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Lexus ES 300/ES 330



  • There are no less than eight lexus dealers in the Chicago, Il. area. Who's offering the best deals
    on the es300 in Chi? Should I wait until the 2003s arrive in showrooms to get a reasonable price on the 2002s? I consider a reasonable price as $500-$700 over invoice. This price is still $3500 more than the Acura TL which I'm also considering.
  • bitnoi1,

    I don't think you will ever see a ES300 for $500 over invoice, except maybe in it's final year of production. Is Acura going to sell you a 3.2TL for $500 over invoice? I doubt it.
  • modvptnlmodvptnl Posts: 1,352
    Got my ES for a $1000 over(I know that's not 500) and could have got a CL S with NAV for $100 over.
  • modvptnl, I doubt you have a 2002 ES300.
    And the CL-S is different from the TL. The CL has been a sales dud(compared to what Acura's projections were).
  • kreativkreativ Posts: 299
    antiosama - modvptnl does have an '02 ES...the fully loaded one, meaning he got quite a few $$$ off MSRP. But he did have an insider contact with a SoCal dealership. hk2la got the mid-level package and also got $1000 over invoice at a SoCal dealership, without any special contact. This kind of pricing applies only to southern California though (or any other area where there's strong competition amongst dealerships)

    gambhir - maybe it's just because those who got the car earlier have driven more miles and have been able to better determine that mileage does stink with this car. But for what it's worth, I do remember someone posting here who said a Lexus service tech told them that bad gas mileage was a known problem with the (earlier?) ES.
  • lexus1lexus1 Posts: 14
    Im getting a bit more than tired of hearing about the great deals on ES 300 in S. California. While you guys are getting 1-2k over invoice, most of the rest of us are getting $500-1000 under MSRP! Things are still very tight in the Southwest as you can see by plugging in a Texas/LA/OK zip code into Edmunds market calculator. My local Lexus dealers each (4 of them) get 60 ES300s a month and more than 45 are pre-sold!
  • OH, South Cali. Out East we don't have those deals. A friend has been searching for about 2 weeks in Mass. and has gotten -zero- off of MSRP so far. He's still looking though.

    $1K over on a 2002 is fabulous.

    I wonder if they'll ship a car to Mass.
  • kreativkreativ Posts: 299
    If coming to southern California to buy the ES means saving a few thousand and being able to get the color/config you want a lot faster, it might not be a bad idea to fly out here and arrange to have the car shipped back home. If you don't live too far away, then you can drive it back.

    Shipping the car on a flatbed usually runs from $500 to $1000. My friend who shipped his car coast to coast said it cost him $1000.

    And if you're from one of those snowy areas, you get a short vacation in sunny southern California. I was out playing golf in 76 degree weather today.

    Search for dealers in southern California through and deal exclusively through the Internet/phone.
    What I would not do is to buy the car and have it shipped without having inspected it first.
  • lexus1lexus1 Posts: 14
    I've just purchased a 02 ES300 Starlight Pearl (pick it up Friday) and was wondering what the salesman's cut of the deal is. Here, I was lucky to get $500 off list! So the margin is over $4,000. What part of that goes to my salesman?
  • syluisylui Posts: 5
    I was told by my Salesman that Starlight Pearl has already dropped out from production as this color is very close to M. Silver and Alabaster. About the deal, my quote is $34887.26 including premium package, VSC; heated seat, xenon hi-light, wood steeling wheel, trunk mat and wheel locks. I figured is about $1,400 off from MSRP. Not too good or bad.
  • aggie76aggie76 Posts: 266
    Where is dealer where you got that deal of $1,500 off MSRP? Options are exactly what I am looking to order but am pushed higher on pricing and told by sales can't get without ML/Nav.
  • syluisylui Posts: 5
    My dealer is from Fairfax, VA. Actually I used and then contacted by this dealership, this quote was better than another Internet quote by $100. This dealer told me the options came with it are pretty much the same as other customer wants, but if you want a specific list of options, they need to special order one, ie, if you want those options plus ML, yes, you can but just need to wait a bit longer. Good Luck!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi all,

    A reporter is trying to find consumers who've traded up from mass-market brands (e.g. Toyota, Chevy, Ford, etc.) to luxury nameplates. He says, "I'm not looking for lottery winners, just regular folks who wanted more car." If you have a story to share, please send it to me at It is helpful for you to include your e-mail, phone number and city/state of residence when you respond. Deadline for submission to this one is March 6. Thanks as always for your input!

