Background, I have an '06 Toy Highlander Hybrid w 225,000 highway miles. Monday, my hybrid inverter blew at 75 mph on the highway, car completely died - repair estimate $9,500 but it now seems Toyota will repair under a previous recall. BUT!!
Dealer is now telling me that the radiator is cracked and leaking - puddles of coolant on the ground. This is 100% a new problem as I had no issues like this before the inverter blew. My driveway (park in same spot daily) has no spotting whatsoever, no warning lights, no overheating. The radiator cracking the day the inverter blew seems an absurdly unlikely coincidence, did this happen during towing or servicing somehow? As a result, or cause of the inverter going? The inverter has its own coolant, but could the radiator have cracked and that caused the inverter to overheat? I do trust this dealer, they’ve been straight up with me, and going to bat for me against Toyota.
I asked the dealer to review the car for whatever it might need. (I asked a different dealer to do this in March, they told me I needed and oil change.). This dealer did their homework and suggested the work I know it needs - tuneup, timing belt, flush/replace all fluids etc. etc. total bill about $2,400. Perfectly reasonable as this is all maintenance I knew was due - prices maybe a little higher at the dealership, but when I bought a hybrid, I did so planning to have a dealer do all major service. Tires are new and brakes are fine. Exhaust seems fine too.
I’ve asked them, if I replace the radiator and do the maintenance, will I get a one year run out of the car? They’re going to go over it thoroughly before they answer that, but if they say yes, I’m inclined to do it. Due to my personal financial situation, I’d pay the ~$3,000 today to have the car running, sell it for a few grand in a year and buy something else then. Would you all mind offering your opinion of this strategy?