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To Buy Or Not To Buy Used Rx300


txexgal
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I am considering buying a Used Lexus RX300 with anywhere between 40K and 60K in mileage for around $19K-$23K (probably a 2000 or 2001). I'm still shopping for one and have read a large number of the postings on this site.

Considering that issues posted may reflect a small number of afflicted cars versus the majority (Ie: transmission issues on the AWD), I am weighing how much to take into account the known issues, versus taking the issues with a grain of salt, recognizing they could be issues that afflict any number of cars made by any manufacturer regardless of model.... Does anyone have actual stats on how many cars this has affected?

At the end of it all, would most of you buy a RX300 and would you say its a reliable car that requires little maintenance? Or will be taking this car in for servicing issues frequently after 75K? Is this car going to last 150K miles should I choose to drive it that long? Am I better off buying a used 4Runner--does anyone know of known issues of the 4Runner vs the RX?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

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If you've gleaned this site as thoroughly as you say you have, then you already know the bulk of the major issues:

1. AWD increases your chances for transmission failure.

2. The various oxygen sensors typically begin failing before 70,000 miles. You'll be able to clean some of them but will also have to replace some of them.

3. Check the exhaust manifold carefully. The original ones tend to crack.

4. The rear oil seal is prone to developing leaks around 70,000 miles.

5. The strut mount rubber bushings are improperly shaped, resulting in a Technical Service Bulletin and they should be replaced with the improved design.

If you can convince Lexus to cover the various known issues above as I did (both before and after warranty expiration), you'll save yourself many thousands of dollars in repair costs.

If you cannot perform routine maintenance yourself, caring for this vehicle over its life will be relatively expensive. If your primary goal is to keep your ongoing maintenance costs under control, you'll be better off with a Toyota 4Runner assuming you pick one that has been properly cared for. Insist on having the maintenance history, and try to limit the mileage more towards the 40K side rather than the 60K side.

My wife is approaching 81,000 miles on her 2000 RX300 AWD now. All things being equal, we'll keep it until 125,000 to 130,000 miles and then get rid of it since at that point it makes financial sense to take the depreciation hit. We won't be purchasing another RX.

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We have a 99 RX (not AWD) with 91K on it. Initially I did not realize how much maintenance would be required with these vehicles...and it was a bit overwhelming. However, if you don't mind getting your hands dirty you can do the vast majority of the work yourself. Also, maintenance items can usually be handled by Toyota or some qualified independent mechanic. No, you don't get all of the Lexus ammenities (free loaner, awesome dealership, etc.) but you do get your maintenance done cheaper. For example, we need to have all of the belts & water pump changed for our 90K service....there is an independent mechanic who will do it for about half the cost of the Lexus dealership. I have used him before and he only works on Toyota & Lexus. So, all things considered, I would probably purchase our RX again. However, when it is time for a new vehicle (we plan on keeping ours until about 200K miles..Lord willing), we won't be getting another RX...just because we want something bigger. I would happily buy a new RX330. Yes, I have had a lot of issues with our RX, but we have an extended warranty and all things considered, our vehicle at 90K is much nicer than my sister's 2002 Tahoe with 50K....no rattles...leather is in good shape...etc. So, yes, they do have their issues...just like any car...but if you make yourself aware of what could happen, you can make plans to take care of those things. The transmission issue does make me scratch my head though. These vehicles should not have tranny problems. :chairshot: If you get one...do the maintenance. It should save you much grief later on down the line.

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We have a 99 RX (not AWD) with 91K on it.  Initially I did not realize how much maintenance would be required with these vehicles...and it was a bit overwhelming.  However, if you don't mind getting your hands dirty you can do the vast majority of the work yourself.  Also, maintenance items can usually be handled by Toyota or some qualified independent mechanic.  No, you don't get all of the Lexus ammenities (free loaner, awesome dealership, etc.) but you do get your maintenance done cheaper.  For example, we need to have all of the belts & water pump changed for our 90K service....there is an independent mechanic who will do it for about half the cost of the Lexus dealership.  I have used him before and he only works on Toyota & Lexus.  So, all things considered, I would probably purchase our RX again.  However, when it is time for a new vehicle (we plan on keeping ours until about 200K miles..Lord willing), we won't be getting another RX...just because we want something bigger.  I would happily buy a new RX330.  Yes, I have had a lot of issues with our RX, but we have an extended warranty and all things considered, our vehicle at 90K is much nicer than my sister's 2002 Tahoe with 50K....no rattles...leather is in good shape...etc.  So, yes, they do have their issues...just like any car...but if you make yourself aware of what could happen, you can make plans to take care of those things.  The transmission issue does make me scratch my head though.  These vehicles should not have tranny problems.  :chairshot:  If you get one...do the maintenance.  It should save you much grief later on down the line.

Dont buy it if it is AWD. You would be better off with a Toyota 4Runner Limited. probably just as nice and a lot more realiable.

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