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Lexus LS 400/LS 430



  • sv7887sv7887 Posts: 351


    Honestly it sounds like your salesman is feeding you nonsense. I have 17" wheels with snow tires mounted on it right now. No trouble whatsoever. In fact the bolt pattern has not changed from the '01 so 17" wheels should fit fine..


    I had those W rated tires on my '02 LS430 with Sports Suspension..At $268 a piece I wasn't very thrilled with them..Michelin Pilots would be a better bargain. What's even more ironic is that the car is electronically governed to 135 MPH..So, I have trouble seeing the use for those tires!!


    I don't see how changing a set of rims should require ordering a different car. Back in '02 when I objected to the Sports Suspension and 17" inch wheels the dealer offered to swap the 17's for 16's off another car..Surely Lexus dealers have 17" wheels on hand for their cars! I'd be quite firm with them on this issue.


    Hope this helps,

  • famwaldfamwald Posts: 114
    I agree ... there should be no problem in switching out the wheels for 17" ones. When I bought our '05 LS430 in December, I was looking seriously at a used '04 but it had the 18" tires. The salesman said wheels & tires could be switched out - no problem - but it wouldn't save me any money due to labor, etc. I ended up with an '05 and 17" wheels anyway---better color and easier deal to negotiate. I was adamant about not wanting the 18" tires, though. Perhaps your salesman is inexperienced (to put it politely) or just does not want to sell you that SUV.


    When we bought our '03 BMW 530 the saleswoman told us that anyone buying the 17" or 18" tire is encouraged to buy "tire insurance" due to the higher risk of blowouts when hitting potholes as well as damage to the wheel rims themselves. I don't need that kind of worry, with or without insurance.


    BTW, Consumer Reports magazines does not care for the larger size performance tires either on wet or snowy roads. CR says they're great on dry roads but awful on wet. That was good enough for me, along with the pothole issue.


    Perhaps it is time to get on edmunds' car search for dealers in your surrounding area, who might have exactly what you want. We bought our BMW this way. We knew exactly what we wanted, called the dealers for their "best price" and ended up doing the negotiations over the phone--a much better way to negotiate IMHO. Never saw the car until we went down to pay and take possession.


    Don't be afraid of hurting the salesman's feelings. Clearly he is not losing sleep by worrying about your feelings. Once they have your money and sold a car, they're focused on the next customer. It's their job.
  • Lexus Division General Manager Denny Clements announced at the NADA convention that just finished up the following official new redesign products and release dates:


    GS 350/GS 460 Spring 2005

    IS 250/IS 350 Fall 2005

    ES 350 Spring 2006

    GS 450h Spring 2006

    LS 460 Fall 2006


    I hope this helps you all with the limited flow of accurate new model release dates from Lexus.
  • Denny Clements also noted "Lexus is going to be the pre-eminent luxury-car brand in the world." "We're not about volume any more. We're out of our adolescence. It's about who we're going to be as a brand." This was in response to Mr. Clements noting that Lexus can grow from 287,927 units sold in 2004 (in the USA) to 350,000 units by the end of the decade.
  • famwaldfamwald Posts: 114
    We've had our '05 LS430 for 6 weeks and the transmission has me intrigued.


    Our previous two cars, the '98 Volvo XC70AWD and '98Toyota Avalon, allowed us to drive down a steepish hill in the neighborhood, without foot on the accelerator, and the cars would pick up enough speed to get us up the next mild incline. A silly game of sorts, but it brought some excitement and challenge into the boring drive home at the end of the day.


    In our '05 LS as well as our '03 BMW 530, it's a no-go. Both seem to stay in the gear they started out in. Both have the capacity to manually shift gears instead of leaving it in "D" and I wonder if this is the reason.


    Did the Toyota and Volvo actually shift gears as the car's speed increased on a mild hill even though the accelerator was not being pressed?


