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Toyota gets free ride with 86

Fast money: Word-of-mouth advertising -- which costs nothing -- is still bolstering 86 sales, Toyota says.

There’s no tough sell for Toyota’s cut-price sports car

7 Mar 2013

IN A perfect world, cars would sell themselves. But, as we all know, the world we live in is far from perfect, and shifting metal out of the showroom door requires a little effort.

That is, until now. Toyota has revealed how much it has spent on advertising its 86 sports coupe. The answer?“I think it has been almost zero compared to other cars we sell,” Toyota spokesman Mike Breen told GoAuto.

The beer-budget 86 has been a car company’s dream, with a pre-planned advertising campaign launched at the same time as the sports car went on sale in Australia dropped as soon as it became apparent that buyers needed little encouragement to part with their $29,990 they were asked to pay for the entry-level GT model, or $35,490 for the up-market GTS version.

Since it went on sale in June last year, 2655 have rolled out of the showroom door to the end of February and into buyers’ driveways. Last month alone, 559 were sold.

“I’m amazed,” Mr Breen said when asked about the sports car’s sales performance.

“It’s six, seven, eight months now since we launched it and I thought momentum by now would have started to slow down.”

8 center imageLeft: Toyota 86

He said virtually all sales had been the result of people walking up to showrooms, and was helped by extra allocations of the car that significantly cut waiting times for buyers wanting specific models.

“It’s one of those beautiful places to be when you’re selling something that sells itself,” Mr Breen said.

“It also gets sold by word of mouth, which is one of the best forms of advertising you can have.

“When we launched the car we did have an advertising campaign ready to go and we did go with it, but we’ve really been able to step away from any ongoing TV commercials and press advertising at all,” Mr Breen said.

“Every car should sell like an 86.”

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