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Lexus GS 300/GS 430



  • howardg1howardg1 Posts: 14
    Dear BMW driver: thanks. Anything I can do to help, just ask.

    Regarding my purchase of a GS 300 AWD in the metropolitan DC area, I tried dealing with all the MD and Northern VA dealers, and ended up falling into the $3,000+ off MSRP deal with Lexus of Rockville.

    My experience with both of the VA Lexus dealers was that they had very limited stock and were sticking pretty much to the MSRP give or take $500 line. If you need an offer to motivate them, try Sheehy Lexus in Annapolis. I contacted them via the Net, and they were offering about $2,500 off MSRP via e-mail. (Annapolis was also extremely helpful and accommodating, and I wouldn't hesitate to purchase from them.) Having that e-mail in hand certainly helped in negotiations on the one I purchased.
  • bdkinnhbdkinnh Posts: 292
    I've been looking for a new car for a while, and took a test drive of the GS300 AWD yesterday, so I thought I'd post my thoughts.

    Overall, it is a very nice looking car inside and out. It looks a bit different (in a good way) compared to the pictures on the Web site and those for sale on E-Bay, esp. the interior and trunk. A few people here have been bashing the trunk for being too small (and it seems that way in the pictures), but I think it is OK (not great, just OK). I golf a lot, and I can't buy a car that can't fit clubs, so I brought mine along for a test fit. They fit in no problem width-wise, and they almost fit in length wise (with the heads of the clubs pointing to the front of the car). I have an average sized set of clubs, and I have four King Cobra metal woods (and my driver is pretty long). All fit without any problem at all. I think even those big Rodney Dangerfield bags (from Caddyshack, if you remember that far back) would fit OK. I was Very Pleased.

    The seats are very comfortable, and most controls are placed where you would want them to be. The only thing I didn't like was that little tricorder (a la Star Trek) flip down panel left of the steering wheel. It's not a major problem, just a little annoyance.

    Someone here said that when you start the car with the doors closed, you can't hear the engine; that wasn't my experience. The engine isn't loud - but you can certainly tell it is running. While driving, the engine seemed to be a bit "whiney" - a little high-pitched instead of a BMW like "growl", but I guess that is typical of most Japanese engines. I'm not saying this as a negative - just an observation.

    I've read a few posts here about the acceleration of the 300 model being a little (or a lot) less than what people would like, but it was more than fine for me. Leaving it in "regular" mode (non sport) was more than acceptable, and I didn't notice any lag when slowing down (as if coming to a red light) and then accelerating (as if the light just turned green). Putting it in sport mode gave it an even better kick. For me, at least, any thoughts of acceleration problems are a thing of the past with the GS300.

    The interior room (headroom and shoulder room) was good. I'm 5'10", and I had plenty of space above and on the sides. My father (riding shotgun) is 6'3", and he said that he had enough space as well and was quite comfortable.

    One issue that I wasn't expecting was the ride quality over bumps. I've driven the Audi A4 and BMW 330xi, and they both absorb bumps quite well. There is a road near my fathers house that is kind of a beat-up back road, with many pot holes and missing chunks of pavement – it makes for a good test drive. Taking the A4 and 330xi down this road, I noticed that they both performed so well you could probably do surgery while driving with no problem. I wasn't able to take the GS down that road (the Lexus dealer is quite a ways away from my father's house), but I plan to during an extended test drive on another day. However, based on how the GS performed on "regular" roads with a few bumps on them, I'm not expecting the same performance.

    The AWD model has run flat tires - could that perhaps result in a harsher ride? I'll admit that I don't know much about tires, but aren't the run flats stiffer? I'd think that would result in feeling the bumps more than "traditional" tires. Also, the model I drove was a Lexus executive’s car that had 7000 miles on it - maybe s/he beat the crap out of it? I don't know. But, I'll make sure I get a different car for my next test drive (in a few weeks). Everything else on the car is so good, I may be willing to throw a new set of traditional tires on it if that will fix the problem.

