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Lexus ES 350



  • egm1egm1 Posts: 9
    Thanks carrelman2.
  • larrymitlarrymit Posts: 80
    Just an update on this. The smell seems to have finally gone away (I hope!). Perhaps something did crawl up into the A/C and die, and now it's dried up and ceased smelling.
  • es350owneres350owner Posts: 1
    Transmssion problem :( On my 2007 ES 350 with 5000 miles, the RPM flares between 2nd gear and 3rd gear when cold. Dealer says there is a fix which involves re-programming the computer. Does anyone have experience with this "fix"? Other people have had their transmissions replaced or a complete car buy-back. Am I wasting my time or is it worth a try??
  • tedescm1tedescm1 Posts: 309
    With 5000 miles i'd go for the buy back! They have been having this problem for about a year.

    How long does it take to correct the problem?
  • egm1egm1 Posts: 9
    I'm waiting for a replacement ES350 under a buy-back. Can someone provide information on how this works with respect to the original lease? Do you just swap cars and go or is it more complex? Thanks.
  • jfxbii1jfxbii1 Posts: 3
    Our 2007 ES350 is ~6 months old has ~5,000 miles and Lexus just replaced the transmission. Our ES350 was built in September of 06. Symptoms were the typical RPM flare and un-typical (from what I've read here) excessive RPM flare when coasting and reapplying the accelerator at ~30 -40 mph (this happened twice).

    Our Lexus also has the following other issues: what I consider excessive cold start knock, the Lexus dealer indicates it's normal for this vehicle (this cold start knock besides being an unknown long reliability problem is an embarrassment to the Lexus brand); rattle near the front center speaker when outside temp. is below ~32F; the saved seat, mirror,and steering wheel settings were mysteriously lost; and the adaptive HID headlights seem misaligned and/or don't work properly.

    I'm not sure if it's possible, but we're going to pursue a cash buy back and purchase a different brand car. Any and all help/advice from somebody here who has gone through the buy back process (preferable for cash and not another ES350) would be greatly appreciated. We're going to start today by calling Lexus USA.

    It's too bad because we like the cars other attributes (comfort, style, ride, etc.).
  • pfrosenpfrosen Posts: 3
    I have a 2007 es 350 ultra which I special ordered and received October 2, 2006. When I fill up the gas tank and for the next 50-60 miles, whenever I start up, especially on a hill, there is a thud noise and feel coming from the gas tank. It sounds and feels like there is a bowling ball in the trunk. Lexus has heard it and says it's normal, but I have never heard this in a car before. So before I go to my states lemon law, I want to know if anyone has experienced this same thing. Additionally, the cold engine knock is not appropriate.
  • bobbassbobbass Posts: 34
    This "full gas tank thud" has been discussed in other forums. At the risk of violating the rules and regs of this terrific forum, here is a link that DOES pertain directly to your question:
  • pfrosenpfrosen Posts: 3
    Thanks for the help. I'm new to this.
  • bigpapalukebigpapaluke Posts: 108
    My wife and I are about to pick up a brand new ES350 on Saturday; however, I've been briefly scanning some of your posts and am now concerned about the transmission problems others have spoken of. Is it a problem with a car that was manufactured in 2006 for 2007, or has it been a consistent problem for those vehciles that have been manufactured this year? Just want to make sure we're walking into a solid purchase. My wife is not going to drive this car like a sports car, but we want to make sure the issue is just isolated to early defects that have since been corrected.

  • vamvam Posts: 3
    I have the dealer down to $32,404 (including $715 destination charge and a satellite radio). Can I get any lower?

    Also, I'm very concerned about the transmission issues I've been reading about. What shall I look for?

    Thanks for being here!
  • vamvam Posts: 3
    Is a car buy back a term in the lease vs. purchase? How does it work? Do you lose money doing so? Thanks!
  • vamvam Posts: 3
    I'm debating to lease vs. purchase. So far, I put about 20 to 25 miles per year on my current car, Toyota Camry. I drive a teenager everywhere plus myself.

    I'm trying to understand which is more beneficial for me. I understand there is some kind of crossover point in the life of the lease having to do with depreciation and market value. I'm not clear on what this is.

    At any rate, I'm trying to get a depreciation schedule so I understand what a factors are involved in leasing.

    If I buy, I can 6.24% for 72 months on a purchase price of $32404 (add tax and license) for ES350 w/Premium w/o NAV and satellite radio. NAV feature would be great, but I can't afford that. I'm already up $200 more per month than I pay now.

