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Lexus SC 430



  • I posted the following in message Number 404 in October of last year.

    I often get the sulphur smell caused by unburned gas in the catalytic converter. This is almost always after heavy acceleration. Dealer says this isn't a problem, it's probably caused by the fuel I burn. I run Union 76 supreme.

    I received responses to change the fuel I used. I've tried every auto fuel on the market without success. I have had the car back to the dealer three times and they "can't find anything wrong". Every time I put the car under heavy acceleration I get the smell. I'm learning to put the windows up before I stomp on the gas. I think this is ridiculous for a $60K plus car and am becoming more and more disenchanted with Lexus every day. It's just too bad the 350Z can't carry a set of golf clubs. However, the Infinity G35 Coupe looks like a winner. I think I will dump my 430 at the end of the year for a G35. Too bad I bought it instead of leasing it. On another note, my windshield was cracked by a flying rock. I've been waiting 7 weeks now for a replacement. I'm looking forward to my next survey from JD Powers.
  • My experience has been the the amount of "stink" has more to do with that particular car, then the gasoline used. One SC430 may have no smell whatsoever, while the next may stink. I got stuck with the stinky Tercel in 1984. My brother's (same car exactly) did not stink at all. It has to do wit the catalytic converter. Unfortunately, these things are not usually covered by warranty. My suggestion would be to let them know that you are unsatisfied with the car and start a "case" with Toyota directly (not the dealer). Then take your car to the dealer, park it upwind from an area where people are, and let it idle and produce as much stink as possible. This works great on a busy weekend if you can park your car right at the showroom enterance. When people comment on the stink, just tell them you bought your car here and the dealership told you that it is normal.....
  • Have just said goodby to my SC430 after 25 months and 12800 miles. Before I sold it I had to replace the tires because the rear suspension was not set right at the dealer and the rears wore on the inside badly. The fronts had about 2-3k left per the dealer. He did give me a littler credit for new tires which brought him down to the NTW price. I just could not offer it for sale with the bad tires. But heres the important part. The new Bridgestones have a rubber curb just outside the rim which protects the rim from getting abused on a parallel curb. Nice. But the real news is that the new tires were MUCH more comfortable(softer) on street bumps. Had I had these tires in the beginning, I would have been much happier. They are the same Bridgestones that came stock but it looks that they have been re-engineered all for the good.Anyone should look at the new tires before opting out. I am offering this info because the forum has been so helpful for the last 2 years. I no longer have the car(new RX330) but want those out there to know.
  • I almost baught an sc430. At the time I placed the order they didn`t have one to physically see. Around a month before the car was to be delivered I got to drive one. The run flat tires were poor so I got the ls again. It is a shame some of you are disapointed as life is too short to put up with a poor product(tire) Tony
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    You can replace the tires with something you like better. I have never heard of making a decision about a car based on the tires that are on it. I bet if you asked, the dealer would change the tires out to whatever you want if you pay the difference.
  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,366
    are concerned, with this car they make or break it. Specifically, the run-flats break it. The ride leaves much to be desired. Replacing them is an expensive proposition and renders the pressure sensors invalid. I've yet to find a dealer that would replace them when I was looking at the car. Good luck.
  • If you are not satisfied with the overall experience, I have found it is best to move on. I am not trying to make any comparison, just being honest with myself. Tony
  • Well, I have written several times about my displeasure over the run flats on my 2002 Lexus SC430...finally after 3 months of investigation and talking directly to other owners who made the change.I bought new DunlopRF...last Friday /amd the car rides 50% better..and best of more pulling..all in all I would say the overall performance of these tires is 98% better..I wrote Lexus and spoke several times with customer satisfaction...they would not do anything..the dealer would not do anything.....this is my 4th next car.;well we will see..Irv
  • Aft3 months investigation, I finally put a new set of Dunlop 'RF on last friday..the car rides at least 50% better and the pulling is 98% eliminated..cost was $1107 Lexus refused to do anything about has 11,000 miles..all I can say is I WAS GIPPED. complained about these tires from the week I bought the car..this is my 4th mext car...we'll see..Irv

