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250k - Still Running Strong!
Cons: Trunk floor is not flat which complicates packing occasionally.I bought my 2001 IS 300 brand new as soon as the model was introduced. Since that time I have managed to put over 250,000 miles on the clock in all manner of driving and weather conditions with nary a stuck accelerator. I always bragged that I'd have no problem getting in my now high mileage car and driving across country. Well, that's just what I did; with 230,000 miles on the clock, I drove the car 3,000 miles to its first East Coast winter. All maintenance has been performed by Lexus dealerships, the most attentive being Lexus of Carlsbad. If you're looking for a reliable entry level somewhat sporty luxury sedan that's a lot cheaper than a BMW 3-Series, you simply can't go wrong with the IS series from Lexus.
Pros: Auto leveling Xenon headlights (says high-end)
Cons: No subwoofer with sounds
Advice: Very dependable car with great gas mileage!The Lexus IS300 is the only performance sport sedan Under $45K,that also gets over 20MPG city!! Don't get me wrong there are more powerful 'meaner' sedans out there. But as far as the whole package goes the IS300 takes the cake. Don't be fooled by its 6cyl. mask. A simple push of the trac button to off and you'll find yourself chasing the back-end out of a turn. Interior seats could be a bit more comfortable but do have good lateral support. Cockpit is equipped with all of the modern wants and needs. (depending on the pkg. selected) Looks more than anything on the car demand respect. Lexus chose the 'less is more' cliche which suits this sport sedan to the T and forced other manufactures to strictly follow suit.
Pros: Sporty handling that hugs the road
Cons: Hesitation Problem with the Transmission
Advice: DO NOT BUY - Lexus is not willing to stand behind their productThe handling is extremely capable for sporty driving and the brakes are unrivaled. The power is adequate and smooth, though it tends to lug a little at lower RPM's. The E-shift allows only limited control over shifting (gears 2-5) and far too often down-shifts on its own. A HESITATION PROBLEM occurs in many IS300's as a result of the vehicle's ICU (onboard computer) malfunctioning -- a major issue considering it is not detectable during the initial test drive, gets progressively worse, and according to Lexus, is not correctable.
Pros: Audio system and handling capabilities.
Cons: Could use more horsepower and only gets about 20 mpg on average.
Advice: This is an amazing vehicle that can match almost everyone in its class in all aspects yet costs much less. Lexus reliability is second to none.This is an amazing vehicle that costs much less than the 3 series, A4, C320. First I will address some of the positives as I have driven almost every car in its class. This car is much sportier than most in the sports sedan category. It is not as fast as the 330, new TL or the G35. However, the car feels about as fast as all the others and is much more fun to drive. It handles better than all of them. The TL and G35 can pull about .01 or .02 more lateral g's when the IS has on all seasons but that's only grip. The IS can be tossed side to side much easier because it is a smaller car with a stiffer suspension. Motor Trend had it pull .91 g's when the IS had summer tires on which ranks up there with two seater sports cars. Handling is top notch and nothing can competer in this category Lexus quality is the finest. This car doesn't have wood or look as refined as others but the materials are first rate. I have no rattles or problems through 40,000. My father has a 330i and my wife has a C320. Their cars aren't as well put together as far as rattles and squeaks and have been in the shop 2 times more than mine. Next, the stereo in the Lexus is much better than others. BMW has the worst stereo around. If you disagree then you haven't heard other cars. G35 is a great sports sedan but has a very cheap console and features and is a bigger car that is less fun to drive. The TL is fast and modern but is front wheel drive. It definately has different handling characteristics especially when cornering. The A4 and X-type are just a luxury cars with very little sporting characteristics. Both do not handle especially well or are very quick because of the extra weight. Plus the wannabe jag is based on a Ford Contour platform. My buddy has one and it is in the shop every month. The IS doesn't lead every category in this class. However it is one of the most fun cars you will find in terms of driving excitement. It also is very reliable and comes with every feature you need. It is a drivers car. I don't want anyone else driving my car so why would I need memory seats. Plus how often do I have rear seat passengers that need their asses warm. You can get nit picky but this is a fantastic drivers car that you don't see nearly as frequent on the roads as many of the others.
Pros: Its quickness and looks.
Cons: There were quite a few problems (most little things) when I first got the car. A hesitation problem I had to take the car in 3 times before it was properly fixed. It was a computer problem.
Advice: Get ready to have fun and get lots of looks.I actually bought my IS300 a few years ago(2001) and I have had very good luck with it. It has an incredibly smooth shifting of gears and just feels like a million bucks. I have had so many people come up to me and compliment me on the looks of the car. Lexus staff are always very nice and would go out of their way to safisfy the customer.
Pros: Smooth, powerful I6 engine and wonderful manual transmission clutch/shift linkage.
Cons: Hood prop rod and space-intruding trunk hinges.
Advice: Get the limited slip differential (and vehicle stability control for the automatic transmission model)First 3,500 miles in my '04 IS300 manual have been sheer magic. Absolutely fun to drive and drive hard. Outstanding brakes, ride, handling, steering, engine, and transmission. She could use more power (supercharger?), a 6-speed manual transmission (just to keep up with its competitors), fold-down rear seats, and a deeper overdrive (to lower RPMs at highway speeds for better fuel economy), but she shines as a serious all around high performance sport sedan. Great family sedan. Reliable. Stylish. Space efficient. Great car for the money!!! Loved my wife's '03 IS300 automatic so I had to get a manual for me!
Pros: quiet yet taught ride
Cons: could be little bigger in length and width
Advice: you should like to drive a 5 speedNice and tight yet smooth on the curves