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Lexus SC 430



  • toyotas1toyotas1 Posts: 134
    Can you answer a few questions for us? What do you think of the new XLR and Benz SL? How does your car handle/ride? Are you happy with the ride/handling tuning? Is the trunk good for TWO sets of golf clubs? Are the seats good for "spirited driving"? Any chassis "flex" over uneven pavement? Did you test the CLK Cabrio before buying? (Sorry, to ask so much, but this doesn't happen every day!)
  • rayferrayfer Posts: 5
    just had my 15k service on the sc430. the main problem i have had in the year since i have owned it is the roof rattle. the dealer replaced the entire roof interior and it has solved the problem it seems.
    i went and sat in the new SL500 mercedes yesterday. the lexus interior is far nicer. i like the mercedes body style better though. they wanted 117k for the mercedes... i would rather buy his and her sc430's
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    You ask: "can the sc430 go through an automatic car wash?" First, why not? What are you afraid of? I've driven mine at high speeds in the driving rain, and I doubt that a car wash is more severe than that. Do you think it will tear the top off? I don't think so. And secondly, why? If you have a nice finish (like Zaino) on your car, which you should, or even a good wax, an automatic car wash will just mark the thing up with swirl marks like crazy. In other words, I would think that the automatic car wash would not hurt the car, would would be devestating to the finish.

    I have seen the list of options the dealer can change in the computer (e.g.: I had him change my system so that both doors unlock when I put the car into "Park") and I don't think the rear windows are on there. In my experience, they are too small to make any difference, up or down. Some people have asked if they can be put up while the top is down, and now you want to know if they can be put down while the top is up. I've never wanted to do either, although your inquiry makes more sense. My guess is that they are too small to be up with the top down. Why they will not down with the top up is anyone's guess, but maybe it's because noone wants to ride in the back seat with the top up anyway. You will just have to sit your dog down and have a little talk with him.

    As for the other set of questions from toyotas1, "not much" re the XLR; the SL500 looks good (I saw one yesterday) from the front, but I don't like the back so much. It is a very large car for a hardtop conv. I don't like the interior much, either, and I think it's way overpriced; MB will throw in overpriced and indifferent service with every sale.

    The SC430 handles very well for a GT. It's not a Porsche and is not trying to be. For most pupopses, it corners like a snake in a rathole. The ride and handling are fine, and you can put a lot of stuff in the trunk if you do it right. With the top up, I expect that at least 2 sets of clubs could go in the trunk, but I don't know as I don't play golf. The number of tennis rackets is almost unlimited, though. With the top down, you are probably limited to one set (as long as you have the run flats/no spare option).

    The seats are very comphy and fine for spirited driving, but this is not a car you want to drive at its limits. I looked at the CLK's and did not like them at all. They are much bigger and far less luxurious. The interior in them is very plain. If you need a full back seat and a much bigger car, it's fine. I felt that the cars are so different that I don't think they are targeted at the same market, although I might be wrong on that. The CLK just did not look at all like what I was interested in, while the SC said "I am very different from anything else out there -- notice me."

    Or maybe that was the girls that keep asking me about it.
  • karklinkarklin Posts: 15
    I have had a Honda S-2000 traded for a Boxter and the Boxter for the SC-430 I like the last one the best.Beautiful ride lots of goodies.
    I would highly recommend it [email protected]
  • As prospective SC 430 buyer there are several issues, that have caught my attention while looking at previous posts.
    1. Tires. Has anyone opted for the non runflat variety and regretted it (cost, mileage, roadholding etc) or vice versa?
    2. How much is routine maintenance costing?
    3. Can anyone explain or even hazard a guess as to why there are 70+ SC 430 models for sale on and less than 30 (2001) GS 300 models on the same website? Does this represent a glut of the 2 door?
    4. Is anyone getting the SC 430 for less than MSRP
  • calstercalster Posts: 2
    Thanks for your reply.