    Thanks for your help!
  • tjazz321tjazz321 Posts: 8
    Luke, I have an 07 ES-350 built in March, and have had no transmission nor any other problems except my distaste for the Michelin OEM tires. I have 3K miles, and am very happy. The service manager tells me that Lexus identified the ES cars with the potential trans. problems and either replaced the transmissions or offered buy-backs. Overall, it was a very small percentage of the total manufactured. The transmission is very smart and the car in general doesn't want to be driven like a 1982 TransAm. It requires some finesse, and once you get used to the car/and the car gets used to you, it's all good. In my opinion, the more recent the build, the better the chances of being past any potential problems. It's a great car. BTW, this car will accelerate very quickly once you learn how it likes to run. I have self-timed it between 5.9 and 6.8 for 0-60mph.
  • bigpapalukebigpapaluke Posts: 108
    Thanks for your response. We picked ours up on Saturday and my wife absolutely loves it. We confirmed with our sales rep that Lexus identified the problem early and it has since been rectified. I must say that I was impressed with its acceleration. I have an 06 A4 2.0T, and we both came out of the same corner and she was gaining distance on me. This car is going to be a long time keeper.

    Did you purchase the extended warrenty? I'm on the fense about purchasing it after the fact. I know Lexus has the Toyota reliability and quality, so wasn't sure if it was worth the investment.
  • devon_gadevon_ga Posts: 8

    Calculate a 4.90% interest rate if you do a purchase and do a comparison. I am not sure where you are located but there is a credit union offering 4.90% up to 60 months. I purchased a ES 350 earlier this month at that rate for 60 months It is my understanding you can apply for a loan no matter where you live. Try Best wishes on your decision.
  • tjazz321tjazz321 Posts: 8
    This is my third Toyota Corp product, and any of the small problems I've ever had occur within the warranty period. To me, extra warranties are not necessary for this brand with its reputation. Just be sure to report and document any problems within the factory warranty.
  • bear64bear64 Posts: 17
    I have the same problem as well and have been told by my dealer about the computer reprogramming fix. In fact, the dealer came and picked up the car this morning and is installing the new transmission computer program today. I hope it solves the problem. While this is really nice car, the tranny issue is so annoying that I have been looking for a replacement car if this issue is not corrected.

    I also have been experiencing a problem where the car is coasting around 30-40 mph. When I give the car some gas after coasting, the tranny seems to have a problem finding the right gear and abruptly "clunks" (automotive technical term) into gear. For a luxury car, things like this should happen much smoother than they do on my car. Heck, my V8 powered '05 4Runner shifts better than my luxury car.
  • tedescm1tedescm1 Posts: 309
    When did you buy this car?

    The dealer says everything (to date) has been corrected!
  • llullu Posts: 4
    This is the second time with problem of side molding damaged in four months since we bought the Lexus ES350. The first time, within the first week after we bought it. It was the passenger side molding on the rear door was bent when both doors opened. Yesterday, it was the driver side when my son and I tried to open the doors at the same time. The rear side molding was bent and damaged. It seemed to me this is caused by bad design. I wondered if any one has the same or similar experience.
  • bear64bear64 Posts: 17
    My car is a September '06 build.

    The dealer has not returned the car back to me after the installation of the tranny computer reprogramming effort. Hopefully I'll get the car back today and the tranny problems will be a thing of the past.
  • tedescm1tedescm1 Posts: 309
    Good luck...

    It does not pay to purchase a brand new car in it's first year of develpement or production. It appears that all companies now beta test their cars on the street.
  • bear64bear64 Posts: 17
    Well, I went and picked up my car today at lunch after the tranny ECU flash. Before I could get to the red light right next to the dealership, I experienced a flare between the 2nd to 3rd gear change. In fact, the tranny flared twice before I could get to the red light. Drove around the block to take the car back to the dealer and by the time I arrived, the flare was barely noticible. Dropped the car back off with the dealer and asked for a service manager to give me a call.

    I fear this will be something they cannot replicate, which has happened in the past when I have taken the car in for this problem. I am also going to call Lexus and update my complaint with them so that they know the problem was not resolved.

    I don't know what is going to resolve this issue, but I wish it would happen soon. I really like this car with the exception of the tranny problem, but the tranny problem is leaving me with an irritating problem that is driving crazy. And the tranny issue is only magnified when I drive a loaner car (in this case an RX 350) and the loaner drives better than my car. This is just not right.
  • bear64bear64 Posts: 17
    After leaving the car with the dealer, they had their diagnostic specialist look at the car. Sure enough, no one at the dealership could replicate the problem. I went by the dealership this morning and attempted to duplicate the problem with a tech and a laptop in the car, but I was unable to make the problem occur.

