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Alex Law

By introducing what it calls the Access Toyota program, Toyota Canada hopes to make the quality of its dealership experience the equal of its famous product.

Access Toyota will offer a "hassle-free" purchase or lease experience "tailored to the customer's needs," extensive information about Toyota on competitive products by phone or Internet, third party pricing for a trade-in, online credit pre-approval, and "Drive-Away pricing."

The point of this program, says Yoshio Nakatani, president of Toyota Canada Inc., is that "Toyota Canada intends to be the new standard in automotive retailing, the model that everyone else is measured against."

Nakatani says, "Working together with our dealers, we've examined every aspect of our sales and leasing processes to make them easier, more convenient, more customer-focused, and a nicer way to buy a car. We've challenged ourselves to be the best, and we're not prepared to accept anything less."

Access Toyota has started with eight dealerships in Manitoba, but is expected to move to the rest of Canada by the end of the year.

At the heart of Access Toyota is a dealer-set pricing system that Nakatani says will "take the intimidation factor out of negotiating for a new car" and will "essentially offer a firm price close to what most buyers of that particular model pay," the so-called transaction price.

Alex Law
Alex Law
Automotive expert