    Don't know why I worry about auto car washes... I worry more about scratching the finish than anything else. Having had convertibles in the past, they were a major no-no because of the cloth tops, but I figured with the hard top it was probably OK. Then again, if I'm going to own this car, I should not be so lazy as to wash it myself .

    The dog, however, is not pleased . Then again, many folks don't believe that the dog ought to even be allowed in this car, but they aren't dog people.

    Thanks for your help.
  • joe166joe166 Posts: 401
    I bet the dog is wondering whether YOU should be allowed in his car. Pets are a great way to get humility.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    A reader asks:
    1. Tires. Has anyone opted for the non runflat variety and regretted it (cost, mileage, roadholding etc) or vice versa?
    2. How much is routine maintenance costing?
    3. Can anyone explain or even hazard a guess as to why there are 70+ SC 430 models for sale on and less than 30 (2001) GS 300 models on the same website? Does this represent a glut of the 2 door?
    4. Is anyone getting the SC 430 for less than MSRP

    To the best of my experience and knowledge:
    1. Almost everybody has the runflats. I have no problem with them. From what I hear, the ride difference is not much and although you have the "security" of a spare, you have virtually no trunk space when the top is down. Depending on the weather, this can be a lot of time. Get the runflats. Life is too short.

    2. It's right in line with other Lexus services. Probably more than the Buick dealer charges, but you aren't interested in a Buick. The Lexus service and support is the best in the world, and it's not expenseive as MB; that's good enough for me. Finally, apart from routine service, in 10 years I've hardly had any other service calls at all. Nothing seems to go wrong on these cars. That's why they are at the top of the Powers survey all the time.

    3. Don't know. Could be because people on the waiting list got the car and it was different from what they expected. It's different from almost everything on the road, and it's not everyone's cup of tea. If you can find a deal on a used one, grab it. Around here, used ones were recently going for up to $10,000.00 over sticker due to demand by people far down on the waiting list. Wealthy people, I think. I don't know what is, and am not sure you should generalize too much from the data you find there.

    4. Only in your dreams.

    Happy motoring.
  • 43810774381077 Posts: 31
    For what it's worth my Boston dealer's taking $2K off the list right out of the box. Of course, I'm a regular customer and when they do offer a number less than MSRP they usually hold to it within a few bucks. Isn't much negotiating usually.
    Also you have to remember that the economy isn't what it was, the T-birds are out( not that it's direct competition) there are new SL's on the street ( again not direct competition) and the SC is not a limited production and there are plenty of resales available. Typical resale seems to be one with 6 or 10,000 miles asking price mid $50's, $6 or $7K off list.
  • joeyb1joeyb1 Posts: 5
    I have a different opinion on Run Flats, and I think the choice may depend on where you live. I find them quite harsh. My car is only two months old, and I have had the rear subframe bushings replaced. And, they will be replaced again in a few weeks. This is common problem on the SC430(ref Tech. service Bulletin SU004-01).
    However, without a spare the trunk room is significant for a convertible. I can put my bicycle in the trunk without wheels. The OEM runflats have a rating of 140, so I would only expect about 15,000 miles from them.

    I've seen the ads on the internet. some may be people dissatisfied with the car. But, I suspect that a lot are from people who hoarded the cars when they were in demand in order to make a fast buck. Now they need to get rid of them.

    My understanding is that most dealers are charging MSRP, but that there are cars available.
  • Joe,

    Where do you live? How many miles did you put on your SC in those two months?

    Personally, I'm very happy with the runflats so far. I bought my SC at the end of 2001 and only have 1500 miles on it. My dealer sold me the car for a little (about $1 K) less than MSRP, I think so he could book the sale last calendar year.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    I've had my SC since May, have about 6,000 miles on it, and have no problem with the run flats. I think they are an excellent trade off for the top down space. I was told that I might get as little as 10,000 miles on them, but they still look pretty good, even though I drive it pretty fast and corner harder than necessary, just because I can.