    I am told they will replace the tranny if I so request. Apparently, there has been both a software and hardware modification to the transmission some time after my car build so my car qualifies for the repair if required.

    I went ahead and, per the request of the dealer, took the car home and will drive it for a few days to see of the software reprogramming solves the problem. They are hoping the "learning" ability of the transmission will take care of the issue. When I drove it off the lot initially after the reprogramming, the car had not had the opportunity to "learn" my driving style. They are hoping this will explain why I experienced the flaring.

    I have to mention that through all of this, the dealership has provided exceptional service. They have been accommodating in every way possible. They truly seem interested in making sure I am happy with the car and will do just about anything to make sure this happens. Despite being frustrated with the car, I have nothing but praise for the dealer.
  • znelson32znelson32 Posts: 8
    I just picked up my ES, love this thing. Tried to get some movies playing but all I heard was the audio. Never got the video on screen, what am I doing wrong? I was in park with the car off, only pushed start once (accessories).

    Nevermind, I just realized the parking brake has to be on....
  • navtownnavtown Posts: 3
    I just bought a new ES 350 and have used Lexus cars in the past. I love the car. I don't see/hear/feel/experience what a lot of people are complaining about here. All I can say to perspective buyers in the market is not to believe everything written out there on the Web. Toyota/Lexus has become kind of like the Walmart of the Auto industry - they are Big, good at what they do and they kick competitors behind. They have also made a lot of people envious and some who have made it their full time job to badmouth them.
  • acat1234acat1234 Posts: 5
    I have an ES 350 with 12,000 miles on it (Delivered October, 2006) and can only say that the automotive press has certainly over sold this car. I like the styling (though it looks identical to a Camry which diminishes the overall Lexus image!!), transmission and engine performance. However, the following issues should not occur in a "Premier" luxury car:

    Throttle Lag - The worst I have experienced in any car. Dealer says "that's just the way it is"

    Rattles - Again, just as many rattles as any American car I have ever owned.

    Electronics - Except for the "flash and dash", the
    electronics in this car are no better than in my two previous Auroras. In fact, the rain-sensing wipers are ineffective in that they wipe too long and, in the winter, just smear the windshield. I usually disable them. Again, "that's just the way they are" is the dealer's reply. GM's are much better!!

    Handling - Car is very "soft" in steering and handling. Again, the Auroras were much more precise and stable when going around curves. However, the dealer did warn me about that and told me I would have to buy a Cadillac to achieve that type of steering/suspension.

    Reliability - After listening to the cost of replacing the Navigation system which controls most of the cars electronics, I am seriously considering the extended warranty especially with the above issues in mind. So, in short, I could have purchased a Cadillac for less money, including the extended warranty, and, IMHO, had a better car.

    Fuel mileage - It is outstanding for a car this size with the horsepower produced.

    Ride - Good riding qualities. For a Highway cruiser, not bad.

    Fit/Finish - Very good, but again most cars in this price range are very good.

    Conclusion - I will buy a Cadillac next time.
  • ronwynronwyn Posts: 16
    Picked up my ES 350 in August 06. It was a July build. Had a trans valve body replaced in December, trans replaced in January and told in March I needed another transmission. I am now awaiting delivery of my new ES 350 with a build date of May or later. I have been told problems have been corrected after March. I now have 12,000 miles on the car I am returning and the trans still is not right, but I don't care as I am giving it back. Lexus and the dealership have been very good in the handling of this matter, it just takes time.
  • tjazz321tjazz321 Posts: 8
    I have a 3/07 build delivered in April, now with 4K miles, and I have had none of the problems cited from earlier build dates. The transmission is a little fussy, but finesse extracts great performance from it. For example, if I want to accelerate hard, I do not mash the pedal but rather take a full second to floor it--then it goes like mad in the right gear. Remember, this is not meant to be a sports car. Other than the poor OEM Michelins and a wimpy basic stereo (shame on Lexus), it's been perfect.
  • bear64bear64 Posts: 17
    Did the transmission replacement solve your tranny problems?

    I have now gone through my second round with Lexus and my dealership to get the tranny problems, basically identical to the problems you encountered, addressed. I am currently driving a loaner car that supposedly has a the transmission hardware and software fixes that were implemented in later builds for the car. The purpose of driving a loaner is to see if the problem I am currently having with my car occurs with a car with the tranny fixes. We'll see if it takes care of the problem.

    I would like to put this tranny issue to rest as soon as possible and was hoping the new transmission would solve the problem.
This discussion has been closed.