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Nwahs

Buying A Gs300 - General Advice Needed

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Hi - I'm new here, just joined today.

I'll be buying a USED GS300 for my wife in a few months, and want to do my research first.

We're looking at 98-2001, but concentrating on 99-2000 for $$ reasons.

Is there any year (or period of a year) to avoid? If so, why?

What things specific to the GS300 should I look at during inspections/test drives/etc?

I'd really like to get a navigation system. If I buy one without it, can I buy one and install it (plug and play)?

Thanks in advance for all the advise.

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If you are wanting a GS with Navi (and I highly recommend it) then you should concentrate on looking for a 2001. I believe this is the first year for Navi with the DVD based system instead of the hard drive based system. There is a lot more info on the newer system. And, you can upgrade to the newest year by simply changing out the DVD disk. I have a 2001 RX with Navi and love it. My wife and I use it a lot more that we thought we would. If you get the old system then I am afraid you will be disappointed in the performance. Just my 2 cents. I know it will cost more, but I believe it is worth it.

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New update. I checked out the Lexus website and it says that the Navi system in 2000 was DVD based. I did not know that. Check it out. To see the difference, go to a dealer and look at a pre-owned car with the older system then check out one with the newer system. There is no comparison.

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Thanks Tom for the heads up. Via the search function, I'd seen that the DVD started on the 2001s, but I guess not. Can anybody else confirm?

I'll have to go look at some, but wanted to get more "ammo" before I go to the dealers.

Also, anybody have any advise for buying off eBay???

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yes watch what you buy when it comes to cars off ebay.check the seller out real good and look at all his feedback before buying from him.my freind just got ripped from a guy on ebay that sold him a real lemon!!trans went the second day it was delivered to him!and the guy had alot of great feedback.after alot of complaints the guy finally sent my freind a new tranny!just becareful and good luck :D

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The Lexus website is wrong, the 2000 navi is NOT DVD based. I drove a whole bunch of 2000 GS400s and LS400s and the nav is the hard drive unit just like 98-99. The DVD nav came out in 2001.

I would avoid a 98 since it was the first model year, but otherwise no real problems!

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Thanks Steve. I was going to avoid a 98 for that very reason.

Guess I'll check out the NAV differences, and see if that makes a difference to me.

And I'll see if nav is worth the price difference.

Thanks, and keep those opinions coming!

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Its just a whole lot easier to update the DVD system, doesn't cost less if you do it yourself its just easier (both parts are $250).

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Are you saying I can just replace the hard drive parts of the "old" nav system to turn it into a "new" DVD system, for $500?

If so, I think that's the ticket!

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For $250 ;) you can't turn the HD unit into the DVD unit, you can just upgrade the HD to have all the latest maps and POIs. The interface will be the same. Also the HD unit can't incorporate as many POIs as the DVD unit. For the HD its about 1.5 million, for the DVD its currently at 5 million.

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I purchased my 2000 GS400 a year ago. Off the top of my head, here are some things you should look at:

1. Front bumper/grill/hood is prone to rock chips, if it is really bad, have the dealer repaint/replace.

2. When driving, turn everything down and listen for excessive raddling coming from inside cabin (mostly from moonroof/glove box). Also, listen for rattling coming from steering wheel.

3. Make sure headlights does not have excessive moisture...if so, get dealer to replace.

4. When in Drive, check the RPM for low idle, which will cause the car to idle rough. (Note: The rough idle will go away if the AC is turned on, I think also if the lights are turned on.) So, turn off lights and AC and make sure car idles smoothly. This problem doesn't occur in all cars.

These are some of the minor issues I've come across either from personal experience or reading other owners' experiences. Hope this helps.

Good Luck.

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I believe what people are calling a hard drive is a CD-based system while the later systems are DVD based. A single DVD will hold much more data than a CD so that you can probably get the nav data for both Canada and the US on one DVD where it might take 9 CD's just to do the US.

If a Navigation system is important to you, get one with a DVD-based system.

I'd look for a one-owner car with a solid maintenance record. Paying a little more up front could save you a bundle later on. Also insist on or buy a CarFax on the vehicle because you'd be amazed what you can discover with a CarFax. If you buy the car from a dealer, make him pay for the CarFax and show you the maintenance records for the car.