    Nor have I had any problem with the bushings as you describe, although I will look at the Tech Serv Bulletin and ask my service mgr about it when I take the car in for routine service in the next few weeks. Expect a full report here.
  • ben54ben54 Posts: 5
    Just had the 10,000 mile service on my SC430; been through the 1000 and 5000. I noticed on my invoice that the next service is due at 13,750. Before I go back to question the dealer, I'm going to ask Lexus "Central" if there is a TSB out on this. I was assuming an "every 5000 mile" service" (even thou I really don't think every 7000 would hurt). No driving extreems here in Dallas...except summer,..but we're not there yet...and thats the only reason I was using 5000 vice 7000... COMMENTS ANYONE?
  • evictorevictor Posts: 1
    I have a friend who bought recently a SC 430 from Longo Lexus in El Monte (near Los Angeles) for $2,000 under MSRP.
  • opentopopentop Posts: 3
    Just hit 5K and runs like a charm, changed out the run flats day one and no regrets. Not a squeak, rattle or other problem noted. Also got rid of the pie plate wheels day one.

    Tires: Dunlop S9000's with BBS wheels
  • 43810774381077 Posts: 31
    Can you get a set of golf clubs in the truck with the top down, or for that matter with it up? I've yet to find an SC on a dealer's lot w/o run flats to run my own test. How do the BBS wheels look? Did you select the Dunlops to soften the ride? I swaped out the Michelin Pilots on my CLK to Bridgestone Potenza's, got a much harder ride with no visible improvement in handling...the 9000's were the other option.
  • carnaughtcarnaught Desert SWPosts: 2,718
    ...are not really that hard of a ride thanks to the excellent suspension, IMHO
  • drrobertdrrobert Posts: 8
    Hi everyone out there; just curious if any of you have owned an SC300? I just got a 1997. Awesome car, but could use a little more power. Any suggestions?

    BTW, Ive read through this discussion, and just want to say for the record that looks are subjective and no one should claim that the SC430 is ugly. What is ugly to one person, may be just perfect to someone else. To each his own.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    A listener writes:

    "Hi everyone out there; just curious if any of you have owned an SC300? I just got a 1997. Awesome car, but could use a little more power. Any suggestions?"

    Yes. Trade it in on an SC400. The 300 has a six; the 400 has the V8, with about 280 hp. I had an SC400 for almost 10 years (which takes me out of the target audience of your question) and I never wanted for more power.

    Of course, now that I have the SC430 which has the newer Lexus V8 (4.3 L instead of 4.0, and 300 hp instead of whatever the other one had), I am enjoying even greater performance, acceleration and gas bills.

    Life is too short . . .
  • carnaughtcarnaught Desert SWPosts: 2,718
    ...1993 SC300. Although it was not the fastest car on the block, I never wanted for more power. The car, which was one of my best, had terrific ergonomics, seemlesss shifts and always made me feel like I was pampered. 0-60 times are not everything, although it was only .7 sec slower (0-60 time) than the SC400. So... just enjoy the car.
  • devokedevoke Posts: 33
    We are buying a new SC430 this week. We are in Mobile Al, but may be buying the car from Lexus of Orlando Fla. We were on vacation down there a few weeks ago and noticed they had $2k off MSRP. Nice folks there. Hopefully, my Lexus dealership, who are now friends, will match the price or make it worthwhile for the $2k difference. I really want to buy here, because I live here. Both dealerships seem to be super nice and very professional.

    The reason we are buying a Lexus, other than the obvious fact that this is an awesome car, is I have read nothing negative on Lexus reliability or service. The same can not be said of my Mercedes-Benz SLK230. Long story short, it had 21 visits to service in 2 yrs. We had to go to arbitration to get the arrogant folks at MB to do something about the car's problems. Bottom line is the arbitration took almost 7 months and almost $4k to complete, but MB had to refund our original purchase price, in full. The car has about 17k miles and was purchased in Aug '99. We just got the results this week. Buyers please beware MB will NOT stand behind their car when they create a lemon. AND, they will be arrogant about not standing behind it. They admitted they could not repair the car and offered me $6k less than Edmund's average trade-in price because the car had "problems." Is that a total lack of taking responsibility for a "lemon" or what?

