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Lexus RX 450h Prices Paid and Buying Experience

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  • We are going to be picking up our RX 400h on Wednesday from Westside Lexus in Houston, TX. They have plenty of cars in stock and are great to deal with.
  • We're interested in a 400h at Westside Lexus too, but would like to compare notes on options, availability and price. Did you shop other Houston area dealers, and if so, how did they compare on price?
  • They had about 8 cars in stock. We got one with the heated seats, but no other extras. The price was $2000+ under MSRP and was the same price Sterling McCall (sp?) was willing to give us. We are doing a one payment lease which saves you money over a regular lease and since we think the technology on the hybrid may change a lot in the next few years we wanted to lease rather than buy.
  • 1 -- dealer offered $1500 discount without prompting. We wanted a car with all the options, and dealer had in stock the car we wanted except that it lacked a factory installed DVD. Dealer installed an 8 inch DVD player for $1625, i.e. larger screen and cheaper price than factory unit. Total cash price including DVD player was $50,488.

    2 -- consider making initial contact with dealer on Internet -- most dealers appeared to assign one of their better salespeople to Internet inquiries.

    3 -- not all Lexus service technicians are created equal. The technician recommended by the delivery manager -- who, we learned later, operates a strict rotation system-- was extraordinarily inept in answering questions about the initial mileage. We finally got useful answers from another technician recommended by the salesman.

    4 -- the Lexus site contains useful material on mileage performance, including an explanation why most of us will not achieve the EPA results, and points out that optimum performance may not be achieved during first 5000 miles.

    5 -- most surprising omission: absence of climate control for second row passengers who are served only by three little vents in the middle of the floor, adjustable as regards direction and volume of flow but not temperature.

    6 -- and the lemon of the week award goes to..............the navigation system! Leaving aside its confusing button names and poor legibility, and a manual which explains "how" but not "why", on its initial use the system failed to recognise the address of an abused women's shelter in Indianapolis, -- though it did offer the name of a furniture company in Cleveland,. When given the shelter's phone number, the system said the number was invalid, but when, on a whim, I put in the final four digits as "2000" instead of the correct "2200", the system gave the correct address for the shelter, although under the name of another company. The system in our 2005 Acura had no difficulty with either the address or the phone number. Stay tuned.
  • I had never used a nav system and it took some time to feel comfortable with this one. There is a dvd on the nav system that does walk you through everything. You can play it in the car or use it in a desktop pc. There also used to be a tutorial at the official Lexus web site where u register your vin number, it is the one sponsored by Lexus. I found that one the most help. When it didnt like some of my addresses and the directions were opposite normal i realized it was set for a home city in canada. Now i get in the habit of entering the city first, that is one reason it didnt recognize your address. It will take an address that is close and get u there, and it will also adjust to a route you are driving that is different from its suggested route. Now that i have used it for a while i find it more useful than i thot it would be.
  • mirexmirex Posts: 68
    I now have 6600 miles on my 400h which includes several trips from Seattle to Portland as well as a round trip to Lake Tahoe, Novato CA, and back up the I5 corridor. The navigation system worked well including finding an obscure address in Gardenville, NV. Any streets or addresses that are newer than the dvd version in the navigation system, of course, will not be found.

    The verbal command option is next to worthless. When speaking "go home" it gave me a list of chinese resteraunts. There should be an option that allows you to record a command.

    I had previous experience with the Lexus navigation system in my RX300 so learning the additional options wasn't too difficult. I have seen the Accura navigation system and was impressed.
  • After reading several posts on here, I emailed several Texas Lexus dealers (Houston, San Antonio, Dallas) for the best price and my trade-in. MSRP is $49883+TTL. I received 3 best offers from Dallas dealers. I end up buying from one of these dealers. He offered me $2845 off the MSRP and he gave me one with additional Mark Levinson audio system upgrade ($980 MSRP). I drove up to Dallas and bought it the same day. My trade-in price is about $300-400 difference from what I expected from bluebook. Overall, my purhcase experience is excellent. I did an one pay lease following fellow forum member's suggestion.

    BTW, I really enjoy this RX400h, I use bluetooth connecting to my cell phone to talk while drive. Navigation is easy to use, except you can not program it while driving. I am getting about 26.2 mpg fom three fill ups. Oh, and the dealership is Park Place Lexus . My advice is to email those dealers first and ask them to give you the best price and compare them. Austin Lexus never return my email or call me until a week later. They want me to pay MSRP and may not have one available.

    I hope this information will help others

    Derek
    Austin, TX
  • Since the dealers in southern California are still charging MSRP, and have limited selection, we are considering "importing" from another state (thanks to a few posts on this forum about discounts available in various regions ;) ).
    Is there anyone on this forum who bought from an out-of-state dealer and had the vehicle shipped to southern California?
    What was your experience with doing this (expense, timeline, satisfaction, etc.)?
    (Even if some of you had your vehicles shipped to other states, any general information you can share would be appreciated!)
    Thanks! :)
  • hendjazhendjaz Posts: 155
    In Seattle we similarly have no available inventory and waiting lists are apparently still common. I sent emails to all of the dealers in the western states except for CA for obvious reasons for the purpose of finding one available, not so much for getting below msrp. I received a few auto response emails but only Lexus of Albuquerque responded that they thought they might have one or two that weren't already committed to someone.

