Lexus RX 300

pocahontaspocahontas Member Posts: 802
Here is the new place for Lexus RX 300 owners to
discussion their ownership experience. Below are
links to previous RX 300 owner forums:

- Lexus RX300 Owners, Forum - III

- Lexus RX300 Owners, Forum - II

- Lexus RX300 Owners, Forum - I

Happy Motoring. ;-)

Pocahontas, Host


  • jtusojtuso Member Posts: 4
    On Friday night, November 17, the TV show 20-20 had a feature on the danger of overloading SUVs with gross payload (carrying weight) of less than l,000 pounds. They said our RX300's payload was 850 pounds, and that overloading it, especially with weight on the roof, increases the chance of rollover. Five guys on a fishing trip with all their gear would probably push the limit. They listed the M-class and X5 as having payloads of around 1200 pounds, as I recall. Explorers, just over l,000 pounds payload, are especially vulnerable as they have room for much more weight, but not the load capacity. Tell your RX friends. Overloading can be dangerous. Joe Tuso Drive RX. Enjoy! Enjoy!
  • happynesshappyness Member Posts: 1
    The common sense for any loading technique is always put heavy loads on the bottom and light loads on the top to reduce the turning moment.

    850# is heavy though! Thanks for sharing the info.
  • swiftmswiftm Member Posts: 68
    Load Capacity Information

  • EtienneEtienne Member Posts: 4
    Hi all:

    I am based in Boston and am now looking at the RX300 either with or without the navigational system. Anyone who bought in Boston or elsewhere, I would appreciate your help

    How much off MSRP did you pay?? Is it possible to get it for $4000 off without going to CA or FL??
    Any recommendations for dealers and positive experiences in New England

    What is your opinion of buying the Navigation System?? Is it worth the the upfront price for resale value??

    Thanks for your help

  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    I just traded my 2000 for a 2001 with Nav......I suggest the NAV without is absolutly fantastic....very accurate and useful!! Be sure to get a "FULL" Demonstration of the NAV's features before deciding...(make sure to get a salesperson that knows how to operate the nav) 2 cents
  • inkyinky Member Posts: 370
    I went to Tulsa lot sunday (closed) and saw a ton on RX 300s. Surprised and irritated that the 2001 in now cheaper than my 2000 I bought in August. The 1,500 package discount, puts the fwd with leather, roof, CD changer, wood wheel at $37,600.
    Mine listed for $37,700 and had no wood wheel, no stability control, no traction control, and none of the 2001 upgrades. I guess I should have watch the ES300 pricing. The 97 ES 300 was more than the 01 is now! And in 97 list price was common. I guess Lexus is being bit in the butt by the MDX pricing. Also surprised to see a vapor color with no CD and no roof. MSRP $36,000. I see no point to that. Even no memory seats. For $1,700 you get a ton of stuff more since the value packages are out there.
  • normang1normang1 Member Posts: 2
    I just recently bought a used 2000 FWD RX300. I am
    very pleased overall. I am confused about the "snow" power setting. Is this similar to a
    Traction Control System to be used in wet conditions, or should it strictly be used in snow at slow speeds?
  • avery1avery1 Member Posts: 373
    I believe it just starts the car out in 2nd instead of 1st gear.
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    Yes, Avery1 is correct....snow setting starts the car moving in 2nd gear.
  • houstonlexlvrhoustonlexlvr Member Posts: 1
    I'm in Houston, Texas and had pretty much resigned myself to paying MSRP for a 2001 RX300 at the area dealers (or going to Dallas to get one). On a lark, I put a bid in on Priceline this weekend for a Blue Vapor FWD with Premium Plus package. My bid was $36,000 even and it was accepted by Westside Lexus. That includes destination and advertising fee, and I pick up the car on Saturday. No haggling, no hassle, and I even get the upgraded steering wheel at no cost. In Texas, I don't even have to pay the $50 Priceline fee. I think I got a great deal. If you're looking try Priceline out and see what happens!
  • gpmacgpmac Member Posts: 2
    Average MPG has been stuck on 17.5 for the last 12000 miles, is this normal or do yours change
  • gpmacgpmac Member Posts: 2
    How can i get the temp display for outside temp and AC to show Centigrade instead of Fahrenheit
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    Reset your Avg MPG setting.....(see manual)
    Display shows average since last reset.....since it is an average and you may have not reset it in 12000 miles...I would not expect it to change from 17.5 very quickly....I reset my avg MPG everytime I fill the car with gasoline.
  • finch3finch3 Member Posts: 113
    If you keep the display on avg MPG for a long time, say 3000 miles, it will just stay stuck, as any change like going slow or fast won't really affect it much. I use mine whenever I start a trip or after a 1000 miles or so. It's fun to leave in on plain old MPG and let it range from 5 to 100, which I guess is the default when you're going downhill not using the accelerator at all.
  • avery1avery1 Member Posts: 373
    I just did a test today where I set my cruise control with the speedometer as close to 70mph as I could. (It was right on the line.) Then I reset my mph digital readout and on a flat desert road just watched it for 30 min or so. The digital readout showed 67mph continuously. Which do you think is the more accurate. Does anyone know where the readings come from?
  • eliottteliottt Member Posts: 2
    Having just read a number of magazine road tests that emphasize the "fragility" (and low clearance) of the RX300 off-road, I wonder what the real-world experiences of you owners out there really are. My wife and I are thinking about heading for the (S. Cal) desert and hills one or two weekends a year, but we don;t want to spend out time waiting to be winched out of a dry wash. I'm sure most of what we'll aim for would be rated no more than "easy" to "moderate" in off-road books.