    All reports say Lexus will stand behind whatever they make and will replace it if they do happen to produce a lemon. I can tell you that means alot when you happen to get one.
  • 43810774381077 Posts: 31
    Or as more accurately stated "lack of", I finally got a rise out of my guys recently. I'm using a dealer 30+ miles from home owing to the attitude and horrible service locally. These guys have been pretty good, great compared to their peers, but have begun to adopt " the attitude". On my last visit, in response to that "you're dirt" look and tone they give you I suggested that I'd be a little less bold if my product were playing catch up with Lincoln and Cadillac in the JD Powers rankings. Got him really ticked, but at least knocked the smirk off his face.
    If only Lexus could match MB's style and technology, or MB could adopt the Lexus reliability, quality, service standards, one would put the other out of business. Right on to the poster who dragged them thru the arbitration process.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    I asked my service manager about the tech bullietin and the rear subframe bushings.

    He said it's no big deal; they have had about two cars so far on which they have replaced the bushings per the service bulletin. There is no recall or anything so major. He said there is a bad batch out there that go bad and make some noise. If this happens, you will hear it. If this happens, they will make it right and replace the bushings.

    As far as he can tell, it's pretty rare.

    It sounds to me like they have a pretty good handle on this, which is both very much like Lexus and, of course, the impression any Lexus service manager would want to convey.

    If anyone has any other information about these bushings, let us know.
  • drrobertdrrobert Posts: 8
    Thanks to squidd99 and carnaught for responding to my question.

    I may trade up to an SC400 one day, but carnaught is correct in that the 300 is such a great car that maybe I should overlook the 0-60 and just enjoy the overall greatness of the car in terms of handling and luxury, not to mention its a fantastic looking car.
    Thanks for the input.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    You are correct, sir.

    The SC300/400 is still one of the best looking cars on the road.

    Although I am having a blast with my new SC430, I sometimes, maybe a little bit, miss the elegant sweeping lines and beautiful curved front end of the 400, not to mention the luxurious ride.

    Enjoy it because it will be some time before there is anything else quite like it again.
  • aj123aj123 Posts: 1
    Hello All. Recently purchased White Gold Crystal SC430. After week noticed paint peeling off lower parts of front bumper as well as side of rear bumper. Dealer was great and replaced vehicle with new one--same color. Picked up yesterday, looked great, took home and noticed very small "pucker" on front bumper, where it meets fender. Bumpers are plastic and color that peaks through is black, in all instances. Is this just an isolated issue (pearl white the culprit?) or have you noticed the same problem? The problem would appear most prominently around lower portion of wheel wells on plastic bumpers only. But takes keen eye to notice. From my perspective, it appears Lexus may have a build/quality issue with respect to how the plastic bumpers are painted...Don't want to have to paint brand new car...Not sure whether to return this one too. Thanks!
  • I have a friend who also had problems with the paint peeling on plastic areas- this on a black sc430. My own silver 430 doesn't show any evidence of the problem.
  • carnaughtcarnaught Desert SWPosts: 2,718
    ...and have not noticed any related bumper paint problems but will watch for it.
  • squidd99squidd99 Posts: 288
    First of all, you guys (and Lexus) are going to have to decide if your cars are white, gold or crystal. Make up your mind.

    Anyway, mine is black (Bituminous Midnight Shade)and shows no paint problems on the plastic or other parts of the car.

    My only paint gripe is that a road stone hit the lower silver painted surface of the grill area, which scratched off the paint, leaving a small black spot (I guess it's plastic under the silver paint). For a while, I thought it was tar on top of the silver. When I examined it carefully, after the spot would not come out (damn spot), I asked the dealer if he would either touch it up or sell me a little touch up paint thing for the silver, like I have for the black paint.

    But they don't have that in silver for the grill where I have the nick, and they had no suggestions. Maybe I should just get a generic silver touch up paint at AutoZone and try that, unless anyone has any better ideas. I think a close match would be better than a black spot.

    This is not a big problem, but I appreciate your time.
This discussion has been closed.