    Very best,

    Jeannine Fallon
    PR Director
  • mbbenzmbbenz Posts: 47
    my brother got a 2002 ES300 for $750 off MSRP at Lexus of Watertown, 10 minutes west of Boston.
  • I'm planning on ordering a 2002 ES300 in a few weeks and would like owners' opinions on the value of two options that I am considering: The Vehicle Skid Control option (I live in New England), and the High-Intensity Discharge Headlamps. Are they worth the cost? Thanks.
  • I got the car with both the VSC and the HID headlights. The VSC you dont notice until you skid bit when it happens that you are sliding and VSC corrects the skid, you are grateful that you have it. I live in New England and with the winter driving, it is worth having. The headlights are without a doubt a option to get. The view of the road is much better than standard lights and I think they make quite a difference.
  • mbbenz, Thanks. I'll forward that info. to my friend. I doubt he'll go for that though. I think he wants more like $2,000 off of MSRP on a loaded ES300. I think it stickers for about $39.3 Grand.
  • I'm going on a 500 mile trip soon in my 2000 ES300, and have used regular unleaded gas for the past 2 years with nary a ping or any other problem. But with the price of gas so low now (99 cents a gallon near me in the Seattle area), I thought I might try a couple of tanks of unleaded plus or premium to see if it makes any difference in performance, smoothness, quietness, acceleration, or whatever.

    (1) should I try unleaded plus or premium?
    (2) for most likely differences, should I try using the higher grade of gas around town or on the highway?

    Thanks for any knowledgeable suggestions.

  • We recently purchased a Starlight Pearl ES300 for my wife. It has the VSC and HID headlights. She really loves the headlights. The Skid control option is nice for winter driving. This car also came with the ML stereo w/o Navigation. It is an option that we didn't really care about at the time but are really enjoying the superior sound quality. Our recommendation is to go with the Skid control and the headlights, you won't be sorry!
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 854
    It was nice to hear from you again. What kind of gas mileage are you getting on you ES300?
    You certainly could try the mid-grade or premium but unless you took two identical trips you could not tell if it really made a difference in the miles-per-gallon. That is physically possible but hard to do. Road and temperature and other ingredients would just not be the same. If I had an ES300 I probably would use the mid-grade all of the time. It is cheaper than premium but yet better than the 87 regular. The 3.0 motor adjusts to the different grades of gasoline so one could find it extremely difficult to tell the difference in performance. Good luck if you decide to try and let us know concerning your "tests".
  • Well, I've sat on the sidelines of this string for the past few months while passively pondering my next vehicle. Turning the big 4-0 this spring and feeling the need to blow some cash and upgrade the wheels. This will (likely) be my first adventure into lexusville. Currently driving a 2k Max, and aside from the ho-hum styling, has been an excellent ride for the dough with only one issue to date (rotor warpage).
    Now having perused all of the brochures and DVD on the new ES(the DVD doesn't cut it, and the brochure is a bit long on "lifestyle" and short on substance), I took my inaugural test drive at my local chicagoland dealer..... Here's my thoughts, and ultimately why I will not be purchasing:

    > Very quiet and smooth
    > Gauges are outstanding-very high-end
    > Superior fit and finish
    > Cup-holders fragile and ill-placed
    > No room for junk-cell phone, etc- big minus IMO
    >>> But here's the show stopper- Seats are way too small and adjustments are no help.

    I have owned many, many cars over the years and I have learned my lesson on seat comfort. Once I sit in a car the very first time, it's yes or no immediately. The length is too short (I'm 6'2") and I couldn't even see the seat on either side of my butt. I am surprised that this issue has not come up on this string..... I walked across the showroom and sat in the GS300 and what a world of difference. Seats are perfect. Now I just have to re-think the money equation. I would be interested if any one else shares my opinion on the ES, which is otherwise a great car.
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 854
    Thanks for your input on the ES300. I test drove one a few months ago and did not notice a seat problem but I am 5'10" and 180 lbs. You seem to be quite an expert on cars. Please try out the Acura TL and the Infiniti I35 and give us your opinion of those two. I would be interested in your opinion. Have you tried any American cars like the Olds Aurora, Buick Regal, etc? I am also looking and listening for new car information for a purchase later this year or next. The problem I have with the Lexus is that they want MSRP and the cars on the lot are 35k plus and that just is too much for that car when you can get so many other models for less-Acura TL,Infiniti I35, Olds Aurora, etc. I do want a reliable car but one that gets reasonably good gas mileage and I hear that complaint frequently concerning the ES300. I realize that the Toyota Camry is not in the same class as the ES300 but maybe that is a better solution. Let me know what you think.
  • I was very close to purchasing a 2k I30 instead of my Max GLE. I really liked the upscale interior and gauges, but it came down to attitude (which is exactly the same situation with the new ES). It just goes against my soul to pay any dealer MSRP. To not budge off of that is a complete insult, IMO. I'm hearing it all over again.... "sell every one before it hits the lot", "hottest thing since sliced bread", "sorry, no deals"----- spare me the speal----