    What do you think? Is the RX300 SUV enough for a little dirty dancing?

  • rx300fanrx300fan Member Posts: 2
    Did anyone see the December issue of Car & Driver, they did a test of seven 40,000 SUV and the results are.

    1. Acura MDX
    2. BMW X5 3.0i
    3. Lexus RX300
    4. Mitsubishi Montero Limited
    5. Tied: Mercedes Benz ML320 and the Infiniti QX4
    6. Land Rover Discovery

    Now they really didnt have anything bad to say about the Rx300 execpt that its really bad off surprise there but I'm surprise they got a 0-60 time of 9.6 seconds when in past reviews it faired much better then that.
  • wmquanwmquan Member Posts: 1,817
    The Car & Driver 0-60 tests (for that particular comparison) were apparently done on a slow track. Not only was the RX300 time slow (9.6), as you pointed out, the timings for virtually all the vehicles were slow (e.g. more than 10 seconds for an ML320 which is definitely faster than that, 8.4 seconds for an MDX which should be faster).

    They also really praised the RX300's seats, and that it was definitely the most car-like.

    I'm not sure if they rated a 2000 or a 2001 model.
  • inkyinky Member Posts: 370
    Your 17.5 is a true ownership average since you have not reset by pushing "info" and holding for several seconds. Anyhow, that is interesting. What kind of driving does that mostly represent and is your fwd/awd? I have noticed that short trips are brutal on economy with 60 mph cruising getting 26 mpg (with mobil one 0w30).
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Member Posts: 543
    Consider this additional review from Australia....."Mitsubishi’s new Pajero GLS (Montero 01 in US) has raised the standard for four-wheel drives in several areas, and beat the Mercedes-Benz ML320 and Toyota 100 Series LandCruiser GLX to the best 4WD title.

    On the road, the Pajero delivers class-leading ride, handling and steering, and braking, attracting consistently good scores.

    The change to a unitary construction (with no separate chassis) has helped Mitsubishi to deliver best in class dynamics. The new chassis combines with fully independent suspension to provide an outstanding ride/handling compromise.

    In this respect, it makes the LandCruiser feel like a truck.

    Although the Toyota LandCruiser’s 4.5 litre engine delivers more pulling power in the low to mid rev range, the Mitsubishi Pajero’s 3.5 litre V6 also performs strongly.

    New to the Pajero is a five-speed, adaptive auto transmission with a tiptronic-style manual shift mode.

    Off the bitumen, the LandCruiser still has the edge but the Pajero is now very close. With a good approach angle, a smooth and willing engine, solid engine braking and reasonable wheel articulation, the Pajero copes with terrain that would have defeated the previous model.

