Last post on Jun 24, 2013 at 1:51 PM
You are in the Lexus RX 300/330/350
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Lexus RX 300, SUV
#2093 of 9498 My Experience with the RX 300
May 31, 2001 (4:59 pm)
I have never written into a discussion group in the past, but I've been an avid follower of this board for 5 months. I want to thank everyone for their invaluable input and education, especially Tonychrys. Please excuse me if I get a little wordy. I purchased a 2001 RX300 AWD w/o Nav, but fully loaded ($40,601 list after pkg. discount) in March. My wife and I are extremely pleased with the vehicle and have absolutely no complaints. We traded in a 1997 Mercury Mountaineer, and the RX300 is by far the best car/suv we have ever owned. We purchased the car from Lexus of Watertown, MA and found the salesman, Steve Bennett, to be a knowledgeable, no pressure person to deal with. He put on no "dog and pony show", was real low key, handled everything himself, and had no hidden add-ons or surprises. We got a fair trade-in and a very competitive $37,500 cost. We also visited Lexus of Norwood, MA, a dealership that does 3 to 4 times more business than Watertown, and we found the experience to be the opposite with high pressure, a salesman who couldn't, or wasn't allowed to, make a decision, and a sales manager who got involved right away and tried to convince us we'd be doing ourselves a favor by buying a car from them. After 3 hours we left there without a solid price, but had enough information to realize that there would be about a $150 difference between the price they were going to charge for paperwork costs, and what we would pay at Watertown. This nice bonus goes right in the owner's pocket, and most people don't find out about this cost until they are closing the deal.
I was educated by this discussion board about the Goodyear Integrity tires, and part of my deal was the agreement to swap out the Goodyears for Michelins as first choice, and Bridgestones as second choice. The salesman waited for over a month after we took delivery and checked all the RX300's delivered to the dealership and found that none were coming in with the Michelins, some had Bridgestone's, and most were Goodyears. They swapped out the Goodyears for brand new Bridgestones after we had over 1300 miles on the car. The first service inspection was done as a house call with the appointment set up the day we picked up the car.
I took Tonychrys' advice and bought the Husky floor liners and these were great protection during this past messy NE Winter. Speaking of protection, I sent in an order to Zaino Bros. for their various polishing and cleaning supplies. I found them an easy company to deal with, and an email I sent to Sal Zaino for some information was answered in the same day. I'm just waiting for a warm non-rainy weekend to put the full treatment on the car. I've used the car wash a couple of times and I've been impressed with the results.
Thanks again for the help and education. There is nowhere else that a consumer can get unbiased and truthful information, both pro and con, about a major car purchase. If any of you are reading this and trying to decide between a Lexus RX300 and other competing models, I can only say that we are not sorry we chose the RX 300. For the few people who wrote in and tried to compare the Highlander with the RX 300, and try to point out a large price difference, I advise you to look long and hard at the warranties and service, plus add in all the positives previously listed on this board that you won't find in the Highlander, and you will find you are comparing apples and oranges. When we were shopping around we test drove the Highlander and found it to be a good car. When we sat down to negotiate, we found that there was no negotiation. Supply and demand at that time led to sticker price and only fully loaded vehicles were being brought in. The salesman's attitude was if we didn't buy one from him, someone coming in the door behind us would. We ended up paying $1000 more for the RX300. End of story.
#2094 of 9498 Re: My Experience with the RX 300
May 31, 2001 (5:25 pm)
Sounds like you did your homework and things turned out great. I'm glad you and your wife found a vehicle that suits your needs.
Just as an FYI, I called Lexus Corporate about a month ago regarding the factory tires. The 2001 Rex only comes from the factory with either the Goodyears or Bridgestones, and get this: there's no way to tell which ones! Yup, they said they put both on in the assembly line, no rhyme or reason. So you did real good by holding out for the Bridgestones, I can't wait to get rid of these GY Integricraps.
Enjoy the miles and good luck.