    As for the other choices out there, the new I35 is a very nice freshening of the 2k I30, and yes, the seats are excellent. Only problem is the model's state of the's looking like another complete re-do perhaps as soon as '03, or definitely by '04. That along with the intro of the G35 and underselling Q45, it just seems that infiniti hasn't cracked the code on dialing in the I35 as it stands today. Plus, say goodbye to any resale value. It garners no more than my Max. Still a very nice ride if you don't care about the market longevity.
    A friend of mine owns a TL, and it's....okay... just doesn't get me that excited.

    Again, I'm really disappointed on the ES seat issue, and I have to fight talking myself out of the purchase, but I know I'll be kicking myself on the first long drive. This actually might end up in my favor, as the dealer seems very interested in making a deal for the GS300. The only concern there is an impending redesign for late '03 as a '04 model. But I think the car has some timeless class to the current design.
  • kreativkreativ Posts: 299
    I agree that if the seat isn't comfortable the moment you sit in it, and doesn't get much better after you fiddle with the adjustments, don't get that car!
    I find the seat comfortable, and Lexus claims the front seat has an active suspension system. But everybody's different.

    Personally, I would wait until the new GS comes out before purchasing it. Seeing the kind of luxury upgrades given to the '02 ES, I can only expect the same for the next GS. And buying the first year of the a new generation allows for your car to stay current for the next 5 years. The untrained eye won't be able to tell your '04 GS apart from an '08 GS, but would easily be able to tell apart the "old" '03 GS vs. the '04 GS.
    On the other hand, the nice thing about Lexus designs is they don't ever look or feel "outdated" (except for the ES250). Even the '90 LS400 looks modern 12 years later. And the benefit of buying at the tail end of the current generation is that you can get a very good price (I could've gotten the GS for below invoice).
    But for the GS, I would still wait because I feel Lexus will make significant upgrades to the interior. And you never know how the exterior will look until they introduce it.
  • My first time to this forum - I have never owned a Lexus. I am looking for some feedback from someone who has a new ES300 and has previously owned an LS400. I had for quite some time been planning on buying a Certified 1999 or 2000 LS400. Last week my wife and I test drove the new ES300 and a 2000 LS400. My wife really liked the ES300 - I did too - but I am still very slightly leaning toward the LS400.

    I thought the 2000 LS400 had a somewhat smoother ride and was a bit quieter than the 2002 ES300. The price of a new loaded ES300 and the Certified LS400 is about the same.

    How about some feedback from some of you out here that have a feel for both. How do you think the resale value of the two would stack up against each other after 2 years? If I go for the ES300 I would probably look at trading for a Certified LS430 in 2-3 years.
  • If I go for the ES300 I would probably look at trading for a Certified LS430 in 2-3 years.

    In which case, I would go for a certified 2000 ES300, save a bunch of money (when compared to a new 2002 ES300), and then trade-up to the LS430 in 2-3 years. Or maybe lease a new ES300, since it is only for a short period, and then buy the LS430, once the lease is up.

  • Hi Folks:

    Does anyone know whether or not you can get a factory rear wing spoiler for the ES300?

    Many thanks.
  • bexleybexley Posts: 10
    I spent my Saturday afternoon cruising around town to different luxury car dealers trying to locate a new vehicle for my wife. She currently has a 98 Camry LE V6 which she is very happy with, but she's ready to step up to something alittle nicer. We're looking Japanese because of previous luck, and also high levels of quality for affordable prices (European is just too expensive). We narrowed are choices down to the Acura TL, Lexus ES300, Infiniti I35, and Mazda Millenia. I've included my ranking and impressions (see if you agree).

