part of the Toyota network, following an investigation.

Toyota in fact told us today that it would look into all claims of dealer-level price gouging, and suggested all potential customers buy brand new and pay the proper “official” price – and not a cent more. Any dealers found exploiting demand and overcharging for near-new used vehicles would fall foul of its “internal standards”.

But any on-sellers that are gouging who don’t belong to the TMCAu franchise network are outside its control.

While the LandCruiser 300 is certainly not the only vehicle subject to low-mile used markups in these times of stock famine, it is one of the most hotly demanded and high-profile new cars launched in recent times, and is particularly supply constrained.

While brand new cars carry RRPs and attract specific State charges, the vehicles cited in this story are registered and classified as ‘used’ regardless of mileage.

We’re aware that nobody is forcing anyone to pay these prices, but we contend that it’s not a good look for the brand or its dealer group. As, it seems following some high-level conversations today, does Toyota Australia.

Let’s start at the top spec grade, the LandCruiser Sahara ZX, which has a manufacturer RRP of $138,790. From there you run into different on-road charges at State or Territory level.

Using Toyota’s pricing calculator for brand new vehicles, this RRP equals $148,658 drive-away in NSW, $152,036 drive-away in Victoria, $149,905 in Queensland, $151,469 in Perth, $147,618 in South Australia, $147,528 in Tasmania, $149,461 in the ACT, and $146,426 in the NT.

Yet the two listed “Dealer Used” Sahara ZXs listed on Carsales, with respectively 203km and 5km on their odometers, are currently asking for $189,990 and $192,990.

Next the LandCruiser GR Sport grade wears a RRP of $137,790 and State-specific drive-away prices of between $145,396 and $150,966 depending on location.

Yet of the 11 GR Sports listed, 10 of them were listed as either dealer or private used cars with between 200km and 3340km on their odometers, and with pricing of between $168,000 and $199,900.

The RRP of the LandCruiser Sahara grade is $131,190 before on-road costs, equalling drive-away prices of between $138,598 and $143,904 depending on location.

Yet of the 16 Saharas listed, 15 of them were listed as either dealer or private used cars with between 2km and 3600km on their odometers, and with pricing of between $174,990 and $189,990.

The RRP of the LandCruiser VX grade is $113,990 and State-specific drive-away prices are listed as between $120,882 and $125,500 depending on location.

Yet of the 22 VXs listed, 21 of them were listed as either dealer or private used cars with between 2km and 3600km on their odometers, and with pricing of between $145,000 and $169,981.

The RRP of the LandCruiser GXL grade is $101,790 and State-specific drive-away prices are listed as between $108,316 and $112,446 depending on location.

Yet of the 10 GXLs listed, eight of them were listed as either dealer or private used cars with between 32km and 250km on their odometers, and with pricing of between $139,990 and $149,990.

Finally, the RRP of the LandCruiser GX grade is $89,990 and State-specific drive-away prices are listed as between $96,162 and $99,473 depending on location.

Yet the only “dealer used” model listed is asking $122,990 drive-away with 20km on the clock.

When presented with the excessive pricing, which by appearances largely looked to be listed as used dealer stock in Carsales, a Toyota spokesperson provided the following statement.

“Toyota has internal standards in place to support responsible selling practices by our Dealers and we will absolutely review any report to the contrary.

“As to limited private stock, this is driven by the market but we encourage customers to place an order today with a Toyota dealer for a brand-new LandCruiser 300 at the official recommended retail price.

“We thank customers for their loyalty and patience and assure them we are striving to reduce wait times.”

This reporter asked Toyota Australia vice-president Sean Hanley in October last year if there were any concerns around gouging in-market, given we saw similar on the outgoing 200 Series.

The company was clear it would not put any official policies in place to stop its franchised dealers or dissuade customers from on-selling low-mileage and supply-restricted LandCruiser 300 Series’ at huge markups beyond what it’s allowed to sell brand new vehicles for.

“In terms of selling practises our dealer network is very responsible, I believe very ethical through the standards that we set,” Mr Hanley told CarExpert.

“We have a recommended retail price on the car… [but] our dealers are free to trade accordingly based on the market conditions.”

If you find a Toyota dealer asking a ridiculous amount for a ‘used’ LandCruiser, let us know and we will follow up the subsequent, promised internal review.

MORE: Toyota Australia addresses LandCruiser 300 price gouging issue

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Mike Costello
Mike Costello
Mike Costello is the News Editor at CarExpert.
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