    The model I drove had the Nav system in it. I didn't use it very much, but compared to the Nav system in my father's Audi A8, I thought the screen seemed a little fuzzy and harder to read. I don't plan to get the Nav system anyway, so it wasn't a problem for me, but you may want to take a close look at it before plunking down the $$$$.

    Overall, I like the car a lot. Other than the ride quality over bumps, everything on the car is perfect. I hope that in a future test drive, I like the ride as much as I did in the (less expensive) Audi A4 and BMW 330xi.

    -Ben K.
  • tinypoemtinypoem Posts: 26
    Congrats on the new purchase! The service is not exclusive to Longo. I thought it was too at first. Glendale Lexus also offers the same flatbed and mobile oil change service that Longo offers. The even offered to come out to my house to install the cargo net. Both do so within a 60 mile range of the dealerships. They also both have a huge fleet of loaners if you decide to go in. I took my car in last week for them to install the cargo net and they gave me an RX330 with Nav to play with for the day.
  • osxaddictosxaddict Posts: 14
    In talking with the sales guy down at Longo, I noticed that he had two of the RX400h's down in their underground "lot" and I got him to talk about those -- he said that they've got all of them already sold for the next 16 months.. Talk about crazy! Anyway, I can hardly wait to get mine tomorrow from the dealer.
  • fittogofittogo Posts: 2
    I'm getting ready (really ready) to purchase the same vehicle with the ML/nav etc. in the DC/MD area. Would you mind telling me the name of the dealership you bought from? I'd like to get the same deal. Am dealing with a salesman via e-mail so far. Many thanks.
  • howardg1howardg1 Posts: 14
    fittogo: check my message above #1230. That should provide all the info you need on who I purchased from, but I did literally stumble onto a deal in Rockville. If that had not happened, the best offer I had was from Lexus of Annapolis for about $2,500 off. They were very easy to work with, and most helpful. If you can get them to give you the price via e-mail, which they did with me, you can then use that as "leverage" with whatever dealer has one in stock you like.

    Let me know how it goes, or if you need other info. I dealt with literally all the MD and NVA dealers trying to get the car I wanted at a "fair" price.
  • florida1florida1 Posts: 42
    I leased a 430 yesterday for $1900 off msrp (final price $51400.000) and a rather attractive residual $29,970--which made for a relatively good monthly payment----they put the lease together through US Bank---because the have a lease plan that trumps even Lexus Finance by a long way---

    US Bank $700.00 (w/o tax) per month 39mos
    Lexus FI $773.00 (w/o tax) per month 39mos No cap buy down on either

    Love the car---They sure look good when they are away from the dealer lot and so many others---very sleek / incredible color options (wanted an A6 but had to admit that although they are nice ---they are simply out classed by the GS)---
  • bdkinnhbdkinnh Posts: 292
    Does anyone know if you could put regular all season tires on the GS300 AWD? If so, I'd love to swap the stock run flats with all seasons to get a better ride, but I don't know if that's even possible; maybe the GS300 requires them.

    In case you can't tell, I don't know much about tires. ;)
  • dmcmahondmcmahon Posts: 26
    You can definitely hear the engine when you start the car cold. It makes a purring sound, which you can also hear under heavy accelleration. After it's warmed up, it's hard to hear it at all when stopped at a light with the stereo off. A very very quiet interior.

    Re. your 6'3" dad, yeah, the passenger seat has a bit more room than the driver's - I think it's a bit lower to the floor. Plus, since the passenger doesn't need to reach the steering wheel, the seat can be reclined to get additional headroom. Have your dad sit in the driver's seat in a position where he can operate the wheel and pedals, and I think you'll see the headroom problem.

    I find the ride quality over bumps to be very luxurious; it should be a plus for this car versus "sportier" competitors. I would bet the run-flats are responsible for some of the harshness you're feeling.

