The truck ran like a dream. It ticks over like a Swiss watch at idle. I remember it ran well after you first worked on it
at 90,000 miles. It is now at 118,000
and I do not think the truck has ever run better.
You do superb work.
This came via email on April 11, 2012
I just wanted to extend a HUGE THANK YOU to you and Stephen. I've only been there twice (what can I say, I drive a very reliable vehicle) but the service is always outstanding. When I arrived to pickup my vehicle yesterday afternoon, Stephen told me you had printed out the SF County Sheriff's report about the gasline break in my neighborhood. I thought that was so incredibly thoughtful! You guys are awesome. I don't feel like a customer, I feel more like a friend. And I feel totally comfortable knowing Stephen and his techs are working on my truck. So many reasons while I'll stay a loyal customer and
Greetings! Diana and I made it home to Colorado, the “Check Engine” light never went on, and the Tacoma seemed to run just as it had before we bought the bad gas at Costco.
We’ve been following the story online, and I’m not shocked that many people have been affected. Costco has been easy to work with, so far, and hopefully they’ll reimburse us without trouble.
I cannot thank you enough for the service. With my car breaking down away from home, I was nervous about going into a repair shop that I was not familiar with. It’s easy to be overcharged or have repairs done that aren’t necessary, afterall, you’re stuck until your car is fixed. Just walking into your shop and talking to you both I knew I was in good hands and dealing with knowledgeable professionals. I felt respected, listened to, and that I was dealing with people who were just as interested in doing what was necessary to fix my vehicle as I was. It was, by far, the best auto repair experience I have ever had. I feel very fortunate that I ended up at Toy Auto Man that day.
Hope you are well, and once again, Thank You So Much!
The person who wrote it did not identify themselves....
We would love to know who you are!!!!!
(To read it and others about our shop at cartalk.com, click here)
Here's the letter:
This is the best shop around, period. These fabulous folks have fixed nagging engine and electrical problems in my dear old '84 Landcruiser wagon that several other shops had attempted to solve over the years. All of the mechanics here are extremely efficient and exceedingly nice and caring about all of their customers. Women especially seem to love Toy Auto Man, given the fact that the couple who runs it--Stephen and Claudia--are so nice and honest, and always take the time to explain each and every question in full detail. They take as good care of their mechanics as their customers (the shop is closed on Fridays), so the attitude is always cheery and customers always seem to leave in a very good mood, even on the worst of bad car days. Perhaps the best qualities of Toy Auto Man are their completely thorough vehicle inspections and reports on the present condition and future needs of your vehicle or on a prospective used buy. Their bulletin board serves as a first rate marketplace for buyers and sellers of used Toyotas, and there are some great deals here. Customers learn a lot about their cars here and the shop's conservative repair philosophy and maintenance reports will save you a great deal of both money and worry in the long run. OEM parts are extremely well stocked on immaculate shelves, and Stephen will inspect and go over worn parts with customers before discarding anything. His attention to detail and bedside manner is unrivaled. If you don't buy a Toyota or Lexus because it's one of the best running vehicles money can buy, get one so that when it isn't running so good, you can come here and get the best service around.
-- reviewer #43972, December 2002
And more from Car Talk:
My Toyota repairs began with Frank Schultheis long ago. When Steve bought Frank's business, I was estatic; I knew Steve years before when he owned a cycle/4 wheeler shop, and, he was a very nice guy. But he didn't have chocolate! Steve & wife Claudia's operation is unique in my 50 yrs of car ownership. The service/skill/thoughtfulness/kindess is the finest anywhere, period. Albuquerque Lexus should take lessons. Like others in this column I buy Toyota/Lexus, first because of Steve & Claudia and second, the cars' quality. TonyT
[Psssttttt...we know who wrote this!!! :) ]
Thank you, Tony, we love you, too :) Our chocolate is YOUR chocolate!