    This has puzzled us and we figure someone on this forum will know the answer. Thanks!
  • I presently own a 2003 Lexus LS430 and am seriously considering buying the new generation LS when it comes to market next year. One of my strong desires in any new vehicle is the ability to incorporate my Ipod MP3 music player into the vehicle's audio system. Mercedes has announced such a complete Ipod integration in their vehicles for later this year. Does anyone have any idea what Lexus plans are in this area?
  • paulchiupaulchiu Posts: 378
    I think Toyota is waiting for a better standard before incorporating some iPod connection. Frankly, if you burn MP3 at 256Kbs or under onto your device, the sound quality will not be as good as a CD in our Mark Levinson LS430 sound system. I have heard the hard wired iPod system in the BMW and I was not impressed. Surely, for many, quanitity is more important than quality. The sheer amount of titles at your finger tips is fabulous with those iPods, but what good is it if you cannot voice command it while driving. If you are serious about your music quality and go lossless AAC or some other format, then you will have great fidelity, but wouldn't a bunch of burned CD's do that too. Changing CD's is very doable while driving. Searching with the flywheel is hard and may cause aaccidents.


    Despite all these concerns, it's likely that once Sony has a great standard, Toyota will built some great voice command MP3 device into our flagship.


    In the meantime, enjoy the Mark Levinson!


  • I heard that a electronics store outside of Chicago called "The Little Guys" in Homewood Illinois knows of a product that lets you hook your ipod MP3 to your audio system. It is suppose to be out in March 05. The were talking with a radio jock named Steve Dall about it last week. Try them for info.
  • I have been following the message board for some time, the owner of a '98 LS. Xlnt reading. In spite of the new 460 model coming out next year, I still anticipate the purchase of an '05 perhaps this month. I am in So. Calif, and would like some expertise and direction regarding reasonable expections for cap cost, financing factor and residual, 15k annual,for a Modern Luxury, presumably a Tier 1 credit risk. Any input would be greatly appreciated. BTW - the 98 just went over 100k, owned for 3 years, 60k, 90k and torsion bars have been only real costs, all done at Toyota dealerships with xlnt service. Will keep it in the family til the cows come home. Regards
  • wbwynnwbwynn Posts: 246
    There needs to be a direct connection to the ML system - both retro for earlier models and for the new LS. FM and cassette connections degrade the sound. Lexus should be a leader here, as the landscape for automobile audio is fast-changing. In its annual survey, named Apple the most influential brand in the world. Time for a connection Lexus.
  • Hi Folks, I finally took my first plunge into Lexus. I bought a 1999 LS400 with 65000 miles. The dealer said that I would have to change out the timing belt at 95000. True? Any other comments about maintenance or trouble issues that I might look for would be appreciated.
  • SylviaSylvia Posts: 1,636
    A reporter would like to interview someone who recently bought a large sedan such as a Mercedes E-Class, Lexus LS 430, Mercury Crown Victoria or any large Cadillac or Lincoln.


    Please send your daytime contact info to by Friday, February 11, 2005.
  • I'M PUZZLED. Prior to 2004 the LS had 2 oil change schedules: one for heavy service and one for normal usage(7500). Starting with the 2004, the required oil change is at 5000 miles. Have the engine qualities deteriorated that much?


    The Porsche Boxster requires oil and filter change every 20,000 miles or 2 years, using 0-30W Mobile 1. I strongly suspect that the LS engine is every bit as well made and the quality is as good as the Porsche engine. Or maybe not? I couldn't get a good answer from Customer Service. I have my suspicion of what's going on. Maybe someone can truly enlighten me on this quandary.


  • Here is the explanation from Riez over on the IS300 board regarding the 5000 mi oil changes. Basically, Toyota/Lexus is covering their butts from negligent owners. As to the Porsche, maybe they are using synthetic oil?


    Check out the December 2004 issue of Car & Driver, Csaba Csere's "The Steering Column", p. 13. He has an interesting discussion about Toyota's recent "sludge-damaged engines" issue. Points to Toyota research that "many" of these so-called damaged engines were in leased cars with 30-40,000 miles. Looks like many never had their oil filters changed and had oil change interval problems (i.e., the leasees weren't changing their oil like they should).


    Toyota also determined that owners/leasees weren't following the "severe service" intervals as needed.


    An excerpt:


    "So how is an owner to determine the threshold between 'normal' and 'severe' service? Toyota concluded that an owner couldn't be expected to know and has since revised its oil-change shedules for all its vehicles to 5000 miles."
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    How did those cars get past the required inspection at the end of the lease. I know I have always had to keep maint records on my leased cars.


    Sounds like corporate BS to me.
  • gteach26gteach26 Posts: 576
    I've leased different cars/trucks from Ford, Lincoln, Lexus, and BMW... I've never been asked to demonstrate that I've serviced the vehicle. In fact, the turn in process has been so quick and painless that it has prompted me to continue leasing.