    Re. the golf club test, interesting. Still, only one set of clubs width-wise. I assume they fit lengthwise if you angle them a bit? Could you get another set in that way? What about suitcases, do you think you could get two full-sized suitcases in? If so, how, stacked one on the other? Note that some space near the top of the trunk is lost to (I think) the mechanism for the rear sunshade - it's easy to miss in the darkness back there.
  • bartalk3bartalk3 Posts: 692

    I drove an Avalon XLS, and before I even got it out of the dealer's driveway, I knew it wasn't for me. A lot of body roll, typical "American" sedan. I would have considered the Touring model, but I find it incomprehensible that it doesn't have stability and traction control. Don't understand that, especially since those features are available on all the Camrys, I believe, and maybe even Corollas. I imagine they will add that on the '06s. I don't think it was omitted for any reason related to the GS, because the two cars appeal to very different buyers.

    I would hesitate to begin switching suspensions as you mentioned. Sounds like real possible trouble to me, plus the possibility of voiding the warranty, etc. True, 10,000 bucks is a lot of money, but there really is a world of difference between the Avalon and the GS. I love the power of the Avalon engine, though, and when they put that engine into the GS, it will be unbeatable.
  • howardg1howardg1 Posts: 14
    :confuse: Have a question for any GS owners regarding the illumination lighting system. When I approach the car with the electronic key the outside puddle lights and the inside lights come on if the door is locked. However, if the door is unlocked when I approach the car, the lights do not come on until I physically open the door. In my reading of the owners manual I cannot find any reference to the doors needing to be locked for the illuminations system to automatically work.
    Anyone know, is this the way its supposed to work? Thanks, for any help: GREAT CAR!
  • kreizboikreizboi Posts: 2

    i am in Boston and I am trying to get $3k off a 2006 GS300 AWD. The dealer said they would give me the $3k if show them some kind of prove that others are too getting the similar deal. if you or others reading this who got $3k or more off their GS300, please help. I am a poor dealer, and that is why I am dealing with the dealer over the internet.

    Thanks a great deal,
  • kreizboikreizboi Posts: 2
    i am in Boston and I am trying to get $3k off a 2006 GS300 AWD. The dealer said they would give me the $3k if show them some kind of prove that others are too getting the similar deal. if you or others reading this who got $3k or more off their GS300, please help. I am a poor dealer, and that is why I am dealing with the dealer over the internet.
  • osxaddictosxaddict Posts: 14
    For those of us on the left-coast (west-coast) that got the $3K off MSRP, they were more than likely for the RWD version not the AWD version which I'm told isn't available here (at least for Southern California).. That may make the $3K a bit harder to get since it's not the exact same vehicle.. Perhaps someone else did, but mine was for the RWD version..
  • bartalk3bartalk3 Posts: 692
    About 90% of the GS300s coming into the midwest region are AWD. They must think it's Siberia here.
  • deaniedeanie Posts: 172
    Hi Bartalk3:
    I agree with everything you said re: Avalon (my Avalon posts echo what you said), particularly how ridiculous it was of Toyota to omit VSC as an option with the Touring. I'm still waiting to hear from Toyota re voiding the warranty for using Touring suspension bits, but I digress. This is a GS 300 discussion.

    Yes, the Avalon's engine in the GS will be unbeatable (next year perhaps?), but I couldn't wait that long to buy my next car. Just saw a 300 yesterday in black - stunning, particularly w/the stock wheels.
  • As long as my key is in my pocket, the lights all come on even when the door (s) are unlocked. Yes-it is a GREAT CAR
  • darthvedadarthveda Posts: 14

    I'm looking to get the GS300 and the dealer in south bay will only go down to $1500. I'm not a good negotiator so I was wondering if you could be of some help on how you delt with the dealership. I tried to PM you but can't figure out how to do it. If you could PM me then I'll reply to ask you a few questions if that' sok with you. Thanks and congrads on your new Lexus can't wait to get mine!!!
  • darthvedadarthveda Posts: 14
    Hi Florida,