#2095 of 9498 Lexus Does Try Harder
May 31, 2001 (5:34 pm)
After several months and several trips to the dealer, we think our rumbling noise at idle has been solved or at least reduced to almost imperceptible levels. At the last service, the dealer replaced all three engine mounts. This seems to have cured the problem but they said we won't know for sure until next winter. Apparantly the engine mounts are liquid filled and when the weather gets cold they tend to stiffen up and may result in a little more engine noise and vibration. All in all, Lexus did try very hard to make us happy and they did. I have nothing but praise for our dealer, Bobby Rahal Lexus in Mechanicsburg, PA and the service manager, Lynn Yoder.
#2096 of 9498 Follow up to SRT engine mods
May 31, 2001 (5:57 pm)
Some more info from SRT:
The installation depends on your particular dealer, there are a few that are OK to do the install, however unfortunately most are still being cautious.
HFI: $675 - 4-6 weeks
Stage 1 SC: ~$4,250 - 3 months.
Stage 2 SC: ~$5,750 - 3 months.
You will be surprised as to how strong the RX engine is, and the tranny is bullet proof as it is designed to handle in the neighborhood of towing +4,000lbs.
I can't wait to get our RX to the times of 0-60mph under the 5sec. range, makes me salivate every time I think of the 4WD doing a power launch.
I can't wait....
Jun 01, 2001 (6:42 am)
I have been reading a lot about owners changing their tires, I would like to know why and what am I not noticing about mine. I just got back from a 2000 mile trip interstate driving all conditions,at 75 mph onmy goodyear integrity tires and the car was great! What am I missing here, not being a technical person. I really enjoy the information on this site, thanks for responding.
Jun 01, 2001 (7:09 am)
If you are happy with the tires, that's all that counts.
What some of us don't like about the GYs is that they are designed more for comfort than handling performance. They are made with a very compliant sidewall construction. What this means is that the wall of the tire (where the lettering is) has a lot of "give" and can flex. This allows the tire to absorb some of the road bumps and adds to the ride comfort. The downside is that this "flexing" also makes handling a little sloppy. The vehicle can tend to "wander" in high cross-winds, taking curves at high speeds, and other hard-driving situations.
For day-to-day driving I'm sure the GY's are ok. Some of us just want better and more predicatable handling under all driving conditions.
Hope this helps, and enjoy the miles.
Jun 01, 2001 (7:51 am)
Its funny that the people on this board seem to prefer the Bridgestones over the GY's and on the Highlander board (basically same vehicle) people seem to prefer the GY's. Maybe I'll try the Michelins.
#2100 of 9498 Strut problem I keep reading about
Jun 01, 2001 (9:14 am)
I have just over 12K miles on my 2000 RX. In the last couple of months I noticed that the car feels like the shocks/suspension are gone, especially at the back. It is almost painful to go over any bumps or potholes and I am also getting some of that thumping sound that people were talking about (although it is the loss of comfort that is most noticeable rather than the sound). Could the strut mounting/strut problem cause that? Or is it something else?
Jun 01, 2001 (11:26 am)
izabelajohn, bad strut mounts make for a thump from front/rear or both.......haven't checked to see if there is a TSB on the struts, but when the mounts on my wife's 99 RX were replaced, service also replaced rear struts. service techs comment to me was that "they" (don't know if he merely meant my dealership or Lexus in general) had started replacing struts at the same time as mount replacement since apparently the struts are going fairly quickly. 12k sounds a little quick, but that's really the only thing that would markedly degrade ride comfort without changing appearance of vehicle (broken spring would sag visibly at that corner). should be warranty replacment for you.
#2102 of 9498 Owner Maintenance?
Jun 01, 2001 (11:39 am)
I'm considering an RX300 in the next six months. I have always done my own maintenance (oil changes, tire rotations, etc.) My vehicles have always been Ford and a couple GM.
Are there any tricks to RX300? Filters easy to remove, etc? Must the dealer do routine maintenance to keep the warranty valid?