    I always tend to do maintenace on my leased cars at "decent" intervals of around 7,500 miles. Still though, I've been known to skip a service visit or two. The fact that I do not own the car doesn't help my motivation much.


    As to sludge-damaged engines, I suppose these cars were not of the "Certified Pre-Owned" types.. don't those "supposedly" go through a 3 Zillion point inspection prior to resale? I'd think they'd pick up on the fact that a car hasn't been serviced regularly during the certification process -- unless that process is a bunch of marketing baloney.
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    I was a member of those forums. Some cars were sludging before 16K. If the engines fail from "lack of maintenance" that soon, I think they need to rethink the design. Especially when some cars go much longer intervals.


    Like I said back then, there's no sludge issue with Toyota's other engines. Why did these Toyota/Lexus owners choose to neglect those particular models. It didn't add up on my calculator.
  • Thanks for your reply deanedell. Having not read the article you referred to, I do know that there were problems with certain Corrola engines and maybe other Toyota engines. Why just Toyota experiencing these problems? It seems it was a design problem in these engines possibly producing cavitation resulting in sludge-damaged engines.


    As to "So how is an owner to determine the threshold between 'normal' and 'severe' service? Toyota concluded that an owner couldn't be expected to know and has since revised its oil-change shedules for all its vehicles to 5000 miles". The owner's manuual clearly spelled out the difference between normal and severe service--decernable by any 4th grader. Or maybe it's presumed that Lexus owners haven't reached that mental ability and would simply accept any explaination, however lacking.


    If owners do not get an oil change in 40,000 miles or on a regular basis, why would mandating a 5,000 mile schedule induce tham to do otherwise?
  • I have had three Lexus leases over the years, two were with Bank One and the other with Toyota credit. All three experiences were similar in that it was a hassle to turn in the cars and noone even asked about service! These are the same people who complain about the condition of the returned lease cars and lack of good service by lessees. I always followed the service recommendations for each car and did the minimum required because I knew I was not going to keep them afterlease. I own a 2003 LS430 Ultra now and I change the oil every 7500 miles with the Amsoil synthetic oil. I know that I could go twice as long, based on the Amsoil research, but the Lexus book calls for the 7500 mile interval.I also use the Amsoil in my 2004 VW Touareg because Vw specifies the synthetic in their V8.
  • sis2sis2 Posts: 6
    Can anyone knowledgeable about this answer please?

    There are 5 differences between the

    LQ (Custom Lux) and the PT (Modern Lux) pkgs: Dynamic Radar, Pre-Collision, headlight washers, power door closers, and laminated glass, all of these on the LQ pkg., making the price increase $2500/invoice and $3000/retail.

    I'd like to know from a consumer point, what real difference would these things make in a driving experience or any other aspect? I'm mainly referring to the pre-coll and radar. I already assume the others are price- increase excuses, but are these 5 extras worth the extra $2000-3000??
  • oacoac Posts: 1,594
    Hi George:


    I own a fully-loaded '99 LS with 98K miles, and all scheduled maintainances performed up to date.


    Here are the rough costs for scheduled maint:


    30K mile -> ~$150

    60K mile -> ~$600

    90K mile -> ~$1300


    These are costs based on my location here in So Cal.


    Have changed tires (2x) and rear brakes, along with regular oil changes at 5K mile intervals. That's been it.


    Oh, the timing belt was changed at the 90K-mile service, along with a few other things.


    Hope the above helps you with your '99....
  • To me the dynamic cruise control would be worth the extra cost. However, if the only difference is that the PT has the laser cruise control vs. the radar, then it would not be worth it. In other words, either type of dynamic cruise control (where the car follows at a set distance, and slows down if the car in front slows down) is worth 3K to me over the life of the car. The other things don't do as much for me.
  • my 2005 ls430 with 18" dunlaps was returned to the dealer for a refund exchange to a gx470 .

    the dealer COULD NOT balance the tires . the factory quotes a nonsense fix that fixes nothing . lexus will go back to the 17" quickly .

    the dealers in my area are meeting with the factory monday ( wash to ny ) .
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    .... when the dealer could not balance the OEM Dunlops to my satisfaction, he swapped them out with a new set of five Michelins. Problem solved.