    For the money, the Pajero GLS also offers a long standard equipment list.

    The ML320 uses the same great engine as the E320 sedan, but has limited off road ability, and the Pajero is at least equally capable on the road."
  • hayabusahayabusa Member Posts: 26
    rx300fan & wmquan...
    The Car & Driver test was done on a 2000 model RX 300, cause I didn't see the chrome inside door handles nor the new taillights. What a shame, cause they used the 2001 MDX...

    The Land Cruisers in other parts of the world have other engine options, including a turbo diesel. The one in the USA uses a 4.7L V8(not a 4.5L or whatever engine)
    Also, the suspension in the rear for the US model is tuned for a better highway ride or something(don't know what they changed exactly, if they changed the suspension setup)... Anyway, it makes it drive less like a truck than the other non US models...

    I hope I'm correct, BTW I don't know A thing about suspensions or that stuff so don't be surprised if I wrote something stupid...
  • vip9vip9 Member Posts: 30
    Hi all. While I am still waiting for mine (should arrive by Xmas), I have a few questions.
    Did any of you install (or plan to do so) a protective grill. Is there one fitted for the MDX? How much was it? How does it look? (Pictures???)
    Any MDX stories from the Buffalo area now that they got 2' of snow? How does the car handle in those circumstances?
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    Keep in mind folks, this is not an MDX forum.
  • 00rxguy100rxguy1 Member Posts: 38
    I think your in the wrong forum.

    Back to RX300. Does anyone know anything about putting white bulbs in the foglights?
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Member Posts: 543
    I bring you that info for your review to illustrate just how well the Montero now does in comparison to the gold standard, the LC. Take it for what it is worth. I personally felt it was important as Australians really use these SUV and the Montero and LC are heavy favorites.
  • nascarfan3nascarfan3 Member Posts: 2
    Hello Everyone,

    I appreciate the feedback that everyone puts into this forum.

    We just took delivery of a new AWD 2001 RX 300. It has the Premium Package Plus, Heated Seats, Crossbars, Wheel Locks, Cargo mats, etc...

    MSRP was $41,256 - We paid $37,000 plus tax and license in Northern California. My wife loves it. We just turned 100 miles.

    Does anyone have a recommendation for car wax or polish. We have the Burnished Gold color.

    Thanks, Nascar
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    I use only "One Grand" brand products. Their wax is called "Blitz Wax".....I have been very happy with the results.
  • swiftmswiftm Member Posts: 68
    nascarfan3: Congratulation on your new toy. I recommend Zaino wax system, or do a search on zaino in Edmunds Town Hall. Good luck, Swiftm
  • dbbwngdbbwng Member Posts: 1
    I live in the sf area and wondering about anyone's experience with the pricing for the 4wd 2001 rx300. any helpful hints or what dealer to stay away from ???
  • frankpxfrankpx Member Posts: 3
    i have a 2000 rx with about 1700 miles. when should i think about cleaning the leather? is lexol good to use? i have the ivory interior.
  • frankpxfrankpx Member Posts: 3
    i have a 2000 rx with about 1700 miles. when should i think about cleaning the leather? is lexol good to use? i have the ivory interior.
  • wayn1wayn1 Member Posts: 69
    one more time
  • bjacob1bjacob1 Member Posts: 7
    We're looking for an SUV and have narrowed it to the RX300, ML320 and MDX. Any recommendations? The nav system is mandatory in any choice for us. Also, any recommendations on what I can expect to actually pay? I'm really bothered by the shift lever in the RX300, however
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    I think you should have little problem getting a 4wd with NAV for around $40k....assuming it is one with the "Value Package" pricing....msrp showing around $42k.
  • pattesonpatteson Member Posts: 3
    Does anyone know if some of the 2001 RX300 options will be available to retro-fit on older models? I have a 2000 RX300 4WD and want the NAV system, HID lights, and new steering wheel/shift with walnut & leather trim.

    (Too bad I didn't wait until now to buy. When I asked the dealer, early this summer when I bought, what new items were on the 2001 they didn't have a clue)

    I'm also mad that VSC wasn't on the 2000 model and on the 2001.