  • gravel2gravel2 Posts: 1
    Well, I got Lexus to replace my run-flats with the Dunlop run flats (at no charge to me) and I am still unhappy. I have had a Lexus for 10 years (maybe that was my clout). Anyway the ride is still 'rough' but not as bad as before.
    However, it still cannot be driven in the ice or snow and the other day it slid across a lane of traffic when it was raining out. That had happened to me once with the other run-flat tires and I was hoping the Dunlop one would eliminate that problem.
    Lexus does say that for $1000 they can 'rework' the trunk and then you can buy regular tires and have room in the trunk for the spare.
    I resent having to pay an additional $1000 for their poor judgment in not allowing you an option of kind of tires.
    When I complained about the tires and not knowing about run-flats when I purchased the car the customer service guy told me it was on page such and such in the manual. I guess I'm not with it because I don't read a car's manual cover to cover before buying a car!
    As soon as I research the other convertibles I will sell this one unfortunately. Anyone have any suggestions? I have a back problem and the height of the SC430's seat (getting in and out of the car)was a plus for me. I had to give up my Jag convertible because its seat was too low.
  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,366
    I sympathize. The run-flats and the related disappointment with the car brought me to selling my SC (my 5th Lexus). I do not regret my decision even though I think it's still a great car.
  • After driving a month on Dunlop Run Flats which I installed as per my last message at 11,000 miles, I must tell you its now like a different more twitches no more pulling car rides 100% better///Lexus made a mistake putting Bridgestone on in the beginning and should have made them good. I sent them a certified letter telling them this along with the bill and asked for a check or credit against another new Lexus and they did not even have the courtesy to answer me.
  • You were lucky if Lexus picked the bill for your tires..I had Bridgestone on myh 02 SC430 which were defective..the car pulled and twitched all the time..I complained for 2 years..finallyat 11000 miles and after much research talking to other owners I recently put on its like a different pulling 100% better ride..really enjoying the car for the first time.. so I wrote Lexus and sent them the bill asking for reimbursement or credit against a future Lexus purchase ( not the first time) and guess what??? they did not even have the courtesty to answer me..that's how they treat the buyer of their most expensive the way and I told them..this is my 4th wife is driving one also...she loves it (GS300) so what do I buy next..well as little as I drive I will keep this car at least 2 more years but then??
  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,366
    That is indeed a disappointing attitude for Lexus to take, to simply ignore you. Sounds like they're getting the haughty attitude of MB and BMW.
  • bongo59bongo59 Posts: 13
    I have owned 5 500SL's including the new designo....i traded it in 2 months for the SL 55 which i love....but have just sold last night....i still have my lorinser 2003 500 SL but i bought a nieman marcus 2002 SC 430 and for 30 K less this car is worth the price....i do agree the tires and ride and exterior styling are substandard with MB .....but not 30K worth.....I am listing my lorinser Tues morning....this is my first lexus so i'll give it a try for 6 months and get with you then!!!
  • I have used BridgeStone Potenza RFT(runflat) as well as GoodYear Eagle F1 EMT(runflat - Extended Mobility Technology) on my Lexus SC-430 and observed poor handling, twitching and sliding all along on both brands. Finally I switched to Dunlop SP Sports 5000 DSST( runflat using Dunlop Self Supporting Technology ) at 30K miles and see improved handling, better wet-weather traction, steering response - all in all the car has been quite a pleasure to drive - quite sporty and nimble I should say, as if I bought a new car at 30K miles! - anyone considering to buy SC430 should ask the dealer to put the Dunlop runflats initially itself - dont regret later.
  • Thank you reaffirm what I have found out..the hard way..only sorry I waited so long to make the change..Lexus knew by the amount of complaints they had that the Bridgestone tires were no good.but ignored the complaints..they didn"t want the responibility of a recall or the expense of replacing them for their loyal customers like you and are right..the car drives like a new car now that the Dunlops are on it..there is no other car on the market that appeals to me or I would have bought it..the Mercedes 500SL I drove it..did not see any advantage plus the seats are hard..the car is not pretty inside like my Lexus is..why spend 100k and then maybe have a way..but now I am really happy with the Lexus..only have 11,000 miles so plan to keep it a couple years yet...
  • Here is the deal. I drove a 1998 MB E320 for the last five years. The MB service experience has been awful. No loaner cars, long waits for service, poor waiting areas. My girlfriend drives a VW beetle and she gets a complimentry loaner car. While the overall performance of the E320 was good with no major probs and a few minor ones, I have satisfied my ego need to be a MB owner.

    I just purchased a 2003 SC430 with run flats. Yes, it pulls from time to time, but other than that it is a fantastic vehicle. And the improvement of having Lexus come to me to pick up my vehicle and drop off a complimentary loaner cannot be overemphasized.

    The interior luxuries and details are unmatched by anyone. It is a joy to drive this car. I just have to be certain to relocate and find a new job in Florida as I do not look forward to a Michigan winter in any coupe.

  • Thanks ipsadoodle. I like my SC430 too. The car has pretty good powerband ( even at 120 mph...shh)
    Handling could be a little better on twists and turns.. new Dunlops fare far better in this area. All in all, it is a great package for the price.
    Mine is an arrest-me red.
  • It is curious to me that every time the so called automag experts review the sc430 they are fairly critical of this cars handling and appearance.
    While I do not consider this car to be a sport car and styling is always subjective ; it is quite obvious to me that the purists are heavily
    biased towards "classic" luxury cars of old (namely BMW and Mercedes). I drive the sc430 in the mountains often and can attest to its fast,sound and reassuring reflexs. It is NOT razor sharp. But I have seen numerous comments about this car's handling being "ponderous" or unsettling......Hardly! And the looks are definitely sporty, daring and most onlookers think gorgeous. Certainly this is a more daring and interesting deseign (from Lexus!!!!!!) than a
    mercedes clk it just me.....but the clk is a conservative look. If the Lexus was this conservative you can be sure it would have lost points for being boring!! Yet the "experts" refer to the sc styling as unbalanced and ......yes...."pumkinseed" styling in one mag.
    Personally I think it is NEW, different and even stunning.............though I would like to see Lexus make this car smaller and is NOT a trim deseign.

