Toyota Supra fans won’t need to wait in an online queue for much longer if they want to buy the Japanese sports-car.
Approximately 350 Supras were allocated to Australia this year, with some more added along the way.
Toyota Australia vice president, sales and marketing, Sean Hanley, said the company had secured “more than 350” for next year but declined to provide an exact figure.
“We always negotiate for more cars,” said Mr Hanley. “We’re not going to have thousands, but we will get a reasonable allocation (of Supras) next year.”
Mr Hanley said the increase in availability made it logical to switch back to a dealer sales model.
“Next year we’ll convert over to dealer sales,” he said. “The first batch (of Supras) was online, it will now move to traditional … dealer sales.”
When asked if Toyota planned to take any action against financial speculators who were trying to capitalise on the restricted supply – by advertising them for up to $130,000, about $20,000 to $25,000 above full retail price – Mr Hanley said: “If people want to buy a Supra they should go to a Toyota dealer.”
The recommended retail prices for the Supra are $84,900 plus on-road costs for the GT and $94,900 plus on-road costs for the GTS, which can eclipse $104,000 drive-away before options are added.
One of the downsides to online ordering is that it removes the ability of the customer to haggle on price. The switch to dealer sales will likely lead to sharper prices.
Toyota says it may again use online sales to distribute limited stock levels of in-demand cars, but it was committed to the traditional dealer sales model in the meantime.
“We trialled … online and it was an overwhelming success,” said Mr Hanley. “Supra had a very strong brand heritage, we knew we were only getting a limited number, and we needed to be able to control the outflow of our limited numbers so … we had a ballot to give everyone a fair go.”
Mr Hanley added: “From time to time on certain cars we may try online sales again. We don’t rule it out forever (but) we are still very much engaged in and believe in the dealer (sales) model. We have no plans to move away from that traditional model.”