  • rxcurerxcure Member Posts: 33
    I second the interest in applying retrofits to older models. Silly as it might sound to most, the move to a shoulder belt in 2001 on the middle seat is very important for me as I have 3 kids and while the RX is not our family car, on occasion I like to take all the kids in the RX and it's not nearly as safe to have only a lap belt. Lexus, are you listening?
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    From my understanding to upgrade to the new nav system and wood steering wheel, ends up costing more or equal to trading in on a 2001.
  • pattesonpatteson Member Posts: 3
    But can it be done? I may want to do it a little at a time. What parts/systems can be added?
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    I was told it can be done, but you have to replace the entire radio, AC, Screen equipment....I think when I priced it here it was somewhere around $12,000 for the nav and wood wheel/knob upgrade.....and that does not include the other changes to the 2001....probably better off selling the 2000 and getting a new 2001 for that expense.
  • EtienneEtienne Member Posts: 4
    Hi all

    I received a price of 4000 off MSRP(including the rebate) om a fully loaded RX300 with Nav (44,300 MSRP) and 3500 off without Nav (41,320 MSRP)

    I am in Boston. How am i doing here??
  • ststephen0ststephen0 Member Posts: 37
    Yes the chrome wheels are the same as standard, just chrome plated....Personally, I do not like them very much (my opinion)...
  • bjacob1bjacob1 Member Posts: 7
    Is $40,000 + taxes a good price in the Va./MD area for a 2001 RX300 AWD w/ the nav. value package, tow package + heated seats?
  • pattesonpatteson Member Posts: 3
    Why did they take the transmission Power Option off of the 2001 model? It now only has the snow mode.
  • finch3finch3 Member Posts: 113
    Some cars have a protective coating on the leather seating, so no care product is necessary, only a cleaner. In some cases the coating is so strong that a Lexal type product wouldn't even penetrate. Does anyone know if the RX has such a coating?
  • gambiamangambiaman Member Posts: 131
    Well tonight I just traded my FWD 99 RX300 for a FWD vapor blue 01 RX300. The 99 and the 01 both have Goodyear Integrity tires which traction wise I have not been impressed with. Before I bring it home I can get the dealer to change the tires to the Bridgestone's that come on some RX's. Anyone have any advice whether I should do this or not? Do the Bridgestone's offer better traction but are noisier, etc.
    Thanks for any comments/help/advice.
  • bill_75bill_75 Member Posts: 1
    In order to receive a '01 RX300 sooner I explored the option with the dealer of ordering a '01 w/O HID lights and then adding them later.

    According to the dealer here(Raleigh NC), the parts themselves were $2600, then of course add the labor.

    Needless to say I'm waiting for mine to arrive.......
  • EtienneEtienne Member Posts: 4
    What is the MSRP for the vehicle you are getting a price of 40,000 for??

    Mine was 44,400 and he is offering 4000 off on that and 3500 off on one without nav a MSRP of 41200

  • clee4clee4 Member Posts: 103
    I took the website advice and went to the dealership to look at the Navigation System-pretty slick! Maybe you can help me with a few questions that the salesman couldn't answer:

    1. How is the Nav system updated? Do you have to take it to the dealer or can you download off a computer like some of the handheld units?

    2. What is the cost for updates after the first free year? If the dealer does have to do the update, do you know what is the nominal labor cost?

    3. Who is the Nav system manufacturer?

    Thanks for the help!
  • robert1100robert1100 Member Posts: 5
    I noticed that RX300 is listed in the "deal of week" in the mid-size SUV category. The TMV of a base RX300 is $3000 below MSRP. If true, this makes RX300 quite attractive in terms of value.

    I'm trying to decide between MDX and RX300. With $3000 off, the RX300 FWD w/premium package plus will costs roughly the same as a base MDX.
  • jcmdiejcmdie Member Posts: 594
    I've driven the rx300 a few times and like the interior comfort and ride. The major drawback is the nearly non-existent cargo area. I might be able to squeeze two suitcases back there. Hardly enough for a family of 4. Are these primarily meant as a 1 or 2 person car? Does anyone know of any inteded changes coming up that would increase the volume of the cargo area.
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