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Lexus LS 400/LS 430



  • dh1870dh1870 Posts: 2
    Hi all I am new to the forum, and have a question. I am thinking of buying a used LS430. Possibly a 2003 or 2004. I have noticed while looking up the blue book values that the 2003 is about $5000 cheaper than the 2004. So it appears to me that besides the changes in the 2004 model, they are taking an additional year of age into account for the valuation. SO my question is when do the re-evaluations get figured into the blue books? Is it when the new model year occures or the new calendar year? Or do they refigure quarterly? If I am looking for a 2004 LS, should I wait a few months, and it may drop down to what the cost of a 2003 is now

    thanks all
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    There are a lot of variables at work here. First, the "blue book" that Kelly puts out is very consumer oriented - in other words, the "uninformed buying public" still tends to use the Kelly Blue Book for car values. But the more informed public and the industry uses other valuation systems now, and Kelly is probably the least credible of the bunch. Edmunds is one valuation source that is good. Manheim is almost exclusively who the insiders use (dealers, wholesalers, etc.,) because Manheim controls a large percentage of the wholesale used car market in the country with their hundreds of auctions nationwide.

    Secondly - values are reconsidered all the time, and as fast as the market adjusts, values adjust. Public perception governs demand for used cars, and demand governs value. Supply and Demand ultimately determine what your car is worth to you - and whatever you are willing to let it go for, and whatever your buyer is willing to pay for it. These prices are averaged to some degree, and results are published. Regional issues apply as well.

    Then, there's used, and very used. Used cars take a big hit at around 60,000 and 90,000 miles. Condition plays a tremendous role in an actual car's value. Model changeovers can affect value tremendously. There was quite a difference between the 03 and the 04 Lexus LS, in options, technology and a little in style as well. The 04 is more sought after, therefore, commands more money, and ergo; is valued higher.

    So, in other words, why wait? The longer you wait, the less a given car will cost you because it ages. OTOH, you can't enjoy it until you own it,'s really up to you and how much you are willing to pay.
  • gteach26gteach26 Posts: 576

    I just traded in my 2005 LS430 (modern lux package with 27,0000 miles).. KBB, NADA and edmunds valued the clean trade-in at around 5K more than "REALITY". Manheim's price is what the dealer offered and paid.

    Bottom line for my particular case is that KBB, NADA, and Edmunds were WAY off. Carmax wants you to give your car away for free and Manheim was right on.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    All three, KBB, NADA, and Edmunds, were off by $5000, on the high side, and Manheim was right...?

    ...because that's what the dealer offered you...?
  • gteach26gteach26 Posts: 576
    Edmunds, KBB, NADA all showed around $40,000 as a "clean" or "good" trade-in price for the car (didn't put "excellent" condition to be more realistic).

    Carmax offered $32K
    Dealer # 2 offered $35K
    Dealer # 3 offered $35.2

    I never hinted at what I wanted for the car, just asked them for their best offer.

    New car purchase was negotiated separately to avoid confusion.

    Both dealers showed me the manheim auction list printout for my area-- don't know if they made it up but since they both came in so close to each other I figured the price was legit.

    I wish dealers would use KBB, Edmunds, or NADA numbers -- it'd make trading in a car a much more transparent process....

    I wonder if there's a forum here where the people are discussing the good, bad, and ugly of the different car valuing services out there on the web? Did a search with no luck.....
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    I wonder if there's a forum here where the people are discussing the good, bad, and ugly of the different car valuing services

    There is this one in Smart Shopper: Edmunds vs. Kelley Blue Book Pricing. The host, Kirstie, said she'd be willing to add NADA to the title. Check it out.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Exactly - this is true because Manheim sets the market! Whatever those cars bring at auction, is what the dealer could get stuck with if they can't move it on their lot, so they need to protect themselves against a loss on your trade. Manheim is the best they can do. I don't know what KBB, NADA and Edmunds use for research - but it's not real, except for the consumer - it's what THEY follow. But dealers, wholesalers and brokers all use Manheim, it's the real world.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "Manheim is the best they can do."

    Yes, Manheim, using auction prices as a basis, would undoutedly be the "best" deal for the dealer.

