Last post on Dec 12, 2012 at 10:05 PM
You are in the Lexus LS 400/LS 430
What is this discussion about?
Lexus LS 400, Lexus LS 430, Sedan
#4441 of 8462 2004 LS430 redesign
Aug 05, 2003 (1:17 pm)
The pictures of the redesigned '04 LS430 show the same trend Lexus took in the '93 and '98 redesigns or touch-ups. Exterior and interior changes appear subtle to the untrained eyes, but the *felt* changes are real indeed. The '98 2nd generation model had such outstanding changes from the '95-'97 year that you'd only notice if you drive the two versions, and not merely from looking at pictures. 5-speed VVT-i tranny, front dual headlights, wood-leather steering and shift knob, hp boost by 30hp, and torque boost by equal amounts, self-levelling HID lights, rear center seat head rest, hard disk-based NAV, etc.... These are REAL changes that made the post-98 versions more elegant (in my opinion) compared to the pre-'98 versions. I predict the "subtle" 04 changes will follow similar pattern - understated changes but with REAL substance, much along the Japanese culture of understated yet unmistakable quality and refinement unlike the "in-your-face" Mercedes or BMW designs.
Here is a potential list of features you will not *see* in the 2004 LS 430 pictures:
New NAv software
These features are not apparent looking at pictures, but they are real changes. Something tells me the MY '06/'07 full redesign (3 years after '04) will make these changes even more real in retrospect, in same fashion as the '01 vs '98 redesign changes were much different aestetically and quantitatively.
Aug 05, 2003 (1:24 pm)
The "real" changes other than cosmetics you speak of have for the most part been confirmed. They are (note there will not be AWD):
1. 17" standard wheels with 18" option
2. Gauge needles changed from red to white
3. Generation 4 nav system
4. 6-speed auto transmission w/Sequential Shift
5. Adaptive front lighting
6. Driver/passenger knee airbags
7. Tire pressure monitor
8. Rear seat vanity mirrors and swivel reading lights
9. Moonroof and power rear shade now standard
10. Optional Smart Key
11. Optional pre-collision system
12. Optional back-up camera and Bluetooth wireless (w/nav)
13. Optional rear heated/cooled seats
14. Optional satellite radio
#4443 of 8462 thanks lenscap
Aug 05, 2003 (1:45 pm)
These are wonderful features in the 2004 release. Wow ! They are even more than I imagined will be on the car this early, but better now than later. It surely makes the '04 a much better buy, imo, than the '03, assuming the price points are not too far apart (<$5K, give or take, I imagine).
I am really going after the 2007 LS 430/500 at which time I would *grandfather* my current '99 LS to my (then) 18-yr-old daughter for her freshman year in College. That's the plan/goal.
Any thoughts on the actual aestetics of the 2004 LS ? Like/dislike ? I hope we do not hear it looks like the S-class again. That is something best left out of this forum.
Aug 05, 2003 (3:11 pm)
You are welcome for the 2004 info. Wow - your daughter will be lucky. If I knew of a girl in college with an LS I may have tried to date her just for her car.
I love the current LS and think what they did to the 2004 is subtle yet just enough to keep it fresh. I'll have to see the front in person, but I'm sure I'll like it.
Aug 05, 2003 (5:18 pm)
I agree with lenscap about the freshening. I think the little changes they are making will be subtle, but still an improvement.
I've always thought the front headlights should look a little more sculptured, and I was actually a bit surprised to see the lack of LEDs and the orange stripe on the back lights. Part of this is that I was looking at pre-owned versions of the BMW 740il at the time, and the orange stripe was the only change from one model year to the next (2000-2001?).
Aug 05, 2003 (6:18 pm)
Thanks for your pointers on the tail lights and new features on the 2004.
Where have you picked up all the data on the 2004? I'm glad about the tire pressure monitor, the 18" wheel option and the rear shade. Actually I like everything you listed. I'm curious to see the new Nav system and to hear the satellite radio.
Right now I'm seriously shopping SUV's and have decided to put off a late year 2003 purchase and wait for the 2004's. Heavy favorite remains the LX and I'm trying to decide on buying vs. leasing. So since you are so up to date on 2004 LS I'm hoping you know what is going on with the LX. I'll trade the night vision option for the back-up camera option in less time than it'll take you to blink your eye. Do you have any data on the 2004 LX470??
OAC3 - I was starting to miss you. Glad to see you back in action.
Aug 05, 2003 (7:12 pm)
Whatever you decide on the LX, don't lease. The residual even with 10K a year was no better than 47% at Ray Catena. At that level, you can lease a more expensive Range Rover (although noisier and smaller inside) for much less. Residual on the 2004 Range Rover will be 61% or higher. Similar residual on the Cayenne Turbo.
Speaking of the backup camera. I have to say the current parking assist with the positional indicators is far more advance than a single LED in the S500/S600. There is no way to know that your back right is near a vulnerable spot on the S. With the LS, you can clearly see where the danger is.
Aug 05, 2003 (7:22 pm)
I think I read somewhere reputable, but I can't remember where, that the 04 LX will have a backup camera. But didn't the current LX come out in 98...are we going to get an all-new one in 05 maybe? Suggest you check the LX boards on clublexus if there isn't good info on edmunds.
The laundry list of 04 LS features probably came from autospies: http://www.imakenews.com/autospies/e_article000168284.cfm
Aug 05, 2003 (7:40 pm)
I'm amazed at that residual as the residual on my current $62k LX is $38k or 61% after 3 years and 36k miles. In fact when I ran the numbers a few years ago it was more prudent to lease and buy after 3 years rather than buy upfront. It was a close call and I assumed a conservative interest rate (3 year CD rate at the time) on what I would be passing up if I laid out the money upfront. When I get serious about it I'll let you know the residuals I get. Right now its a late year item with a delivery in late December or early January.
Traditionally LX470's and TLC's have always held their values well. I'll have to check the prices of used (sorry, pre-owned) LX470's on Edmunds.
Aug 05, 2003 (7:54 pm)
I was mistaken - my buyout is $36k which is still 58% of sticker. Now I quickly checked Edmunds TMV's and actually the 2000 TLC and LX470 sell for more than the 2000 RR. In fact the Lexus resales around $4k more while the TLC is about $1k more. If I remember right the RR was several thousand more than the LX in 2000. So it seems the resale of an LX has held up far better than a Range Rover. I'll doublecheck but I think I got it right.
The TLC and LX are in perfect step with each other. Everyone always says the Lexus is $10k more but load up the TLC the way most dealers bring them in and your within $3k or so of the LX - at least that was the case when I was shopping back then.