    I called right away and made an msrp offer on one and before the salesman could get my offer in the RX sold to a buyer there in the dealership. He then investigated another one that they had and found that a buyer on their list was scheduled to come the next day to look at it but had not yet committed to buy it. It was the right color for us so I made an offer for it, secured it with a small credit card deposit and they sold it to me. We flew to Abq a few days later and drove it back to Seattle, making a family vacation out of it with stops in Santa Fe, Moab,UT and Twin Falls, Id on the way back. We love the RX-h and very much enjoyed the purchase and travel experience. What a great road trip vehicle.

    From SoCal, Abq should be an inexpensive flight and nice easy drive back. Try the Phoenix stores too as someone said the availability there was better but I received no responses from them other than auto ones. I called a few of the out of state dealers too and didn't rely on email only but email is actually what worked the best in finding the ones in Abq. I would be happy to share the contact information for the Abq dealer if you are interested. BTW, you may have to go further east (ie Texas as was noted) to get a "deal" on one currently. Good luck to you in the search.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,835
    Congratulations on your new car... But, please.. no contact information ...

    Dealer name and city/state is fine....

    regards,
    kyfdx
    Host-Prices Paid Forums

    MODERATOR
    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • You must purchase the vehicle new and for your own use, not for resale.
    You must drive it mostly in the United States.
    The vehicle must meet all federal and state emissions requirements.
    Government agencies, tax exempt organizations, and foreign entities are not eligible.

    $2000.00
    kap
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,812
    "Government agencies, tax exempt organizations, and foreign entities are not eligible. "

    Well, mark one down in the "DUH" column for the feds again; since a tax exempt organization would not be paying taxes anyway, how could they get a credit on taxes they don't pay?
  • Omtradelaw, can you help me with a trade for an RX? I have a 2006 ML350 with 1800 miles. Sticker is 48400.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,835
    I don't think omtradelaw was offering to take your car in trade (which would be against our forum rules), he was offering to answer any questions you might have...

    But, either way, since he posted that in July, and that was the only time he has ever logged on to our forums, I don't think he will be replying..

    regards,
    kyfdx
    Host-Prices Paid Forums

    MODERATOR
    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • flugelflugel Posts: 34
    I live in virginia, can I still get a tax break if I trade my 2005 ES330 (loaded) to the dealer or if I sell privately but let the dealer put the sale of my ES330 through the dealership?

    Also, what can I expect for a good discount off of MSRP on a new RX400h with ML and navigation?

    where at (which dealership)?

    Can I use regular 87 octane in a new RX400H ?

    The HOV use, I read< for hybrid is to be rescinded next year by either my state or the Feds. Any info on this?

    Thanks.......reddog
  • ctsangctsang Posts: 237
    Why do you want to trade your 06 ML 350? If you do, you will lose big time.
  • andy3andy3 Posts: 4
    For the life of me I cannot fathom why anyone in their right mind is willing to pay, all-in incl. tax and license, over $50,000 for this vehicle. I love my current RX 300, but isn't it obvious that Lexus has been unable to achieve significant mileage improvements in the 400h, and now has to resort to hyping enhanced performance (acceleration, etc.) and luxury? The fact is that really improved mileage performance in hybrids is only achieved in the lighter weight hybrids, such as the Prius and the Honda hybrids. I looked long and hard at the 400h, but will be damned if I will pay over $50,000 for just a very, very small increase in MPG performance - there is simply no realistic payback. I hate to leave Toyota/Lexus, but a reasonable, lighter weight AWD SUV, with significant MPG increases, is the 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid, which I can purchase here in my Northern California county for $1,000 over the dealer's invoice - a fully loaded vehicle with all of the top options with a total purchase price, including tax and license, of about $35,000. Not quite as luxurious as the Lexus 400h, but at least $16-17,000 less costly!
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,812
    "I looked long and hard at the 400h, but will be damned if I will pay over $50,000 for just a very, very small increase in MPG performance - there is simply no realistic payback. I hate to leave Toyota/Lexus, but a reasonable, lighter weight AWD SUV, with significant MPG increases, is the 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid, which I can purchase here in my Northern California county for $1,000 over the dealer's invoice - a fully loaded vehicle with all of the top options with a total purchase price, including tax and license, of about $35,000. Not quite as luxurious as the Lexus 400h, but at least $16-17,000 less costly!"

    Oh man, are you in for a ride with the responses to this post. You dare to post detailed, logical information! Are you from the planet Vulcan, by chance? :P

    Seriously, I would hold off on the Escape Hybrid. The technology is not mature at Ford. I would wait for the 2007 model. They did not copy Toyota technology, they independently developed their own stuff.
  • katzjamrkatzjamr Posts: 146
    Andy3, 50K is alot for a vehicle i agree, im not sure i could justify it if my business wasnt paying for part of it. However, there are big compromises in the Ford Escape that you will have to live with. Old hybrid technology, not the latest version. Less power, a poorly integrated AC system, Ford Nav systems that have no idea where they are... the list goes on.