A CarFax will show you how many previoius owners, any accidents, whether the car was privately owned, leased, owned by a business or a fleet car, if the car has been repossed, where the car came from, etc. Obviously, you want no part of fleet cars or any vehicle where many non-owners have driven it.

Don't even think about E-Bay unless the car is local to you so you can check it out.

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I wouldn't be so quick to discount ebay. There are several companies that for $100 or so will go out and do a detailed examination of the car cosmetically and mechanically and report back to you with a ton of pictures. Some of these reports highlight as much as every rock chip and are extremely thorough. BIG savings on ebay...

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You can also go to Lexus USA and do a state search of dealer inventories for the car you are interested in. It will give you an idea about what a dealer might ask for a car.

A 2001 GS300 from a dealer will probably have been a lease car with two owners, something over 30,000 miles and a prices of a little under $30K. The dealer might also have bought the car at auction because most cars that have been leased twice are auctioned off.

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I disagree. A 2001 from a dealer is more likely to be a 3 year lease car with one leasee. Usually CPO dealer cars are only one owner, 1.5 year leases are extremely rare, and Lexus as a point of fact doesn't usually lease used cars. The specifics for a CPO car are very strict.

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Yeah, you're right about the lease. I was thinking of the 2000 model year where many of them were sold in 1999. Since Lexus dealers don't have CarFax options on their websites, go to some of the California Mercedes dealer sites and check out the links to CarFax they usually provide for the cars they're selling.

You'll learn a lot. The car you're interested in could have been originally leased in Georgia, leased again to someone in Colorado where it was repossed and then auctioned off in Texas to a dealer in California. It may have even been in an accident somewhere along the way.

I don't buy used cars but if I did, I'd go to a local Lexus dealer and do what I said before...get a CarFax and a maintenance history.

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This thread may be a little worn out, but just a note on Ebay buying. I purchased a car off of ebay, but it was only 70 miles away so I was able to drive to the dealer and test-drive the Lexus before purchasing. I was actually able to trade off my 2001 Escape for the car, which I got at wholesale. I would never consider buying an eBay car even with a $100 inspection. An aquaintance of mine had an ebay vehicle inspected and it came back clean but when the vehicle was received it was very dissapointing. Apparantly the the inspector did not have, shall we say, "discriminating" taste -an attribute that most Lexus buyers naturally posess. That being said, there are some fantastic deals on ebay, but according to my ebay dealer, most of the sales are done over the phone and aren't reflected in the ebay ad, so don't let the ebay sales prices be your first guide to realistic prices.

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Well I bought my 2000 gs 300 platuim ed 1 year ago, it had 30k miles on it I paid 24k, a rare black on black.

Best car I will ever have, after 18k miles zero problems

I do have a ?

I want to take it to the dealer and have it checked out before I lose the 50k warrenty, what should I have done???

thanks

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Hi - I'm new here, just joined today.

I'll be buying a USED GS300 for my wife in a few months, and want to do my research first.

We're looking at 98-2001, but concentrating on 99-2000 for $$ reasons.

Is there any year (or period of a year) to avoid? If so, why?

What things specific to the GS300 should I look at during inspections/test drives/etc?

I'd really like to get a navigation system. If I buy one without it, can I buy one and install it (plug and play)?

Thanks in advance for all the advise.

I think this thread may be a bit off topic. Im days (I hope) away from getting my first GS300. Only that I see that in 2001, according to LexusOwnersClub.co.uk, there a are a slew of changes between 2000 and 2001 model. are these changes only for EUR, and not US? I gotta have my e-shift!!!

MeanDorris

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OK, I'm back after a hiatus (school finishing up). We've got the cash for the car, and have settled on a 2001 due to the improvements made from 2000-2001.

We've looked at a few gs300s at dealers, and some questions have come up:

How much would a replacement taillight (the red/orange/clear part, not the bulb) cost from a dealer? From eBay?

Should the hood have the VIN number on it? I couldn't find it on both cars I looked at.

Should the metal body section in front of the radiator have the VIN number on it? I couldn't find it on both cars I looked at.

One car I looked at had original "fenders" (not sure if this is the right name for the part above the front wheels) based on the VINs, but the two main bolts visible fron under the hood appear to have been removed (as if it were in an accident). Any legitimate reasons for this (suspension replacement, 19" wheel install, etc)???

Can I get replacement/upgraded Nav DVDs from somewhere other than the dealer? (a friend has a DVD burner)

Thanks for the help!

-Nwahs

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