    But NEVER the seller or trade-in owner.
  • colloquorcolloquor Posts: 482
    If $5K is disposable to you, or any money for that matter, trade in your car; if not, sell it privately. I haven't traded in a car in over 35 years. Although I consider my time valuable too, it's never taken me over 1 week to sell my car through local newspapers, now craigslist, etc. A weekend spent detailing the car, rather than the golf club, pays big dividends.
  • hprjrhprjr Posts: 24
    I have an '00 LS400 with 105k miles. Recently when starting the engine (I keep the AC in the auto mode), the slight clicking noise that comes from the AC compressor turning on has graduated into more a double popping sound much more pronounced than usual. Any ideas what is happening-the AC is performing well-car has been serviced by the book at Lexus dealerships. Thanks for any help.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Sounds like the compressor is going out fast. I would cease using the A/C immediately, and get it checked, or at least changed. Because when it quits working, if it is indeed the compressor, you can flood your system with junk. It's not the end of the world if you do, but not a great thing either.
  • hprjrhprjr Posts: 24
    Thanks for the reply. I'll take your advice ASAP and take it to the dealership.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    So.....what was the outcome???? I'm just curious.
  • hprjrhprjr Posts: 24
    I'll know tomorrow. Haven't had a chance to drop it off at a dealer yet. Been driving with the AC off.I'll let you know when it is fixed. Thanks.
  • hprjrhprjr Posts: 24
    Okay, this is what the service advisor said. Yes, the compressor is making a little more than the normal start up 'click' but would NOT change out the clutch/compressor assembly now for that kind of money (approx.1600$). He explained something about the clutch has a 20% slippage allowance before it shuts the compressor off at which an AC light will flicker telling me that the system is down to prevent further damage. I was impressed with their honesty and treatment-they could have easily advised changing out the assembly.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I admire their honesty as well. One would hope that would be a broad attitude, but each service writer is different.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Not certain about today, but not too many years ago the compressor's electromagnetic clutch could be replaced ($200) without replacing the compressor.
  • I saw this car for sale and after researching the vehicle feel this could be a good buy. The car was not driven in the winter and the low miles for the car appeal to me. I am looking to get rid of my 1998 Durango for a car that will be better on gas and getting around town (to work, gym, etc.) and is comfortable for me (I am 6'5" tall). The vehicle comes with a cd changer in trunk, rims/tires 3 years old and a major tune up a year ago. The only problem noted is a radiator sensor light however the owner says he has had it checked out and nobody can find the problem. The asking price is$4500/OBO. I would really like to get some feedback on this vehicle. Thanks for the help.
  • hprjrhprjr Posts: 24
    I'd take it to a dealership and pay approx. $100 to have it thoroughly checked over. In addition, ask if it has had the 30k, 60k, 90k, and the 120k services performed. Lexus keeps this info. in their system no matter what dealership the service did the work. I had a 1990 LS400 for 10 years and 165k when I sold it. Only problem I encountered was the steering pump had to be replaced and the LED instument panel lights were starting to misbehave. Properly maintained, those cars are now reaching 300k! Once a tech inspects it top to bottom, they can give you an idea what it needs to provide you reliable service.
  • While the LS is about as good as it gets, we're talking about an 18 year old car. C'mon...if you want reliable transportation you really can't expect it from any 18 year old ANYTHING.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Ditto. It's gonna have problems, and not all of them cheap to fix.
  • Got home from the city the other day and noticed one of my wheel inserts was missing that cover the lug nuts. Bummer. I have a 94 LS400 with chrome wheels. Anyone know where I might find these?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Sewell Lexus has a great parts department., I think. Also, try E-baymotors.
  • I have an '04 LS430 with the dynamic cruise control. Sometimes after using it for a while, if I cancel it to slow down and then later press "Resume", instead of resuming the previously set speed it acts as if I had pressed "Set", ie., it sets the speed to whatever speed I was doing at the time I pressed "Resume". This is an intermittent problem, and so of course the dealer can't reproduce it. I am wondering if any of you have had this problem and what it turned out to be.

    My hunch is that it must be the switch itself, on the theory that intermittent problems are usually mechanical, not electronic. Or it might be frayed wiring?

    I would appreciate any suggestions, hints, clues, guesses, . . . whatever.

    Thanks -- Renny

    PS: This started about a year ago, and has been gradually getting more frequent.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Don't know if this will help. I have found that if I cancel with the brake, resume doesn't work, it does as you say, acts like set. However, if I cancel by pulling the switch toward me, resume works fine. Could this be your problem?
  • Thanks, Howard. I will certainly test that. I believe I have had the problem in either case, but I will make sure. If that works it's an easy work-around. Have you complained to the dealer about it?

    Merry Christmas -- Renny
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Have not complained, as I figured that was the design....haven't bothered to research either, as it hasn't bothered me. Been a minor point of interest only to me.
  • Have an 05 also and have found the seats to be a real pain in the a_ _, literally. I am tall and thin, but the bolsters on the seat bottom really dig into my hip bones. I have the airconditioned seats and the bolsters are very firm, and hard. They don't give much. The center of the seat sits down too much further exascerbating the situation. Dealer didn't want to consider doing anything. Just sat in the seat for 10 seconds and pronounced it "just like new". Any one out there that has a suggestion to get this dealt with would be much appreciated.

  • My lease ends in one month on my 2004 Ls430. The car is in perfect shaoe and has 51,000 miles with no problems. the buyout is $28.5 plus 7% tax. Im considering buying it rather than stepping down to an es350. Is this a god idea?
  • Both my '01 and '04 LS430's had very uncomfortable driver seats. It was so bad I got a large fluffy towel and folded it up 8-ways and put it on the seat. That made it reasonably comfortable. Of course it made the heating/cooling pretty ineffective on the seat, but they still helped on the back.

    Many others have commented on the seat being uncomfortable. I too took each car back to the dealer and got the "It is designed to be like that" story.

    By the way, the LS460L has a more comfortable seat. Not Cadillac-like, but good enough so I no longer need my towel.
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