    Just my observations and opinion. Any others?
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Now there is some truth to what you're saying. Anytime a comparo has a Lexus and a Porsche in it, someone is going to loose badly...depending on the criteria being judged. I think the Lexus is a luxury machine first, but it hasn't always lost this contest based solely on it's lack of performance or it's looks.

    Several magazines have also knocked the car for it's lack of body rigidity, it's always knocked for this especially when compared to the SL, XLR or 911, which are constantly praised for having a tighter body structure and a "tighter" overall build. My own personal take on the SC430 is that it's an interesting car, but it's too close to being a 2-door LS430 in it's driving, and it does claim to be a "GT" car afterall, that implies more excitement than it is able to provide. It wears 18-inch wheels/tires that promise a better drive than it delivers. I'm sure the car is not sloppy in it's handling, but what the mags find is that it doesn't match the class leaders, and it's not like those cars have punishing rides either, 911 excluded. The Lexus also has a rather garish interior when you specify the light wood with the dark leather, it simply looks to busy (overdone) compared to say the XLR or SL, which look better integrated. I personally think it's a big omission on Lexus' part by not having any kind of rollover protection.

    Compared to the old CLK the SC430 is more of standout, but not in a favorable way I guess to many. I see the old CLK Cabriolet as a classic looking Benz, the proportions are just so right, it's very hard to top styling wise. The SC430 comes off looking like a ladybug or upside down bathtub in comparision, it's not sleek like a roadster should be, it's too upright and bulbous. That said, I personally find it to be an interestingly styled car, not ugly at all just weird....but shockingly I can see where it would appeal to people. I'll say too, that the new CLK Cabrio does nothing for me stylewise either.

  • 1. You can't specify the light wood with the dark leather; the light wood come with and only with the "ecru" (off white) interior.

    2. The word "it's" is a contraction, not a possessive pronoun.

    3. I agree; the SC430 is not a Porsche and isn't trying to be; that's why I like it.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Either way it's still tacky looking and to over-the-top.

  • Most people who have ventured an opinion on the sc interior/dash have thought it was among THE nicest and tasteful interior ever seen on a car.
    And while the exterior could be more sleek and less "bulbous" (I see this too!) I get nothing but "wows" from the "average" non-car nut dude on the street. I still think (because it is a
    daring style statement) this car gets more (positively!)noticed than most beamers and Mercs,

    Incidentally, I have the dark wood interior with saddle leather..........both unique and beautiful to most.

    If I could throw out my practical side that loves Luxury, reliability AND Value..........I would want a porsche.

  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Any non-car person would be wowed by any of these cars, so I'm not sure exactly what that means. How do you know it gets noticed more than a BMW Z8 or Mercedes SL?

  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,366
    Occasionally a Lexus hater trolls on a Lexus board such as the above. I agree with most observers that the SC interior is one of the most luxurious and ergonomic in the business. Most enthusiasts acknowledge that Lexus' and Audis are among the most well done interiors.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Typical Lexus don't agree or ask for proof in the classic Lexus fashion, then you're a troll. Out with the names, pretty weak stance.

    If a MB fan posts something like my car gets more stares than a Lexus, the Lex fans (one like footie) would be asking for the only thing they can understand to prove it, a survey..and they'd be asking for such proof in a Benz board.

    maxhonda99......Read the E-Class topic, like say the last 20-25 posts and see if thats called "trolling".

  • carnaughtcarnaught 'zonaPosts: 2,366
    regarding post #636, the poster says, "yada yada yada....."

    I say, "serenity now"

    (On this board, I smell a troll)
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    If what I said was trolling and/or bashing then surely post #5234 in the E-Class forum is more of the same. It was made by a wandering poster that is severly limted to their survey clutching/preaching, that had no other intent than to stir up something. Period. The E-Class topic has been visted by this poster more than once for no other reason than to say much of nothing, even when nobody has spoken about the two cars in a comparitive way. I'm curious to know what topics do you think have been created with the sole intent on bashing Lexus?

  • Bear with me a minute. In my (much) younger days, I could afford anchovies for my homemade pizza, but considered them too expensive for what I got. So I coined the "anchovy principle", which has stood me in good stead for many years.
    To wit...can I afford a Lexus SC430? Yes, I can. And I would like to own a sports car. I have an RX300 now, and love it, so I know about, and can appreciate, a Lexus. But at $62,000+ for the SC430, I begin to think of those anchovies. An RX8? A Z-car? Even a Boxster? Reliability is very important to me, and so is styling, so the Lexus continues to appeal. But it's SO expensive. What to do? Would appreciate some comments.
This discussion has been closed.