    To stevedebi: It is my understanding that Ford was developing its own hybrid system and came so close to infringing on Toyotas patents that it was cheaper and faster for them to license toyota technology on the Escape. Ford is working on their own but the Escape hybrid system is a toyota product.
  • hendjazhendjaz Posts: 155
    Have you driven a 400h? The performance difference over a 330 or most any other SUV is remarkable and it is not a hype. For those of us looking for performance and reasonable mileage in a SUV package, the choices are limited to one - the 400h. For those looking to save money and get the highest mileage possible, and performance is not a goal, then this would of course not be one's choice.

    This is a "green" alternative to a Cayenne (albeit with a bit less handlng prowess) and not to be confused with a Ford Escape.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,812
    "To stevedebi: It is my understanding that Ford was developing its own hybrid system and came so close to infringing on Toyotas patents that it was cheaper and faster for them to license toyota technology on the Escape. Ford is working on their own but the Escape hybrid system is a toyota product."

    I'd heard the opposite. Do you have any link to such information? It is a subject I'd really like to figure out definitively.
  • I made my purchase of a RX400h and I got $4000 off MSRP for a base vehicle without the Mark Levison sound system. After tax and licensing fees my out the door price was a little over $48K. I test drove all 3 hybrid SUV's and I found the Lexus the most enjoyable. The 2006 Escape was my least favorite. It made a rattling sound under hard exceleration and the dealer would not sell for under MSRP. The Highlander was nice but the dealer had a very limited stock on hand and was asking 2k over MSRP which put it at about $42K. If you are looking at a hybrid vehilce for MPG performance/payback buy a Prius. The Lexus is definately worth the extra $13K over a Ford.
  • sportsnut, what state are you from? Right now I'm trying to purchase one but the best deal I got was $1700 off MSRP. How did you manage 4k off? Any info would be appreciated.
  • I am just not that happy with it. I think the exterior design is a marked improvement from the old M design, and I think its interior design and layout are superior to Lexus's, but I like Lexus's reliability a bit more.

    So the Prius got recalled. Should Lexus be worried about the 400h?
  • I purchased it about a month and a half ago from JM Lexus in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. They only had about five at the discount price and they were the base models without the heated seats or Mark Levinson sound system. Still a great price.
  • andy3andy3 Posts: 4
    This will be my last rant re this topic. Having given all of the current hybrids a good hard look, my conclusions are: they are over-priced for what you get, except for the Toyota Prius - which is, along with the Honda hybrid, the only hybrids that really get you significant improvements in MPG and thus a realistic payback. The Lexus RX 400h is overpriced, with no real significant improvement in MPG; the Toyota Highlander the same; and the Ford Escape hybrid overpriced for the very significant fall-off in overall quality you get from this vehicle. The current US fad is to go hybrid, which I call the "feel good" vehicle purchase as the buyer thinks he/she is doing something spectacular for the environment, etc. I'll keep my 2002 Lexus RX 300 until something comes along that is a quality SUV with significantly improved MPG.
  • I got mine last weekend from Fremont, CA. I paid sticker price and it's fully loaded. I had been on a waiting list at multiple dealerships, so bargaining wasn't really an option. They took my 2000 Jeep cherokee for about 1k under blue book for the trade in.
  • bvendbvend Posts: 2
    Picked up my flint mica rx400 10/29 $3000 off msrp at wilde lexus + matched lowest internet financing. Great to deal with they have some in stock and are willing to deal.
    Herb/Bradenton fl
  • adp33adp33 Posts: 10
    What is the latest on pricing? Is now a good time to buy this vehicle, or should I wait until next year. I'm ready to pull the trigger. My car has over 80,000 miles on it, and I've been looking for a new one for over a year. I may keep the old car so my daughter can drive it when it's her time. My old car is a 2000 Sebring convert. It gets about 22. I know I am not saving the world by buying the 400H, but if it's more luxurious and more fun to drive than my Sebring, it doesn't hurt that it gets better mpg and will have much lower emissions. And if I want a convertible, I'll just back the Sebring out of the garage, which will be perhaps once a month or so. (and in a couple years, maybe I'llupgrade it with a "plug in" patch, and I'll be getting 60 mpg - yee-ha)

    How do you folks think it will perform in snow?
    Have any of you tried different tires on it?

    I also like the Mariner, but I'm thinking the 400H will be more fun to drive and better/safer in the snow. AND I really like the idea of rear reclining seats. (it's the one downside to our Volvo XC90, as compared to its predecessor, a Grand Caravan)

    I'm pretty sure the 400H is the perfect car for me. I wish I could get one for 40K! :-)
  • You can't just compare MPG. The RX 300 (and 330), while a fine vehicle relatively speaking, is a granny car compared to the 400h when it comes to power and performance.

    Plus, many people misstate the price differences among the Lexus models, forgetting that even the base version of the 400h basically is fully loaded (options that would add many thousands to the price of a 300 or 330).

    To each his own.
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