    In your case, rather than change the tires, you had them change the car. A bit drastic, but an effective solution nonetheless :)


    Just curious as to why nobody suggested changing the complete set of tires?
  • the factory , in a gesture of goodwill , offered a set of 5 michelin pilot " w " rated tires .

    i wanted the 17" wheels and a set of michelin mxv4's with an " h " rating .

    however , at that point i was tired . every time i was at the dealer's , someone came in to scream about their new '05 ls with 18" wheels and dunlops ... while the factory denied a problem ?

    deceision : no 18" anything for me . i wanted my ls to ride and perform like an ls .
  • garyh1garyh1 Posts: 386
    Yikes, I have an '05 LS with 18" Dunlops (just coming up on 1000 miles) that seems fine to me. How did you know there was a problem? What did you experience that sent you back to the dealer? Is this a problem with all the cars, or just some?


    I agree that I wouldn't want summer tires. Are the "W" rated tires all-season? Are there any 18" tires that are not problemmatic?
  • yickwoyickwo Posts: 54
    I am about to pull the trigger on a '05 LS with 18" wheels. Should I hold off? What kind of problems with the 18inchers?


    On a separate note, why is Lexus offering a $750 cash incentive to only recent college grads? How many recent college grads can afford an ES/IS 330 let alone LS430? Am I missing some thing?
  • on the 2005 ls430, the 18" dunlops are " v" rated not " w "

    they are all season tires

    there is an upcharge on the factory monroney sticker of about $190 to upgrade the 17" standard ( as on a 2004 ls ) with the standard size all season fat dunlops .

    you'll notice on the upper passenger side exterior windshield , notifying a purchaser not to expect much more than 20,000 miles on the optional 18" wheels and tires . they are tall and thin and ride like driving over railroad tracks ( even on a smooth boulevard blacktop).

    to know if there's a problem ? most of the cars i have tested , have an apparent wheel balance problem from 60 to 72 mph ... with a shimmy , bounce , and outright grumbling . i drove one car that did it's thing at 25 mph . dealers other than mine tell me customers complain the ride isn't like their old ls and don't speak of balance problems or out of round problems . very well COULD BE MY DEALER DOES NOT HAVE THE KNOWLEDGE OF BALANCING OUT OF ROUND TIRES ON THEIR SOPHISTICATED BALANCERS . if you are experiencing no problems , it's a good chance you have 17" with normal size dunlops . all the ls430's were shipped to the states with the 17's until early december or so when the 18's started coming in .

    mitchell rowe
  • vickwo : no one can tell you to hold off . that's your call . however : 1 - look for an early 2005 ls with 17"s . 2 - drive the car at least 20 miles and get them hot . absolutely at highway speeds of 60 62 70 75 mph on a smooth recently paved blacktop highway in all 2 or 3 lanes .

    also check for drift to one side or the other , and what i coined the wandering desert camel ... where the car just wanders from side to side like mindless robot .

    item # 2 : the $ 750 cash rebate for a college graduate in the last 90 day's . no you are not missing anything . obviously it's an ABSOLUTE PHONEY REBATE . ONE WOULD HAVE TO BE AN MD SPECIALIST IN HEART SURGERY TO AFFORD A LEXUS WITHIN 90 DAYS OF GRADUATING COLLEGE .

    obviously there's a clown in the marketing department . maybe the same clown who took a perfect car , the standard of the world , and

    stuck some bicycle tires with a life on the vehicle to satisfy the college graduates who will take their rebate and buy new wheels and tires ?

    mitchell rowe
  • sv7887sv7887 Posts: 351
    Hi All,

      Make sure the dealer is using a Hunter RoadForce balancing machine. They are the best in the business and can balance practically anything. I bought my '05 LS in Dec but it's been on snow tires ever since..I'll have to see what it does once it's back on the normal rims..I would have prefered the 17" wheels..I don't see the need for 18" on this car, especially when the car is governed to 130 MPH!!! (Why is it that the ES goes to 143?) My older LS400's were limited to 150..


    Usually the dealer is good at resolving these matters..They switched the tires in my '92 LS when I bought it because of vibration issues to Bridgestone Turanzas..Ditto with my '98 LS (To Dunlop Sp 5000's)..


    As for the cash incentive..Maybe for leasing purposes? I don't of many grads even Harvard ones that could afford 35K in cash immediately after graduation..Maybe they're getting loans or leasing..


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