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Lexus LS 400/LS 430



  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    "I am an enthusiast of quietness, smoothness, comfort, space, quality, reliability, capable handling (my choice of the sport suspension)--for me, the LS has these nuances in spades."

    Ok I guess I can possibly see that for a LS430. The only thing I really see on your list that the LS does better than it's competition is reliability, thats not enough for me personally to put up with the LS430's other issues, but to each his own.

    The S-Class and 7-Series or A8 or Jaguar XJ for that matter aren't EVER going to provide a better "value" per most Lexus' fans definition of the word. I can't help but think "value" will always mean the less-expensive car. The word is so overrated in my opinion.

    It's a pretty safe bet that no matter how good a S-Class, 7-Series or A8 is it will never wind up on Edmunds list due to price. Especially if the threshold is 55K.

  • nealm1nealm1 Posts: 154
    "I can't help but think "value" will always mean the less-expensive car."

    LS430 v. E class. The latter is cheaper (although not by much); the former is, IMHO and by a wide margin, the better value.
  • brtmdbrtmd Posts: 54
    "To each his own"--agreed (in fact, I believe there are several things we agree on, but are approaching from a different perspective). When I buy any product, I have a list of priorities to meet. When I decided to purchase a full size luxury sedan, I determined my priorities and evaluated the competition (for me, the LS, S, and 7). Many, if not most, of my priorities (which I have already listed) for such a vehicle were met by all three to a satisfactory degree; once price was considered, it was over. Hence, value will only be objective to the individual and subjective between those with differing priorities. Choosing to disregard or dismiss value ("overrated") in your own purchase decision is always an option; I often have and would not condemn anyone for doing so. By the same token, to dismiss another's concept of value is pointless.

    "It's a pretty safe bet that no matter how good a S-Class, 7-Series or A8 is it will never wind up on Edmunds list due to price."--Again, on this I disagree as evident with the SL example. When a product is felt to be clearly superior, value is either redefined or disregarded.
  • I have an ls 430 .Ultra with Ecru. As some have suggested (bcleep in particular), I want to use charcoal floor mats in the winter and Ecru in the summer. When I went to order them, the part number for Ultra mats is different than the part number for regular LS 430 mats. For the life of me, I don't see why any LS 430 mat won't fit in an ls 430 ultra and visa versa. Can anyone help with this? Thanks
  • brtmdbrtmd Posts: 54
    I would be very surprised if the mats were actually a different shape and not interchangeable. Maybe they use a different grade of carpeting for the ultra version?
  • When I ordered the mats on the phone, all I mentioned was LS430. The dealer didn't ask whether it is a UL or Cus Lux. They should fit all LS430.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    I was really speaking in relation to the S-Class vs the LS430. Naturally I don't think the LS430 is better than say the E500.


    Oh I'm not condemning anyone, I agree that everyone has their priorities when buying a car, I guess overall what I'm saying is that people have different priorities and they should be met when spending this much on a car.

    The SL winning its class is somewhat different. I still say as long as the LS430 is priced at 55K to start and the S, 7 and A8 aren't anywhere near that then the LS430 will get the nod because yes (gulp!) it does provide a *similar* experience for much less. With the SL its not even a contest with any cheaper car. And value isn't readily applied to cars with 2-seats anyway, it's a more of an emotional purchase.

  • brtmdbrtmd Posts: 54
    I agree; they are similar enough that price becomes a distinguishing factor that can either be considered or disregarded. Also agree that buying a 2-seat convertible is probably based much more on desire than meeting a list of priorities. It is a highly impractical choice for many people, including my family; yet, my wife wants to drive nothing else. When it comes time for her to buy, she doesn't even want to look at anything other than a Miata.
  • helmarhelmar Posts: 15
    I have a '99 LS400, with an '03 LS430 on order.

    I've wondered why the cruise control isn't smart enough to downshift (to help slow down) if the car starts accelerating past the set speed when going downhill.

    Is this addressed at all in the '03 with the Laser cruise control?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    They can never do that on FWD cars out of fear that some idiot will be using the cruise control on a slippery downhill surface and....

    FWD, and AWD with FWD bias, are the dominant vehicular configuration on the road today.

    Regretably that dominance means you get to play second fiddle.
  • oac3oac3 Posts: 373
    I have read on this forum where it was suggested that you do NOT own a Mercedes yet. You have not denied it either. But, I am curious why you go on and on about the virtues of a car you don't even own, at the expense of LS owners on this forum ? Credibility, in y books, start with ownership. If you love Mercedes that much, why don't you do the 'smart' thing - buy one and get it done with. Seems a simple thing to me.

    But then, for your 'tastes' and 'priorities' in a luxury car, you'd have to pony up $80K+ for your dream car. If you have that kind of $$ more power to you. I don't hence my 'value' purchase of an LS.