This letter was sent to us via email in November 2006:
Dear Claudia & Steven,
I want to express my gratitude for the exceptional and outstanding service I receive when I brought my 2004 Tacoma to you for it's 30k service a couple of weeks ago.I'm not sure if you would want additional new customers, based on the current and obviously heavy demand for your services already, yet I have to say that it would be difficult for me to refrain from talking about your establishment to any and all of my family, friends and co-workers.There are so many aspects of the service I receive which I can easily consider exceptional, so rather than itemize them all in this message, I will merely say that the ENTIRE experience with your shop, in my mind, sets the standard by which every other auto-service establishment I have ever done business with, should be measured. To arrive back at our house after picking up the truck from Toy Auto Man, and to actually feel excited about finding you for service on my Toyota is simply an amazing point in itself. What a true relief! Simply put, peace-of-mind in it's truest form.Most mechanics are 'untouchable', but in each instance when I have communicated with you, I have been offered the opportunity (proactively on your part) to speak directly not only to the mechanic, but to the owners as well. To me, that in itself is unbelievable in this day-and-age.I actually look forward to my next experience at Toy Auto Man, and I certainly will not hesitate to cast my vote for Toy Auto Man when the next 'Best of Santa Fe 2007' rolls around. Thank you, thank you, thank you very much for welcoming my Tacoma into your family of service!
With kindest regards and much respect & gratitude,
Customer Feedback from our website:
4/14/2008 First Name: Enrique Last Name: Montoya City: Santa Fe State: NM
After experiencing the "We don't care about you unless you are going to spend hundreds of dollars" attitude at Beaver Toyota... going to the Toy Auto Man was a breath of fresh air. Toy Auto Man is REALLY there for the customer and REALLY cares about you and your car.
7/10/2008 First Name: Cesar Last Name: Coronado City: El Rito State: New Mexico
Comments: They sure a different kind of auto mechanic shop. They don't have you lost or worried, just as you begin to wonder about what's happening or much its gonna cost, the phone rings and its them giving all the update. I will definitely go back to them, its a bit of a drive but worth every mile. You guys were nothing like I expected, much more caring for the customer then for yourselves. Make sure and tell Stephen and yourself that I really appreciate the hospitality and the the short time it took to fix my beat up truck. Again thank you.
11/19/2008 First Name: Scott Last Name: Turlington City: Santa Fe State: New Mexico
I brought my Lexus in last month and really enjoyed your professional service. At that time, I asked Stephen if he knew of any independent shops that could work on an older model Porsche. I have misplaced the paper that listed all of the places that he recommended. I was hoping you could ask him again and send me a list of shops in Santa Fe and / or Albuquerque that he would recommend.
Thank you again for your great service on my Lexus! I could not believe how fast and professional the work was completed.
Toy Auto Man is the place to take your Toyota/Lexus in Santa Fe. The owners and the mechanics are of top quality. No matter where you go to get your car/truck fixed... you are going to pay a bill no matter where you go.. BUT with the bright reception when you come in the door, the comfy couch to relax while you wait, wide array of reading material, CLEAN and attractive bathrooms, Back Patio, and living room (with more seating, a computer to surf the web while you wait, and a selection of coffee... teas... etcetera) one will feel like they are more in a home than an auto shop. The mechanics are thorough. You get a HAND written detail of the work performed (not the default print-out like at the dealership) and their work is guaranteed. Seriously. Go to Toy Auto Man. (4/14/2008)
Posted at GOOGLE Maps:
Fabulous service and friendly people - Oct 22, 2008
We have been going to Toy Auto Man for years ever since we threw up our hands in disgust at our treatment at our local Toyota dealership. We could not be happier.
Stephen is incredibly knowledgeable about all things Toyota (I guess they do Lexus as well) and knows my car inside and out. I have a relatively new type of car (Prius), but he knows more than the Toyota people did about maintaining it.
When you come to pick up your car, Stephen will talk to you about all the things the noticed about your car and things to keep an eye on for the future. Claudia deals with all the payment/appt stuff and is great to deal with.
Overall, I have nothing to complain about and my wife and I are extremely happy we found them!
LJ Wilkinson, Software Developer, Santa Fe, NM
Received via email on June 8, 2011
Hi Stephen and Claudia,
You worked on my '96 Tacoma Toyota truck a few weeks ago and I found your web page to send a thank you. My Toy Auto Man spiffed up, hard working truck now performs better than I can recall it running for many years. (There is a smile on its white face from headlight to headlight.)
I have just spent about an hour on your site reading about Claudia's work with animals, Stephen's passion for speedy cycles and his father's impressive award ceremony in Japan attended by Japanese royalty . My passion is also biology so Stephen's dad's field is of great interest to me.
Congratulations on a top notch web page and on the integrity with which the Inoues run Toy Auto Man. More power to small business and less to greedy large corporations.
TOY AUTO MAN
Where we treat YOU and YOUR vehicle like family
Se habla espanol
We strive to make you and your vehicle smile at every service