    Quick question on your lease. Did they provide you with the information for US Bank or did you have to ask for it. I mean that's a huge different and I would think they would want you to go with their Lexus financing, How you were able to get US Bank to finance it?
  • After 6 mos of trying to figure out which car to buy I settled on the '06 Lexus GS 300. I had given up on the Mercedes (my first love) due to so many problems with the car consumer reports said - do not buy. The BMW although a bigger and sportier outside, really lacked the luxury I was looking for on the inside (what is the idea of the bottle cap looking thing). I was at my local Lexus dealer and was resigned to an '04 or '05 LS when I spotted the new GS and instantly knew this was the car for me.
    I have owned the car for 1 month. I found a dealer who gave me the price I was willing to pay (about $3,000 off list) but he did not have the car in stock so I had to wait 3 wks for delivery. Keyes Lexus in Sherman Oaks is awesome. I have already tested their service dept, I switched the wheels to 18" Momo with Yokohama tires which they ordered and installed for me. The ride is now much more sporty. I am very happy with the choice I made and would recommend the car to anyone.
  • fittogofittogo Posts: 2
    Thanks. I'm in discussions now but Rockville's stopped at $2K. Will e-mail Sheehy. Did your GS 300 have the ML/Nav system options? That seems to be the dividing line between a larger deal and the one quoted to me.
  • howardg1howardg1 Posts: 14
    Mine is the GS 300 AWD, without the Nav/ML stereo. Sticker price, including the destination charge, was $47,419. When negotiations began they told me they had never discounted more than $1,500, however, when I showed them an e-mail from Annapolis offering $2,500 off the non-Nav. price, they offered to match it, and we went from there. I do not think I could have gotten this deal except on an in-stock car. I might have been lucky in that they had just received the color combo I wanted, apparently all on their waiting list had passed wanting the Nav., and I was there with checkbook in-hand. Might just have been the right place at the right time, but if you can get the offer from Sheehy they should at least match, or buy from Sheehy. Never visited, but Sheehy was extremely helpful over the Net and phone.
    Which color combination are you getting? Have you had a Lexus before? Any experience with Rockville service?
  • Mine does not have the navagation system or AWD.
  • howardg1howardg1 Posts: 14

    What color combination is your GS? Other than changing the wheels/tire, have you had any problems in your month of ownership? The illumination system, do your outside lights come on if the doors are unlocked, or only when the are locked?
  • Hi Kreizboi,

    I am also in Boston and ready to pull the trigger on GS AWD. maybe we could deal together as 2 car deal and have advantage to negotiate more. I love the car but just can't stand the thought of ~$8000 markup from invoice.
  • florida1florida1 Posts: 42
    US Bank was their idea---They all but said that Lexus FI's residuals on the new GS's are ridiculous----Two dealerships here told me that they are selling most of the GS's and leasing a relative few because of the poor leases from Lexus----I leased from the largest Lexus dealership in the country----
  • florida1florida1 Posts: 42
    Mine is the same way but it kind of makes sense if you think about--The unlocking triggers the illumination otherwise no trigger
  • florida1florida1 Posts: 42
    1) Am I the only one that can't stand the beeping of the unbuckled seatbelt once you get in? I'm taking it in to have it turned off--very annoying, when you are driving around the block and simply don't want to put your belt on---you have to listen to 45sec's of loud beeping etc

    2) Has anyone had the rearview mirrors stopped from tilting down in reverse?

    3) Does anyone else not like the sunshade going down every time you put in reverse?
  • florida1florida1 Posts: 42
    Two full size suitcases NO---I tried today and had to put one in the bacl seat-
  • osxaddictosxaddict Posts: 14

    I talked to Southbay Lexus as well and they really weren't too interested in wheeling-n-dealing besides the fact that I don't believe they had much inventory (my guess based on their comments). I'd suggest not bothering with them any further and look a little further away such as Longo or Glendale.. If you want to ask me more questions, drop me a note at rickf-at-"ca-flower"-dot-com.
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