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Lexus ES 350, Car Leasing, Car Buying, Sedan
#542 of 2857 Lexus ES 350 Serious Transmission Issue and “Lexus Experience”
Apr 04, 2007 (7:17 pm)
I bought my Lexus ES350 March 10th from a Northern Virginia Dealer. This is after careful (!) research between BMW 328xi and Benz C350! Lexus seems top of the line for the price and comfort. We drove the Black/Cashmere ES 350 with Navigation the same evening after 4 hours with 32 miles on it!
The next day (within 24 hours) we drove it on the highway with whole family (wife, and two boys who were excited on the voice of Navigator!) and merged from I-66 East to 495 North (Left Merge. If you live in DC area and everyone knows this is one of the suicidal spots in DC area), the car just broke!!!!!!!!!!! The car stopped in the middle of the highway with the engine on but just revving but not moving!!! Very scary….. Trucks whizzed by and I could roll it to the left shoulder and the family was scared like hell (Still they are!). In the shoulder, as soon as I put gas on the pedal transmission slipped and never moved, but just revs as if the car is on park.
Managed to tow the car to the dealer and got the loaner. (Long story short)
The dealer did not come back for the 48 hours about the status of the car and the alternative. They know it is a transmission problem but do not know how to deal with the issue! The next day they offered me a replacement ES350 with the same color due to arrive in two weeks. I met the manager and asking for what Lexus is saying about this, he mentioned Lexus would stick to their warranty and will repair my broken car and at his discretion he decided to give a replacement car. While I value his offering I still want to get the Lexus stand on this. No one could believe the Lexus broke in 50 miles.
When I called Lexus Customer Appreciation and explain the story the Rep gasped when heard my story. Nobody ever heard of it a Lexus broken in less than 50 miles!! But at the end of the conversation she was trying to end the conversation by saying that Lexus will send me an apology letter! I made sure this has to be escalated and I need to know where Lexus is standing on the ES350 transmission issue!! I got a call from the East Coast Customer Service Manager and she did not know how to handle me. I kept on saying ‘I don’t know what to ask, but I lost confidence in ES350’. She did not accept other than apologize. There is some serious problem in that transmission. She said that, I have to come up with an answer what compensation I am looking for and hung up the phone!
I decided to ask for a different model of Lexus with the same price, or I do not want any Lexus car!!! I can not run rest of my life in a car which is not thoroughly tested, not backed by the manufacturer and risking my family’s life on it. Lexus refused and their offer was 10,000 miles free service! The price of 4 people live is $39.95!!! It was such a humiliating offer. They did not offer any extended warranty or never even ready to comfort my feelings. Basically they sold me a Lemon and not accepting it. One favor they did was they released me from that car, not forcing me to buy that. (Lemon laws are written in favor of the manufacturers in most of the states including VA!)
It is certain that 2007 ES350 has severe transmission issues which Lexus knows (there are couple of posting in the internet but not as bad as this) and I AM ALIVE to tell this. If anything would have happened on that highway Lexus would have said a stupid driver died with his family in an accident and put everything under the rugs! After three weeks I saw the car on the bed still waiting for parts to arrive from Japan. They never tried to increase my confidence level on ES 350 or Lexus brand.If you want to try your luck go ahead.
My e-mail id is (chidacargmail.com) and feel free to contact me about the experience!!
#543 of 2857 Re: Lexus ES 350 Serious Transmission Issue and “Lexus Experience” [chida]
Apr 04, 2007 (10:18 pm)
Thanks God You all are OK.
I'll probably wait and see what the 08 model has to bring.
Have you decided what would be your next car?
Have you looked into GS350, but I can imagine after what happened it would not be an easy call to get back in the Lexus with that scary thought on the mind.
#544 of 2857 Re: Lexus ES 350 Serious Transmission Issue and “Lexus Experience” [chida]
Apr 05, 2007 (10:19 am)
Did you try to switch to the manual mode (by turning the stick to left). I am interested to know the cause of what happened. Will Lexus reveal that if I ask. Never heard of transmission slipping like that. Consumer Reports has rated ES350 transmission as Excellent. Generally, except some cases reported in early production, transmission seems to work well.
#545 of 2857 Lexus ES-350 buy, Japanese culture and get a map
Apr 05, 2007 (6:31 pm)
Bought a new ES-350 yesterday. Got 10% off MSRP which worked for me, I'm not a price hound. If you need a deeper discount you should be shopping for a Hyundai. Skipped the $4000.00 Nav/audio upgrade. Give me a break. The GPS is great if you want to go in circles or search for entrances to the highway that were closed years ago. Get a map. Just came back from an extended trip to Japan. When you visit the manufacturing floor with the workers you know why Japanese cars are the best in the world. It's part of their culture, the bar is set at the top. Good enough is not an option. Perfection is the norm and strived for in every area. My Toyota Landcruiser has 192k on it and still runs great. Looking forwarding to owning this Lexus.
#546 of 2857 ES350 price in North California
Apr 05, 2007 (8:22 pm)
I plan to purchase the ES350 soon. Anybody can share their dealer experience and price with me.
Thank you for your information in advanced.
#548 of 2857 Re: Lexus ES 350 Serious Transmission Issue and “Lexus Experience” [jaspalb
Apr 06, 2007 (1:44 pm)
Yes. Tried the manual switch also. The frustration is not the issue how Lexus handled it. Will Lexus reveal? Good question. Give a call! They know the answer for mine. No one had never seen in their lifetime, Lexus failed within 50 miles!!
#549 of 2857 Service away from purchase dealer
Apr 06, 2007 (3:13 pm)
Considering buying a ES350 in Dallas as the one dealer in the state of Oklahoma is not very competitive. Concerned that might not get the best service in Okla City if purchase out of town. Has anyone experienced any problems with service from non-selling dealers? Quote in Dallas area is about $34500 for a MSRP price of $38157. Is at least $500 better than OKC.
#550 of 2857 Lexus ES350 Serious Transmission Problems
Apr 10, 2007 (12:33 pm)
Had a new transmission installed in our two month old ES350 with 2,400 miles on the car. Replacement working well but engine has a knock / ticking sound upon morning cold start up. Local Lexus service writer said it was the "fuel injection". Funny, after the first free oil change, it has gotten louder and longer lasting. People ask what is wrong with your car - I tell them it's a Lexus. Friend, in the market, bought a BMW 530 AWD instead. If you want more information about the ES350 and it's woes (and praises), go to clublexus.com.
#551 of 2857 Re: ES350 price in North California [ylin1900]
Apr 10, 2007 (12:37 pm)
Check out e-bay motors. Dealers are offering quite a few low mileage ES350s with replacement transmissions at a decent price. But your title will be notated that it is a manufacturers buyback (in order to get complaining customers out of the defective cars under lemon law).