    4. Mazda Millenia: I think that the Millenia is a good car, and to the uninformed, it does impress. It has the right luxury features, decent power, good handling, good fuel economy. The car doesn't feel particularly luxurious, feels on par with the Camry my wife currently drives, but we both liked the style of it. The price is also the cheapest. The dealer was willing to sell me at $27000 for a fully loaded Millenia S. Seems like a good deal, then I did alittle research since my visit to the dealer and learned that the car is an 8 year old design, that is being phased out of production. Bottomline: Millenia is retiring, and just can't compete with the others, a better option for someone considering a Camry or Accord alternative.

    3. Infinit I35. My wife and I both liked the luxury features of the Infiniti, it had alot of things the others do not (heated steering wheel, 17-in wheels, spoiler). The car also had the biggest engine (which makes me worry about fuel economy), and is probably the fastest. Styling was also attractive. Pricing was decent (dealer would go around $33k loaded). Overall, the car gave a good impression, until we went next door to the Nissan dealer and saw the exact same car called the Maxima. Infiniti did not do enough to differentiate this car from the Maxima. Bottom-line: The I30 leaves a good first impression, but after awhile feels like a Maxima with a different grill and a few added luxury touches.

    2. Acura TL. Probably the sportiest of the bunch, luxury seemed like it was kinda added to this sporty sedan. The quality seemed excellent and all the controls and switches had a comfortable familiar feel to them. The styling was attractive, but forgettable. The engine performance was very smooth and powerful. Pricing was decent ($30k loaded, however the dealer would not bargain). Again, as with the Infiniti...I get the impression that I'm driving a Honda product, the vehicle just didn't have the luxury feel that I would be paying for. Bottom-line: The top of the line Honda Accord.

    1. Lexus ES300. Probably, the most attractive of the cars and the only one that did not feel like a nicer version of a midlevel sedan. The car just had a consistent luxury feel to it in the way it drove in the test drive, and the high quality of materials and leather. The car was not very sporty, but as a luxury car, I don't think it is supposed to be. The car also had all of the right luxury touches of the others combined into one car. I also thought that it is probably the largest and roomiest of all. Pricing is where things get alittle stickier, for all the good, you have to pay the price ($35k loaded dlr willing to budge alittle off the sticker). Bottom-line: Feels a class higher than the others, but at a price almost as high.

    This week my wife has to do some major deciding, is the added luxury of the Lexus worth the price, or can she live with a more mid-level feeling sedan with luxury features tacked on such as the Acura. Stay tuned....
  • lexus1lexus1 Posts: 14
    Sprinkled through the last month or so have been a number of questions and comments about the new 5 speed auto. I picked up my ES Friday night -starlight Pearl, Premium package, HID, WU, heated seats and sunshade--so will give a first opinion. On Saturday I took a drive of about 100 miles to try everything out. At first, I noticed the problems some have reported--the slushy shifts between 1-2 and 2-3. However, within about 5 minutes and stopping for 5 lights, I noticed that I did not notice the shift any more. So, for me, it was a case of the tranny learning how I leave from a stop. Now it gets interesting. The next place I had to stop, I had to goose it across 3 lanes of traffic and the tranny got a bit confused...not wanting to hold first or second long enough since it now knew that I was not a lead-foot. This is where I wish for the old PWR setting that used to be in Camrys.

    Other than the tranny, I had no issue with the car. I also did not hear the hiss in the Premium sound system that some had reported, so maybe they've fixed it (car manufactured in early January).

    The seats did feel a bit small after two hours but still comfortable. And the color(s) really turned heads. It's baby blue in direct sunlight, turning silver in shade and soft silver in clouds. Very cool. Put a fresh coat of MacGuires (SP?)on it since the car was fresh out of the plastic wrap and it really shines -- great finish, unlike some of the finishes I noticed on the TL-S when I was shopping.
  • bexley: I would agree with your comparisons. As an I30 owner (99) and a new ES300 (02) owner I think the ES has the looks to differentiate from the pack.
    One thing I will say about Infiniti, when I bought mine in 99 one reason was because the I30 had a 4 yr 60k warranty, this was not true of the Maxima, and my experience with Infiniti service has been great, certainly several cuts above a Nissan dealer.
    I hope that Lexus can match the level of service that I have gotten used to with Infiniti. Time will tell, only have 900 miles on the car and I love it.

This discussion has been closed.