    For the umpteenth time: To every one their choice !
  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    I'm not sure I understand wwest's response since I know that he knows the LS series are not FWD, but RWD. Also, the laser cruise does, indeed, downshift to adjust its speed when overtaking a vehicle ahead. First, it reduces throttle, then it downshifts, then, if necessary, it applies up to 20% braking. But maybe I just misunderstood, as I am given to do on occasion :)
  • is it just me, or the new S class minor shape modification looks kinda lexus like? esp those front headlamps? it looks more LS430ish
    go check out at
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,690
    I noticed that also. Plus if you look at the car's side from the front looking toward the back-end it also has that Lexus look. I do think MB did a wise thing making the grill bigger. The car now has a more prestigious look in my opinion. I found the old grill rather mousy looking for an S-class.

    I think MB may be getting a bit worried that the edgier styling of 2000 played to the younger generation bull market crowd and that crowd is quickly dwindling. They may go back to a more classical style for the S.

    Flint350 - did you see my post re the NY Times stories last week?
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Relative's cars are the reason why. Oh and thanks for the advice.


    I gotta tell you that is totally ridiculous...the S-Class now looks like a Lexus. Right. Wanna bet the next LS is a yet another copy of a Mercedes, that being the current S-Class? You all are funny. You all seem to have so much insight into what Mercedes is worried about.

  • helmarhelmar Posts: 15
    Actually, my earlier question wasn't specifically about the laser cruise control, but about cruise control in general.

    If you start going uphill, the car accelerates to maintain the selected speed, upshifting if necessary.

    If you start going downhill, the car makes no attempt to maintain the selected speed, but simple speeds up as gravity dictates.

    It would seem to me that the car COULD downshift in an attempt to maintain the selected speed, but doesn't.

    Am I just off base on this?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706

    First, the laser cruise control is unique to the LS430.

    "Regular" cruise control "firmware", and base design, is shared across many product lines, FWD. RWD, and AWD.

    Actually as I understand the T/L cruise system it will retard the timing to keep the downhill speed down, but that's about it.
  • flint350flint350 Posts: 250
    Yes I saw the post, but haven't seen the articles yet. But since you've again been characterized as "ridiculous" and "funny" (not in a fun way, I gather), I wonder if I should take the time to read them. :)
  • ljflxljflx Posts: 4,690
    Yeah - I forgot - I (we actually) can't say anything about MB. Even business speculation that has nothing to do with the car itself is off limits in merc1's MB world. Plus saying something like it has a bit more of a Lexus looks is translated as its a carbon copy. I guess I will go completely silent on MB from here on in.

    By the way I know of several businesses that were targeting young people made rich by the bull market. They are rapidly changing their plans because the customer base they were targeting has pretty much evaporated. It's rather normal in business to do these kind of things.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    My friend you're not ridiculous by any means, you're suggestion that the S-Class looks like an LS430 is. Thats like saying the Audi TT looks like the Nissan 350Z. Lexus has no "look" for anyone to "look" like, Lexus' "look" is copied from everyone else in the first place.

  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The only "original" automotive "look" was the Tin Lizzie.
  • who are you to decide that? In MY opinion it does. I could very well call YOU ridiculous for thinking otherwise. Your opinion on this board is subjective as you do not own an LS430 nor an S class. also paying $80,000 for an S500 is just plain ridiculous.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    And we are *all* submitting our very humble opinions, right?


    Let's not reward a, um, "baiter" with an argument, okay folks?
  • Sometimes when the going is a little dull `merc` comes along. He may not own car, but is very well read on the subject. The Mercedes board is very slow, therefore the frustration is too much to let the Lexus folks be. `merc` Did you ever get the `Architectual Digest` with all the great pictures of future Mercedes? Tony
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Only the blind would think that. I don't have to own a current S-Class or current LS430 to know that they don't look anything alike. Nor is ownership needed to see that the LS430 is a 1992-1999 S-Class copy. Oh and I think paying 70K for a LS430 is equally ridiculous.


    I only chime in when I detect to much bs, and that can be on ANY board, except the SUV boards.

  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I agree wholeheartedly.

    You get 98% of the benefits of an LS430 UL for $55k.

    And so my 996 looks like a close copy of the Audi TT, why should I care?
  • I am taking my 02 Ultra in tomorrow for Saturday service. I am approaching 10K. Not much to complain about, except for the squeek from the electric steering column during hot weather.

    btw, I bought the Ultra for the parktronic feature--cannot live without it.
  • I had the same problem with the "groan" from the steering column on my 02 Custom Lux. I took it in at 5K service and they fixed it immediately. Haven't had a problem since and I'm now approaching 10K miles.

    Have you had a problem with the automatic windshield wipers in hot weather? Mine seem to take 1 swip when I turn the car on when it's hot out. Hopefully I'll have that fixed when I bring it in for the 10K service.

    Best regards
  • maxhonda99maxhonda99 Posts: 1,289
    agent0986, Actually a S500 starts at more like $90K. A total rip-off. And the S430 starts at about $75K, again a rip-off.
  • Seems like we are all getting service tomorrow.

    I have not had problems with wipers coming on, but a while ago someone had their sensor replaced and it fixed the problem. Mine came on the other day when a lot of bugs hit the windshield!

    Has anyone had their Nav lock in on an address near your "home," but not the address you entered for your home? Mine seems to enter an address nearby, but not my address, and if I "mark" my garage, for example, it is not the same place as my "home."
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